My husband’s out of town for most of the next month, and then again in a couple of months time. So it’s me and 3 small people in the house. Panic!!!
Cue Survival Mode Parenting: changing the systems to survive a season of travel, longer work hours, extra commitments or obligations, or anything else that impacts your family’s equilibrium.
- Ask for help if you possibly can. In this independent, self sufficient, “I can cope”, society that we live, it can be so hard to ask for help. But we have to get over ourselves and do it. I’ve called in reinforcements from parents and friends – Mum and Dad are having one of the kids stay the night a few times during the next month, and I’ve booked in a couple of kids dinner dates at a friend’s place – doing the crazy hour with company definitely makes it more survivable.
- Make a rough plan of your week’s activities so you don’t have to think too hard each day about what to do.
- Make a meal plan. Don’t feel bad if it includes spaghetti and scrambled eggs every second night – if it’s not forever, your kids will be fine. Even better – try and cook a few meals ahead (or buy simple ready made soups/pizzas etc) and get them in the freezer. Check out Meal Mayhem for a few ideas.
- Do a huge shop the week before, and overstock the pantry with all the basics so that you can do smaller shops in the busy season.
- GET ENOUGH SLEEP.
- Buy a couple of extra craft supplies/activity books to pull out if you run out of ideas for entertainment, and your kids are climbing up the walls. You don’t necessarily have to use them, but its great to have them up your sleeves if you need to.
- Accept that you won’t get a lot done other than running the house. Don’t try to change the world at the moment, save that for when life returns to “normal” (is life with kids ever normal?!).
- If you miraculously get any down time, use it wisely: do something that feeds your soul.
- Think through your day, and what are the pressure points, and do whatever you can the night before to make those times easier. Get kids clothes out, put breakfast stuff out, etc. Your evenings might not be your own for the next while, but it’ll make your days run more smoothly.
And on that note, it’s time to get back to navigating the chaos round here!
For more thoughts on surviving life in a crazy season, check out this post.
What do you do when a season of chaos hits?