Staying at home is both a blessing and a privilege, but by no means does that mean it’s an easy job to take on. Whether you are a new mom or have always been a stay-at-home mom or you’re transitioning from being a working mom, there will surely be some challenges thrown along your path.
Anyone who thinks that staying at home is a piece of cake has it coming for them. However, having a stay at home mom schedule will at least make things a little simpler!
5 Steps to Creating the Perfect Stay at Home Mom Schedule
I have gone through different phases of motherhood and I assure you that staying at home is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. I’m the kind of person that needs to be on a schedule and wants to feel like I am accomplishing something.
It’s part of how I keep a positive outlook on life and stay happy. Plus, it’s a constant confidence booster. My kids also love knowing what’s coming next and a stay at home schedule gives them comfort that they can predict what their day looks like! Let’s get into how I recommend breaking the day up.
Step 1: Write It Out and Make it Visible.
If it’s not written down and easily seen (all the time), your stay at home mom routine is easy to forget. Write or type your schedule out and make it fun & bold! Post it on your refrigerator or set it up on your counter. It will be a reminder throughout the day of what you need to do.
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Step 2: Fill in the Must-Dos.
Every mom has her own list of essential things to get done during the day. This will be the skeleton of your stay at home mom schedule.
- School Drop Off
- Nap time for little ones (and mama, in my case)
- School Pickup
- Household Chores
- Family time
Think about what the best wake-up times for you are, when you have to drop off and pick up kids, and what you want your meal times to be. These will be the frame of your schedule.
Step 3: Write down the other tasks you need to get done in your week.
Your stay at home mom daily schedule probably needs to consist of more than just school and meals! Things like grocery shopping and sports practices will need to be added into your schedule as well.
- Grocery Shopping
- Class Parent
- Cleaning (If your kids are old enough, make sure they are part of this task)
- Taking kids to practice
- Me-Time (it’s important!)
Step 4: Fill in these tasks but don’t overdo it.
Look, we all want to be super mom, but you and your kids will be much happier if you take some things off your plate and are more present when they are around. So, don’t overfill your schedule to the point of exhaustion. No one wins in that case.
Leave some time each day for free play! It’s a great buffer that can be switched out if anything unexpected comes up.
Step 5: Know It’s Not Locked In.
Having a schedule is nice, but kids will be kids. Leave some room for flexibility in there and don’t get down on yourself if some night’s dinner just doesn’t get done or circle time doesn’t go as planned.
If things go off course, don’t abandon ship, just adjust and keep moving forward. You got this!
Here is How I Break Down My Own Stay at Home Mom Schedule
Every stay at home mom schedule is going to be a little different. I have listed my schedule out below as an example. I have school-age children, however, this schedule can easily be adjusted to fit different needs!
- (30 Minutes Before Kids Wake Up) 6:15 AM: Wake up and have some mama time. I know you might be thinking, “No way, I’m sleeping until someone yanks me out of the bed.” I promise you that even 5 minutes of awake alone time will set your day on the right path. Read a couple of pages of a book, do a mini yoga session, or write in your journal. Heck, even just make your bed so you can climb back into it at the end of the day. Whatever it takes for you to feel like you’ve got a little self-care in.
- 6:45 AM: Everyone will be waking up around this time. If you have early risers like my kids, set this as the time they can come out of their room. If they wake up before this time then they can have quiet alone time in their room. Routines will vary for every family depending on what needs to be done and different ages but set up a morning routine that works for you. This will include making their own beds, getting dressed, brushing their teeth, and doing their hair.
- 7:00 AM: Breakfast time! It’s easy to skip over, but it’s such an important meal that both parents and kiddos should make sure they eat something. There are plenty of breakfast recipes like premade burritos and sandwiches that we live off of. Teach everyone how to clean up their breakfast and wipe the counters down before heading out the door.
- 7:30 AM: School Drop Offs
- 8:30 AM: Whether all your kids are in school or your toddlers are still at home, let this be a quiet time. They can color, read a book, or maybe even watch a little TV. As for mom, this is a good time to throw some clothes in the laundry or do the dishes.
- 10:00 AM: Snack time!
- 10:30 AM: Now for the most essential part of the day if you’re creating a stay at home mom schedule for 3 year olds! Everyone will probably be energized after a snack, so this is a great time to do circle time! Circle time means going over letters or numbers with flashcards with your little ones. This is something I learned from my mom who has been a preschool teacher for years and then stayed home with all my siblings and me. It’s really awesome to be part of your kids’ learning, especially those foundational things.
- 11:30 AM: Prep and eat lunch. Bonus tip; pack your school-aged kids’ lunches for the next day at this time. It’s better than rushing to do it in the morning.
- 12:30 PM: You have finally made it to nap time. Congratulations! Make sure you have a wind-down routine set in place. It will help your kids time clock to know that sleep is coming. For mama, get in a quick cat nap but don’t sleep for longer than 20 minutes. It will be a nice refresher but it won’t be the kind of nap that makes you feel even more tired. After your cat nap, start prepping dinner. It’s early still obviously, but you can chop fruits/veggies, marinate meats, and in the winters even throw a whole crockpot meal together.
- 2:00 PM: Get ready for school pick up and head out.
- 3:15 PM: After-school snack and outdoor playtime.
Evening Schedule for Stay at Home Mom
- 4:30 PM: The most dreaded part of the day for all, homework time. And for mom, this is a good time to put the finishing touches on dinner.
- 5:30 PM: Dinner time! Rotate who sets the table and does clean up nightly. Sit down at the table and enjoy this time together. I love hearing about all my kids’ days and I think they appreciate the space to tell us all their stories.
- 6:15 PM: Dishes – Kids put away their dishes and thank mom and dad for a delicious meal 😉
- 7:00 PM: Wind downtime. Just like a set-in-stone morning routine, have a nightly bedtime routine in place that everyone can follow. This will include bath time, brushing their teeth, pajamas, and time for reading books.
You can use the above as your stay at home mom schedule template! You can swap out the items for the things that fit your family and lifestyle, but I do recommend keeping it broken up into similar timeslots. The more specific you are with what you are doing at all hours of the day, the more likely you are to stick to the plan!
Other Tips to Help You Succeed
Teamwork & Creating Systems
Keeping your house organized means systems and it also means you can’t do it on your own. If you have kids old enough, get them used to helping out with daily chores that are always done at a certain time. Also, it helps to have your spouse do some tasks before or after work.
Here are some routines that happen in our household:
- Our oldest son empties the dishwasher every morning
- The youngest daughter makes sure the dogs have food and water every morning
- Our two middle boys are in charge of taking out the trash and sweeping up after dinner.
- Everyone cannot play video games until after dinner and their rooms have to be clean and homework done
Fitting Laundry into Your SAHM Schedule
I could write a whole post on the laundry, to be perfectly honest, as I have tried so many systems. I am embarrassed to say it but my husband came up with the best system for our household.
My husband says the biggest time suck for us when we are doing laundry is figuring out which clothes belong to which kid. We do have 6 kids so that could be why it’s such a challenge. So we break up our laundry into batches that can’t be confused.
- Oldest Son & Youngest Daughter – Two Loads (One Batch of Darks & Lights)
- Middle Son & Mom – Two Loads (One Darks – One Lights)
- Dad & Middle Daughter – Two Loads (One Darks – One Lights)
- Youngest Son & Towels – One Load
- Sheets – One Load
That is 8 fun loads of laundry for the 8 of us and we are just weekend warriors when it comes to laundry. We start Friday when they get home from school and then slowly finish through the weekend.
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Bonus Tips About Sleep that Stay at Home Moms Should Not Ignore!
Whether you’re creating a schedule for older kids or a one-year-old schedule for stay-at-home mom, don’t forget the importance of sleep! The very foundation of having a schedule honestly depends on firm sleep schedules for everybody.
It takes some time and maybe a little struggle at first to get these set in stone, but I promise you it is so worth it in the long run. Don’t forget mom needs to get her sleep too. It will make you happier and more productive.
My quick thoughts on Naps for Mom- For some reason, I feel like our society looks as naps as some sort of weakness only for toddlers, and I used to be in that same boat. My husband is lucky enough to be able to come home from work early and he would take a 20-minute nap every day. I used to scoff at him, yet then I noticed I kept asking him how he has so much energy. He would say it is his 20-minute naps.
Finally, I gave it a try. I set an alarm for 25 minutes giving me 5 minutes to fall asleep. Those 25 minutes are simply amazing and I have never felt so refreshed and will never go back to not napping. My tip- take a short nap (Long ones will make you very groggy – so keep it to 20-25 minutes)
What Tips & Tricks do you have for your Stay at Home Mom Schedule?
Frequently Asked Questions
How do stay-at-home moms schedule the day?
Stay at home moms can schedule out their day in time blocks; morning, afternoon, and evening. Here’s an example:
6:45 AM: Wake-up routine
7:00 AM: Breakfast
7:30 AM: School Drop Offs
8:30 AM: Quiet time
10:00 AM: Snack time!
10:30 AM: Learning time
11:30 AM: Prep and eat lunch
12:30 PM: Nap time
2:00 PM: School pick up
3:15 PM: After-school snack & outdoor playtime
4:30 PM: Dinner prep and homework time for older kiddos
5:30 PM: Dinner time!
7:00 PM: Wind downtime. Just like a set in the stone morning routine, have a nightly bedtime routine in place that everyone can follow
What time should a stay-at-home mom wake up?
Stay at home moms should wake up sometime between 7:30-9 dependent on what their day is structured like. The most important thing is to keep it consistent!
How do stay-at-home moms get organized?
Set a schedule and systems in place! Then, stick to it the best you can.
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