I have a love hate relationship with the beginning of the fall season. I love the wardrobe that comes with fall, the over use of pumpkin in everything and the anticipation of the upcoming holiday season. However with all that I love, I also hate what fall also signals: the beginning of the school year. Being consumed with multiple school schedules. The resurgence of mommy guilt that my kids stay in after care for so long. Feeling like I am not spending enough quality time with them because when we come home it is all about: homework dinner bed. That Saturdays will now be consumed with activities and birthday parties (we have a no Saturday activity rule in the summer). Their social life CANNOT consume yours.

The one thing that remains constant is my expectation and anticipation for the next mommy break. You see, I can make the choice to either be consumed by school year mommy obligations or embrace, expect it, and be ever more intentional about making sure I create regular opportunities to take a mommy break. Because I set out on a journey to take a mommy break once a week for a year, it is programmed in me to think about “what about me this week” —- EVERY WEEK. You should too!

I don’t care if you have endless mommy super powers, the only way to ensure you have the stamina to endure the school year is to be well intentioned with taking regular mommy breaks. We are master task matters and we need to apply that same due diligence to your mommy break planning. Here are three steps to give you a jump start to school year mommy break planning:

Step One: Make the Decision To Treat Your Mommy Break Like Your To Do List: When you sit down on Sunday or Saturday to look at the week ahead, make a conscious decision to be as plan-ful about your mommy breaks as you are about your to do list. Think about the things you must do and the nice to haves. Move the nice to haves to the next week.

Step Two: Have the Conversation Every week, I say I am going to sit down with my husband before bedtime (after football) to look at the week ahead together. While we are planing the week, I have the conversation about when I want to take mommy break this week. Because I am always striving to play fair, I reciprocate the questions. It’s ok to make this the primary point of your planning conversation.

Step Three: Write Down The Mommy Break In Your Planner: No matter if you are a digital to do list mommy or a paper and pen to do list mommy, you must write it down. This is also an opportunity for me. It is not enough for it to be in your head. Write the mommy break down on the day and time you want it to take place. It makes it more real that this is something you have planned for the week.

Step Four: Try, Try, and Try Again: Life happens. There are going to be unplanned things that throw you and your plan to take a mommy break off track. When the week falls off track, regroup and figure out how to rebound. (Ideally do this with your significant other or husband if this applies). Don’t let the week get the best of you.

Planning the week ahead at a coffee shop, not sure if made sure I wrote down the mommy break (even though this was the mommy break for the week)

Planning the week ahead at a coffee shop, not sure if made sure I wrote down the mommy break (even though this was the mommy break for the week)


Don’t have the expectation that it is going to be easy. Mommy life is not one size fits all and neither should your mommy breaks. You have to create a plan that is conducive to your family rhythms and to your mommy routine. Anything that you create outside of this will be hard to stick to. Simply: If you don’t plan your mommy breaks, they won’t happen!

Nicole WalkerComment