Organizing your time

If you have children you know first hand the importance of a regular routine and schedule. Without one kids get grumpy, tired and restless. The same thing goes for us adults too. Giving ourselves a basic routine and schedule is the key to an organzied home and an organized life.

A written schedule for your day is super important. You may not even have to look at it, but the simple fact of putting it on paper is enough to get you started. I have my schedule on my fridge just for motivation to stick to it. And when I do stick to it, I feel more relaxed, my house is clean and I actually have more free time for myself.

If you are a working mommy, your time at home is precious and a schedule is even more important for you.  As a stay-at-home mommy, my time is more flexible and I can fit in the important stuff all throughout the day.
I’m going to give you some examples from my own schedule and some that may work for both stay-at-home and working moms.

One of the first things on my schedule is Making the Beds. I never saw the importance of this before, but after doing it consistantly for awhile, I now realize what a big impact it has. It really does set the tone for the day and takes a only a few short minutes. Even when the rest of your home is in crazy chaos, your bedroom should always be the calm of the storm, a place you can go for a quiet moment to yourself. Of course, there is also nothing better than climbing into a nicely made bed at the end of a long day.  Encourage your children to make their own beds too. I help my little one with the blankets in her crib, but my three year old can make her bed all by herself.

If you are a working mommy, laundry can be particularly overwhelming. If your family is large, you probably do at least one load a day. Laundry is a MUST on your daily schedule. For working mommies, add throwing in a load to your schedule, preferably as soon as you get home.  Switch the laundry over right before dinner and then schedule putting clothes away during your kids bedtime routine. My husband bathes the girls every night while I clean up the kitchen and put laundry away.  I save my kids clothes that go into drawers for them to do after they get out of the bath, they actually really love putting away laundry!

30-minute clean-up. This one is very important to my nightly routine and I don’t go to bed without doing it! Every night after the kids go to bed I put on my ipod and do 30 minutes of cleaning. I probably should be doing this every other night and exercising the other nights, but whatever. I vacumm, mop, windex fingerprints off mirrors and windows, dust and clean the bathrooms in my quick nightly wipe down ritual.  I’m done by 8:30 p.m. and I have the rest of the night to myself!  Now, you may not want to vacumm and dust every night, but taking 30 minutes at the end of the night to do some kind of cleaning will mean that you never have to spend a Saturday afternoon cleaning your house. Weekends are for family time, not for housework. You may be tired at the end of your day, but trust me, 30 minutes more is so worth it. Do not spend this time picking up kids toys though. Make your children (or help them) clean up their toys before dinner or before bedtime. Your night time 30 minutes should be for serious house cleaning.

K. So here is a quick example schedule. I challenge you to make one of your own and stick to it for ONE WHOLE WEEK. I promise you will not regret it! Your house will be clean and your weekends will be free to spend however you like, without housework!

7:00- Get ready
8:00- Make Beds and tidy up Bathroom
8:15- Take out meat to defrost for dinner or throw something in slow cooker
5:00- Sort Mail – put bills in “to be paid” folder, flyers in the “to be read” basket (emptied nightly) and junk mail in recycling.
5:10 Throw in load of laundry
5:30 Make dinner – one parent plays with kids while other makes dinner
5:55 Switch Laundry
6:00 Eat Dinner / Family Time
7:00 Bath Time, pjs and brushing teeth – one parent bathes while other parent cleans up kitchen and dinner dishes and puts laundry away.
7:30 Family Time
8:00 Story, Songs and Bed
8:15-8:45 – 30 Minute house clean
8:45 MOMMY FREE TIME!!

Remember, I know this seems like a busy evening, but now there is no laundry or cleaning to do on the weekend!