Lazy Genius Your Homeschool–Principle #12: Schedule Rest

As someone who homeschools three kids, keeps a regular writing practice, and works from home, I find my time is largely spoken for. There is always more work than there is time or energy to do it in. If I wait to rest until everything is taken care of, it will never happen. Instead, Kendra recommends scheduling rest. Making time and space for real rest. Here are a few ways I am doing that.

Blue sky + river with far away hills

Yearly Homeschool Calendar

Homeschoolers never feel like they are doing enough. It’s just an occupational hazard–there are more books than there is time and attention. Pam Barnhill has created a wonderful set of homeschool planning sheets that you can grab for free. I use the year at a glance page to plan our school calendar for the year. First, I mark off all the holidays and birthdays. Then I determine a start and end date and count up our school days. When I have the urge to take a mental health day, I can make sure we are on track and being faithful to our studies. Having the days accounted for makes it easy for me to see all that we’ve done and to take a break without guilt.


Every week God gives us a day of rest, but it comes with a boatload of expectations for doing it right. It’s been a long process for me to craft a Sabbath rhythm that is celebratory and restful. We start the Sabbath at sundown on Saturday with a meal that everyone enjoys. We light candles and make sure there’s good music. We linger. This meal feels different even though we eat together everyday.


I just returned from a personal retreat. Making this happen has been the best gift for this introvert mama! It’s a real stretch, and it only happens once or twice a year. I started staying closer to home by renting a neighborhood AirB&B. Time away, but even more time away from our space where there are always projects lining up for my attention!

4 Day Week

We do our regularly scheduled school practices 4 days each week. That extra day is for catching up–sometimes it’s laundry or meals, sometimes work, sometimes it’s catching a play! The change keeps us prepared to diligently work because a break is always just a few days away!

Active Rest

Sometimes rest doesn’t look like putting your feet up and reading! Making time to move my body, to listen to a podcast or just to the sound of my own breath, is restorative in a way that’s hard to beat. I’m going to lace up my shoes early this morning and maybe try to catch the sunrise at the river!


I love having something creative to put my hand to that isn’t productive or practical. I’m not making anything to sell, I’m not trying to improve my skills. I’m choosing to sit down and be finished with the active part of the day. I’m resting.

If you are new to The Lazy Genius, here’s the Starter Kit! 20 episodes that will get you energized and moving in the right direction!

And you can find all the posts in this series right here.


  1. I love this principle, and have been trying to come up with creative ways to create rest. I love the idea of a retreat! I would love to enter to win a copy of the book. It sounds great!

  2. I think this principle upholds all the rest – no pun intended! When I make time for rest, life flows rather than crashing into me. I want to explore finding ways for my children and husband to rest too, maybe focusing on our Sabbath rest is where to start. Your idea of a personal retreat sounds so lovely – a good idea to look into retreat centers close by. Thank you for sharing! 🙂

    1. Rest is so essential…and so elusive. I am making a cup of tea and taking my magazine out in the sun this afternoon before the press of dinner + the evening starts.

  3. This past May I did a personal retreat for the first time ever. I stayed overnight at Glen Eyrie In Colorado Springs and I scheduled an hour with a spiritual director. It was such a needed rest and was so refreshing! Even now as we head into September soon, I am still holding on to the truths the Lord brought to me during that retreat time! It was invaluable!

    1. So glad to hear that you were able to find time away, Shannon! And that it’s still bearing fruit in your life. I think that’s a testament to the importance of rest + retreat.

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