As a stay-at-home mom, sometimes it is easy to feel stuck in a rut, or rather feel sort of Groundhog's Day-like. I am always doing the same thing (or at least it sometimes feels like that). Babies need predictable, scheduled days, so you do end up doing a lot of the same things and then there is always the un-ending laundry, dishes, dinners, and other chores to do around the house.
I was talking with a friend of mine about this and it started to get me thinking about what can make it all a little easier or at least more fun. I made a set of goals a little while back which have helped me to feel better about myself and has given me more purpose.
1. Get dressed, make-up on and hair done everyday--- I don't mean dressed in sweats, actually something nice. This makes such a big difference for me. Even if I don't get out of the house I feel better about myself and I look good for my husband too when he gets home.
2. Get outside for at least 30 minutes each day---Elanor and I go on walks, play in our yard or go to the park. It is good for both of us to get some fresh air and get out of the house. I even go outside in the winter, we just bundle up and go out! Obviously if she or I are sick or the weather is really bad we don't go out or only for maybe 5-10 minutes.
3. Keep a clean house--Yes, it is unending and sometimes so tedious, but I feel so much better and accomplished if my house is clean, plus it teaches Elanor to be clean as well.
4. Do at least one extra fun thing a week--We do something special like go to the park, go swimming, or go to the library.
5. Eat lunch with Husband/Daddy once a week---Elanor and I just started to do this so we can see Tyler more. It is great to be able to see him in the middle of the day!
6. Go to a playgroup or meet up with a friend once a week--I need to get Elanor in a play group, but our ward does not have one, so it is a bit difficult. However, my friend Mikaela and I both have babies and we try to get together once a week or so. It is nice to talk to an adult and it is great that Elanor gets to be around another baby.
7. Get some time to yourself or a small job/volunteer time---I teach ballet once a week for 4 hours (4 classes). It is great to get out of the house and do something I really like to do. The great thing is that Elanor only needs to babysat for two hours because Tyler picks her up after work. They get to have some Daddy and Elanor bonding time, which is an extra plus. You can get a small job or volunteer at the art museum or teach a class (It can be anything you are good at: a sport, ballet, singing, theatre, sewing, piano, tutoring, whatever!).
8. Go on a date every week with your husband---We need to do this more! We try to do this often, but every week is our goal. For great tips on dating (and free date ideas!) go to my friend Mackenzie's blog here.
9. Do some sort of learning activity each day with you older baby/toddler--Try painting, coloring, play dough, anything that teaches your child something. As they get older, teach number, letters, reading, writing, etc. Elanor and I have started doing this recently and it is fun, plus it gets me to be a little creative.
10. Take time to dance---ok so maybe I'm a dancer and really enjoy this, but dancing is so fun and easy. Babies love it and it is great to do as a whole family as well.
These are mostly all daily and weekly goals, so don't forget to make monthly and yearly goals as well!
What sort of goals or tips work for you to make your stay-at-home days more fun?