Back-to-School Moms

When it comes to back to school, most news coverage focuses on getting the kids prepared for the new school year, but what about the newest population of students … moms?

In these uncertain times, a record number of moms will go back to college this fall to advance current careers, find new job options, and seize opportunities to contribute more to household finances during a recession. 

How do the families of college moms cope? Try the following tips from real-life college moms.73_Mom_online.jpg

  1. Gain the support of friends and family. We all need cheerleaders to accomplish the many things moms do in any single day. 
  2. When you go back to school supply shopping for the kids, don’t forget your own supplies for online studying like printer ink and paper, a spare battery pack for the laptop, and flash drives.
  3. Prepare meals for the week on Sunday. Whether it’s a hearty soup, lasagna, or a casserole, make meals that are filling and easy to take out of the freezer and reheat quickly.
  4. Work as a team. Show the kids that running a family requires team effort and that your schoolwork is important too. Let them pitch in to help out with family chores.
  5. Remind your significant other that he may need to brush up on his math and science skills because you will need him to help the kids with homework.
  6. Before you sit at your computer, take 15 minutes to do some stretching and/or a few sit-ups. Get the adrenaline pumping so that you are ready to commit to studying and homework.
  7. Instill in your children the value of making sacrifices. Teach them that hard work has positive results.
  8. For those single moms or stay-at-home moms who sometimes have to do it alone, it is OK to let your older children entertain themselves when you have deadlines to meet.
  9. Keep the faith. Everyone has their ups and downs, and sometimes, there are more downs than ups. At the end of the day you can still do this. Remind yourself how much your education means to you and of the future benefits it will bring to your entire family.
  10. Plan some alone time, even if it’s a 20-minute soak in the tub to relax after the children are in bed.

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Thanks to moms at Kaplan University (www.kaplan.edu)— where nearly 75% of students are women and the average student age is 34 — for their tips for juggling family, work, and school.

Have you decided to go back to school?
 
 

A Not-So-Ordinary Day in the Life of a Working Mom

23_BusyMom.jpgDo you ever have “one of those days”? Yesterday was one of those days for me. I’m still new to the whole working mom routine, and balancing work and home is a daily challenge. Well … yesterday was a test of my balancing skills. I won’t go into all of the details of our crazy day, but I’ll try to give you the short version.

My 8-month-old, Jack, woke up with a fever which meant an afternoon visit to the pediatrician’s office. Making it to the pediatrican’s office meant I had to reschedule a meeting, leave work early enough to dash home and get the stroller that I had forgotten that morning, and then pick up Jack.

Once at the pediatrician’s office we waited almost an hour and a half to see the doctor. (Ever tried entertaining a sick, tired 8-month-old for that long in a strange, germ-filled place? It’s hard work!! I’d love some pointers!) Jack was diagnosed with ear infections in both ears. (Poor guy!) So there was a prescription to fill and evening child-care arrangments to be made since he couldn’t go to the church nursery and we had Wednesday-night responsibilities. Jack and I both ate dinner on-the-go and made it home just in time to get things ready for the evening for Ma (Jack’s grandmother and one of our favorite babysitters). After church, there were bottles to wash, a diaper bag to be packed, and other preparations to be made for the next day.

By the time I was able to get to bed last night I was completely exhausted, but I couldn’t help thinking about all of the things I didn’t get done at work and all of the chores that seemed to be piling up!

Luckily, not every day is quite this hectic. However, balancing work and family is never easy. It is so hard to find time to do some of the things I know I should be doing — spending more time with God, exercising, spending one-on-one time with my husband, or just doing something fun for myself.

So here are a couple of questions for all of you working moms out there.

How do you make time for God, your spouse, and yourself in your busy schedule?
What encouragment and/or practical pointers can you offer to other working moms?