A key component of TGC’s view of gospel-centered ministry is the integration of faith and work. We seek to help Christians work with distinctiveness, excellence, and accountability in their trades and professions. To aid in this effort we’re launching a new series, “How I Work,” in which we ask people to share their shortcuts, tools, and routines that help them do their jobs or fulfill their vocational roles. (The concept and format are borrowed from the excellent Lifehacker series on work.)
For our latest interview in this series I talked to Lori Bridges, a homeschooling mother who has four children.
What are your current vocational roles?
I currently homeschool three of my children—ages 10, 8 and 6—while trying also to keep my 2-year-old alive and happy.
What one word best describes how I work?
What work tools can you not live without?
What are the apps or online tools that you use everyday that you can’t live without?
What types of social media do you use?
I check Facebook, Twitter, and email to see what goes on in the adult world.
What kind of workspace do you have?
Our primary workspace is a table next to shelves for all the books but throughout the day we move around the house and sometimes outside to study. We attend a homeschool co-op once a week where I and other parents teach courses, pooling shared resources.
What would you say your best time-saving shortcut is?
Consistency. When my kids have a predictable routine, I spend less time having to motivate them, and more time getting things done.
What are your work hours?
The ideal school day is 8:30-2:30, which leaves time in the afternoon for music, dance and various sports activities.
Do you incorporate any spiritual disciplines into your workday?
We have always had a Bible component within our curriculum and we pray together at the beginning of the day.
How do you manage your workload?
With planning and lots of prayer.
Besides your phone and computer what electronic tool can’t you live without?
My wireless printer.
What do you do to recharge?
Read and sleep.
Are you a morning person or night person?
Mostly a night person.
What is your sleep routine like?
I go to bed later than I should and wake up earlier than I want.
How do you deal with distractions?
Well, our 2-year-old is our biggest distraction so it’s helpful that he is so cute. Often his siblings will engage him during breaks in their work. If all else fails, constant snacks keep him occupied.
Anything else you would like to add?
Homeschooling is not always an easy road but I am thankful for the opportunity to be at my children’s side on their journey to grow and learn. I also get to read a lot of great books during my “workday.”
Other interviews in this series:
Trevin Wax (blogger, author, managing editor of LifeWay’s The Gospel Project)
Karen Swallow Prior (author and English professor)