In March my family, a 4 year old and a great husband, is moving to Rhode Island. Because we are only going to be there for 6 months my DH has suggested I be a SAHM. SO i'm very excited but also very scared. I don't know HOW to!!! Do you keep a schedule? How do you teach your child? How do you keep from getting tired of them? (please don't think that I'm a bad mommy for needing breaks, but I do.)
Any help or advice would be welcome.
I love being a SAHM. I have a 2 yr old and a 9 mo old. I set a tentative schedule everyday, which we usually keep, but some days life happens and we get off schedule. It's not easy staying home with your kids. If you do feel like you're getting tired of them, put them in their room to play or put in a movie. That's what I do. Every mom needs breaks. Kids are more demanding than the worst boss and the pay sucks. I work their playtime around meals. Breakfast, then I put in a movie that they end up not watching, so I can clean up and get some stuff done. Lunch, then naptime for baby and playtime for me and DS for a little while. He gets a little downtime in his room, sometimes he'll nap, while I make dinner. Dinner, then bath, then a little more playtime, then bed. Some days are different if we go to the park, the grocery store, etc.
As for educating them, they learn by doing. My sons learn all day long. We color, we count, we read. The Leapster toys are great. My son has this one that goes on the fridge. It's the alphabet and you put each letter in this thing and it sings a song about what letter it is and what sound it makes. He can now identify every letter in the alphabet and tell you what it sounds like and he's 2. He knows his colors because we color a lot. He can count to 10 because we count his cars and line them up (every day, OMG it's horrible for me but he loves it). Just make time to play with your son and he'll learn. Let him help you in the kitchen, or folding laundry. Anything can be a learning experience.
It won't take long for you to get into a routine and you'll do fine!
Amy, Thank you!! I kept thinking easy schedule. And being in a new place we can go "exploring."
No problem! The looser your schedule, the more accomplished you'll feel when you get stuff done. If you set a strict schedule, you'll just feel bad when things didn't get done and believe me, they won't get done.
This will be really good bonding time for you and your son, especially since he'll be starting school pretty soon.
For learning if you know where you're going to be when your child starts kindergarten find out what is required in that area. Different states and schools require different things. It won't be hard after that to figure out how much of it your son knows and what you need to teach him if he isn't going to be in any preschool program. That doesn't mean that you have to sit and do lessons with him each day though, alot of the basic stuff can be done through play.
Try to find a story hour or something near you. There's a good chance that you'll meet other people and your son will have some time with other kids.
Don't stick to a tight schedule.
Oh yea, that's my routine too!!! meals and naptime routines are very important. Mornings vary but it usually involves sesame street first and then play time, they don't watch it much, but they're always listening. My kids have picked up so much from that show. Then I try and play something with them in the morning before lunch, usually something artsy. We usually have quiet time in the afternoon after lunch for a bit. My little one takes a nap, the 3 yr old watches a movie, then we go for a walk to pick the 5 yr old up from school, sometimes we play outside for a bit or else they play together in the living room while I get dinner going. I usually try to get them out of the house at least once a week even if it's just to the grocery store. there's hardly any "me time" during the day, it's my constant struggle because I always feel like i'm "working" so to speak. The other really important thing is bed time, after they go to bed is the time that my hubby and I get to spend alone in peace and quiet. Usually we're watching TV while I'm folding laundry and such but at least I'm not worrying about what the kids are getting into or who is fighting, etc so 8pm is the magical hour for me! Try and involve your child in the stuff you do around the house too, you'd be surprised by how excited they are to run the vacuum or help fold the laundry, especially at 4 yrs old. You could always encourage learning through those activities too like matching the socks or outfits together like pants and shirts that go together or sorting by colors. counting the steps when you walk upstairs, they could help measure things when you're cooking. When you're mixing colors for a cake, ask them what colors combine to make green, purple, orange, etc. It will take some getting used to but you're going to love it!
I'm not one for a nitty gritty schedule but I have a loose schedule. My kids are now 3 & 5 so it's gotten a little easier, but I agree w/ the previous poster plan your days around meals and nap time if that applies makes for a happier kiddos LOL. Both my kids have "chores" like empty the dishwasher, feed the rabbit and keep up there own toys etc. The kids and I do LOTS of crafts together alsoand we play tons of games like memory and candyland which helps w/ counting and colors LOL... I do have flash cards for the days the kids want to play school and I have lil workbooks but we mostly learn thru play AND/OR when they are asking questions I answer and we spell lots of words out like stop and such....
oh and also my kids love the channel Noggin - there are NO commercials and it's like "preschool on tv" LOL... So ck your cable listings if you have it
You guys rock! These all make sense, I guess I just needed to hear it from the experts!
I'll be totally honest with you-some days you are going to want to run out of the house screaming. It's a big adjustment (was for me, anyway) to going to be a SAHM. I stick to a loose schedule. Unfortunately, my guys don't nap any more, so I try to find things for htem to do. They actually motivate me to go to the gym, because it has childcare, and they love to play with the other kids and different toys. Sometimes if it's bad weather or too hot, we'll go play at McDonalds playland, or Chuck E. Cheese. $5 lasts an annoyingly long time at CEC's!
I really miss working, but I wouldn't trade being here with my little ones for anything.
Ha! michellenj, I was going to say that too but I didn't want to scare Jules. I call my hubby some days and say: I give up! I surrender, I've raised the flag! Just shoot me now! but in the grand scheme of things, I love being home with them. I also have a gym membership that offers childcare, the kids are fantastic motivation to drag my butt over there!
I have been home now since 1996 and can't imagine going back to work! At first, it was very hard and boring. Definately get out and explore the new area. Being a military family, we do that right after we move any where. I have also joined play groups before to help my little ones not be so bored with me.
My youngest is now in half day kindergarten and I am so busy now that I can't imagine even working again!
Enjoy your time with your kids! They grow up way too fast!
Theres days when I have to hide in the closet or lock myself in the bathroom just to make a phone call! And then theres day when I'm pretty sure pod people have replaced my kids with well behaved robots!
As far as schedules go though, we had one before the baby came, it was mostly planned around food.
Breakfast at 8am, lunch at 11am, naptime from 12noon-3pm ,snack time at 3ish, and dinner at 6pm.
What went on in between those times varied from day to day.
But ever since Jordan came along we've been on her schedule, and it seems I'm always running late.
But we are adjusting, and you will too.
Just find what works for you and your kids.
Good Luck and Welcome to the SAHM Club!
We have a loose schedule as well. We get up at the same time every day(during the week) so we can take my oldest DD to school. They usually eat breakfast before we take her unless we are running late. Also if it's nice I'll take them to the park to play. It's getting hard to do since the weather's getting colder, but we try to do something. There's an indoor nature center here that they love to go to. We do that sometimes. Check in your area to see if there are any children's classes/activities. We also have a play gym here as well and an indoor pool. Have yet to do those, but we might if we get too bored. As for the rest of the day I usually put them in their room for a while so I can have some mommy time. It's either so I can check up on my email, clean, or just sit on my big ol' butt and relax. If it's a really rough day I'll wait till DH gets home from work and then I'll go to the store by myself. Gets me out of the house and away from the kids. Don't get me wrong. I love my kids, but sometimes I'd love to put them in the dumpster. I will say it's an adjustment to go from a working mommy to a stay at home mommy. I had an especially rough time with my youngest DD. To say she was colicky (sp?) was an understatement. Her pediatrician said it was the worst case of colic he had ever seen. She cried for 8 hours straight one day. Needless to say once DH got home I was out the door. He didn't even have a chance to get in the doorway. I didn't care where I was going I was just going somewhere. Even if it was the corner gas station. I will say though that I love staying home with my girls. The bad thing is next year my middle DD is going to start Kindergarten. Then I'll only have 1 at home.
Don't worry about it. You'll be just fine.