As Mother’s Day approaches, it’s easy to feel like we’re living the in the movie Groundhog Day. If you’re a mom with young children, you face unique challenges during this time of extended family togetherness. It’s easy to wish for things to get back to normal, but is it possible to do more than just survive?
Here are 5 ways to thrive at home during social distancing.
Be intentional. Don’t just let the day unfold without order. With schoolwork, playtime, cleaning, laundry, and ALL the food prep, the day can descend into madness pretty quickly if you don’t have a plan. Before you go to bed each night, spend a few minutes thinking through what you need or want to accomplish the next day. Build in breaks for yourself. Even if your kids no longer nap, having a built-in quiet time where everyone spends at least an hour in separate rooms can be good for everyone—mom included! Keep in mind that your schedule is YOURS. This is designed to serve you and your family and no one else. If it isn’t working, you can adjust or even scrap it!
Make a seasonal list and check off the fun! Grab a piece of cardstock and some colored markers, gather the family together, and brainstorm some fun things you could do together this spring. Ideas could include taking a family walk, doing a craft together, playing a game, eating strawberry shortcake, making s’mores over a campfire, or popcorn and movie nights. Make sure the things that make the list are things you’d really enjoy doing together. And don’t make too much work for yourself! Things don’t have to be Pinterest-worthy to be fun.
Get outside every day. Make sure you take the time to get the kids out so they can run off some energy. Their ability to focus on tasks will be better, they’ll eat and sleep better, and it’ll be good for you as well!
Create opportunities for connection with friends and extended family. Being separated from those we care about is difficult. Here are a few ideas to help your kids nurture those precious relationships from a distance.
- Have a new or developing reader? Pick an age-appropriate book and have your child read a chapter a day to a loved one via FaceTime.
- Pull out a box of photos and let your school-aged children organize the photos for you. Talk about the memories they discover over dinner.
- Create some happy mail! Task the kids with creating cards and crafts to send to grandparents, cousins, friends, or even essential workers.
- Comparison is the enemy of contentment, and it’s easy to compare what we’re doing with those we see online. Use technology to inspire you, but if you sense that it is contributing to a feeling of discontent, unplug.
- Simplify in the kitchen as much as possible. Your family doesn’t need gourmet meals, they just need to be fed! Pick some super easy meals and rotate them regularly.
- You don’t have to do it all! Rely on your partner for help. You can give the kids age appropriate jobs too.
Mamas, the work you do matters. Many on our Elderberry Co. team are moms, so we understand the added workload that this stay-at-home order creates. We want to celebrate you! We’ve created the cutest little gift box for Mother’s Day. You can grab one here while supplies last!
Photo Credit: Britney Sidwell Photography