You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance.
– Franklin P. Jones
So how does a single mom also figure out how to be a simple mom?
Keeping life simple, decluttering and doing away with the unnecessary is good, but it’s all for nothing if we don’t pass on a love of simplicity to the next generation—and that begins with what they learn at home.
Raising a happy, healthy, strong daughter from babyhood to womanhood is the best privilege I’ve ever been given. Humour, kindness and humility backed by amazing family and friends helped me to navigate the obstacles of parenthood.
But we can’t do it all. It’s not only single parents that feel this pressure. Parenting and running a household is hard. Add to that work and in some cases being the only financial provider – it’s exhausting. We all have different financial and custody situations, not to mention children at various stages with unique personalities.
I may not be able to spend the whole day with my daughter, but I can spend ten meaningful minutes coloring with her after breakfast before work. I know that what matters are the essentials and that is a very, very short list for me that involves food, water and making sure my daughter feels loved.
Being a single mother forces me to concentrate on what matters most to make my family my top priority, and I choose only a small number of priorities to do in my life to be at peace and enjoy the time I do have with my daughter.
I invite you to focus on one thing you can do, instead of being overwhelmed by everything your circumstances or energy may limit you from doing.
That fantastical nanny got it right, Mary Poppins. “For every job that must be done there is an element of fun, find the fun and snap! the job’s a game!”
Focus on putting fun in everything you do. When we succeed in making chores fun, then the chore is no longer work. With kids fun is often in creating a game. Things like: “let’s see who can pick up the most,” “who can complete the task first,” or “let’s pick up everything we can in the time it takes to sing the Barney clean-up song three times!”
One calendar. I only had one kid, so I didn’t have a lot of activities to track (by choice), but I used one calendar and entered all activities and appointments from kids’ stuff to my own.
Keep traditions. I’m Italian, so I have a lot of traditions I like to keep, but we created a few of our own too. My favourite is “Mom and Julia day.” If you make it a regular thing, and give it special importance, it will be a tradition, and it will be something your kids remember into adulthood.
My last post: When life’s not simple