Saving Time With Littles

Planning saves time

Having six children in my household, I have learned to plan ahead. Planning ahead keeps the peace within my household and saves time that I could be spending with my children. A quote I live by is If you fail to plan, you plan to fail – Benjamin Franklin. 

Planning outfits ahead of time

Laying out clothes a day ahead, or even a week in advance for you and your children is a great way to save time. A simple trick for planning for the week is putting outfits in an organizer or placing an outfit into a gallon ziplock bag with the child’s name and day of the week on the front of the bag then putting the bags in a dresser drawer for the week.

Skipping pajamas when possible and dressing older kids in what they are going to wear for the next day, if it is comfortable, is okay. While my kids do have pajamas, there’s not a huge difference in joggers and a T shirt than a pair of pajamas and saves so much time in the mornings.

saving timeMeal Plan

I personally meal plan two weeks in advance. I have a dry erase calendar I write everything on including what’s for dinner. Nights that we are busy with sports practice etc., I plan simple meals that can be thrown into an insta pot, air fryer or cook in the crock pot during the day. Keeping a few quick meals on hand for those extra crunched for time days is a must. I always take time to look ahead and pull out what’s for dinner the next day to avoid scrambling at last minute. Other things I frequently do is make an abundance of things we eat a lot of, prep meals and then freeze them or freeze leftovers and take them for lunch or serve them for quick lunches on the weekends.

Feeding your kids and keeping them alive and happy, especially if you are a stay at home mom, takes up most of your time from 7am-7pm. I organize a snack basket with each child’s name complete with a labeled water bottle or cup for the day this helps curb bored kids from over eating and lessens arguing over snacks. Once my child is tall enough to reach the sink with a stool or water dispenser in the fridge door they are responsible for filling and keeping track of their water bottle and getting a drink.

Online Shop

Although I shop local as much as possible, online shopping is convenient. I order groceries online and then pick up and it saves me hours. No more dragging a parade through the grocery store or hearing the kiddos beg for every other thing they see. Some places will even deliver your items for free or a small fee. You can order everything online from groceries to diapers at the click of a button.

Dedicate a time for social media

Setting aside a specific time for social media or online work saves time in the long run when you don’t have interruptions. Waiting to bust out the laptop once the kids go to bed or go down for a nap will take you 30 minutes to complete a task that would have taken you 2 hours if they were awake.

I have also found that putting my most frequented apps, Facebook and Instagram, into a folder and on the second page of my phone so I use them less. Out of sight, out of mind. I waste a lot less time mindlessly scrolling through social media platforms this way.

Routines and Cleaning

Developing a routine and attempting to stick to it helps tremendously. Knowing what is coming next is helpful not only to myself, but to my children. On the weekends I try my best to keep nap and meal times the same time daycare does to keep it consistent.

Keeping morning routines simple is a must. Everything from car keys to the diaper bag is by the front door and ready to go. I can get ready in 30 minutes or less with a shower and have a 5 minute makeup routine down pat. I wear makeup daily because it makes me feel and look less tired. My essentials are a hydrating primer, foundation and mascara. Recently I have enjoyed Younique products, they are affordable and good quality. I do my skincare routine at night to save time as well.

Keep a basic cleaning routine. I alternate what days I clean different areas, so most nights I only have to clean one thing. Having your kids clean up after themselves teaches good ethic. Once they are able to walk they are able to pick up at least a few of their toys, set realistic expectations for each age. Often as a Mom I feel the need to do most things for my children, but teaching independence is important! Keeping up games or toys with a million pieces and dedicating those items until after the toddlers go to bed is also a great idea. My toddlers love to make messes and keeping these items out of reach helps prevent this.

Hiring a cleaning service or individual is also a popular option. They can come as frequently as you need. Some people schedule once a week and others every other day. I have not thrown in the towel yet but my family member provides cleaning services and I have her on my radar.  I am always looking for new ideas to save time, the more time I save on the day to day, the more time I have for my kids and doing things I truly enjoy.

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