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Suggestions to get through next 10 months of maternity leave
I'm bored!!

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#1 GeminiSix

Posted 28 February 2013 - 02:06 PM

I have just commenced my second 12 months of maternity leave (ending in December).  DH and I made this decision last year based on the fact we couldn't get an FDC position for both DD2 and DD3 together, and also DD2 is in 4 year old kinder this year with odd pick up and drop off times, and the extra year of leave will get her through to when she starts Prep.  I was also going through the same stage I did with the other girls of dreading putting DD3 into childcare.  So basically me being at home for another year makes our lives uncomplicated for this year.  My maternity leave replacement has been contracted until the end of the year, when I am due to go back.

I think I am just in a rut at the moment.  This is the longest period of time I have had off work, and I am bored being a SAHM.  I'm sick of the same old routine, drop off at school, back home, clean up kitchen after breakfast, do some washing, watching a bit of daytime TV etc, back to school at 3.30.  The house isn't in a great state at the moment because I am just so over doing housework day after day!

I go to playgroup on Fridays so I see other mums there, I do catch up with friends quite regularly too.  It is just the monotony of it all.  I was just remembering getting dressed up for work in nice clothes, instead of the jeans, t-shirt and thongs I wear all the time now.  

So I'm just after ideas of how other SAHM's get through their day and avoid getting bored?   What are your routines to get your housework done when you just can't be bothered?  I'm trying to think of a project or hobby I can start.

Edited by GeminiSix, 28 February 2013 - 02:06 PM.

#2 Escapin

Posted 28 February 2013 - 02:11 PM

I'm just coming to the end of 2 years mat leave and I have to say, I'm happy to be going back to work! So I hear you!

Not sure I have many good ideas though - you could try one of those websites where you get hired to do little tasks - mainly online. I'm sure another poster will know the website name. You could make some pocket money while your littlie has their sleep. Not sure what else I've got!

ETA: besides lots of exclamation points, obviously I have too many of those...

Edited by Escapin, 28 February 2013 - 02:17 PM.

#3 cinnabubble

Posted 28 February 2013 - 02:13 PM

Sounds like bliss to me.

Could you do a short course through TAFE or WEA or something like that?

#4 Mitis angelam

Posted 28 February 2013 - 02:41 PM

I did a short course in creative writing over the summer.  Was good fun, I learned a lot, and it gave me something to do for six weeks (and beyond, now I've got an unfinished writing project!)

#5 elle-M

Posted 28 February 2013 - 02:46 PM

I've always been an avid reader and studied literature at uni, so I started writing a book a few months ago. The project has become bigger than Ben Hur and will take me years due to all the research, but it's a hobby and it's MINE and I love it!

I also got a digital SLR camera for my birthday so I've learned to shoot in manual mode and do some editing etc. and I've started a blog to keep family updated with photos of my kids.

These are the sorts of things that I find precious "me time" - you deserve it!!!

#6 threetimesblessed

Posted 28 February 2013 - 03:08 PM

Will be watching replies with interest.
OP, my children are the same ages as yours.
I have been on maternity leave for 9 months and will be taking 2 years off.
I too have thought of starting a business, studying but am not sure.

#7 cinnabubble

Posted 28 February 2013 - 03:18 PM

Join the gym. That takes up a reasonable chunk of post-drop-off time.

#8 mommyoffour

Posted 28 February 2013 - 03:19 PM

Threads like this make me ^^^^

I wish I had that when mine were babies. There was never a moment for myself. They never slept, and wanted to be held most of the time.

If I were you, OP, I'd do fun stuff. Heaps of fun stuff -- whatever happens to take your fancy!!!! And ENJOY original.gif

#9 GeminiSix

Posted 28 February 2013 - 03:48 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions.  Unfortunately joining the gym is out, I don't have any access to childcare for DD3 and have no family around to help.

I like the idea of a short course, I'll have a look into online TAFE.  And to the PP who is writing a book, that is something I would love to do and have thought a lot about over the years.  Maybe I'll just start putting somethings down on paper (or I suppose computer) and see where it heads.

I think I'm just having a bad day.  I have always found myself happier, and much more productive at home, when I've worked part time.  It balances me out.

#10 SummerStar

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:02 PM

I did a course through OTEN. And to be honest I preferred the period where I was doing nothing. Had nowhere to be nothing to do etc
Whenever I was relaxing I alwas felt I should really be working on assessments. Anyway that is behind me now and I'm back to enjoying trash tv and doing nothing. I love it!!!!
I will start looking for a job relating to what I studied in a couple of months so I can quit the job I'm on maternity leave from and I know I will miss my days of nothingness.
I have started writing a book but its not something I do all the time. I go through stages of writing then not.

#11 PurpleNess

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:05 PM

I've started Ballroom dancing classes one night a week :-) It's ME time & great fun...I love being a SAHM

#12 elizabethany

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:17 PM

QUOTE (Escapin @ 28/02/2013, 03:11 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Not sure I have many good ideas though - you could try one of those websites where you get hired to do little tasks - mainly online. I'm sure another poster will know the website name. You could make some pocket money while your littlie has their sleep. Not sure what else I've got!

This is called Mechanical Turk

I picked up some study while at home, but I am regretting it now, because I got HG and am now well behind.  I have had to drop my quilting (good thing to try) because of it all.

Goodluck OP.

#13 Ice Queen

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:18 PM

One thing that helps me greatly is to have some structure to my week.  I don't love housework so I find I prefer to do it in 1 go and then have a few days without it otherwise I just feel like all I do is housework!

Sunday night, run around like crazy, load washing machine, tidy up, pick up all the laundry
Monday, drop DD at kindy, straight to shops with DS, grocery shopping, cafe with latte, newspaper and DS and I share a muffin, italian doughnut.  Go home, wash, clean, wash, clean, fold laundry, pick DD up, dinner, phew.....busy day!

Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday - no housework or washing!!!!  I do have DD on these days though. Ideas for activities: picnic in the park, walk with pram, shopping with my mum, art gallery, zoo, museum, trip to country to visit my family. Meet friends for coffee or at their house.  Local aquatics centre or the beach on a hot day. Library.  

Thursday - stroll shops with DS after kindy run.  Walk with the pram.  I usually organise a coffee with a friend or a lunch as I only have DS so I can catch up with people better. Small amount of housework and washing while DS sleeps.

I love to cook so I use the time when DS is sleeping to make nice dinners and bake.  I have a vege and herb garden so do that too.

My gym has a creche so I do that, but understand that this might not be an option.  One idea is a Wii fit.  When I had DD, she slept SOOOO much so I got one so I could exercise when she was sleeping.

I actually do very little organised activity stuff.  This term we are doing soccer on Tuesdays and I am finding it keeps interrupting my social life!  Can't wait for it to finish.

I read a lot and got a Kindle recently.  So I read heaps.

#14 ekbaby

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:20 PM

How many days is your DD2 at kinder? I would try getting out of the house (besides school pick up) a few more days. Depending on who you have on which days, you might find some outings are better when you have just baby, some are better when you have both.

Things you could do-
- go swimming/pool - does your DD2 have lessons already? If not it might be an opportunity for you to sit and watch with bub, then all go swimming together afterwards
- do the grocery/fruit and veg shopping- your DD2 might enjoy helping. Or you might find it more relaxing with just bub
- organise different "excursions" for your DD2- maybe just once a month or so as it can be a big tiring having a big day! But (depending on where you live and what is around) things like a trip to the beach, museum, a special park, watching trains etc. Zoo and aquarium and things like that are nice if you can afford it or have an annual pass, but if not, depending on where you live there are usually free/cheaper things too). If you plan it in advance it's something for your DD to look forward to.
- a regular play date or parents catch up- do you have any friends in a similar situation?
- think about whatever errands you have to do, can you make them more enjoyable for you and the kids? Eg if you have to go to the post office or whatever, walking there with bubs in pram so you can get some exercise, or your DD2 could have a ride on her bike/scooter. Mine love going to Bunnings and that can take up a whole morning.
- Doing some volunteer work (I think there was a whole thread on it a while ago- things that are suitable to take your kids along to- there are also lots of things you can do from home like treasurer/secretary stuff for a local group)
- Having a project at home, this can be tricky depending on your kids age but I have been doing more stuff in the garden, DS1 (same age as your DD2) can help with lots and is really interested. My younger one potters around.

You might find this book/blog helpful Steady Days

(although I find it a bit sugary sweet sometimes  wink.gif )

PS Like Ehill I find having a structure/rhthym to the week really helps. Monday is park day, Tuesday playgroup, Wednesday visiting grandpa at nursing home, Thursday shopping etc.

Edited by ekbaby, 28 February 2013 - 04:22 PM.

#15 JRA

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:25 PM

It's tough isn't it.

I took up a hobby, I have no artistic skills, so am now hooked on cross stitch.

#16 Leggy

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:41 PM

If you want to study, but do it at your own pace, you can try the MIT Open courses:


It's basically every course they teach, reading lists, notes, and assessments, free and online. Of course, no-one grades your stuff and you get no credit from it, but if there's something you wanted to learn about just for the hell of it...

Have a browse through their course lists: American Literature, Introduction to Electrical Engineering, Chinese Foreign Policy, History of Western Thought, Kitchen Chemistry, Physics of Rock Climbing (no, really!)...

Otherwise, you could just google some lists of classic literature and put yourself though a reading course - at the very least, you'd always have something besides your kids to talk about.

#17 Ice Queen

Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:45 PM

QUOTE (PurpleNess @ 28/02/2013, 02:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I've started Ballroom dancing classes one night a week :-) It's ME time & great fun...I love being a SAHM

Something I forgot to mention in my PP is organising things on your own on the evenings like above (which sounds awesome btw!).  

I figure I spend enough tome bonding with my kids during the day, I dont need to be there every night.  My DH on the other hand doesnt see them much so I think it is good for him and the kids to spend time just them.  I quite regularly organise dinner with my friends, a trip to the cinema, a cooking class, late night shopping, even a yoga class can be awesome.  Having a nice evening planned can get you through the monotony of a dull day!

If you were working you might feel 'guilty' about skipping the evening shift but when are a SAHM, go right ahead.  No guilt allowed.  Not that working mums should feel guilty either but I can understand they might.  In fact, mums should be guilt free but we all know that is a pipedream.

#18 GeminiSix

Posted 28 February 2013 - 06:10 PM

Thanks for the extra links and suggestions! I particularly like the look of the casual course at your own pace thing. I'll sit down tomorrow and have a good look at this.

Thanks to those who also suggested different ways to fill up my day and get the house in order.

#19 Overtherainbow

Posted 28 February 2013 - 10:46 PM

Can you do some further education that will assist you when you return to work?

Volunteering is wonderful and can be done with kids.  I volunteered in the class and also took on president of the schools p&c for a year.  It definitely gave me a worthwhile project.

I tried to minimise housework.  I stil tried to do it in a 1/2 day with just washing and kitchen on the other days.  It is a great chance to organise and declutter though.  I renovated a house, decorated a house, buillt a house and moved 3 times while on maternity leave (I count it as maternity but I worked evenings and afternoons in my own business  and in retail after 1 year with each child).

It's a great time to paint the house, re-do the garden, op shop and do up furniture.

I had to get out so did kids gymnastics and swimming lessons.  

I read up financial books and created our own long term financial plan.  I reduced our debt, increased our savings and started playing the stockmarket.

I learnt a new instrument and volunteeried to teach a small group an instrument at school.

I learnt how to cook everything from scratch and stitched up my own nappies.

I enjoyed coffee with friends and went away for weekends.

Fly lady was good to guide me through decluttering one room at a time.

#20 lozoodle

Posted 01 March 2013 - 10:01 AM

I've just commenced my third stint of maternity leave, and I too am going to be off for the full 12 months. I'm worried I'll go insane, but I think I will be ok. I just worked fulltime for a year so I'm sort of enjoying the break at present, but I know that it will change.

Things that I'm intending to do are:

- Meet up with friends loads
- Kindy gym or similar for the older 2 kids
- Join a new mums group through the early childhood clinic, you never know who you might meet and even if you make just one new friend, it is worth it
- Older child in daycare 2 days a week still (its her pre school year)
- Getting stuck into all those jobs around the house that I never have time for - sanding, painting, sorting stuff out, etc.
- Getting out and doing lots of walking for my own health and well being

Basically just stay busy. I don't really have a hobby as such, I just like to get out and about, even if its just a coffee at a cafe one day or something, just something to get out and about. The main thing I am doing is just trying to appreciate the time with my kids because I don't often get it when I have to work full time. At the moment I feel like I am on a cruisy holiday, but of course that will soon change when #3 arrives.

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