we’ve been busy.

Every late summer I find myself in a big giant MESS.  Just like spring cleaning, I go through the same process every fall, except the cleaning has to do with my thinking, my actions, our schedule for family, play, and work- as well as our home.

This summer was BUSY for us.  We had a lot going on for work, and although we normally home school year-round, we slowed down quite a bit over the past 3 months in order to accommodate our busy schedule.  Honestly, I felt a bit guilty…scratch that, VERY guilty for not having the time I would have liked with my kiddos.  If there is one thing I hear from my photographer colleagues with kiddos, it is “How do I find a balance to it all?”  And it is very, very easy to see how this could be an issue.  Trying to run a home based business, while taking care of the kids can be tricky…then adding their schooling on top, and a hubby who still works full time outside of the home, well, you have no choice but to run a pretty tight ship in order to get things done!  I have spent the last few months really thinking about it all, and about how to make our home run more efficiently.

This week has been the “kick my butt in gear” week.  I began with writing lists on things that I need to get done in my everyday week, and then a list of things I would like to get done in my week.  I am trying to manage my time, and see how many of the “wants” I can fit in there amongst the “musts.”

Here is a typical day in the Z household:

7:00- Everyone up.  Mama makes breakfast.

7:30-Brett to work.  Kids finish up and straighten up kitchen.

8:00- Kids do chores, Mama does Bible reading.

8:30- Kids get dressed, and have free time if everything is done.  Mom catches up on email, or posts blog (which has to be prepped day prior).

9:00-Kids at table with books.  School starts!

12:00- Snack time. Go for walk if nice out.

1:00- Nap or rest time for all kids.  Mama gets cracking on work-blog prep, emails, or editing.

3:30- More school

4:30- Dinner prep.  Kids can go play if work is done.

6:00- Dinner

8:00- Kids to bed

8:30- Hoping to take 2 nights off a week, but most nights will be editing and blog prep, mixed in with updating expenses and all that other super fun business stuff.


Here are some shots from schooling last year.  Riah kinda danced around, but this year he has to sit down with them and work. :)


I had to empty out all the drawers and clean them this week…WOW what a mess from the past year.



Ahhh…these photos are like “Pleasantville” compared to how this house actually sounds!!


Monday is our official “start” of school in the Z home.  Wish me luck!!!! :)

P.S. Beautiful sessions will be on the blog next week too!

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August 28, 2009 - 11:59 am

Gail - What a fun post Jess! Thanks for a peek into your home schoolin’ life! So much to admire in your mothering skills :)

August 28, 2009 - 12:01 pm

Abra Michelle - You know what the one of the most awesome things about your schedule is?

8:00- Kids do chores, Mama does Bible reading.

Priceless and will get you through many tough times. ;)

August 28, 2009 - 2:55 pm

Karen - I am truly inspired. I have 3 kids under 4 and am wondering how do other photographers manage this! it is so helpful to see other moms trying to balance family, work and life. Blessings to you in the new school year!

August 28, 2009 - 6:05 pm

nichole - wow, i wondered how you all did it…awesome, God bless you for your faithfulness in all things! #3 makes me wonder if this could be mistaken for an old photo of you and your hunsband as children if you know eachother back then. smile!

August 28, 2009 - 10:53 pm

Lisa McAfee - Jess,
Praying that you, Brett, and the kids have the VERY best year yet with home schooling. I have been home schooling for 16 years now and I always feel like I could have should have done better. No condemnation! you are the best teacher for your children because you love them, want the best for them and you know what they need. Blessings to you!

August 29, 2009 - 10:23 am

Maya Laurent - I love seeing your schedule! You are such a wonderful mom…have I said that before? :) And, can we talk about that cabinet in the background of your first photo? That is awesome!

August 30, 2009 - 9:19 am

holly - love you all to the moon and back.

September 9, 2009 - 12:25 am

-brittany- - this is awesome!

haha…I just sent you an email in regards to this and poof you made a blog post response and post dated it for last month :)

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