As for a schedule, we have a loose one. Our day is rigorous, but I didn't make up a formal schedule on paper yet. The kids know when things need to get done, and I did tweak a few things like shortening up the lunch break and adding another chore time slot after the school day. Overall I think I'll wait to see how it goes before I go back to a paper schedule. I also added in extra chores to make things run a bit more smoothly. I could see during the break that I was getting up earlier and staying up later just finishing up housework after my sister left. That doesn't fly with this Mommy! Kids can always be made (Mexican culture!)/motivated (American culture) to work harder academically and physically. Besides there are so many of them that no one person will ever work harder than any other one person...namely me! Even though I am the queen of this castle, I still get the blessed opportunity to be the servant of all.
Even before we started homeschooling, I complained about not having enough time to get everything done....reading to the kids, grading work, extra crafts, sewing, more in depth studies, etc. I've always blamed it on having, nursing, weaning, or potty-training babies. Truth is I give in to these little buggers! I allow them to play for inordinate amounts of time or watch T.V. to relax because after all, "The poor dears! They just need a break from sitting so long." These kids who get an hour lunch, wake up at 7AM, start school at 9AM, would watch Sesame Street for an hour (ok, just the little ones), and never have homework are in no way, "poor dears!" I'm raising spoiled, lazy, incompetent brats! It's good for them they have some native intelligence that keeps them testing three grade levels above their current one. But there will come a year when that won't work, and the world itself doesn't work like that. We have to work. We have to work towards sanctity and salvation.
I don't think I'm being too tough on these guys. There will always be tougher, more unreasonable mothers who need to be rehabilitated to be gentler to their children. I don't think I even get close. But I am glad that I can see holes and try to fill them in...or until the next life-changer rocks my boat!
Have a great week!