Monday, October 19, 2009

A Daily Rest - The Logistics

Thanks so much for the wonderful comments in my last post, ladies. I'm glad the article was a blessing to you.

I know it's all fine and good to agree with the author in theory, but several readers have wondered how exactly a daily rest pans out in real life. There are definitely days that I'm left scratching my head, too :)

I think this "daily rest" is likely to be constantly changing, adapting to the need of the moment and the phase of life. For instance, a family with a newborn in the house may have far lighter lessons for a time, enabling Mama to get those much-needed extra moments of sleep. For a family with 4 somewhat older children all doing a full schedule of Ambleside Online - Mama might check out for thirty minutes while the children all have some productive independent work to do. I've learned that what works for my family now probably will not work for my family in even six months. Schedules and routines have to constantly change and grow with us if they are to be our helps and not our masters.

Here's a peek into our day today as an illustration -

It's a Monday and we haven't been outside at ALL today, even though it's gorgeous outside. We have houseguests coming for Punkin's 5th birthday (!) this weekend and there are literal MOUNTAINS of laundry to do. Additionally, we did very light lessons last week as the house and its many projects took precedence for a bit (I'm sure our houseguests will appreciate a door on their room!!! - ha). So, we've done a lot of housework and a lot of school work. It's now 3:30, we just finished a history lesson, and I'm totally fried. Punkin and Little Dude are still napping, and probably will be for another 30 minutes or so. Shug is reading, SweetP is making beaded bracelets. I am blogging - shame on me! So now I'm going to log off and try to get some rest before I hear my little man calling out to tell me he's not interested in staying in bed anymore. Monday nights are Sam's late nights - he'll probably be home at 7pm or a little later. It's very important that I rest now to help me carry out the rest of the late afternoon and early evening. I'll get maybe 20-25 minutes. Less if I don't wrap this up pronto :)

As we add more and more into our school days, it becomes increasingly difficult for me to have time alone with the Lord in the afternoon. If I don't wake up before the children and have time to read the Word and pray then, it's likely it won't happen at all. In the afternoons, if I grab a break, I nap. In the evenings I read just a chapter or two of a book. Last night I read a chapter of A Tale of Two Cities. Tonight I think I'll read the second chapter of Adler's How to Read a Book. Maybe the secret to fitting in a little reading and a rest is to keep both short. You needn't read 100 pages of a book in one sitting to benefit from it :) In fact, less is likely to be more - especially if you can think on it a bit while you do dishes or fold laundry the next day.

I wouldn't cut down on time in the Word or prayer, though. That's one area where longer lessons are better :)

Anyway, glad you all enjoyed the article! Thanks again for the comments! Now, time to crash. Oh, and just in case I hear my boy moments after my head hits the pillow - I whole-heartedly agree with the readers who left this bit of wisdom for us all:

"However, I have to agree with what Nikki said about resting in the Lord. I tend to guard my quiet time so jealously that it can become an idol that I selfishly feel like I can't do without."

Amen, Heather & Nikki. I often say that Motherhood is Selfishness Boot Camp :)

Have a great one, ladies!!!

P.S. Oh, and I have to admit something - I had a rather substantial cup of strong black tea at 3:15 ;)


Natalie M. said...

Loved the post, Jacci! While we have substantial differences (you have four, I have three; you have two school-aged, I have only one) motherhood is so much the same all round isn't it?

I find myself struggling lately to fit in my time with the Lord and am thinking it would be meet to cut out all other "recreational" readings for the time being and focus myself on the Word.

Thanks for the encouragement,


PS. Reading "Tale of Two Cities" for the first time right now - loving it - only made my way through CH. VII of BOOK THE SECOND yet. Wonderful!

Heather said...

Your peek into your day made me wonder: Although you didn't make it outside on that day, how do you ever manage to get lots of outside time for your little ones when you have 2 older ones who are doing "real" school? Do you ever take the school work outside with you?

Susie from Bienvenue said...

What a beautiful family! I am inawe of Moms that homeschool. I think that is great!!

Jacci said...

Heather - good question :)

You've heard Miss Mason' phrase "every suitable day", right? Well, I think she meant the weather, but sometimes I consider a day unsuitable for other reasons. For instance, today was gorgeous but we had a LOT of housework to do after the weekend. We also had lessons to do. We did manage, though, to have the kiddos outside from 5-6:45 pm (we had a late dinner because Daddy worked late). I think you just do what you can.

Tomorrow promises to be gorgeous, too, so - now that we have our work done and lessons have been consistent - it's no big deal to take all day tomorrow "off" and head to a park. Tomorrow is a "suitable day" for 4-6 hours outside.

Hope it helps,

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