Create a Stay-at-Home Plan for your Family
As we all prepare for staying home with our families for the next few weeks, we should organize our schedules to stay well-balanced for what each one of your family members needs. Creating a checklist of daily tasks, rather than a stringent timed schedule will support spontaneous play and also allow for what each of you feel like doing. While you build your task guide, here are a few suggestions of things to include:
Mealtimes – plan your times and look at the clock to ensure you don’t eat more often than needed due to boredom and that you do remember to eat regularly. Meal plan with the children for the day to get them excited and enlist
their help, ask “which meal or dish would you like to help with?”.
Physical Activity – staying active may be hard if you are quarantined to your home, but YouTube has a selection of great videos for all age groups. If you do it as a family – take turns on who decides which video to do. If your kids are in some sports like Karate, check with your instructors to see if they have online videos that the kids can continue to work on while at home.
Mindfulness – take time to breath. We are all overwhelmed by all the information coming in and how quickly it is changing, making this a task will remind us what is important. Talking about the frustrations can clear our mind, follow it with things we are grateful for and then take a minute to breath. This is a great group activity with young children, but as adults (and mothers!) do this alone too.
Learning – school aged children will need to continue to grow – but don’t force it, create a list of different activities or do those “science kits” from their last set of birthday gifts, the intent is to give them options! There are some great online apps for math and language – download one that focuses on your childrens’ interests. As for adults – now is the time to use the downloadable book services for your phone from your local library.
Creativity – adding it as a task gives an option away from electronics - for kids this can be playing with LEGO, drawing, writing or even playing with PlayDoh. For adults, playing with our children will keep our creative minds going, personally meal planning helps me stay creative.
ARTS – if you have musicians in your home make time for it – it can be listening to music or visit a world museum online to explore an amazing piece of art.
Fresh Air – open windows or step out on your balcony – this will keep us grounded. If you can get out for a hike or bike ride, make it a task to ensure we do it as often as we can. If you can’t leave your home at all, spend time caring for your indoor plants.
Quiet Time – we all need a moment to ourselves, even as moms it is important to take some time during the day to do something for us. Spend this time reading a book or meditating, find out what your kids want to do during this time in their own rooms.
Hygiene – it is important to practice good health and hygiene during this time. It is easy to stay in our pajamas everyday, but it can also be difficult for children to understand the difference between a lazy Sunday and every other day.
Electronic Time – discuss what everyone thinks is fair for how much and the type of electronics that should be allowed. In my home, kids get a family movie and all other electronics are awarded for each other activity that they complete. It creates motivation, and also give them control.
This is also a great opportunity for us to work on things that we have put off because we haven’t had the time – use an app to learn a language or take the time to start organizing your home.
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About the Author: Randeep St. Jacques is a Certified KonMari Consultant on the North Shore and a member of the Professional Organizers in Canada. She is passionate about organizing for clients that are looking to reduce their clutter and organize their lives.