How are you doing? It seems to be the question that most people are asking each other during this pandemic. I still quite often have to pinch myself. Are we really living like this? In lockdown. Not seeing family and friends. No school, no nursery. It seems bizarre. I keep having to explain to my eldest I’m not really sure how to be or how to feel, as this has never happened before, in any of our lifetimes. Surviving lockdown with the kids! Not being able to go anywhere. Not having the help and company from my Mum.
I’m feeling a LOT more in control now. We have been in the house since Friday pick-ups, apart from trip outs for food and a daily walk to the woods. Tomorrow will be a full week. It almost feels normal now? Which is crazy, after only a week. My crazy anxiety has settled. I am sleeping well again and eating normally. Just need to get back onto the exercise.
It’s been nice to connect with people again, even if just over messages. You really do realise who is important to you in a time like this. We’ve spent time together as a family and don’t get me wrong, it is HARD WORK with three kids all day long, but we are kind of getting into some sort of groove.
After being at home with the three of them for almost a week now, home-schooling the eldest and coping with the other two, I’ve realised I am surviving lockdown with the kids and it’s been okish. I’ve learnt stuff already along the way and I thought I would share this with you.
Surviving Lockdown with The Kids
What I love about us humans is we adapt. It may take a week for some of us or a month! I have seen some people in the same state as I was in last week, this week but I do feel we all get there in the end. Just don’t worry if you aren’t there yet or never do get there!! It does get a little better and you feel better.
As I said, I’m calmer and surviving lockdown with the kids and this is how:
– IGNORE SOCIAL MEDIA!! Okay, I love the way the world has come together to help each other out. Facebook groups, home schooling tips, things to do, crafts, fitness, baking….the list is endless. I think some companies and people have been unbelievably kind and creative but for me, I’ve ignored a lot of it. It can be another pressure that we don’t need right now. If you are stuck for ideas, these groups are fabulous but if like me, you have your own groove, steer clear and do your own thing.
– IF THE SCHOOL HAS SET WORK, STICK TO IT – This links in with the above point really but why stress yourself out? My eldest’s school have done a fabulous job and I find we stick to what they have set every day, focusing on reading, writing, maths and spelling. We do exercise too. I know there are some amazing and very creative ways to homeschool but when I have two other kids bouncing around…that isn’t happening!!!
– ROUTINE – This maybe a controversial, as I have seen a lot of people being quite relaxed but I have found a timetable and a routine my saviour!! The days are flying; I can imagine like a work or school day really. I’m not saying you have to home school (but I do think you should do something). You can see an example of our schedule below and we loosely stick to it. I’m fairly relaxed with screen-time in the morning and we don’t start the day until 9am but after that my eldest starts her work and we get cracking! The days have structure and already my eldest knows what is expected of her. I understand we shouldn’t be stressing them out but since they were babies, all my kids have had some form of routine and it works!
– SNACKS, snacks and more snacks – I factor snack time into the day and try and stick to it or the kids will be asking all day. They know what healthy snacks they are allowed and we usually rotate them around. Never underestimate how much they will eat!
– BICKERING – this will happen. My oldest two girls have got worse as the week’s gone on. It’s very hard not to want to shout and get angry but I’ve really tried to have more patience, speak calmly and comfort my middle child, who gets upset. Sometimes you are going to have to let it go, as they are going to be together for a very long time. I find splitting them up for a bit helps.
– DON’T BAN SCREENTIME IN ANGER – my hubby keeps threatening this and I want to punch him in the face. DO NOT threaten the one thing that gives you time to tidy, have a cuppa, pass out or write in my case!! It is too valuable. I do limit it to around the same time as the school day. Off at 9am and on again around 4pm. The screens in the day are just for learning but you do what you have to!!! We also subscribed to Disney Plus.
– GET OUT OF THE HOUSE – whilst we can and the weather has been awesome, the girls have had a scoot or bike to the woods. It is always deserted and whenever we pass anyone, we have stuck to the 2m social distancing rule. Some days we have been out for well over an hour and it really has been good for the soul and my sanity.
– LOOK AFTER YOURSELF – I wrote a post last week about looking after your health during lockdown and I echo it. Eat well, try and exercise, have a glass of wine, have time alone and look after your mental health. If the news and social media are triggering you, steer clear. You can’t look after your kids, if you are not feeling well.
– FACETIME BREAKS – I’ve actually been ok this week with the schedule but if you are feeling a bit crazy, it’s a perfect time to FaceTime a family member or let one of your kids, chat to their friends. Passes some time and nice to have some different company for a bit.
If all else fails, cuddles and silly time go down a treat in my house!
It’s been one week and one week only. I know we have a long way to go yet but I feel relieved to be doing ok. I even said to my Mum having them at home was actually pretty nice. Usually by the 4th to 5th week of the summer holidays I’ve had enough, so my update blog post may be in a different tone in a few weeks!
But we can do it and we are doing it!
How are you doing and do you have any extra tips? Let me know in the comments!