I feel like I am always evaluating and praying about how I am spending my time. Am I being a good steward of the time God has given me? What can I be doing more to connect and play with my kids? Am I making the time to spend with my man? Is blogging a waste of time? Is reading other's blogs the best use of time?
I often wonder how other mommy's of small children allocate their time. What time saving tips are in place to make their homes run smoothly? Are other moms incredibly disciplined or constantly feeling frazzeled and that not everything important is getting done? There is a lot on the plates of mamas; to get in housework, homeschooling, family Bible study, exercise, blogging, quiet time with God, quality time with their husbands, friends, co-ops, laundry, errands, women's Bible studies, groceries, food prep and play time with their kids. Whew, that was exhausting to even write : )
Not that I do all of these things perfectly, but here are some of the time saving tips that have been shared with me that I work on implementing into our routine.
1. Get up before your kids... at least an hour! This is a hard one, but one that I have been working on the last few months. It has been more rewarding than I would have ever imagined. It has taken so much discipline on my husband and my part to get to bed by 10. But it has been so worth it!
2. Meal Plan! I am a huge fan of meal planning. I will write another post on just this.
3. Have a plan for the day. Be flexible if it doesn't go as planned but start with a plan. Even when H was little I liked to plan into the day times that I would sit on the floor and play with him. Otherwise, the Type A in me comes out and all I do all day is "get stuff done" and have him just tag along.
4. Plan at least 2 days a week to stay at home. It is so natural to always be on the go and out of the house, thus letting everything at home pile up. Again, another post dedicated just to this subject.
5. Get your baby on a schedule! I know some don't agree with this, but for our family, it has REALLY been a blessing. I read Baby Wise and Secrets of the Baby Whisperer. I highly recommend both books if you are pregnant, or have a new little one. Training your baby to sleep as a baby has paid huge dividends for us, even H still has good sleep patterns.
6. Meal Prep during nap time. On the days that I am diligent to prep for dinner during nap time, the hour leading up to dinner goes SO much more smoothly. On the days that I don't (like yesterday) the kids are frustrated that they don't have my attention, I am impatient and by the time we sit down to eat I want to rush through dinner and get on with bedtime.
7. Limit your internet time. Ahhh, this is so my weakness. I can spend hours perusing surfing the web, looking for ideas, recipes, gifts, a good laugh. So, for me anyway, I have to give myself some restrictions of how often and at what time of day I can be on the computer. I would hate for my kiddos to remember their preschool days marked by Mama always looking at her laptop.
Just some things that work for me. I would love to hear what is working for you : )