Monday, September 9, 2013

Happy Monday - Falling into Fall

Good morning!

Sorry I missed you last week!  I had a chance to take a drive with my husband on Labor Day and I couldn't pass it up. :)  Somehow it seems that fall starts with the Labor Day holiday, doesn't it?  The sun is setting earlier, the mornings are getting chillier, and the leaves on the trees in my yard are even starting to change colors!  The biggest indication, though, is the big yellow buses that I'm seeing around town... School is in session once again!!

When we were homeschooling, I really looked forward to the beginning of the school year.  New subjects, new books, new notebooks, new clothes, new ideas...  Everything spelled adventure and fun.  I even enjoyed the structure that homeschooling brought to our day, and I'm realizing more and more how much I depended on that "school year" structure to get me on track after a busy summer.

This year I decided to approach this fall as though I was once again starting a new school year.  First, I've been washing my fall and winter clothes preparing to transition to a new season.  I have really enjoyed having a capsule wardrobe this summer, but some of the pieces aren't very well suited for fall.  I plan to trade out the short sleeved blouses for 3/4 or long sleeved shirts, pull out some warmer skirts and add back in my scarves and another sweater or two.  I'd like to plan a wardrobe of about twelve outfits - down to accessories and shoes - for the fall season.  If I make a list of the pieces that I need (Like a nice navy skirt!  I need to check at Goodwill for that!), I'll be able to watch the fall sales and pick them up at a reasonable price.

Another Back to School idea I'm trying is to use a "workbox" scheduling approach to help me plan out my day.   I made some scheduling cards (using Winnie the Pooh Clipart!!) to help me remember all the main parts of my day.  I have one for Morning Routine / Menus & Shopping / Stamping / Stitching / Daily Clean Up / GraceWorks / Weekly and Seasonal Cleanup / Being a Blessing / Blogging / Details (Mostly PaperWork) / Planning Ahead / Lunch / Supper / Something Special / Errands / Evening Routine / Bedtime.  Then I made a chart of the hours from 6 am - 11 pm.  Each evening in my planning time I can look at my calendar and block off my responsibilities for the next day and then fit in the other cards around it.  When I have it the way I like it, I write the next days schedule on one of the Classic Home Journal Daily Sheets... usually one that I've punched wrong!! ; )  Although I've used the HJ Daily Sheets often in the past, the extra help of having visual blocks of time -- that I can rearrange without erasing! -- makes it easier to plan out my day so I don't miss something important... like cleaning the house!!   Well, that and Pooh Bear makes me smile.  :)

One final Back to School idea.  I have written my early morning routine on a sheet of paper that I have in my binder.  Since this includes checking my email and drinking coffee it has the potential to last MUCH longer than it should.  So - at the bottom of the sheet I wrote:

Let's Begin!

Light a Candle
Put on Pretty Music

Just like my homeschool students needed to know that school time had started and it was time to concentrate on their work, I gave myself a tangible prompt to help me remember that it is time to work and that I shouldn't get drawn back into the computer.  Plus the candle makes the house smell wonderful and the music I play draws my attention to Christ.  It's a win-win situation!

I'm sure you all have some wonderful back to school schedule ideas.  Feel free to share them in the comments section.  I love hearing from you!



Happy Monday Prompt:  A way I prepare for the next day is to...

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