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A peek into our Summer Schedule

We got a free Frosty at Wendy's!

So, I skipped doing a Cleaning Project and Daily Plan yesterday because it was Memorial Day.

While we did our usual homeschooling and daily cleaning chores, we got done early so we could enjoy a fun outing to a movie with free tickets we’d been given from friends and then to hit up Wendy’s for a free Frosty. We’re all about Frugal Fun here. 🙂

Some of you have asked for more details about our summer schedule. So I thought I’d share a peek into what it looks like. Do remember that it changes a bit each day depending upon what’s going on that day, but the bones of the schedule usually stay the same.

5 Things You Should Do Every Single Day

Need some ideas for how to get started creating a daily routine? I encourage you to start very simply — with just a few things. Read my post on 5 Things You Should Do Every Single Day for a great starting point.

A Peek At Our Summer Schedule:

  • Me up/quick morning routine — I try to do this Morning Routine here.
  • Blogging/business work — usually for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Kid’s up — baths/dressed
  • Breakfast — I usually start in with our Bible and memory work while they finish eating breakfast.
  • Morning homeschool time — we’re doing Sonlight Core D so our together time usually takes around 1.5 hours.
  • Reading time — we all sit on the couches in the living room and read our own books quietly for 20 minutes or so.
  • Morning chores — This consists of: Rooms clean, beds made, trashes emptied, house picked up, bathrooms quick-cleaned, floors swept, and laundry started.
  • Kid’s work on independent work while I work on laundry + extra cleaning projects (Today’s project: declutter 2 rooms)
  • Me — quick run/shower, if I didn’t get it in before the kids got up.
  • Lunch/Latin
  • Jesse take over with the kids’ school/activities/dinner prep while I spend the afternoon on blogging & business work — our kids have activities almost every afternoon (swimming/figuring-skating, etc. and Jesse’s in charge of those).
  • Dinner/family time — 6:30ish
  • Quick house pick-up/finish laundry — I try to do this Evening Routine here. — 7:15ish
  • Kids to bed — 7:30 to 8 p.m. — the girls usually read/listen to audiobooks for awhile before going to sleep.
  • Time with Jesse/read
  • To bed by 10:30 p.m.

Later today, I’ll share a post about how our day went and give you an update (with pictures) on how our day went and my progress on decluttering to give you a real-life peek into a day in our life.

If you have a routine that you follow at your house, I’d love to hear more about what that looks like. If you’ve blogged about it, I’d love to have you leave a comment with your link.

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  • Christy says:

    So glad you got showers in that list 🙂

  • Diane says:

    I really do find it easiest to run before anyone else is up and I don’t know how you do it later with the heat (or heat you will be getting in the next month). I’d be interested in hearing what you’re doing for Latin. We love Song School Latin even if we mostly just listen to the CDs. Thanks for sharing that you’re doing SonLight. I don’t think we’ll switch from what we’re doing but I am planning on reading many of the books on their list. We love reading time so much.

    • I run on the treadmill in the garage — and yes, it is hot sometimes, which motivates me to *try* to get it done early. But sometimes, that just doesn’t happen. 🙂

      We’re doing Song School Latin — just watching the DVDs for the right now while we eat lunch.

  • Nicole says:

    when do u make bfast, lunch and especially dinner?! That’s one of my biggest challenges!

    • The kids make their own breakfasts — usually cereal, oatmeal, or maybe eggs if we have enough time. Lunch is usually leftovers or turkey sandwiches — something that I can make in 10 minutes or less. And Jesse usually takes care of dinner — often a crockpot meal now that it’s getting warmer outside.

  • Amy says:

    I am so amazed at how much you get done before lunch! I have been trying to get up earlier and get my children up earlier ever since you did the “Early to Rise” challenge a while back, but we are still stuck at 8:30 being the earliest I can get my children up out of bed. What time do your children usually wake up?

  • Billie says:

    Sounds like an awful lot of daily school work and chores for summer time, remember to visit the pool and soak up some of the sunshine.

    • We school year-round because my kids love school (they usually beg to do extra!) and because we’ve found they thrive on a routine versus free-for-all and means they don’t have to do catch-up work/review at the beginning of a new school year. However, we travel throughout the year and do lots of fun family things throughout the week (like our movie night last night), so there’s lots of great memories thrown into the mix of each week.

      Plus, our kids have activities almost every afternoon (ice-skating, swimming, baseball, etc.) so they get in lots of sports and sunshine and free play in the afternoons. They are also doing a few different camps this year — which they are really excited about!

  • Swapna says:

    Wow… If only my daughter would wake up by 7:30-8 am. That sounds like heaven… How do you guys do it?

    Even though I wake up at 4:45 am, I still struggle to get much done in the mornings before my 3-yr-old daughter wakes up – I’m just able to take a shower & get ready and get her lunch ready for daycare and that’s about it. She’s up by 6 and then it’s getting her ready for daycare takes the rest of the morning and off to work it is.

    Perhaps I need to establish a better morning/evening routine.

    I’ve got to say though – my daughter sleeping 9pm-6am continuously still feels like a miracle after the struggles I’ve had with her 🙂

  • Coffee Sipper says:

    Are you doing Classical Conversations for memory work? Do you have any tips for how you do memory work review? My almost six year old seems tired of memory work, and I’m thinking partly of just giving him a break for a summer, but I also like the idea of at least having a simplified routine instead of a free-for-all so we’re not playing catch up at the beginning of the school year.

    • We’re doing the memory work from Sonlight. Right now, we’re memorizing Psalms 8. We listen to a CD with the Psalm put to music and then read the passage out loud together. That’s all we’re doing for review right now and are slowing learning it. They give us 6 weeks to learn it and give us different ways to review each week.

    • Nancy says:

      We did CC for grades 4-6 and my kids were MMs each year. It wasn’t hard if you are consistent. I would simply shuffle the flash cards and we’d go through them each weekday, then do the HX timeline. We never had to do presidents or states and capitals because they memorized those with songs when they were young. It’s easier with multiple kids because they don’t have to answer every one but they are still getting the review. I never cared about MM but my kids did.

      • Coffee Sipper says:


        Thanks for the ideas, these are excellent.

        I’m curious, how did your kids decide they wanted to do MM? I think it’s a goal we want to have at some point, but it seems that it really depends on the readiness of the child. Did the 4 year old sit still for the proofing, or did you have another way to do it than having the 4yo sit for 1 1/2-2 hours? Did the youngest have the motivation to do it because there was an older child also doing it? Our director seemed uncertain that very young children can, yet I believe that with consistent review, it may be possible. What thoughts do you have?


    • Diane says:

      Sometimes I just let my CC CD play in the background. Kids still absorb it and it isn’t drilling.

      • Coffee Sipper says:

        I really should invest in the CDs, thanks for the tip!

        • Diane says:

          We listen to them all the time. They have songs for the presidents, time line, Latin and skip counting and all history sentences. We’ve memorized all the history, all 3 cycles without really trying.

  • Summer says:

    Thanks for sharing your schedule! I was just working on a blog post about establishing goals for the summer months. My husband is a teacher so our schedule changes drastically with him being home–and though it’s a good change, it’s still an adjustment and I feel a little out of sorts until I can get back into a routine. Glad to know it’s not just me that needs that, lol! Sometimes I feel like a fuddy-duddy but routines (even loose ones!) helps my attitude and accomplishments so much!

  • adrienne says:

    Thanks for sharing this. We are not in crisis mode but looking at a very strict diet to help one of our children. This will be helpful to keep everything else going…

  • Melissa Lohrey&era says:

    love the fact that even though you home school your kids are involved it activities like swimming etc. I think that is so important my kids have always been involved in sports and they learn a lot from it

  • kariane says:

    I like the idea of [loosely] scheduling your day like that. I find it helps me tremendously to have a plan for our days. It helps me to make sure that we don’t miss important things and helps us all to know what’s coming next.

  • Laura says:

    Hey Crystal! We do have a schedule. We wake up between 6:30-7 and have the kids play quietly in their rooms until 7 (our kids are 5, 4 and 2). During this time, I try to make my coffee and do my devotions so I have a good start to my day! 🙂

    From there we eat breakfast as a family then my husband heads off to work. I have my kids play in their rooms with toys I choose for them (so everything isn’t out and messy at that time) while I check emails, write a blog post, etc.

    We try to play outside whenever it’s nice, eating lunch around noon. Then it’s naptime for the two youngest and our 5 year old still needs a bit of a nap so he plays for an hour and then naps. After naps, we will jump on the trampoline, play Legos or watch a movie sometimes. Dinner is at 5-5:30 and bedtime is at 7. 🙂 I did write a blog post on our “schedule” but more or less, the humor involved at raising little kids and how our days often don’t go as planned! Overall, we have some scheduled things in our day, but want to remain flexible so that we can change what we’re doing, whatever comes up.

  • Christina says:

    Sounds super productive! Right, so my schedule is :
    *whisper* yell at my kids, at whatever ungodly hour they arise, to get back in their room until 7:30 at which time I roll out of bed needing to pump like 3 hrs ago praying mastitis doesn’t set in. But first I make coffee because nothing happens before that. Then I change at least one baby, feed both babies, throw pop tarts at the other two to the tune of Daniel tiger.
    Then I pump some more, look around at my disastrous (but not dangerous) house and shake my head. I wash all bottles and pump pieces. Throw a few bananas at my boys and pray my infant twins sleep. If they do, we work on what ever project is on the top of our list. This week it has been the yard.
    Lunch, coloring and play then nap by 1 pm. Pump, feed babies, do laundry, watch a dumb show, prep dinner. Dinner done by 6, herd the hoard of cats upstairs by 7. In bed asleep by 8. Sit on my sofa and pump more while typing this, feeding babies, starring at “laundry mountain” and wish for a housekeeper. Sometimes a protein fruit smoothie on the deck. Sometimes vodka. Bed by 11. It’s a work in progress.

    • Girl, it sounds like you have your hands more than full… I can’t even imagine! But you have my highest respect that you can still have such a sense of humor about it! 🙂

      • Christina says:

        😉 My husband works from home and is a lot of help. It’s a busy season, I can laugh because I see the end of the chaos in sight. Jesus says to not worry about tomorrow, it has enough trouble of it’s own. My husband’s “forced” self-employment as a web designer has been an unanticipated integral thread to us more than surviving. He’s at Unexpected plug! 😀

  • alys says:

    How many hours do you spend each week blogging? I work from home full time (40 hrs), and I am wanting to homeschool. I have this past year, but my oldest is only 5 and kindergarten is really basic. Trying to think if it is doable once the my other two (4 and 2.5 currently) are older. I get up a 5 every morning and have complete flexibility in my work hours.

    • I average about 40 hours per week, sometimes 45 or even 50 if I have a really big project going on — like writing a book or something. I usually work 1-2 hours in the mornings before we start our day and then 5-6 hours in the afternoons after our morning homeschooling is done. And then usually an additional 4-6 hours on Saturdays. So that adds up to average about 40 hours per week.

      I could not work as many hours as I do and homeschool now that my kids are older if my husband wasn’t co-homeschooling with me, though. There just wouldn’t be enough hours and something would suffer. He takes over in the afternoons while I work and is in charge of the kids’ afternoon activities/lessons as well as their Math, Science, and Language Arts.

  • libby says:

    I am a scheduled morning person by nature but that went out the window after our son was born 7 weeks ago. He is not the sleeper his sister was and combined three emergency visits (not for new baby but everyone else) and two rounds of the stomach flu I have been in survival mode for weeks. Things have just started to settle this past week, owynn is still a nighthawk but at least at generally consistent times. My daughter is 2.5 and on a schedule thank goodness. Crystal how did you get back into your scheduled self after having children?

  • April says:

    I’m jealous of how much your husband is helping! But I’m also thankful the dishwashing and half of the laundry chores now belong to my 8 and 9 year olds. Phew! I love your home school schedule. I may have to use some of those ideas. Thank you!

  • Paula says:

    My daughter attends a parochial school and will be finishing in 3 weeks, so we’re starting to try to come up with some kind of routine/plan for summer. I work partly from home and at an on-site job once a week, occasionally twice. So most of the time, I will be home with her.

    We don’t homeschool primarily, but I do always have her do some type of work daily to keep her skills up, so that will be included in each day along with a daily chore. She’ll do those while I do my work in the morning, with afternoons free for fun.

    I’ve already encouraged her to come up with a list of activities for those times when she’s “bored” and can’t think of what to do at the time. Also planning one outing a week, maybe two if we can work it in. Near where we live there is an organization that sponsors “Free Fun Fridays”. Each Friday there is free admission to various places like zoos, museums, historical sites, and nature sites. I plan on going to as many of these as possible to get to see a variety of places and still keep the summer budget reasonable.

    I’m also trying to stay on top of what the weather is supposed to be to make sure we can get outings in on good days. Also on days that are supposed to be very hot, we can change around our schedule and do outdoor play or outings in the morning when it’s cooler and leave the work for afternoon so we can be inside then.

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