10. Go for a walk every day. Even if it’s just around the block! Exercise helps to clear your head and stimulate the systems, as well as relax you.
9. Pack school lunches the night before! This will help your sanity every morning, while getting the kids ready for school.
8. Tell them about the family situation. I’m not saying to bash dad to the teachers, but they do need to know if it’s joint or sole custody, which parents pick up on which days, if there are step-parents and step-siblings involved.
7. Set up a Family Command Center. This is where you’ll hang your calendar and keep track of all paperwork that comes back and forth from school. It’s also a good place for backpacks to be dropped, so you’ll never have to look for them. Pinterest has great ideas for this!
6. Get up 30 minutes before the kids. This will give you a chance to shower and pray before waking them. It will help with the early-morning rush!
5. Set up an email just for school use. This will help keep all the important information in one place. It also ensures that school emails don’t get the lost in the abyss of a personal email box!
4. Prepare a daily schedule for you and the kids and stick to it! If everyone knows what is expected, it will be easier to get through the day. It also helps you to know what’s going on.
3. Be prepared to defend yourself as a single mom. There are many pre-conceived notions out there and inevitably, some stay-at-home mom is going to assume that you are poor, have no time for your kids, won’t help with homework, and will date anyone male who asks you out.
2. But, also find those stay-at-home mom who can help with extra-curricular activities! You work till 5:00 and sometimes, basketball practice starts at 4:00pm! Get some moms in your corner, who are willing to help. And don’t forget to thank them! After all, they are taking on additional responsibilities!
1. FORGET THE LISTS!
That’s right! Trash them! Get rid of them!
See, every family is different! In my home, we tend to be night-owls. Well, except for my middle-child, who managed to get himself into bed early most nights. I also have three boys who are extremely different! No set schedules would work for us!
And, getting us out the door on time? Well, there was that one time, when my youngest was in 4th grade. We heard the bus coming up the street. He ran for his backpack and I opened the door. And, that’s when I realized he didn’t have on any shoes! I yelled at him, he ran back, grabbed the shoes, and ran for the bus. I kid you not! His friends were yelling, “Come on Alex!” from the bus. I stood there, thinking two things:
1. Please don’t let any of the other parents see that my kid doesn’t have his shoes on!
2. Please let said shoes get onto the feet before the bus reaches the school!
I love Pinterest! I’m sure most of us do. However, let’s be honest. We’ll never live Pinterest Perfect Lives! There is no one on the planet who has a life exactly like ours. Which means, there’s no one on the planet who can tell you exactly how to live it!
There may be some points on the list above that resonate with you. Great! Use them. If they don’t, then toss them. Sit down and figure out what’s going to work the best for you and your kids! That’s all that matters!
So have a great year with your kids! Sell that cookie dough for the fundraiser and hand out programs for the annual musical. Use YouTube and Google to help with homework. Roast marshmallows in the fireplace. Go a little crazy when the science fair project is due…the very next day! Laugh and do your thing, momma!
P.S. For all those momma’s that have helped me over the years, giving my kids a ride to activities, watching them…Thank You!! You’re my hero!! I needed the help and you stepped up to the plate!
By Gwendolyn Irene
Daring Adventures of Single Parenthood, A Devotional. https://www.gwendolynirene.com/books/