Friday Focus 29/01/21 – Struggle

This week has been a struggle. The days feel both too long and too short. Too long because it feels like we’re wading through treacle most of the time; and too short to fit in all the things that need to be done. Something has to give. At the moment it feels like it’s mostly sleep and sanity.


The word 'struggle'


Home-schooling has been tough this week. We’ve tried to juggle the schedule around to make it more bearable, moving the worst subjects (English and Topic) to the morning to get them out of the way. We’re 17 lessons in to dissecting the story of the little bird and the forest fire, dealing with the delights of fronted adverbials and I’m reminded of how English lessons at school made me loathe so many books and poems purely because of how long we spent picking them to pieces.


Bedtime has been a bit of a battle and Thomas has been waking very early this week. Some nights there aren’t enough hours in between Sophie finally going to sleep and Thomas getting up to give me a full night’s sleep, even assuming I’m not woken up multiple times (now that would be nice!) Hubby is working into the early hours to get his work done. Mine is mostly going to have to wait for the weekend because I have a new system I need to get my head around requiring uninterrupted time to focus on it and a clear head, and right now I can have one or other but not both. Thankfully it is something I can put off until then.


Breathe. It will get better. I have to keep telling myself that. We’ve just got to take it one moment at a time, get through as best we can, try and focus on the essentials. There have been a lot of tears this week. It helps to vent though. I know we’re not alone in the struggles; that there are lot of other people feeling this way too. There is light at the end of the tunnel, even if we can’t always see it. The changes to our home-schooling schedule have made it easier and hubby and I are doing our best to give each other opportunities for down-time and rest.


The snow provided some welcome joy this week. It was so lovely to see the children having fun in the snow and to have some excitement to break the monotony of lockdown life. A reminder of how important it is to get outside and have fun together. Doing my daily gratitude posts also help. Even when it is difficult to find the silver linings, there is always something there to be grateful for.



What I’ve been grateful for this week:


Sophie doing her home learning; Sophie and Thomas playing with fake snow; Sophie with her snow family; frozen bubbles on the snow; a drawing of a robin; Thomas asleep on the sofa; Thomas and Sophie sliding down a muddy slope - "#365daysofgratitude 2021 - Week 4"


  • Day 22 – I am grateful to be done with remote learning for the week.


  • Day 23 – I am grateful for outdoor messy play with home-made fake snow. Hoping that we might get some of the real thing tomorrow!


  • Day 24 – I am grateful for snow!


  • Day 25 – I am grateful that it was cold enough for us to try making frozen bubbles this morning.


  • Day 26 – I am grateful for some therapeutic doodling.


  • Day 27 – I am grateful that Thomas had a nap and I was able to get a quick snooze in too!


  • Day 28 – I am grateful for outdoor clothes that are up to the delights of sliding down muddy slopes!


Other things that have made me smile this week:

  • Sophie making herself a reading den in the dining room.


Sophie lying in her den made of a quilt drapped over two chairs


  • A beautiful sunrise just before the snow started falling.


An orange, pink and yellow sunrise


  • Thomas tucking into haggis on Burns Night. I’m normally the only one who will eat it!


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32 thoughts on “Friday Focus 29/01/21 – Struggle

  1. You are right about a lot of people finding life a struggle, at the moment I’m looking to the end of January as being a turn of mood. Fingers crossed. I’m glad you got some snow, real and fake. We have some fake snow but I’m waiting for the summer as we had so much fun with it last time. I love Sophie’s den and that lovely sunrise.

    1. Thanks Anne. I think a lot of people are relieved to have got to the end of January. At least February is a shorter month.

  2. Oh no! Sending massive hugs.
    It sounds like a rough week.
    The home learning sounds tough. I couldn’t even tell you what a fronted adverbial is. Maths is our weak subject and has caused a few tears here this past week.
    I hope Thomas starts sleeping better. Life always seems so much harder when you’re short on sleep.
    Take one day at a time and you’re right. Breath!
    It looks like the kids had a fab time in the snow. How exciting for them. x

    1. Thanks Kim. This week has been a bit better so far. I think we all have one subject that is particularly challenging. Hope that this week has been okay so far for you.

  3. Not easy operating on such little sleep. I hope this week is easier. You can’t even blame the early morning light. Good idea changing your learning day round. I often wonder how surprised the poet would be with all the deductions we make by dissecting their poems. My children are older but they still disturb me as I work. I’ve pulled a few late nights, to ensure I can finish a piece of work without being interrupted. Glad you got your snow. #wotw

    1. Thanks Cheryl. Thomas getting up early means I’m trying to avoid late nights unless it’s really necessary as trying to function on not enough sleep just makes everything harder. This week has been a little easier so far thankfully.

  4. Hope that next week’s remote learning goes better and you have the space to do your work too. The snow was a great chance to really relax wasn’t it. I’m not usually a fan, but when on lockdown it works out well.

    1. Thanks Emma, Thomas had a good nap yesterday which gave me space to finally catch up on some of the work I’d had to keep putting off!

  5. This past week really has been hard. I had to give up on homeschooling for my own sanity. I love that you are doing your best to stay positive. I think I might need to have a good cry too. Love the den for reading I might make myself one ;0) #WotW #365

    1. Sorry that you’re finding it hard too. There’s just too much for a lot of people to juggle right now. Having a good cry helps sometimes. Hope this week has been a better one for you x

  6. I had to read the English lesson twice…. 17 lessons of that no wonder you are finding things difficult :/ my kids wake up with sparrows too so my sympathies there too. One day at a time, or half a day or even an hour. Hope next week is better for you. The sunrise is beautiful x

    1. Thanks Karen. We’ve now done 20 lessons on it but the teacher announced this morning that we were done with that story and I have to admit I cheered!

  7. We want to try frozen bubbles but it has not been cold enough here. I am sorry that you are struggling, I haven’t had the best week here either

    1. Thanks Kara. I’m sorry that you’ve had a tough week too. Hope things are better this week for you x

  8. Love the collection of snowmen in their hats. I’m with you on hating all that pulling apart of books. I loved reading, but hated studying English Literature as I felt it took away some of the magic.

    1. I can see how they learn through dissecting books but it can be overdone. I did a creative writing course a few years ago that dissected various books and poems but because it was just a few passages here and there from a selection of works, it kept it interesting and didn’t ruin any of them for me. I think perhaps that’s a better way to do it!

  9. Look at those rosy cheeks – is Thomas teething? Schoolwork is a ‘joy’ isn’t it. It’s all the words they have to use to describe things these days that suck the joy out of English I think. Almost half term! #365

    1. No, I think he had something for dinner that flared up his eczema. I’m glad it’s almost half term too!

  10. I hope the new system for home schooling works for you and you can get your own work sorted. Fingers crossed Sophie and esp Thomas’s sleep patterns are allowing you to get some more sleep and feel rested

  11. Sleep deprivation is tough, sorry you don’t have any time or chance to relax. Love the reading den (the quilt is so beautiful).
    Glad your kids got to play with the real snow.
    I’m in two minds about the English studies, on one hand, it gets boring to dissect good books, on the other hand, it’s better to study language using good literature rather than just sentences written by whoever compiles the textbooks.

    1. Thank you – I know what you mean about dissecting good books, although to be honest, the story was a bit dull to start with which didn’t help!

  12. I am sorry about the lack of sleep I know the feeling we still have a little one that comes in every night at the moment. Sounds like the teamwork is going well though and that’s what matters. So jealous of your snow. We are forecast some this weekend but I will believe it when I see it. I do think it is best to vent feelings and if that means a good cry then so be it. I always feel so much better after a cry! Hope this week was better for you all x

    1. Thanks Clare. A good cry often does help – I’ve learned not to bottle up my feelings, especially when it comes to grief. Lack of sleep always makes things feel harder doesn’t it? Hope you start getting more sleep soon as well!

  13. Sorry it was a tough week. We get all our work done inthe mornings starting at 8am so that it is done by the time I go to work and leaves the kids free for the afternoons. Don’t want to worry you but my 3 sleep through and I’m just as tired as when they woke repeatedly! #project365

    1. That’s a good idea getting it out of the way as early as possible. It does help to focus on the harder stuff in the morning. I’m hoping that when Thomas sleeps through a little more it will get better – it did make a difference for us when the girls both started sleeping through. Sorry that you’re still just as tired even with your three sleeping through though!

  14. That frozen snow bubble looks so cool
    I feel you when you say between one kid’s late bedtime and another early wake-up time you don’t have much time to sleep. It is the same here too!! Looks like the kids had an absolutely fun time playing with the snow!!

    1. It’s hard when bedtime drags on and the gap for allowing time to sleep is too short. It’s been lovely to have a little snow here – the kids love it.

  15. Sorry its been such a struggle…I think a lot of us are beginning to find it all tough.

    The snow definitely was a welcome relief – the kids certainly enjoyed it didn’t they?

    Love the frozen snow bubble and that sunrise is stunning!

    1. Thank you – I think we’re all suffering from lockdown fatigue now. At least the snow broke the monotony of it all!

  16. Feeling pretty much the same, I stay up late as I want some me time, but always exhausted and too much to juggle! Hopefully some kids can go back to school soon so will be easier for some to manage. I really can’t wait for half term! I have always wanted to try frozen bubbles, love the photo! What fab snowmen you all made too.

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