As a Mum, there are a number of roles I play on a daily basis. Some are fun (like going biking and for adventure walks with my son), some not so much (think homeschooling during the lockdown!). From carer to nurturer to entertainer to cook to chauffeur to educator to friend to comforter… the list goes on. Mums play a myriad roles every single day.
But that can get a tad monotonous, for everyone involved. The SAME routine, day in and day out. Be it the school-run or homework or a Wednesday evening tennis class or even something as basic as dinner. Which is why I try and spice things up a bit, wherever and whenever possible. A little variation to the routine, a bit of the unexpected, some colour, some sparkle, some chutzpah can make a world of difference. It's all about putting your creative hat on and bringing a splash of something different into the normal.
Let's start with the school-run. It is something we do EVERY morning and EVERY afternoon, week after week, year after year, for the rest of our child's school life. The same route. The same timing. The same morning rush. So we change what we can. Some days we walk. On others, Little Man decides to scoot and now that he's learnt to ride a bike, we have a third option. Sometimes we pair up with a friend and walk together.
The next big boring hurdle to cross – homework/ studies! But I've found a creative way around that as well. We made a daily homework timetable planner with svg images, so it's all there in black and white (actually in a fun range of colours but you get the drift). It's pinned up on Little Man's desk and we know exactly what to do every afternoon. Limits the tantrums and I let him choose the design of the planner every term, so that's something he looks forward to as well.
We also use their craft bundles for rainy-day indoor activities and school projects. There's a large selection of season-based and theme-based craft ideas, colouring pages, scrapbooking templates and lots more.
Chores: how to make them more appealing
Chores around the house – another sore point. Not just for Little Man but also for me. I mean, realistically speaking, who likes to iron and clean when you could be doing far more interesting things?! But… the jobs have got to be done.
While rewards work great for Little Man (a pound for his piggy bank or a special treat) it's not something we encourage often as household chores need to be done irrespective of rewards; our rule is: if you live here, you help out! So to make it less mundane, we let him choose a chore for the week – be it emptying the dishwasher, setting the table for dinner, helping with laundry or dusting. This way he has control over what he does and doesn't feel like he's doing the same task week after week.
I, on the other hand, make sure I'm listening to some peppy music or an interesting podcast or catching up on a tele-series while cooking/ cleaning/ ironing – besides making it more fun, I'm also multi-tasking and getting a dose of entertainment into my otherwise busy day.
Add colour to the mundane day-to-day
I'm a list person – I need and have a list for everything! It helps me compartmentalise (my thoughts and tasks), and when I have something written down in front of me, it helps me get through the day's work quicker (knowing exactly what needs to be done). So there's no guessing that I need a good planner. I frequently use Design Bundles printable daily planners to keep a track of the tasks that I need to complete everyday. From dentist visits to ordering online groceries to keeping abreast of birthday party invitations, there are always numerous things mums need to remember. My little to-do lists are now easily accessible with their fabulous resources, making life so much easier! And colourful!
As a writer/ blogger, I need to be consistently creative. On my blog as well as on my social media channels. And while the words that I put on the screen are mine, the images and accompanying design is often from other professional resources like Pixabay, Pexels, Canva and Design Bundles. These ready templates and stock images help my blog look more professional, add style and efficiency, and help me experiment with my creativity whether it's with creating clickable pins for Pinterest or designing an ace Facebook banner.
Upcycling and re-decorating
Often, we get bored within the same surroundings. But we can't just pack up and leave, or keep moving homes. That's when a few changes here and there – a bit of re-decorating and upcycling – does the trick. It can be something as simple as moving your living room or bedroom furniture around or changing the cushion covers or switching the pictures in your photo frames. We do this every few months so even though we are seeing the same furniture and furnishings, things look a tad different because its in new places around the house.
If you want something a little more drastic and permanent, you can still do so on a budget. Paint one wall of your living room and turn it into a feature wall – decorate it with a painting or some prints or pictures. Plant some colourful flowers in your garden. I'm not much of a green fingers person, so I buy houseplants or artificial flowers and put them around the house.
I also love prints and plaques with uplifting quotes but I can't keep buying them every now and then. So I take digital prints and dot them around my workspace – adds instant colour and inspiration!
Likewise, there's a lot you can do to your living room/ bedroom/ kid's room/ home office or even your garden.
So, to conclude: small shifts in your day-to-day life, just thinking out of the box every now and then, using smart resources and some creativity can make a HUGE difference. Go ahead, make the mundane memorable…
If you have your own tips and ideas to share on the subject, I'd absolutely love to hear them!
This is a collaborative post
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