Some days I feel as though I barely have time to breathe. Being a mom is keeps me busy around the clock, and sometimes I feel as though I am loosing my footing juggling so many things at once. Then there are other days that things seem to take a step back, it’s those days that I seem to let slip by the most because I could be getting things done… It’s tricky for sure. But I have learned a few things in the last three years of being a mom, and with baby #2 on her way I think now is a good time to remind myself (and others) of some time saving tips I have learned. (Before baby brain takes over and I become a sleepless zombie.)
- Ask your husband for help. There are a good many things I am good at, but there are also a good many things he is better at (shhh don’t tell him). When he’s better, it’s usually quicker to ask him to help (or do it for me). For example — anything electronic and brushing my daughter’s teeth.
- Make a list. I am a constant list maker (I even have one for things I need to ask my husband to do). But making a list helps to keep me organized, which in turn helps save me time. (When I can find my list!)
- Say no to Facebook games. I admit it, I was hooked on Farmville (and I still wanna go back), but when I got pregnant and really sick I didn’t feel like playing. After time away I realized how much of a time sucker it had been on my productive life.
- Viva la Bluetooth. Talking on your hand-held phone and driving isn’t safe, but talking to your friends in the car while driving from appt to rehearsal to practice — that’s a good way to get something fun done while doing a chore. (It’s especially a time saver with chatty friends — gotta run, I have arrived at my destination.)
- When you are in a hurry, stick with what works. Don’t try a new breakfast food on your kids when you are trying to get out the door to for school — save it for the weekend.
- Give kids fair warning. I have learned that if I give my daughter a count down until she has to stop what she is doing (for nap, bath, time to leave, etc.) by the time I tell her it is time to go she is ready. Otherwise, if I spring it on her she will dawdle and protest for a good 5-10 minutes before getting her act together to leave the house.
- Make a memo. Similar to my lists, I have a memo board by the door. I use it to write down things I need to remember to do such as returns, get milk, etc. I take a quick look at the board before I leave and when I return, the board keeps me on track and that saves time.
- Crockpot. Some nights there is just not time to fix a meal. If you can plan in advance for those nights with a crockpot meal your family can still enjoy a home-cooked meal ready to go when they are ready to eat.
- Use baskets. Baskets and bins make for easy and quick toy clean up. So easy your kids can do it. Set up a basket/bin system in your house and at the end of the day ask the kids to help stow their mess in the baskets/bins ready for play tomorrow.
- Out of time, skip the housework for a day. It will still be there tomorrow. At the end of the day, what you really want is a few minutes of quality time with the family. If that means the laundry has to wait until tomorrow, so be it. The dust bunnies will still be there tomorrow.
Time is a valuable resource, and some days it is really hard not to waste it. But if you can get some plans in place to keep yourself and your family organized, you will be one step ahead of the game and that means more time to spend doing something you want to do. Good luck and feel free to share some of your best tips — I am always looking for more ways to save time in my life.
“I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Starbucks blogging program, for a gift card worth $30. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”