I thought it would be fun to bring you along on what a typical night looks like for us here on our little homestead. Things have slowed down incredibly now that summer is over. Before, our evenings were jam packed full of trying to get projects done outside, canning, weeding....just busy, busy, busy. Now, the waning daylight hours force us inside sooner, and the darkness encourages us all to rest. In the summertime, the children can easily stay up until 10:00 p.m. with the light from outside encouraging them. Now in the autumn, with the darkness creeping in at 6:30 p.m. already, the children are tired earlier and are usually in bed around 8:30 p.m. It's amazing how our bodies naturally respond to the world around us when we allow ourselves to be in tune with what it says. We need a time for rest and a time for something different.
Our evening routine usually starts when D gets home after work. The kids and him go outside and enjoy some time playing together after his time away from them. While they play outside, I begin the supper prep. I try every night to make our meal entirely from scratch. When there are things going on, that means planning ahead the night before to make sure we have leftovers on a night when I can't make supper quickly or prepping in the mornings with our crockpot. I just want to feed my family wholesome, healthy meals, and even though there are nights when I just wish I could pull out something fast from the freezer, I'm proud of what I put in front of my family each night and I hope they feel my love for them through the meals I give them.
After we eat together, we spend some time tidying up quickly before heading outside for the evening. We try to spend as much time as we can out there, sometimes exploring, other times playing games with the children. On a milking night, D and the kids find something exciting to do while I head over to the barn and milk. Usually the kids like to "help" and make sure to make an appearance in the barn. After milking, I take the milk in and do a quick pasteurization (we heat to 165 degrees for one minute to make sure to kill an E.coli or salmonella), then head back outside if there's still daylight to enjoy the rest of the evening with my family.
When it's too dark to be outside any longer, we all head back inside for time together before bed. We don't have a T.V. to turn on and sit down in front of, and that's intentional. I can share more about that another time- I'm not against T.V., I just want to make sure we're intentionally using it rather than allowing it to become a quick source of entertainment that fills the space of more meaningful interactions within our house. We plan to eventually get a T.V. in the basement once it's finished to make movie nights easier! More on that shortly....
We spend our time playing games together, baking a treat or snack, reading books, or just enjoying each other's company. Some nights we have things to do for the kids if they're in a sport or activity. B is in gymnastics right now through October, so one night per week we head into town for that. On Fridays we usually have a movie night together, and we all huddle around D's old computer from college, as it's the only one with a CD player so we can watch the DVD! It doesn't have a battery, is missing keys, and is really in quite bad condition...but, hey, it serves its purpose!
Once the children are in bed, I head up to my office and finish up work that I haven't completed for the day in my virtual teaching job. Some nights I am done by 11:00 and others I'm up until 2:00 a.m. Regardless of how late I have to stay up or how behind I sometimes feel, I am so thankful to have a job that allows me the flexibility of working this way so that I can stay home with my babies. Even on days when I feel like I'm going to go crazy and that I can't possibly fulfill all of the roles I've been given, I can always find gratitude in knowing that I get to be home with them. It is the only thing that makes the hard days bearable.
D usually comes and visits me for a bit while I work so we can catch up on each other's days without any little ones interrupting. That not interrupting part though doesn't always happen as Little baby K also visits me some times....though she's not as welcome as D at this time in the night :) I'm only joking...kind of. She won't always be a little baby who needs her mama, so I have to remind myself of that sometimes too (like right now...as I'm typing this she's in my arms. She is such a mama's girl....Do you know how hard it is to type while holding a baby??)
And that's our evening routine! I hope you enjoyed getting a glimpse into our world and seeing what it's like to be part of our crew.
Thanks for stopping by,
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