". . . little shall I grace my cause

In speaking for myself. Yet, by your gracious patience,

I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver . . ."

(William Shakespeare's Othello, I.iii.88-90)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

New Routine

I have a new job. I will be one of the staff piano accompanists at a brand new high school in the area. I am looking forward to the work--the choral director and the other accompanist are friends whose musicianship I highly respect--and, of course, the extra money will be nice! But it's going to mean some changes for both me and my family. Even though the job is part-time, it is going to be more hours working away from home. In recent years my part-time income has been generated by teaching piano lessons and accompanying church and community choirs. But the choral accompanying has just been a matter of attending several weekly rehearsals. Now, as a staff accompanist, I will be expected to be at school for part of every day. My responsibilities will include not just sitting at the piano but assisting the choral director in whatever way I can with cataloguing and filing music, working with students, and the like. This week I have been fingerprinted and background checked and have viewed a tutorial on blood borne pathogens. I am learning how to punch a time card again (it's all computerized now--wow, have I been out of the hourly work force a long time). I have filled out more papers than I care to count and have breathed a sigh of relief that as a part-time worker I am not required to join the teachers' union.

Even though there are some changes coming, I am excited about the work. I like to play the piano, and I don't do it enough. I am in a phase of my life where I don't do much that I don't HAVE to do. There are just too many things vying for my attention. So if I don't HAVE to play the piano, I don't. With this job I am going to have to play the piano every day.

Trying to prepare, I have spent the last few days coming up with a master family schedule. Part of wearing the "Mom" hat is making sure that not only I but everyone else in the family is WHERE they need to be WHEN they need to be there. It's not an easy task. I'm proud of myself for figuring it all out. So proud, in fact, that I'm going to post it here. Below is a rough outline of my M-Th schedule.

5:00 Wake up
6:30 Leave for school
7:00-10:00 Work at high school
10:30 (MW) Pick up oldest son at junior college (where husband dropped him off at 8:00)
11:00 Home
11:30 Bible time with kindergartener
12:00 Lunch
12:30-1:00 Clean up, house chores
1:00-1:30 Rest time with kindergartener
1:30-2:00 Take daughter to day school for art/choir (husband will bring her home); on Thursday kindergartener will have homeschool gym from 1:30-2:30
2:00-3:00 Do "school" with kindergartener
3:00-4:00 Mom time
4:00-6:00 (M) Teach piano students; (Th) Accompany community children's choir
6:00-7:00 Supper
7:00 (Th) Church choir
9:00 Get ready for bed
9:30 Family devotion
10:00 Lights out!

Most Fridays I will be able to be home. That will be my day to do literature and history with my older children and follow up with them on their other subjects. I am blessed with two teenagers who are self-motivated and disciplined and work very well on their own. They will have French and theology with their father on Tuesday/Thursday mornings and piano lessons with him on Tuesdays (his day off). The rest of the time they will have to work off an assignment sheet that I will provide and be responsible for pacing themselves. I have no worries about them doing that. They will also each have daily chores and specific tasks related to caring for their little brother. Since I will be gone in the morning, they will have to take care of getting him up and making him breakfast. They are also both going to help me with teaching him! Caitlin will be doing arts and crafts, and Trevor will be teaching chess and math.

My biggest concern about this new schedule is not the waking up early--I am a morning person, so I do that already--but the loss of those morning hours as personal time. If I want to do anything in the morning geared towards self-care (devotion, reading and exercise) I cannot let myself get sucked in to email and blogs. It's not going to be easy. I acknowledge I am addicted to both. But I am going to have no choice but to cut back. My posting here will probably become a bit less frequent. I hope I can still manage several posts per week. To manage the email, I am planning on changing my several list subscriptions to another email address that I will not check until later in the day. Of course, by that time everyone will have chimed in on all the threads and I will probably become one of those people who doesn't have anything much to say because someone else already said it. Sigh.

One thing that will help make this all work is that my dear, wonderful, sweet, amazing, sensitive honey of a husband is letting me get a cleaning lady! ::Cartwheels through the house:: I think he may actually end this year with a relatively sane and reasonable wife rather than someone who sees people in the wallpaper. Smart move on his part, huh?

Check back in a few months and I'll let you know how the wallpaper is doing.


Ewe said...

I've been working on a blog post about our family schedule now that I am starting kindergarten homeschooling with ds 1.Schedules are not easy! I want to have me time and dh and I want together time and it just doesn't seem like enough time in one day. I admire you for working out schedules for your whole family, especially when everyone needs to be somewhere.
I hope the cleaning lady works well for you. I blogged about our experience here http://daybydayathomeaway.blogspot.com/2009/05/goodbye-servant-girls.html Hopefully your older kids can "help clean up before the maid comes" if you know what I mean to prevent some of the problems I had. My young boys couldn't do that. Plus hopefully once you get a cleaning lady, she stays, and you don't have to find a replacement like I did.
We understand if you have to cut back on e-mail, but I hope you try to post here a few times a week-I enjoy your blog!

Laura said...

Wow, that is quite the undertaking, after a few weeks, though, maybe the new pattern of life will seem normal. :) Love the idea of a cleaning lady...that should take off a big load. God be with you and I still hope to see you here once in awhile!