I was inspired by Cheryl and a few other mom's a while back to begin reading A Mother's Rule of Lifeto try to gain some control over my day. When I start scheduling, though, I tend to start all at once because I get excited, and then I never stick to it. The book, as good as it is, eventually went back on the shelf, and I struggled with making time for prayer and most everything else during the day.
I've also tried Flylady and my own version of keeping a Home Management Journal. Flylady helped some on things like swish and swipe and making my bed in the morning, but the clutter factor has remained...well, cluttered.
On Saturday, I went to spiritual direction and spoke about this very thing. Morning prayers were becoming nonexistent, daily mass was being neglected, and about the only thing I was accomplishing was keeping my home surface clean. My spiritual director told me that I should start small. The most important thing is to make sure I am setting aside time each day for prayer. And not just those prayers uttered throughout my day, although those are important as well. I needed to "go into my inner room and close the door".
I am not a morning person, and it seems that when I do get up early, Fritter gets up as well, and then my day just starts, no matter my intentions. Because I have a weak will, my director said I needed to exercise it by doing one small thing. Set the alarm for 6am, and get up when it goes off. That's it. So I'm working on that and only that. But it sets up my day for success. I get up at 6, and if Fritter is up, he plays by himself in his room until 7. This guarantees me an entire hour to pray, shower, eat, ect.
Yesterday and today it's been great. Not that I've just jumped out of bed, I have had to force myself, but I don't have to sneak in a shower while Fritter is watching Caillou. And I have the time for praying! I'm not going to set any type of a deadline and then move on to the next thing, because this may take me some time to master. But I'm determined, and my spiritual director is sure to hold me accountable for it.
A Mother's Rule of Life will be coming back off the shelf soon enough. Also, I just received my new review book Kimberly Hahn's Graced and Gifted in the mail, which pertains to this same topic. I plan on reading it through once to get a good idea of things (and also so I can review it) and then slowly going through it again to really make progress. I'm excited about my little steps, and maybe one day, I'll be the ideal I want to be (or close to it).