AvonMom Tip: Surviving Summer Vacation as a Work at Home Mom
The main benefit many moms choose to work at home, like me, is to have the opportunity to spend more time with your kids. During the school year, as a work at home mom, it is a lot easier to accomplish what you have to do during the day with having that time when kids are in school to work your business & do your housework around the home with minimal interruptions or distractions. I know for many, summer vacation has begun. As of today at 11:38 am, my four boys are on summer vacation.
How am I going to work now that the kids are home ALL DAY?
Below are tips on how you can continue to work your home business & be able to do why you are working at home- enjoy your kids.
Create a summer daily routine
I am a mom that has always had my kids on a routine. It is a known fact that kids thrive when they are on a routine. I am not saying that you need to keep the same routine you have during the school year, but I know from personal experience, having a “summertime routine” will help keep your sanity as a mom. The only part of the routine I do recommend keeping the same is meal time. Let’s face it, when kids are hungry they are C-R-A-N-K-Y! I also suggest keeping the same bedtime for young children & as close as possible for the older kids. Sleep is very important, especially for growing kids who will be using more energy during the summer. This will also help you have an easier transition once school starts.
How to Create a Summertime Routine for Your Kids & Yourself
When creating your summer daily routine, you don’t need to have every minute planned out. The way I do it is separate the day with big blocks of time. This will help me know when I can work my Avon business. This is what my summer routine looks like:
Morning Routine/ Housework
Daily Work Checklist/Time with Kids
|Quiet Time/Summer Homework||
Time with Kids/Cook Dinner
Finish up loose ends for work/ Prep for next day
On our schedule you see blocks of morning routine & bedtime routine. Since my kids were very little, I have had them on a specific morning & bedtime routine, no matter what season it is. All it means is that they have a list of items they need to complete for each routine.
- Morning Routine: Make their bed, get dressed, brush their teeth, eat breakfast, make sure their room is picked up & their daily chore is completed.
- Bedtime Routine: Shower, brush their teeth, dressed in pajamas.
One major change I do in the summer for my work schedule is I extend my weekends from Friday to Sunday (you will see what we do on Fridays below). This gives me more time to spend with my kids without having to worry about getting work done. It also give me more time to be able to relax & enjoy not only my kids but summer as well. Remember, if you are changing your work schedule, to let your customers know.
Summertime is a great time to start teaching your kids to be more independent, especially your older children. For our family, each school year, we expect our kids to be more responsible & learn how to do more for themselves. We are parents that truly believe that it is our responsibility that once our kids turn 18 & go off on their own that they will know how to properly take care of themselves- cook, clean, laundry, etc. I like to use summertime as a time to teach my kids new tasks & responsibilities. Now being a work at home mom, this actually will benefit me more in the end because they won’t “need” me as much, giving me more time to work with minimal interruptions.
Another important task to teach your kids as they get older is to learn how to entertain themselves without Mommy. From my own personal experience, I know that some kids just don’t know how to entertain themselves. What I do to help my kids find things to do by themselves is create a list of activities that they can do independently. You can create one of your own or you can find one to print out on Pinterest.
Take advantage of summer reading/ summer homework
As you can see in my schedule above, I take full advantage of the fact that my kids have summer homework and I scheduled it when my baby takes his afternoon nap. This will give me two full hours with least amount of interruptions during the day to be able to make phone calls, reply to emails & write my blogs. You will be amazed in how much you do get done each day when you have two full hours of straight work!
Talk to Your Kids About Interruptions
It is important to explain to your kids what is ok to interrupt you during your work time or if for some reason you need to respond to something regarding your work. What I do with my kids is I let them know that I will be working for the next XX amount of time. This will help them know how much time is left so if it is something that can wait, they aren’t wondering & driving themselves crazy about it. Let your kids know what is appropriate & what is not appropriate to interrupt. It is also important to teach them how to approach you like when mommy is working, they can’t come yelling & screaming into the room.
One way to help minimize interruptions is to work in your designated work station. If you haven’t done so all ready, this will teach your kids to know that when they see you there you are working so if for some reason they didn’t hear you announce it they know mom is working.
For tips on how to minimize distractions & interruptions, check out my blog AvonMom Tips for Working at Home.
End your work day at a reasonable time
Just like during the school year, it is important to end your “work day” at a reasonable time. For me 3 o’clock is always my magical hour of no work. During the school year this is the time when all of my kids come home from school & I will continue this during the summer. This will keep our afternoon routine relatively the same. Plus it gives me a reason to shut my “work brain” off for a period of time & to truly enjoy the time with my kids. My customers & team members know by now that after 3 I may not get back to them right away so they know to leave a message or to text me.
Summer camps are a great way to break up your kids summer vacation. Let’s face it after a couple of weeks, they start getting bored so finding a summer camp in the middle of vacation is what I recommend. Signing your kids up for summer camp will also give you a week or two to have a good chunk of the day to catch up on your work or maybe even get ahead!
If you are someone that can’t afford summer camps or like me have way too many kids to send to summer camp, then try & find a babysitter that can take the kids a couple days through out the summer. This will allow your kids to get out of the house or to take care of them while giving you some quiet time to do what you need to do. My kids love going to my older boys grandmother’s house because she has a pool so when she offers to take the kids for a couple of hours I jump all over it! (I really do appreciate it everytime!)
Plan Vacation/ Schedule Day Trips
Summertime is all about making memories together & being a work at home mom you can take advantage of that even more so because you can create your own schedule. So why not plan a vacation or like how my family does, we do day trips. For example, in Massachusetts, Highland Street Foundation offers a program where you get free admission for museums, libraries, culture centers & more across the state. Each Friday there is a different group of places you can go for free. Having a family of 7, being able to go to many of these places for free saves me hundreds of dollars while allowing my kids to be exposed to different cultures, historical places & have educational experiences. Many of these places will also have special events & activities going on their free day so it’s even more fun.
It is very easy to find events, activities & places to visit like this in your local area. My favorite resources are:
- Events page on Facebook
- Your local newspaper (especially your town/city paper)
- Your local library is a great resource to not only find things to do, but many times they will have activities during the summer for kids to do as well.
- Subscribing to your local Macaroni Kids e-newsletter. There you will receive updates & access to a calendar for family friendly activities & events as well as ideas on things to do in your local area. To find your local Macaroni Kid publisher, go to www.national.macaronikid.com
Planning a vacation will have everyone in the family have something to look forward to. Just like with summer camps, it will also help break up the summer for the kids. With my husbands work schedule, it is hard to take a whole week off. So my family loves to do camping trips over a 3-4 day weekend. It gives us time away from electronics & our everyday life while enjoying nature & quality time with one another. I really enjoy this type of vacation because it gives a chance to just focus on one another & make some amazing memories. It truly feels every time we come back from a camping trip our family feels more close knit.
Give Yourself a Break
When I say giver yourself a break, I mean it in two ways:
- Make sure to take time to relax. Plan a day, even if it just a couple hours for just you. Moms need a break just like anyone else. Taking that time to relax & rejuvenate will have you come back in better place mentally & emotionally resulting in you being able to be the best mom, wife & business owner.
- You are going to come across days that feel like nothing is going right. Don’t stress yourself out or get in a panic. I know for me this can be hard at times, but especially during the summer, take this time to have more of the go with the flow mentality. Your laundry will get done eventually. It’s ok if the dishes are not done until morning. Let’s take these next two months to take advantage of the fact that we can enjoy this time with our kids. You & your kids will be much more happier. You’re not going to regret ten years down the line that your house didn’t look like a showcase. You will regret not spending those precious moments you can have with your kids. Let’s face it, they are not kids forever & if you are a parent you know how fast they grow up & time flies.
I hope these tips are helpful for you to have an amazing summer with your kids. It’s all about seizing the moment & making the most out of each day. Being a work at home mom can be stressful at times but the benefits make it all worthwhile, as long as you actually take advantage of those benefits! Enjoy & have fun!
What tips do you have for work at home moms to survive the summer?
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