Encouragement Homemaking Homeschooling Maintenance

Housework VS. Homeschool

Housework VS. Homeschool

I’ve homeschooled for over ten years now, and I still struggle with the “tug of war” between giving my time to keeping the house orderly and homeschooling too! It’s not easy with two full time jobs- because that’s really what it is. Homeschooling is a full time job. So is being a homemaker. That being said none of us can do everything. Something’s gotta give. But perhaps with a little grace and joy in the mix we can come up with some ways to keep us moving forward, taking care of our families, educating our children, keeping our houses clean and functional- but NOT PERFECT.

You see, that’s where I usually get stuck. I like things to be a certain way. I’m a bit of a control freak. That’s where the letting go comes in. I’m a work in progress, we all are, so like me, you may have to let go a little, relax and simply just do what you can.

We all have different personalities and different methods in our homeschooling and housekeeping too. But if you’re anything like me, trying to do everything all the time, you will eventually get burned out to the point when you realize that you just need to be a little more realistic.

There is only so much time in a day, so here are some basic priority checks that help me to balance my time. I hope they help you too!

1. Cleaning- Just focus on the main stuff.

It helps me to look at just the big stuff instead of seeing all the little things that need to be done too. During the week it’s dishes, meals, and laundry. I can get help with quick pick ups, vacuuming, trash, and dusting later. But even if those things don’t get done, I can usually catch them up on the weekends.

2. Planner- Keep your homeschooling simple.

Focus on the most important things: reading, writing, and math. And make your routine do-able. Sometimes as moms we can be a bit overly ambitious, so I have to remind myself here too about being flexible with my plans and not biting off more than I can chew. We can only do so much! Take time off when necessary.

3. Personal Time- Don’t forget to make yourself a priority.

When I was a young mom, I gave everything to my kids. Nowadays, I try to think of myself a little more to avoid burn out. I now know I’m a better mom if I can take time out for myself. It doesn’t solve everything, but it’s a start.

I’ve homeschooled for more than ten years now and have one college graduate. And I still find homeschooling a challenge to balance with other areas of my life. But I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Looking back at all the messes we had that used to drive me batty, I don’t really remember any of those. But I look at my oldest kids and I know that the time I gave to homeschool them meant everything.

About the author

Stephanie Harrington

Stephanie was a military spouse for 20 years and has homeschooled for more than 17 years. She and her husband of 25 years retired from the military and settled in their native state of Iowa where they continue to homeschool their youngest child. Her homeschool style is eclectic with Charlotte Mason and classical influences. She continues to encourage and support homeschoolers through her writings and curriculum development.
When she isn't teaching or writing she enjoys sightseeing, gardening, and cooking.


Click here to post a comment

  • What a great post! This is our first “official” year homeschooling, and I have to say that I am struggling to get everything done, and I am only in the very early years of homeschooling! I have to remember that I still have two little kids who will make messes. I am doing what you said, just trying to get the main things done, and letting everything else slide a bit. Taking a little pressure off of myself has given me a big sigh of relief 🙂

  • Stephanie,
    I can completely relate! I have been homeschooling for 15 years now (one down, one to go) and it’s still a balancing act, between home and school.
    No matter how I schedule, every day is different. The greatest tool is flexibility:)

    Thanks for the encouragement!

  • I know exactly what you mean! It’s totally difficult. Today (because it was the 1st of the month) I had to go into the office (I work very part-time), but when I got home I had dishes and laundry and school. It truly is a juggling act and it’s not easy. I commend you for your steps and hope I’m juggling them all okay! Thanks for the advice. 🙂

  • Stephanie,
    Great post on an important topic. They ARE two full-time jobs; homeschooling and homemaking.
    I agree with your list of priorities. I usually fall down on #3 – time for myself. I imagine most mothers in our position fall short on that one. Conincidentally my last two posts were realted to this very topic.
    Thank you for writing this!