How to Get Work Done With Children Around
Being a work from home mom is great! Working from home with small kids? Not so easy. When you add kids to the mix things can get messy quick! When I first became a work from home mom I only had two. Now I have three and getting work done can be challenging at times. Here are some tips to help you be a successful work from home mom!
1. Keep kids contained
Since becoming a work from home mom I have realized that having a designated office to work is key. In our old house I just took my laptop all over the house and worked wherever. I needed an actual office so I could let my child roam free while I was working. I didn’t want to be getting up constantly to chase him around and make sure he wasn’t getting into anything. Now that I have an office, everything in it is kid friendly and I don’t have to worry about what my kids get into. All I have to do is shut the door and the kids are contained in the office with me!
2. Make your office kid-friendly
Once your kids are contained, you’ll need something to keep them occupied! You can do this by getting some age appropriate kid toys and putting them in your office. This way they can stay in there with you and keep themselves entertained while still in eyesight. They’re busy and you get to work, win-win!
I took a kid’s table I had from Ikea and glued some Lego boards to the tops of one side and then filled the storage bins with magnets and Lego blocks. If the kids want to play with the magnets they can just flip the boards over to the smooth side. This table is a great place to keep the toys out of the way too and the kids love playing with them.
I also keep an ottoman filled with some other toys and some activity tables in there too so they have some other options.
I only keep a selection of toys available and then rotate them every couple of weeks to give them something “new” to play with.
3. Snacks, snacks, snacks!
My kids are ALWAYS hungry. If I had to get up every time they wanted to eat, I would never be at my desk. I keep a stash of some ready-to-go snacks for them to have throughout the day. This way they’re not constantly interrupting asking for food. Some of my go to snacks are cheese sticks, sliced apples, grapes, berries, organic yogurt or yogurt tubes frozen (they think they’re popsicles), and the premixed toddler pouches or applesauce. For lunch I usually make some chicken nuggets, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or meatballs and a side (fries, fruit, or some veggie chips).
I get so much of my work done when my kids are napping. Naps are really important while kids are young and it’s a great way to get some quiet time. I make sure each of my kids still take naps every day. Even if one is awake while the other is sleeping, it’s still one less kid to worry about! Also, try to schedule any conferences or meetings during naps so there is less chance for noise and distractions.
5. Get a TV
I’m not saying to let your child watch TV all day long. The TV can be really helpful when I need to get something done and my kids aren’t having it. Sometimes I have to use it as my last resort. Netflix and YouTube have nursery rhymes or kid-friendly shows that I can turn on for 10 minutes while I get something done. Being a work from home mom means having to be resourceful sometimes.
6. Be a work from home mom that goes with the flow
Being a work from home mom can be tough. Sometimes your kids will do great playing alone and sometimes they are just going to need something. It can be hard to switch back and forth between mom and work mode. Try to keep your cool when possible. Sometimes it’s worth it to take a 10 minute break to give them some attention or get them distracted instead of trying to get them to leave you alone. Your kids don’t always understand or realize what work is.
7. Choose a sitter for emergencies
The goal of these tips is to help you work from home without needing a sitter. However, there may be times that you have a deadline or a meeting and you just might need some extra help. It’s great to have a sitter (or more) chosen that you can call on short notice. Or maybe you just need someone for a couple hours every week to get some focused quiet time. Whatever the case, having a sitter might come in handy!
If you have any suggestions on how to be a successful work from home mom, I’d love to know in the comments below!