CANNOT get organized....behind in my classes - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 09-20-2011, 12:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi lovely, helpful mamas --

 

This post is sort of a cry for help. I haven't even been on MDC for probably like 4 months or more because life has just been so busy.

 

Basically, I am a stay at home mom to a 2.5 year old son. I occasionally babysit my neighbor's kids a few times a week, and pick up my little sister from school during the week. I am in an online, post-Bachelors degree program that I need to do in order to my Masters in a specialized field. It is 6 credits (2 classes) a semester.

 

My problem is that I CANNOT get organized. The classes started 1 month ago and I literally have not viewed the lessons. I cannot study with my 2 year old around because he has SO MUCH ENERGY and I have to keep him busy, and I feel the only time I can study is at 6 am or after he goes to sleep at 10 am. But I don't because I am sooooo exhausted during these two times that I am usually sleeping too (I fall asleep putting him to bed, I lay with him to get him to sleep). Or during these times I am just doing all the other little odds and ends that need to be done - dishes, cleaning, laundry, paperwork, emails, etc. etc. etc.

 

There is another Mama in my class who has a 6 year old, 4 year old, and just had a baby a few days ago, and she posted that she feels "pretty on top of the reading and material" What is my problem??? There are moms doing WAY MORE than me, but still I can't get my act together??? I am worried that I just can't handle things.....and this makes me feel so insecure....because we want to have our second baby soon and I just feel that other moms have stuff so much more together than me.....

 

I need some serious advice about how to organize my day, streamline tasks, study, etc. and just be like those moms who somehow manage to juggle a bunch of kids, the house, classes etc. Thanks!


Mothering my sweet preschool boy luxlove.gif and my new arrival bfinfant.gif

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#2 of 8 Old 09-21-2011, 06:14 AM
 
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Originally Posted by youngspiritmom View Post
There is another Mama in my class who has a 6 year old, 4 year old, and just had a baby a few days ago, and she posted that she feels "pretty on top of the reading and material" What is my problem??? There are moms doing WAY MORE than me, but still I can't get my act together??? I am worried that I just can't handle things.....and this makes me feel so insecure....because we want to have our second baby soon and I just feel that other moms have stuff so much more together than me.....

 

I need some serious advice about how to organize my day, streamline tasks, study, etc. and just be like those moms who somehow manage to juggle a bunch of kids, the house, classes etc. Thanks!


 

First thing, don't compare yourself to other Moms! Really I know we all know this and it's hard not to do. It's just not a good idea to do it, we all have strengths and weaknesses and some people feel the need to present themselves as perfect. I'm not saying this Mom is one of them, but she could faking it till she makes it.

 

When I was in school I didn't study much. When I did it was basically just reading the material and then explaining whatever it was I learned to someone else. Read through the modules and/or power points. I know reading textbooks can be hard with little ones around, but read the textbook to the little one. I got pregnant with my oldest during my 2nd year of college. Through undergrad and graduate school if I needed to study and he needed attention I would read my textbooks to him and look at the illustrations/pictures with him. By the time he was in Kindergarten he knew a lot of the muscles.

 

One thing that helps me is to have Google calendar send me an sms reminder for the tasks I've added into my calendar. I schedule everything that I need to do, prepare for class, cook, play with the kids, read, eat, shower, workout, clean etc and even if I don't follow the schedule to the letter for the first few weeks of a new semester it helps me keep on track to move to the next item of the day that needs to be done.

 

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#3 of 8 Old 09-21-2011, 04:01 PM
 
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Have you done online school before? It sounds like a great idea, in theory, but reality is often different. Life gets in the way and it's hard to be motivated to do your school work. Online school isn't for everyone. Some people thrive in it, others don't (me, for example... I just can not do online classes. I have to actually GO to class in order to get the work done). And there is nothing wrong with that.

 

As for general info on how to get organized, etc... well I struggle in that as well. You are definitely not alone in that.

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#4 of 8 Old 09-21-2011, 04:16 PM
 
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What I did for my online classes was buy a BIG calendar (seriously- oversized so I couldn't ignore it!). Then I went through for each of my classes and broke down EXACTLY what I needed to do every day for each class. When it's broken down like that, it's not so bad. Last semester I did 6 classes (5 online and 1 on campus). I used a different color pen for each class on the calendar so I could keep things straight. It was also very satisfying to cross off items as they got done!

 

You can do it! It might take a little bit of time to get in your groove, but you'll make it!


Steph, DH Jason (1-1-11), DS Owen (10-3-03) and DS Kai (10-13-11)

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#5 of 8 Old 09-22-2011, 02:25 PM
 
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Two things:

 

1)

I think it is unrealistic to expect to get school work done while also caring for 2 year old. No amount of organization is going to overcome a 2 year old. You need dedicated time when you are not your child's primary caregiver to do your schoolwork. If you could arrange a few times a week in small blocks or even one big block you could a lot done.

 

I don't know anything about your living arrangements but how about: ask a DP for dedicated time for school work, swap child care with another family to create time, enroll DD in a Mother's Day Out or co-op preschool or day care once a week. Ask family or friends for help. You need time when you aren't doing anything else. You should spend the first session reviewing all class material to create a weekly list of requirements with EVERYTHING that must be done.

 

2)

 

In your list of things that "need to be done" you've listed a lot of things that don't really need to be done everyday or have a lot of emphasis on them. If you are spending a lot of time on preparing meals or washing up or doing laundry, simplify. Simple meals on a shared plate. One cup, per person, per day. Look at your email/internet once a week. Read your mail once a week. Disconnect from things that don't have to do with your daughter or school. Stop having a social life. Shop once a week. Simply focus on only doing what MUST BE DONE and nothing else.

 

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#6 of 8 Old 09-27-2011, 06:39 AM
 
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When my kids were young, DH did a master's. He couldn't do it without blocks of non-kid time, which we got through preschool since I was working. I took the kids in the evenings while he went to class.

 

Now the kids are both in school, and I am doing a certificate program. I had to do an on-site one, because I have tried online classes a couple of times, and they are not for me. I need the real people in front of me.

 

The ideas about the big calendar (nice office supplies always make the situation better for me LOL! - seriously, get yourself some nice pens and notebooks and a nice spot to study in & it will be more fun) and cutting out anything non-essential are great! And +1 on not comparing yourself - I know it's tough, and I struggle with this all the time. Maybe that mom has childcare, a house cleaner, etc. You get the picture. But even if she truly is perfect, you can only do what YOU can do in your specific situation.

 

Best of luck! And awesome of you to be furthering your education!

 

PS I am the type of person to want to do assignments in one big chunk, but it's simply not possible now. Sounds like that's your situation, too. I have learned that I need to do maybe 1/2 chapter of reading, some of the review, another part of the reading, prepare for discussion - all in small chunks.


Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#7 of 8 Old 09-27-2011, 07:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for your supportive and practical advice. I am taking almost all of it! I got a calendar and put all my assignment dates on it, and highlighted them. Next, I have started taking my 2 year to the rec center down the street. They have pretty good drop in child care for moms who are working out -- I drop him off for one hour and sit in the lobby and do my reading. He enjoyed the new toys/kids and I got work done! You were right, JudiAU, I simply cannot study with my 2 year old around. My DH also stepped up in a big way this weekend and basically stayed with my son for two days this weekend so I could get caught up. I'm still behind, but at least not feeling like my head is under the water.

 

I still need to get separate notebooks for my classes (I've been winging it with one) and would love to get my desk organized.....

 

It's so hard not to compare myself to other moms. I know lots of moms who "do it" all and seem to keep it under control, but I get overwhelmed really easily in life and just need to accept this about myself/personality....

 

Thanks for the inspiration and help, student mamas.


Mothering my sweet preschool boy luxlove.gif and my new arrival bfinfant.gif

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#8 of 8 Old 09-27-2011, 07:55 AM
 
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I just started (about a month ago) an online Masters of Education program and I have a 2.5 yo, an autistic adult living with us, and a new puppy. The key for me has been to have DD in preschool two mornings a week, from 8:30-12:30, to force myself to do work after bedtime (even though I am SO not a night person, and I am really tired), to ask my DH for lots of help, and I have my parents close by who are willing to take DD a couple mornings a month. Mostly though it is A LOT of forcing myself to work. Sometimes I have to work with her underfoot, reading and such, and frequently I have to rely on a little TV to get through something. It is really hard and online courses are so much harder for me than in person courses. However, I don't live near enough to a MEd program and this allows me more flexibility in scheduling.


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