So, this has been on my mind recently… How do you stay organized, on schedule and get ALL of the things done?? I have been asked this a lot recently. It’s a hard question to answer. With 3 kids, and everything else we have going on… keeping us organized never really ends. Also, being my best critic, I never think I am on top of it all.
Well, here are a few things that I have figured out along the way. And please, please share your ideas with me too.
- Lunch hours and late weekday nights (and occasional weekends) are where I squeeze in time for my class and doing homework. Josh helps me to make school one of our priorities and takes the boys, no questions asked, whenever I need to concentrate on my class.
- Just Saying No – As Moms of multiple children (and a baby), one of our greatest strengths has to be prioritizing- right? When 2 are crying, who do you help first? Same goes for realizing how thin you can really spread yourself. I learned my first week back at work after maternity leave that Nobody wins when you overcommit yourself. When asked to do something fun, unless it involves my family, I have to think long and hard about what we have going on at that time and my priorities. Easy enough. I just can’t do it all.
- Chores – The older boys each have a list of chores and get check marks for each chore they complete. After 5 check marks, they earn a cookie (their idea). Asking the kiddos to help out and make it a challenge like sorting and folding socks (my least favorite) or getting dressed the fastest helps. Their chore list include feeding the dog, watering the dog, watering my plant, sweeping the floor, putting their laundry down the laundry chute (their favorite), picking up toys and yes, even eating their vegetables.
- Calendar and planning- simple as that. Planning out our day, week, month helps me to strive for efficiency and remember everything we have going on. Outlook calendar, day planner (I like to write it down) and the kids school calendar are our tools.
- My phone and Technology- (See my recent post on Aps for Moms) Also, Kroger Quicklist, is a complete timesaver. I have taken the boys with me and that alone costs more than the minimal $4.99 fee for those at Kroger to shop for you. Now I have bought a few items the wrong size (like the 60 oz. ketchup bottle taking up space in our fridge) but for the most part, I’m am very happy grocery shopping online. My favorite feature is how it helps me build a list from the things I purchase most often. I can make a whole order in 15 minutes.
- Organizing the night before- pack backpacks, lunchboxes, make bottles, lay out all clothes, shoes, socks… anything to help the morning go as smoothly as possible. We even keep toothbrushes by the kitchen sink as well as in their room. It takes me getting ready and 3 boys up, dressed, breakfast and out of the house about 60-75 minutes. Then we wait at the bus stop and then drop off the other two, adds another 20-25 minutes approximately. The morning is long enough so starting the night before is a must.
- When to clean the house, that is the question. To be honest and realistic, I can ignore the kiddos and have a spotless house. Or, I can have a home that looks like it is lived in. We have a happy home, that looks lived in, a little messy, a lotta toys and (for the most part) happy boys. Sure, I’d love to keep up with every piece of dust and handprint on the window but I learned after we had Deacon that I can spend my time with them and or I can trip over them and clean. So, I clean when I can but just can’t commit to the every week night, and all day Saturday ritual. One day yes, but not now with 3 boys who are 5 and under. But what we do well is pick up, straighten up and organize almost every night. The older boys help and pick up (toys, dinner plates, cups, shoes, laundry) at the end of each day.
- Having multiple children helps- Counterintuitive? Yes. And also, No. I still find myself feeling guilty for not spending all of my time playing with them. But in reality, we have to eat, need clean laundry and so forth. Our boys play well together and are starting to help with the baby somewhat too. The older boys love to entertain baby Wyatt which can help me to get dinner made, for example. They’re in the next room and not far away so I can see and hear what’s going on. And the older boys have been best buddies and playmates for 3 years now, which helps a ton.
- Teamwork – you need a good life partner to tackle the 3 lives that we brought into this world. Daddy helps with everything.
- And last but not least, Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. And not just any coffee but my Amazon Prime monthly subscription of San Francisco Bay Company Fog Chaser or French Roast. The price is great and the taste is absolutely amazing.
That’s all I’ve got for now. Send your thought my way! And if you haven’t, please subscribe to my blog and you’ll get an automatic email each time I post! 😘 XOXO Thanks for reading.