< 1 min read
My husband and I both work fulltime and have 7 children. I would love to hear your best tips for helping stay organised and keep the household running well throughout the busy week. What kind of prep-work do you do the night before and how do you manage the morning routine?
Marked as spam
It certainly sounds as if you have a busy household and I can only imagine that if things aren't properly organised it can easily get a little chaotic. In my case, I found that a good night-time routine was an important part of making sure that the mornings are not a complete shambles. Each of my kids had their own to-do list once they were old enough to sort themselves out and their tasks included making sure that their clothes were laid out, their bags were packed with the books they needed, and that their school snacks were ready for the next day. I also reinforced a reasonable bed time because I realised that tired and cranky kids made the morning routine far more stressful.
The other thing that made a big difference in getting my kids more organised was for me to stop being the "rescuer". By this I mean that I stopped coming to the rescue when they forgot about a project, left their sports kit at home, or were running late. Once they realised that they were going to have to take responsibility for their own forgetfulness or tardiness they soon began to pay more careful attention to their own schedules.
If you have older kids, you can include them in your chain of responsibility and ask them to help make sure your younger kids are on track - just ensure that this added responsibility does not make it more difficult for them to get themselves organised and ready for the day.
I remember working full-time while having 2 kids and a home to take care of. I was always busy and I was always running out of time. It surely made me tired from time to time but I enjoy the adrenalin rush sometimes. My work then was so demanding and sometimes, I even needed to be at the office late at night or very early in the morning, so imagine what my schedule looked like back then.
Fortunately, I learned to manage my time, although sometimes, I still have hiccups when it comes to scheduling work and chores especially if something beyond my routine happened (ie: urgent work assignments, filling in for co-workers, sick kids,s, etc.) So, here are a few tips that made my life easier somehow, back then:
Prepare meals for the week during weekends, stock them up in the fridge and reheat them when needed.
Schedule chores and make sure to follow them, so they won't pile up on the next day or week.
Leave the office on time. This is very important. Talking about work-life balance.
Ask for help if needed especially when kids are involved. Thank God for my mom who was/is always willing to help us out.
Life is so busy!! I find the pre-prep so important as well as a diary for the week ahead.
On Sundays I make up a batch of easy snacks like sausage rolls, pumpkin scones, muesli bites and cut up fruit. I’ve found that if I make up chia puddings the night before, there’s a ready breakfast in the fridge if we get rushed. I also have yoghurt pouches ready for grabbing!
Plus I have dinner boxes delivered 3 nights a week that saves me thinking of what to cook and what ingredients to buy for the week, and often makes enough for lunches too.
Apart from that, my husband does bath time and walking the dog while I cook and do a nightly tidy up.
Works well for us although there’s always potential to need to do more things!
It's tough to work full-time with a family, I know.
When the kids start school, they are old enough to do a few chores. It may take a bit of training but it is worth it in the end. My husband was not around much, but if yours is willing to help, give him weekly chores too.
I learned to give up on a clean house and exercise class or gym. I exercised when I dropped off my kiddos at sports and activities by walking around the block or fields.
Learn to say no. I have a hard time with this one but learned to use this word over the years when church, community, school, and family were pulling at my limited time. I recall bursting into tears after someone wouldn't take no for an answer during the busy holiday season. Although I did not cry on purpose, this action did get the person to back off:)
Last of all, consider a cleaning lady. I could not afford one weekly, but her once-a-month deep clean really helped to keep the house in shape.
I hope you find some tricks to help you out.
Kudos to you! It sounds like you have a lot on your plate and I think taking a few simple steps can make your life a little easier. It's easier said than done though, right?! I feel like I always have grand plans of getting organized and keeping things together, but they always retreat back to chaos.
I think a few simple things can help you stay organized and at least make your mornings less hectic. I always try to put my kids clothes out before bedtime. I even heard of a hack where the kids just wear their clothes for the next day to bed! I honestly thought that was pretty brilliant, because my kids live in comfy activewear anyways.
I try to keep breakfast really simple in the morning and as DIY for the kids as possible. I have bins in the fridge with easy-to-grab fruit and yogurt. I also keep mini muffins within reach for them. There are a few things you can make ahead of time that are also easy to grab in the morning like oatmeal bars and an egg bake. Both could be eaten without heating back up so I think it works perfectly.
Honestly, making sure that your well-rested could be one of the best things that you can do. As parents, we have a lot of things on our to-do list and I find myself frantically running around trying to get it all done. Which often results in a cranky, stressed-out mama! But when I take the time to get to bed early, give myself a little grace, and move a little slower...more actually gets done. I hope that makes sense!
Keep it up, you're doing amazing!!