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When we were in process for our son’s adoption, I spent time searching for the perfect toddler schedule. I’ve mentioned before that my plan did not go as expected, but it is true that a general routine is helpful for little ones. Over time I developed a stay at home mom schedule and a better routine. Having some sort of routine helps you to be more intentional in creating an environment that consistently points your child to Christ. Here is the schedule I used and some additional tips for creating your own toddler schedule!
Here is my daily SAHM to a toddler schedule
7 am – Mommy wakes up, gets ready, reads Bible
8 am – My son wakes up, eats breakfast, gets dressed
- During breakfast, we go through the Children’s Catechism and our Bible memory verses
9 am – MWF: Free play and/or help while mommy does chores (clean, prep dinner if it’s a crockpot meal, etc); Tue/Thurs: Speech Therapy
- I like to stream Christian music during this time. Current favorites are Listen Up! by Sovereign Grace Music or Worthy by Beautiful Eulogy.
10 am – MWF: ABC Jesus Loves Me; Tues/Thurs Errands and Library – sometimes playdates or the park on Fridays
- ABC Jesus Loves Me is a toddler and preschool curriculum that encourages play-based learning in academics, developmental skills, and the Bible. You can purchase the printed curriculum or access it free from the website. For us, this normally looks like reading, coloring, a craft or two a week, learning/reviewing songs, and gross motor activities. As we progressed through the curriculum, it became more heavily worksheet based, which did not work for our family. Because of that, we switched to My Father’s World‘s preK program.
11 am – Free play while mommy gets lunch ready. If nice, go outside or to park.
- We do a 15 min toy pick-up before lunch to help control the chaos
Noon – Lunch
12:30 pm – Read and cuddle before nap
- Current books on repeat are The Biggest Story ABC and First Bible Basics: A Counting Primer. These are two of my favorite Christian toddler books.
1-3pm – Naptime; Mommy works on the blog
- Yes, I can’t believe it either that my son sleeps 12 hours at night and takes a 2-hour nap. No, I don’t know how/why it happens, but we are beyond thankful!
3 pm – Snack time, sometimes we watch a show. My son enjoys Owlegories on Amazon Prime!
3:30 pm – If the weather is nice, play outside; otherwise, Child-led play inside
4:30 pm – If we were unable to do it in the morning, ABCJesusLoves Me. Finish up any leftover chores
5 pm – Start Dinner. My son will sometimes play by himself, but most often he likes to help. We don’t have one yet, but I am considering purchasing one of these learning tower stools to make this safer and easier.
6/6:30 pm – Eat Dinner
6:30 pm – If daddy isn’t working late, they will play before bath
7 pm – Bathtime
7:30 pm – Cuddles and reading
8 pm – Bedtime
8-10 pm – Time with my husband
Tips for creating your own SAHM or toddler schedule
Know Where You Are in Life
- Did you just add a new little one to your family? In the first couple of months after adopting our oldest, we were in survival mode. This meant I couldn’t expect to maintain a toddler schedule that included several hours of my cooking, cleaning, exercise, etc. Whether it’s a new child, illness, or moving, there are times in our lives where we must go back to the basics. Write down your bare minimums, and then (flexibly!) schedule those into your day. Don’t forget to try and include sleep! Can’t even manage the survival mode, basics? Be willing to ask for help.
Utilize Block Scheduling
- In my sample SAHM with a toddler schedule, I wrote down the approximate times that we do different activities. In real life, I prefer to think more in time blocks. Physical activity for an hour, crafts for 20 minutes, reading for 45 minutes, and errands for 2 hours. If you are a work at home mom, you will also find this to help with your productivity. I work on this blog for 2 hours a day during naptime, and I use block scheduling within those two hours. On any given day, I might allocate an hour for writing, 15 minutes for social media, 15 minutes for answering emails, and 30 minutes for reading and commenting on other blogs.
- It took several months before we got into any semblance of a routine, and adding another child to our family only changed things further. After you’ve written down your bare minimums and start adding additional items, be aware that these may change over time. See what my schedule looks like now with two kids!
Keep Your Priorities Straight
- My priorities are as follows: faith, family, home, blog. Honestly review your day. Are you spending more time on social media or watching Netflix than reading the Word? Do you prioritize an immaculate home over spending time with your children? When considering your family’s daily schedule, make it one that reflects God’s rightful place at the center of your lives.
Redeem Your Routines
Sometimes I struggle with my routines because I feel overwhelmed by the busyness or underwhelmed by how mundane it all seems. I grew up hearing the words “meditate on Scripture,” but didn’t completely grasp what it meant or how it would transform my life until I was older. Meditating on the Word is something that we can do as busy moms to grow our faith throughout our daily routines. I created Redeeming Routines, mobile guides to make this more doable. Learn more by visiting the Redeeming Routines site or watch this short video!
What Do You Think?
Do you have a general schedule or routine that you follow? What tips would you give someone who doesn’t have any routines in place? How does having a schedule help you keep your priorities straight, making sure you keep your rapt attention on Christ?