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If you're a SAHP with school age children, do you get loads of 'extra' things done?

(86 Posts)
MrsDeaconClaybourne Tue 11-Jun-19 18:57:06

Or do you find jobs expand to fill your time? Genuinely curious and not judgy.

Over the last few years I've been working in a way that means I have periods where I'm WOH loads then times when I'm effectively a SAHM. (supply teacher)

When I'm working I always imagine that I'll achieve some great projects when I'm at home - loads of DIY, write a novel, blog, study or something. In reality I just do the things I normally rush round fitting in around work but in a more relaxed and enjoyable way so taking the dog for a long walk after the DC are at school rather than dashing out before breakfast; going to Aldi/shopping around instead of having the same order delivered from Tesco every Sunday. DH has less to do when he's around which means more relaxed evenings and weekends which is lovely but generally means we watch box sets and drink tea rather than achieving anything impressive!

Not even sure what the point of this thread is really other than another symptom of having time on my hands grin Think I'm hoping to be inspired by people doing amazing things between 9.30 and 3!

Crazykidscrazylife Wed 12-Jun-19 17:21:33

Ignore the username as I was trying to find something that hadn't been taken. I'm a SAHM and do not get time to do all the small jobs I thought I would. I have managed to declutter the house (though it gets refilled after every Christmas and Birthday). I do an exercise class once a week, have the occasional coffee with a friend and a rare lunch (once every 3 months) but otherwise I'm volunteering and trying to catch up on chores. Probably not what you had hoped for but in reality I get 5 hours a day and a lot of the time it's taken up. I'm very happy with my life despite the lack of income.

Redwinestillfine Wed 12-Jun-19 17:32:38

Not a SAHM but I work part time and have a day 'off' a week to myself ( during school hours). Much the same as you ladies I use it to tackle the jobs list, so decluttering, painting, gardening etc, I clean the house, do an exercise class, do the household admin, occasionally meet friends for coffee and every months or so get my hair done! I love it. It's so much less stressful knowing I have the time and worth every penny of the pay cut imo.

TheCrowFromBelow Wed 12-Jun-19 17:34:21

when I was SAHM for a year I was astonished at how little I achieved in 6 hours, although I train a dog, clean more and iron clothes, which has all pretty much gone to pot now I’m back at work.
I did go in and volunteer at the school but that was only an hour a week.
I mainly fannied around on t’internet.

Snog Wed 12-Jun-19 18:03:08

I work but only one or two hours a day. I am also doing a course for 3 hours a week.

I do more housework and life admin during the week so the weekends are more relaxed. We also eat better when I am not working and I get all the ironing and laundry done.

My novel has not been started yet and the house decluttering project is going very slowly!

confusedofengland Wed 12-Jun-19 18:25:52

I'm not a SAHM but work sporadically (7 hours definite work/volunteering a week plus any supply work that comes along - libraries).

I do find that time whizzes by but I make a concerted effort to fill my days. So, each day that I am at home for the whole 6 hours (usually 2 days a week), I'll make sure to go on my exercise bike, read a chapter of my book & do some decluttering/painting/gardening on top of the usual washing/dishwasher/cooking/hoovering/bins.

On the days I work/volunteer, I'm usually not home until 1pm, then by the time I've had lunch there is barely any time left at all until school run hmm

At this time of year, and Christmas, I find that I am expected to be at school a lot. Between my 3 DC, including 1 with SEN, I have something at school an average of 3 times a week, for all of this half term. This really eats into the time I have left to do things, too. I also meet friends for coffee fairly regularly.

I'm certainly not managing to do as much as I imagined I would before DS3 started school in September!

haveuheard Wed 12-Jun-19 18:35:35

I am a SAHM in that I don't do any paid work, but I volunteer about 15 hours a week in term time, I study part time and then just about manage to do the housework. So no craft projects here and DIY is mostly when stuff gets broken.

absolutelyknackeredcow Wed 12-Jun-19 18:39:26

I have two days off a week. I work in a high pressure job on the other days.
My days off are very busy - I am working on a range of big personal projects, have a lot of medical appointments for a chronic conditions and do all manner of life laundry type activities.

It's only 12 hours and there is a lot of holidays, polling days and school trips

bestbefore Wed 12-Jun-19 18:40:15

I am finally sorting my pension out (hopefully) after years of it being on the to do list...also do home projects, garden projects, as well as usual home/ family things and volunteering a lot!

Dowser Wed 12-Jun-19 19:22:42

My daughter home educates
The answer in no

formerbabe Wed 12-Jun-19 19:29:52

Sahm of school age dc.

No! I had planned to have an immaculate home, freshly baked goods and become an Instagram type gym honed bunny...reality is I get the food shopping done and do a bit of housework. Day flies by.

thenewaveragebear1983 Wed 12-Jun-19 19:57:08

I get 2 and a half days child free (9-3 and 9-11.30) and this week so far I've: worked yesterday invigilating exams, took dd to the orthodontist, spent about an hour in the garden weeding, ran 90 mins/15k this morning, hung two pictures, had a bath and took cuttings from my honeysuckle. Oh, and did a 20 minute phone call as market research to earn a £10 voucher. Tomorrow I plan to run again but only a short one, and do a quick bit of house work, before collecting at 11.30. The time goes quickly but I do like to be busy. I always over-plan myself; far more on my list that I can achieve. I try not to do cleaning as a rule on my free days. Ds is always exhausted on a Thursday afternoon after 2.5 days at school so he has tv time and I try to do the whole house in 3 hours!

Next week my exciting schedule includes such delights as: design a leaflet for my cleaning services, more gardening, multiple orthodontist apps as dd is having her braces done, etc etc.

thenewaveragebear1983 Wed 12-Jun-19 19:59:54

Sorry, should add that's when Ds is at nursery- when he's home we do all the life admin stuff: the library, the supermarket, the things we need from shops/town, all that stuff as I can do it in between the things we do together. He actually likes the supermarket though, so that's a win.

permanentlyfrazzled1 Wed 12-Jun-19 21:09:58

I have 4 school age kids but rarely get a minute to breathe because I home-ed them. If we’re at home, I’m racing round doing all the usual home/life stuff that every family has to do, plus bits of reading/writing/spelling/whatever with each kid individually, 2 of whom have SEN. Every day during the week we’re out at at least 1 home-ed activity in the local area, with some other activities with schooled children thrown into the mix. I volunteer for a national charity, a local charity, chaperone regularly at my local theatre where my kids are involved, and organise at least 4 home-ed activities/trips each month. It’s a busy ole life but it keeps me out of mischief, and beats teaching in the classroom for a living. 😁

Wincher Wed 12-Jun-19 21:13:38

I have one day a week off and both my children are now at school - I thought I would have a chance to catch up with all the cleaning/house admin etc, but by the time I have been to the gym and done the weekly shop and done all the washing most of the day has gone! I do take the chance to sit with a coffee for half an hour which I love.

Iggly Wed 12-Jun-19 21:16:20

Yes when I put my mind to it but I’m only taking a year off. Kids at school.

I’ve redecorated two rooms plus the hallway and given the garden a massive overhaul. This is while also volunteering and starting running.

marvellousnightforamooncup Wed 12-Jun-19 22:14:00

Sometimes. I've painted the whole house, inside and out but mostly I fanny about going for runs, having coffee with friends and watching Impossible. My house is still a midden.

DisorganisedOrganiser Wed 12-Jun-19 22:36:03

I need this thread! I work very part time and had high hopes for achieving loads once both kids were in school.

In reality I get hardly anything done and feel constantly demoralised, ineffective and generally a failure sad.

My time is spent walking to and back from school, going to Aldi, picking up anything we need from the shops. Laundry, tidying, cleaning the house and then exercise. There is no time left then. I don’t have any breaks for coffee and eat lunch standing up in the kitchen. It is a constant source of frustration for me.

Takeittotheboss Wed 12-Jun-19 23:37:38

DisorganisedOrganiser Are you me?

Janus Wed 12-Jun-19 23:45:51

My life too! Have 4 school age children, had 2 sports days this week, dogs to walk for at least an hour a day, constant washing, constant food shopping, changing various beds, mopping bloody floors, cooking endlessly, husband works away so all down to me. I eat standing up (if at all!) most lunch times too. I have no idea where the day goes!

Adversecamber22 Thu 13-Jun-19 00:31:47

I indulge in lunch out, gaming, writing, walking, cycling, costume making.

There was never any way I was going to start frantically polishing my skirting boards

DisorganisedOrganiser Thu 13-Jun-19 05:54:00

Takeittotheboss, if you too feel as if you are constantly getting it wrong then maybe grin.

Those of you who do lots of things, how on earth do you have time? Had high hopes of getting stuff done on Friday but had a message from school about an assembly so I have to go to that and that is the afternoon gone. The morning will disappear once I have done some exercise, laundry and a quick tidy up. Evenings are filled with activities, homework and all that stuff. Nothing ever truly gets organised or decluttered.

reefedsail Thu 13-Jun-19 06:10:53

Disorganised why do you need to go to Aldi/ shops every day? Could you not get a weekly delivery and cut that out entirely?

Maybe go to the gym directly from the school run so you don't give yourself time to faff in between.

Get each person a laundry bucket and teach them to put their own things away so all you have to do in dump stuff in, switch machine, dump stuff out. Takes a total of 2-3 mins per load?

Seriously, you could have all that done by 10.30/ 11 if you just kept yourself going after the school run.

TheExtraGuineaPig Thu 13-Jun-19 06:15:26

Also a SAHM, I was working full time but it was crazy for everyone as DH works long hours and is away about half the time. We struggled for consistent childcare - holidays felt impossible - and it was hard to support homework and activities as they got a bit older, not to mention trips, assemblies etc.

I'm hoping for part time work but very hard to come by in my job and I am surprised how quickly the days go. I am getting lots of exercise so at the gym every morning but mainly I think I fill time by becoming more inefficient - for example when I was working I'd order kids presents online in the evenings, now I browse the shops... I drop stuff off at the charity shops as a special trip when I've got a few things where I used to wait til we had an enormous bag and do it rarely. I do all the shopping/ laundry/ cooking so there does seem to be a lot less stress at the weekends or late a night.

I'd like to be more productive but so far I haven't decluttered, learned a language or sorted out my garden

stripes1 Thu 13-Jun-19 06:20:59

I’m glad it’s not just me. I too thought I’d do loads more than I have and constantly feel guilty. Like others have said the mundane stuff gets done during the school day which means weekends are free for family stuff. I am slowly doing bigger projects, painting, decluttering, sorting and eBaying baby stuff, planting in the garden, but after 2 years I’ve not achieved as much as I’d hoped. Once you’ve done the cleaning/washing/cooking etc the school day isn’t a long as everyone imagines it is! Add in a sports day, assembly, Dr appointment etc and the blocks of time to get a biggger project (eg painting) done dont happen very often.

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