Recently I read that when we multitask, we don’t do either job well. The take away was: don’t multitask. As a homeschooling mom, I needed to multitask and accept whatever standard I accomplished rather than not doing it at all. For busy moms, we benefit ourselves and our families when we develop the ability to think about what we can easily and effectively multitask and then practice it.
For example, Monday, I was prepping chicken noodle soup, which involved quite a bit of kitchen time. First I chopped the onion to simmer in the soup broth. Because the onion was huge, I used 1/2 of it. Rather than saving the other 1/2 for another day, I opted to multitask. I pulled 4 pounds of ground beef from the freezer to brown and sauté with the onion. We had no meal planned for that ground beef, but having frozen, prepped ingredients to pull for a quick meal is a timesaver for the future.
Since I was going to be in the kitchen peeling, washing, and chopping vegetables anyway, I multitasked by browning and sautéing the beef too.
When I homeschooled, I often multitasked by including a child in what I did. The child learned beside me, and we fellowshipped through it all—multi-multitasking. Often that is the case in the kitchen now, although my girls and I are currently peers in the kitchen. If there is no one else working with me, I listen to Scripture or something educational on my phone.
What do you do well multitasking?
Trusting in Jesus, Teri
“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.” (1 Timothy 5:14)
I’m excited to share with you a special post from Melanie. I’ve long admired how she manages technology through her day. So I asked if she could share how she does that with you all!
School days are full of interruptions, but one of the slyest is cell phones. I remember as a kid when my parents got an answering machine so Mom could screen incoming calls and only answer during school hours if it was my dad. Now, we have cell phones and communication interruptions have become even easier to get caught up in—because it just takes a second to send a text, or read a post, or read an email, or just send a quick question. Of course once the phone is in our hands, we notice one more thing we need to look at or answer.
Nathan had been working on increasing his skill set and disciplines for greater success in his work. As I’ve watched him do this, I am inspired to have a similar drive to build my skills and disciplines to be the best homeschool mom and wife I can be. It’s not hard for me to find things I can work on, so obviously I am a work in progress!
One thing that I know helps me be a better homeschool mom is to remove distractions when I am teaching! A big thing for me is my phone. My goal is to keep my phone on the kitchen counter and do a quick check between subjects to see if Nathan has texted. I work to ignore other communication from family and friends until lunch, and the same for the afternoon—ignore texts until school is done for the day. Though I’m sure this can be a frustration for those working to communicate with me, people quickly learn my texting style and accept it. For most communication with friends, I use email. That doesn’t have the same expectation of immediate response as texting currently holds.
My connection with my kids is so much better (and precious) when my phone is not my companion and focus. Our daily routine includes one-on-one teaching time with each kid. They look forward to this time and are very sad when it is skipped or excessively interrupted (there are always some interruptions—diaper changes, redirecting of other kids, etc.). How special it is when my eyes, mind, and heart are in tune to them. The time spent is so much more productive and enjoyable with that focus and lines up with the goal I have in front of me of being the best teacher I can be!
In Jesus, Melanie
“And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up” (Deuteronomy 6:7).
Perhaps worse than not knowing what to make for dinner are the sweet little voices asking continually, “What’s for dinner, Mommy?” when you have no answer for them. I discovered a simple solution – weekly meal planning.
Before grocery shopping each week, I wrote out our dinner meals for the following week. Then I printed it and posted it on the refrigerator. I could check with a glance if I needed to defrost meat for the next day’s meal or prep veggies in the morning. Best of all, those children who could read knew where to look for the meal plan. When the pre-readers asked what was for dinner, I usually had already checked and was ready with the answer, but if not, I had it at my fingertips.
With all adults living in our home, we still do weekly meal planning (see the screenshot of my Google Doc spreadsheet below with my meal plans for the last three weeks). I no longer post it on the refrigerator, though. The adults are content to discover the dinner meal when they sit down to eat.
Trusting in Jesus, Teri
“And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.” Luke 4:4
The Maxwell family and ministry blog of Titus2.com.