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Thread: practicalities of working from home

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Default practicalities of working from home

    Hi WAHMS
    wondering if you can throw some tips my way
    I'm a new mum, my little boy is 3months old- and I have a thesis to write
    Its not exactly "working" from home in terms of earning money, but I sure have a lot of work to do!

    I really have no idea how its meant to work! Have any of you managed to find a way to get stuff done with a catnapping, needy 3mo?
    I am particularly struggling with figuring out how long I can leave him playing alone- he seems to get bored and want attention really quickly, and I really don't want to deprive him of interaction. (which means at the moment I am spending a great deal of his awake time playing with him!)
    Of course it also doesnt help that he is needing "parenting" to sleep for each of his 5 daily 45-min naps.



    I'm barely finding time for the laundry let alone writing
    would appreciate any tips or links to resources.

    cheers
    Loz

  2. #2

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    My DD is 4 months old and was a Velcro baby from the word go. I didn't mind a bit of snuggle time at the beginning but now I've found a few ways to get around holding her all the time! And now as she's getting older, she's better at sleeping by herself, albeit in some contraption or another!

    Do you have a carrier? Does he like being in there? If my DD is being super needy then I'll put her into the Ergo when I needed both my hands free. If I need to be at the computer, I set the laptop up on the kitchen bench/island so it's a bit higher. It's a win/win that way...she still gets snuggles and I can get stuff done.

    Other than that I use a swing/cradle - they're a bit pricey, unless you can get one cheap on eBay etc - but it's been my best buy ever! She'll sleep in there for at least one sleep cycle, if not more. So if I'm lucky I can get a block of at least a couple of hours, a couple of times a day.

    Hope you find a solution!

  3. #3

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    Hi Lozzy - are you PhD? I am submitting mine in a couple of months so I know how you feel. I started my PhD when DS was just little (about 6 months) and I don't want to discourage you but I couldn't find a way to make it work at that age and put it off till he was one. I did have PND though so that probably contributed. I have a lot of support from DH so we actually split the time for DS between us and now that he is older (5 years) he goes to kindy for 3 days. I found that I could only really do things while he was either sleeping or bf'ing (which usually took quite a long time). Like you if I tried to do things while he was awake he got easily bored. Having said that if he is with you and in an environment he still finds interesting (e.g. outside where there are trees and birds) you may be able to get some things done. I personally find it hard to switch in and out of work/parent mode so find it easier to work in blocks where I know I can work through the whole time. Reading back I really haven't been able to give you a lot of advice, but I do understand the pressures of writing up so if you ever need someone to vent to..

  4. #4

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    Thanks ladies
    treecyp- he doesnt seem to like the sling much, and i have a pretty bad back, but maybe its worth another try for down-times? If I can find a way to work with him in it it might be good, but I suspect I'd still be too distracted by him to work well. Swings are a very tempting option...hmm

    krysalyss- well done for being ready for submission! Yeah, mines a research PhD- I've done all the experimental stuff and now need to write it up in papers and thesis. I appreciate your honesty- it might just be that I need to get the grandmothers on board to give me some uninterrupted time to switch into science mode! I don't think they're going to let me put it off much longer- I do have a good excuse, but they're trying to get people done much quicker these days! I like the idea of taking laptop and baby to the park to look at trees- then he can fall asleep in the pram on the way home haha. Thank you- once I get writing you can expect many a venting pm!

    I was at Karitane (sleep clinic) today getting some help to stretch his sleeps out- if I can get a couple of decent (>1hr) blocks in a day it would be awesome! But in the meantime it means a lot more hands on settling... hmm maybe DH needs to buy me an iPad so I can read papers and pat EJ at the same time.

  5. #5

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    I just handed in my thesis. I spend a lot of time with a baby snoozing on my shoulder and articles and laptop on the couch I generally only worked while he was sleeping (hard to work when there's a cute baby awake!) but if I really needed to get stuff done then outside was the place to be

  6. #6

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    I work from home one day a week (Paid from my employer), but I didn't start doing this until DS was about 15 months old. The first few months were very difficult, it wasn't until DS was closer to 2 that it became much easier. Prior to that I'd only get a few hours done during the day and catch up all the rest at night. I definitely couldn't have done it when DS was under 1 as he only every slept for 45 mins at a time.
    I guess the best advice is to have realistic expectations and set yourself lots of mini goals, and realise that some days its just not gonna work at all

  7. #7

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    Same as mummyNaomi. I have 1 day WFH and I have my 18month DS with me. I generally do work when he naps(around 2 hr in the middle of the day) and then may fit some in early morning when hubs is home or in the evening when DS goes to bed. I also do a lot of extra work outside work hours (teleconferences with Europe in the evening, traveling outside standard work hours etc) so my employer is very flexible with me on my WFH day cos they know I put in the extra work when it counts and it evens out. Bit of a different situation to you though. Good luck!!

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