When I worked full time when the children were small it was hard work. I seemed to spend my life chasing my own tail, driving from one end of town to the other and always seemed to be grabbing toast as I went. I was pretty sure if anyone thought I was missing I could be soon found by my trail of toast crumbs. I do wish someone had sat me down and read me these tips on managing family and work. As it was I seemed to muddle through and was doing most of these.
Have A Routine
Just as you know a bedtime routine helps children when they are little to wind down and go to bed, a morning routine helps you get out the door. It also acts a bit like a timer to actually get out the door and the children will notice and know its countdown to out the door. Mine was to quickly and swiftly pick all messy stuff up and put into a big trug I had by the stairs ready for sorting later. Then I would load the dishwasher, wipe the sides, fill the kettle ready for when I got home and put rubbish outside. Doing the same thing each morning the children soon learned that opening the door to put the rubbish out I would be heading them into the car too.
Now I would and do use my phone. Back then mobiles were still little grey pixel screens. I had a notebook about the A5 size I carried everywhere. I had a todo section, shopping section, and an important info bit too. When I thought of something I needed next time I went shopping I would add it to the shopping section. Then I only had to remember to go to the supermarket. But now we can apps for anything your smartphone doesn’t do so list out everything then you got less to try and remember.
Keep On Top Of Laundry
If your washing machine has a timer function learn how to use it and actually use it. Depending on family size load the washing every morning and set it to finish for when you return home. That way it’s already and you just have to load tumble dryer or hang it out. Tip – This is something the children can be tasked to do dependant on their age. Even if it takes two of them helping each other it’s something off your list.
Depending on house size and little helpers get a cleaning schedule written up and put on the fridge door. That way kids ( and you ) know what has to be done and when. I’d speed clean each room once a week on a Saturday and then spend a bit longer in the kitchen. Tip – children can help with housework with things like sweeping, bins, dishwasher. Might take them a bit longer though but show them how to do it and leave them to get on in their time. Also, keep cleaning supplies in the bathroom saves a lot of up and down the stairs getting stuff.
Best Kindle Reads on Being a Working Mum
Mum Hacks: Time-saving tips to calm the chaos of family life
Super Working Mum: Living and Loving Life To The Fullest
Baby Proof Your Career – The Secret To Balancing Work and Family So You Can Enjoy It All
Yeah, this is one of those ‘really grown up now’ moments when you delight at a full meal planner. Plan meals out for the week. Work out what you need and do your grocery shopping online. You can do your grocery shopping anywhere and anytime thanks to the supermarkets having apps.
Empty The Trug
Don’t forget to empty the drug once a week. It can be a game for little children as they go round putting the stuff on people’s beds for them to sort out.
Lastly, remember you can’t do everything for everyone and nor should you even try. Delegate when you can and what can’t be done will still be there tomorrow. And always have some you time. Not kid stuff or housework stuff but truly just you time.