One of the reasons I like homeschooling is that we don’t have a mad dash every morning to get ready for school. I don’t have to wake the kids on time or rush them through breakfast or drive like a madwoman to get them to school on time. (Not that I ever did that when Sunshine was in Kindergarten…) However, as homeschoolers, we’ve kinda gotten used to our relaxed mornings. In fact, my homeschool mom guilt is being always late to morning activities.
In fact, it’s gotten so bad that I’ve learned not to schedule morning activities. Every second week, we do make it out of the house by
9:30 9:40 to make it to Mom’s Group by 10(ish). Some of the other moms make it there at 9 am for Mass. I’m still trying to find matching socks for everyone and digging through my cupboards to see what I can bring for snacks this week.
One of the myths of homeschooling is that we spend the day in our pajamas. Now, while we might have slow mornings, we do not (at least around here) spend the day in our pajamas. I insist that the girls get dressed before breakfast. In my childhood home, we never left our room in our pajamas. Because the girls share rooms with each other, one might sneak out before the other one wakes up, and read for a while. Once they’re all awake, I send them back to get dressed.
Our mornings look something like this:
- Sunshine and Lily wake up between 7 and 8 and read their books for a while
- Jade or Pearl wakes me up around 7
- I get them breakfast, then have my shower and get my own breakfast
- I check to see that the older girls have gotten dressed and had their breakfast
- I made my latte and check my school planner
- We start school for the day sometime around 9
- The girls alternate between doing their school and taking short breaks, and usually finish their work by noon
Sometimes, I feel like we should have a better morning routine. I should set an alarm clock, haul everyone out of bed, have them dressed and at the table eating breakfast together within 15 minutes of waking. I should be more organized. Yes, I do have occasional twinges of homeschool mom guilt when I think about all the moms who can get their tribe out of the house in sixty minutes flat (or less).
Most of the time, though, our relaxed mornings work for us. The girls may take a few reminders to get dressed and may start school complaining about being hungry because they read instead of eating, but school happens. Because we homeschool, I can tell them, “I’m sorry you’re hungry, but right now it’s time to start school. You may get food during your break [in about fifteen minutes].”
When we do have a good reason to be out of the house on time, like a spring or summer break camp that starts at 9 am, I know that I need to prepare a bit more. In that case, I will ensure that I’m up at a specific time and I will give them more reminders. Usually, the motivation—we need to get out of the house for your class—is enough to get the girls moving quickly. So when we have to, they can get up and get going.
My husband and I learned early in our parenting journey that each family has to do what works for them. We’ve made various choices over the years about breastfeeding, co-sleeping, kids’ classes, schooling, etc. based on what works for our family or our daughter at that time. So when I look at our relaxed mornings, I can say that for the most part, it works.
If what you are doing works as well, then there’s no need to feel guilty about it. Maybe your kids do stay in their pajamas until noon. Maybe they wake up at 5 am and finish their school by the time my girls are eating breakfast. Maybe you start your day with a big cup of coffee instead of a shower. If it works for you, that’s great! Keep it up. If not, tweak it until it does work.
What do your mornings look like? Does your routine work for you or would you like to change it? What’s your homeschool mom guilt?
Fourteen other moms are sharing their homeschool mom guilt today! Just click the image above to read the other topics (and their solutions to the mom guilt!). PSST—there’s a giveaway too! You could win one of FIVE packages of:
- The Big Book of Homeschool Ideas (volume 1): 55 Moms Share Their Expertise on 103 Topics
- The Big Book of Homeschool Ideas (volume 2): 38 Moms Share Their Expertise on 57 Topics
- Homeschooling: What To Do When You Want to Quit
- How We Teach: the real lives of homeschoolers from classical to unschooling and everything in between
- Love Rebel: Reclaiming Motherhood: five moms share their tips and inspiration