The following is a guest post by Donna Ashton of The Parenting Studio. Be sure to read to the end for a special giveaway. This giveaway is now closed and the winner will be announced soon. Thank you!
In this hustle bustle world of instant everything, is there any wonder we are craving a simpler, more mindful flow to our days? The noise of life, crazy schedules, always being “connected” can make one wish to live in a little house on the prairie.
I had this thought one day after watching a movie: how nice would it be to have a little cottage with no electricity? To live by the rhythms of the sun, immerse myself in chores like churning butter and kneading bread. Then, my sister texted me and I was brought back to the 21st century.
But that doesn’t mean we can’t balance our hectic lives in a more simplistic way. Maybe we get the best of both worlds. We have a choice to unplug and enjoy the tasks of our grandmothers.
How do we do this? Here are a few ideas…
By creating a strong rhythm, we support this balanced lifestyle with a structure that give us freedom.
Here’s what I mean: if each day you have no plan or flow of what happens in the morning, afternoon or bedtime then you end up making it up as you go. This creates the “trying to catch-up and be 1-step ahead of your children” syndrome who are begging you “What’s for lunch? What are we doing today?”
You end up thinking up something quickly and pretending you have it all together. Or maybe you just put it back on them, “What would you like to do?” That can also be scary.
With a gentle rhythm in place, there are less decisions you need to make because it is already decided – morning chores, breakfast, walk and then playtime. Within the structure is plenty of opportunities to sprinkle in the fun stuff. And now you have more time to plan these fun activities!
This realm goes hand-in-hand with rhythm but is about balancing this 21st century with your butter churning. There are things you will have go do and your children will want to do. Yoga, book club, carpool, soccer, dance, gymnastics, music lessons… this is in addition to normal errands, library, and shopping.
Our lives have become a quest to enrich our children’s lives and let them try every possible option. I invite you to think of your child’s life as an unfolding process.
The keys to balanced scheduling are to decide if it is really necessary. If your activity gets canceled and you are cheering, then it may be time to drop it.
If the thought of decluttering your home is making you exhausted, you may have some work to do! I have a hard time going through my day while eyeing up all the piles and clutter I see. It is an energy drain on us and it is overwhelming to our children.
Did you know that too much stuff causes children to see our world in a shallow way? They never develop the capacity for deep play and getting steeped in their environment if they flit from toy to toy.
Each time I clear out the toys and set out just a few open-ended items, my girls will race over and start creating a story with their imaginations.
Slowing down and embracing this conscious living is simple, but can take a bit of rearranging within our current lifestyles.
As a homeschooling mom and entrepreneur, I know how important it is to keep things as simple as possible. When I read Kim Payne’s book Simplicity Parenting, I knew I had found something truly unique. My passion for this work led me to become a certified Simplicity Parenting group leader so I can guide others to live the Simple Life.
You can listen to the free audio ‘Why Simplify? How to turn your chaos into calm with Simplicity Parenting”
Donna is generously offering one Simple Kids reader a total scholarship to the Fall series, Simplify This Fall which begins on September 15th. *
*note: the winner would be responsible for the course materials at a cost of approximately $25.
- to enter, simply leave a comment on this post
This giveaway will be open until midnight EST Friday, September 9th. I will announce the winner on Saturday, September 10th. Good luck! This giveaway is now closed and the winner will be announced soon. Thank you!
Donna is offering all Simple Kids readers a discount code for Simplify This Fall. Use the code SIMPLEKIDS to get $30 off your registration to the course. If you register for the course and are chosen as the scholarship winner, Donna will reimburse you.
Donna Ashton has devoted over 5 years to learning Waldorf Education and homeschooling her twin girls. She brings her experience with raising her 8½ yr olds in a mindful way to help struggling homeschoolers and parents trying to balance their daily rhythm and get clarity in homeschooling.
In 2009, she created The Waldorf Connection to bring the experts directly to online homeschoolers. She is now a certified Simplicity Parenting Group Leader so she may bring this amazing wisdom to her families and help them simplify and balance their homes and lifestyles.
You can learn more about Donna and her programs, workshops, and products at The Waldorf Connection and The Parenting Studio.