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YES! I believe it can. I know many of you are doing it now. Be sure to leave a comment with all of your great advice.
This is the first installment of the series Someone Else’s Shoes. This experience is Real Foods and Working. Each month my family will be ‘living a week in Someone Else’s Shoes’ specifically to see how real/whole/traditional foods can be adapted to different scenarios. Be sure to read the series information post for more on this.
The Scenario: Plain and simple. My husband and I both working outside the home plus maintaining a real/whole/traditional foods diet at our current level. No more, no less. In our day to day life we try to follow a rule of 85/15 (85% real/whole/traditional/nutrient dense and the 15% we don’t worry as much about).
The Rules: My husband works a slightly off shift. He works 10:30AM to 7PM. In order to mimic the situation that I ‘suspect’ many people encounter my ‘work hours’ will be similar to his. I’ll work a 9:30AM to 6:30PM shift.
Why? I’m assuming that most couples work a regular old day shift of 8AM to 5PM. They get off at the same time, rush home (after picking up the children from daycare and running a couple of errands) and then rush to get dinner on the table in a limited amount of time. With my imaginary shift ending at 6:30 that would give me a half hour to get home (we actually do live just under a half hour from town) and an additional half hour to prepare dinner before my husband gets home.
That means my kitchen will be closed from 8:50AM to 7PM (8 hour work time, 1 hour lunch break plus drive time). Also off limits during that time will be any and all housework (ah, shucks). Since the kitchen will be closed, I’ll pack a lunch and snacks for Christopher and I (Joe and the girls are already used to taking packed lunches) to mimic packing a lunch for work. All grocery shopping will also be off limits during working hours.
Things to Note: I have three children at home. They all have chores. Much to their dismay, they will continue to have chores during this week. For the older two children part of their chores includes a turn at dishes and helping out in the kitchen. That won’t change. My husband is also wonderful about doing things around the house. While cooking is not his forte (he does make a mean chicken fry venison though) he will often do dishes, put in laundry and he almost always runs the vacuum. I do not see our division of chores changing any during this week.
You might be wondering what I’ll do to spend my time during my pretend work shift. I suspect I’ll be actually working 🙂 Since I work an average of 30 hours per week from home now part of that time will be used up. I also hope to spend a little extra time with Christopher. And maybe part of the time I’ll just sit around with my feet up eating bon-bons. HA. I’m kidding about that of course.
Additional Thoughts: As Tiff pointed out in a comment the other day, this is only one scenario for working couples. Many work opposite shifts (that was how it was in my house for many years) which presents different issues but I’m still hopeful that this experience can be beneficial for those situations also. And as Tiff also pointed out, a week is not long enough to really adapt to a new situation. That is where I’ll rely on comments from those of you actually living these scenarios as you share your tips, tricks and ideas.
What am I missing? Do you work outside the home and see something that needs to be added to the rules? What suggestions do you have to help my week go smoothly?
See all posts for Working Full Time and Real Foods