I am a full time mom, we all are. When I say full time, I don’t mean 9-5, I mean 24/7, even when I’m asleep, on vacation, on a date, all of the time. I am constantly worrying about every little thing and planning my kids futures, so it’s hard to take a break.
When I first became a mom I wanted to stay at home and be with my baby. However, I was not blessed with enough money to allow me to do that. Early on I became a single mom so I had to rely on myself to put the bacon on the table. It wasn’t until 2 years ago, after 2 kids that I finally met the man of my dreams, my knight in shining armor.
I had no choice but to get a job and trust someone else to watch my kids so I could pay the bills. At first that’s how I looked at working full time, it just pays the bills. But after 5 years of jumping from job to job and finding something that paid enough, I got lucky. I found a job that I am good at, that pays the bills, and that I thoroughly enjoy.
I work in finance at TD Ameritrade, and unfortunately, I don’t have a college degree. I got very lucky with this position and I am very good at what I do. I look forward to going to work every day for several reasons: it gives me something to work hard at, I enjoy seeing the people I work with, and let’s be honest, I get an 8 hour “break” from the ever constant “mommy, mommy, mommy”.
Working full time is something that I needed in my life to give me structure since I am a very OCD type of person. The thing that helps me organize my life is a schedule. Every night before I go to bed I write out a schedule of how I want the next day to go. It doesn’t always go as planned; with three kids it’s hard to have everything perfect, but these schedules help me see what I can do in a day.
I set goals for myself and I try to complete everything on the schedule before I go to bed. Everything is on my schedule; shower, eat meals, chores, bedtime routine, it’s all on there. These schedules are the only way I can get everything done.
After I had my youngest daughter I stopped (for a very short period) writing out these schedules and my life got hectic. I wasn’t cleaning up the house, laundry was getting backed up, my kids weren’t going to bed until 11pm, it was a mess. Not everyone needs the structure like I do, but I know a lot of mommas who could use this helpful step.
With my schedule I make sure that I get:
- time for myself
- time for my husband
- and time with my kids.
I don’t get behind in the things that have to get done and it honestly makes my day go by faster. I add little things every few hours that I get to look forward to if I have been working too hard, or didn’t get enough sleep the night before.
I do wish I could stay at home with my kids every day, I would love to watch their every minute of growing up, homeschool them, snuggle them during nap time, make them healthy meals all day, and spoil them to no extent, but it’s not in the cards for our family any time soon.
And I am okay with that.
I look at my great job and I’m thankful. My kids miss me while I am gone, and they don’t get tired of me. I have an amazing nanny who I am so lucky to have and help me raise my children. My life feels balanced and these schedules in my busy day are what help me.
This is just an example of how a typical day goes for me and one of my daily schedules. Obviously, my schedule is different when I am not studying, because I have a little more time for myself and I go to bed a little bit earlier. It seems like a lot but it’s not. If you notice, the longest block of time is no more than three hours. Yes, I am tired, but I am used to it and my daily nap really helps a lot. Plus my husband lets me sleep in on the weekend. If you are considering working but worried about the time it will take away from your children, a simple schedule could really help you balance your day so you have time for everything.
5:00 Wake up
5:00-5:30 Get ready for work
5:30-6:15 Drive to work (I work really far, 25 miles away in traffic)
6:15-7:00 Study (I am currently studying for a licensing exam at work)
8:30-8:45 Break time and eat breakfast (sometime I eat at my desk but I am not much of a breakfast person)
9:00-9:15 Morning work meeting
3:30-4:15 Drive home from work (traffic again, ugh)
4:15-4:30 Spend a little time with my girls and say hello
4:30-5:15 Nap (Yes, I take a nap. I am usually up until 1am studying and my youngest does not sleep well at night so I need a nap and it’s amazing)
5:15-6:00 Make dinner
6:00-6:30 Eat dinner
6:30-7:30 Spend time with the family (this could mean playing games, dress up, going to the park, watching a movie, whatever they want to do)
7:30-8:00 Bath time (for the littles, I’m not so lucky)
8:00-8:30 Bedtime routine (pajamas, lotion, essential oils, read a book, spray “monster spray” everywhere, which is actually just Febreeze but my oldest has nightmares unless I spray it, don’t judge me, it works like a charm)
8:30-9:00 Spend time with my husband (it doesn’t seem like a lot of time but 30 minutes of time with only your husband, even if it’s just playing cards or talking about each other’s days helps so much)
9:00-10:00 Chores (Laundry, dishes, cat litter box, sweep, vacuum, etc. I have a chore chart that we follow and each day has a few chores, they get evenly split and then it doesn’t seem overwhelming)
10:00-10:30 Shower (this wakes me up before a long night of studying)
10:30-1:00 studying (my husband does other stuff, sometimes he works on his RC airplanes, watches TV, or just goes to bed early, he thinks he’s an old man)
1:00-1:15 Get ready for bed (brush my teeth, put on pajamas, and lay down)
1:15-5:00 Sleep (or try to sleep anyways)