Once lunch is over, it is quiet time in our house. I put the baby down for a nap (usually!) and the two older children play for a little while. I try to follow my mother's rule that everyone stays inside during the hottest part of the day from twelve noon to three in the afternoon (more important in the warmer months, of course!) and so while I do the dishes and a chore or two, Sugar Plum and Little Man play with their toys, look through books, and draw or color. Sometimes I even slip out to run a few errands while everyone is occupied (I am fortunate that Father John works from home!).
When Button wakes up, we do whatever strikes our fancy. Most of the time, the children are completely happy wandering around our yard using their outside toys, digging in dirt, playing with the hose, and just generally exploring. During this time, I try to do a little gardening or tidying of the front yard and porch. I am really not an outdoors person (summer is my least favorite season!) and I find that it helps if I am doing something to keep myself busy.
As it gets closer to dinner, we head inside and while I prepare supper, the little ones listen to an audio recording or watch a television show (usually Little Bear or an episode of Little House on the Prairie). One thing that I would really like to improve is the care and thought that I put into dinner. Often, we have something simple (and that is fine for us!), but I don't like to have to scramble at 5pm to think of something to make. I am hoping that as we ease back into life without construction, that will be easier!
that's a great routine. I know that for my friends with young kids, making dinner is a huge challenge! Knowing what to make for dinner is a on going challenge to begin with...
I find the same thing -- without planning, making dinner is an uncomfortable last minute scramble. The trick is to find the time to plan, and to stick with the plan. And that includes (which is even harder for me) putting down what you are doing in time to get dinner going, so as not to cut into the evening routine. I find it very hard to be disciplined in this way, but it seems to be the key to making everything go smoothly.
I don't know why it is so hard to plan and then implement the plan at a reasonable time, Maria! Laziness on my part, I guess! The evening goes so much better when I do plan and follow through!
We love quiet time here too! (and my children are 12, 11, 5 and 2)
What a lovely routine. I live with a two-year old (not mine, but the child of the married couple I live with) and he loves quiet time. I think he just enjoys playing by himself, and thinking while he does it. It is just so dear!
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