We had been thinking about going down this path for quite a few years. Most of those we were living in a small town where you could only have 2 dogs and 3 cats. That’s it. Don’t even think about a chicken. That’s not how we wanted to raise our kids, we wanted to homestead with kids instead of town, or city living with them.
How to Homestead with Kids
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Homesteading for us is a lifestyle of greater self-sufficiency by subsistence agriculture, home preservation of food stuffs.
We have been gardening for years, even living in a small town. We have been homeschooling for longer.
Embrace the Chaos when you Homestead with Kids
I start my day with making a pot of coffee, if Blake hasn’t already done so, because nothing starts the day like coffee. Only, that cup of coffee comes after taking the dogs out, opening the chicken coop, making sure that chickens, quail, and turkeys have food and water for the morning.
Then I drink the coffee.
Once my kids are up, it’s breakfast time. During the school year, school work comes after breakfast. We have been homeschooling long enough that school is route for us. Sit down and get it done so that we can move on.
Give Your Kids A Job
Just chores around the house and chores and jobs around the yard are important. We started small here, before we moved to our half acre, with them taking part in the care of our cats and dogs.
Our quail lay in the afternoon so that has become my oldest job, collecting their eggs.
The four of us, our kids and I, work together to do the cleaning. Many hands make light work when it comes to cleaning coops, brooders, and rabbit hutches.
They are learning skills. They are keeping busy. They are contributing.
This is easier once your kids start to get older and learn to be more independent. Now, I can deal with animals or work instead of worrying about getting my kids breakfast. This is only because they can get their own breakfast now. A few years ago, this wouldn’t be possible.
Time Management & Routine
I still struggle with time management everyday. It is easy to get sucked into Facebook, or Pinterest and forget something else that needs your attention. One thing I do well, is routine. I actually thrive on routine.
First – animals
Second – coffee and blog related tasks
Kids – they are after the others because I get up before them. I rarely get up when they do, I enjoy my quiet mornings too much. I need that time to wake up without anyone talking to me. This includes homeschooling, going to the library, or beach, etc.
One load of laundry a day. I hang most of my laundry either inside on a drying rack or outside on the clothes line. I do not fold or put away my children’s laundry, they are more than old enough for that. The rest I do.
Quiet evening time. The evenings are for relaxing. Whether it is a family movie night, or the kids watching TV, us sitting around reading, etc. Quiet, slow evening time is best for a restful night’s sleep.
Let you kids help out as much as they are able. It might take longer for them to complete the task but think about the sense of pride they’ll feel and the skills they’ll learn.