Kids, Mom diary

How I organize my day with kids and work

I value productivity, but I need balance too. Left to my own devices, I would never sit down, forget to eat and run full force at a project until I see its completion, but that is not how motherhood works! The days that I commit to projects and writing, I feel the tug of quality time with the kids. When everything is all about the kids all the time, I feel stifled. That’s where balance comes in and it’s difficult to achieve.

I’m not a routine person and every day looks a little different around here, but I’ve had some questions on how I blog and stay home with the kids. I don’t do it perfectly, but I’m actually settling into a better balance lately. Here’s what my day looked like yesterday by the hour.

7 a.m. | Get it together

Marcello wakes up with our kids around 6:30 and lets me sleep in. (Yes, he deserves a parade with rose petals for this!) Today I got up a little after 7 because the kids were yelling like maniacs.

I’m usually pretty worthless when I first wake up, but today I immediately took a shower because my hair was too embarrassing for words. Clara tried to comb my wet hair and in 30 seconds had the comb knotted, matted and stuck in my hair. Marcello had to pick it out piece by piece. So that took up that time slot!

Daily quiet time and devotional routine

8 a.m. | Quiet time

Quiet time is something I battle to do almost everyday. I try to do it when Marcello takes Luca to school because he takes all the kids with him. That’s 15 whole minutes alone! But I immediately start thinking of all the pressing things I should be doing instead. And that is exactly why I keep a to-do list right beside me so I can write them down and stay focused.

I like to start with scripture. Currently my Monday morning Bible study is going through one chapter a week. This week is Psalm 23 (“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want…”). I’m trying to memorize it (which I’m terrible at) so I spent some time doing that. I spent time in prayer, asking for forgiveness, asking God to plan my day, asking for specific requests from loved ones and a prayer for my husband.

When I have time, I also like to read a chapter of a book. Right now I’m reading Devotional Classics that my best friend, Ashby, gave me. It’s so special because she gave me her dog-eared, coffee-stained, well-used copy to keep for my birthday. It’s a treasure.

I did this with Marcello working on the computer nearby and Clara sitting beside me asking what I am reading and coloring. God really does provide this time for me with relatively fuss-free kids.

Daily routine with kids and work

9 a.m. | Engage kids

I’m not sure where this hour went. Clara and I made eggs while Adriano played animals in the playroom. We all ate together and talked. It’s important that I sit down with them and engage them. I can stay home with them and still not spend time with them. I have to be intentional. This also fills up their love tank so they’re not bothering me as much when I work.

work from home mom schedule and routine

10 a.m. | Work

I worked for a half hour or so (on this post!) and then Clara started bugging Adriano. So he started bugging me. Then they both were bugging me. I found some stickers, turned on some music and now I’m hoping for the best. I probably got half of this post written. I will still have to take more pictures and edit all of them later.

exercise - work from home mom schedule

11 a.m. | Exercise, lunch, chore of the day

I squeezed in a 15 minute workout. I used to get irritated that they were always on top of me and in my way when I exercised. Now I’ve just embraced it. I tell them if they get in the way off my kicking legs and flailing arms it’s probably gonna hurt!

The kids ate (again). My father-in-law brought over some lentil soup. Yay!

Next, I checked my list to see what my one thing to clean that day was. Laundry. Nooooo. I picked up through all three bedrooms and put away what I already had washed. I threw another load in the washer. And never did put it in the dryer. Hmmmm.

costco - Daily routine with kids and work

 12 p.m. | Errand

I changed clothes quickly and tried to curl my hair. I vowed to watch a make-up tutorial and finally get my hair done, like I do every day. Clara put stickers all over the doors.

I had put off going to Costco for so long that now we needed all the things. I took a big risk taking Clara so close to nap time. I was hoping that she would fall asleep in the car on the way home and I could transfer her to the bed. She just moved to a big girl bed and nap time has become more difficult. It worked! But Costco took up waaaay to much of my time.

Nap - schedule with working from home and kids

1 p.m. | Work

Still at Costco. It’s almost 2 o’clock by the time we get back! No! I’m missing work time. When Clara naps, I let usually Adriano have some TV time or he plays Legos. This is my one real chance to make phone calls or do blog work, but there it goes!

Playtime - routine with work from home and kids

2 p.m. | Work

With not much time left with Clara’s nap, I did an Insta story on what I got on my Costco trip, a few of my favorite products and how much I budget. You can see it in my story highlights.

I never know how much time to devote to social media in regard to my blog. I don’t see huge traffic from Facebook or Instagram to the site, so I do it when I can squeeze it in. I’d rather have good content on my blog because I have control over that. I don’t have control over algorithms and changes on other venues.

home from school - work from home schedule for moms

3 p.m. | Kids & work

I picked Luca up from school. The kids raided the pantry because I finally went grocery shopping and then each kind of did their own thing. So I hopped on the computer and updated this post! Squeezing the work in where I can!

Reading a book - routine with work from home and kids

 4 p.m. | Get ready for company

In preparation for having friends over, Marcello and his parents were finishing food preparation. I cleaned the kitchen and picked up. You can read my 9 tricks to make hosting a snap here. It’s all about making it easy, stress-free and FUN!

After that was done I edited the photos I have taken so far and added them to the post.

friends over for dinner

5 p.m. | Family & friends dinner

We invited another generational family over who speak Italian! They have three kids and parents living with them as well! The kids swam and played. The adults yelled in Italian and had a great time. I wish I would have taken a picture outside, but it was our first time together, so it felt odd to be taking their picture, haha!

Bedtime - routine with work from home and kids

9 p.m. | Kids bed time

Whoa. Bedtime is 8:30 here, but we were having too much fun and didn’t realize what time it was! Our friends left. Marcello and I put the kids in bed. Fortunately they were tired and didn’t put up much of a fuss.

Marcello and I sat with his parents by the fire pit and chatted some more.

10:00 p.m. | Relax and prep for tomorrow

I picked out Luca’s clothes for the next day and cleaned up what was left of dinner. I tossed what was disposable and just rinsed what was not so I could wash it in the morning.

11 p.m. | Our bed time

Lights out!

It was a good day. Definitely not my most productive day and probably not even the day I would normally pick to do a typical schedule. But I guess that’s the point, every day looks a little different and you can’t plan exactly how it will go!

Even though I intended to finish this post before I went to bed last night, here I sit finishing it the next day at 9:30 in the morning during my work time. I’m going to hit “publish” and go take a walk with the kiddos.

Work from home with kids schedule

Kids planner - work from home schedule with kids

If this schedule sounds like something you’d like to try, I’ve got a printable copy for you.

Go check out my kids planner! >>

12 thoughts on “How I organize my day with kids and work

  1. Hi Kate!

    I’ve been following your blog for a while now, but this is my first time commenting!

    I wanted to thank you for being so open and sharing your life/faith/family/home tips and tricks. Your blog was the first one I came across a year or so ago when I was first looking at whether being a SAHM would be possible for us. Your post on budgeting and saving money stayed with me and we did several of the things you suggested. Now I’m so excited that we have decided I will stay at home for the next several years to raise our 16-month old son.

    I also love your parents-in-law’s story and I’m so happy God worked it out the way He did! I know your children are so excited to have their grandparents so close (my parents live just down the road from us too). Thank you again and Happy Mother’s Day!

    Kristen S.

  2. Hi Kristen! I’m so happy you decided to comment! Thank you so much for following along and for your kind words. It’s very encouraging for this introvert to keep putting herself out there! And what an amazing decision to stay home with your son! I’m so very happy for you. I’m going to do an updated version to that post soon, so give me any tips you have :) Sounds like we have a lot in common with close generational connections. I’m grateful my kids can have it like I did, even though I’m the one who moved away! I didn’t think that would happen. Happy Mother’s Day to you too! And again, I’m so happy to hear from you. Stay in touch!

  3. Thanks for sharing your day! I love getting a peek at another mom’s day-to-day. :) I’m currently doing a scrapbooking project called “Week in the Life,” so I’m documenting what we’re doing most of the time for the entire week with photos and journaling. My plan is to turn it into a small album later. I’ve done this project every year for the past 8 years (can’t believe it’s been that long!), and I really love it. It’s hard, and I usually fizzle out by the end of the week (fewer photos and words), but I’m always glad I did it. I follow along with the project’s creator, Ali Edwards, so I always do it whatever week she plans to do it, but it can be done any time. I find that when I take time to record things with photos and words, I’m much more likely to remember them – even if it’s just a photo on instagram with a short caption. Anyway, just thought I’d share that. :)

  4. Jenny, I love this!! That is so smart and will crazy fun to look at in 10 years! Thank you so much for sharing it. You’re reminding me that I’m a year and a half behind in my yearly albums. My Publisher shut down. Who do you use to make your books. I’m paralyzed by making a decision because I want all the books to look the same over they years. #ocdorganizingproblems

  5. Sounds like a pretty good day. (I’m learning that unproductive days can still be good days. Not that yours was unproductive!) I love how honest you are. 🙂

  6. Kate, I am WAY behind on my yearly albums… :) I’ve used a few different photo book printers. I think Mpix has the best print quality, but I’ve only ordered their lay flat (“panoramic”) albums, and you can’t customize the cover, other than the skinny dust jacket, which I don’t love. I haven’t tried their regular photo books, but I need to. I’ve used AdoramaPix (lay flat), Shutterfly (both lay flat and regular), and Blurb. They’re all pretty good. I’ve used Shutterfly the most because they have sales so often. Young House Love recently did a post about switching from My Publisher to Blurb, and they specifically talked about how all the books look together on the shelf. :) Here’s a link:

  7. That’s the truth! A lot of good days are the “unproductive” days that we remember with a smile.

  8. Jenny, it sounds like I asked the right person!! Thank you so much for sharing your comparisons. I’ll go check out YHL. I love them :) xo

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