Working anytime from 36 to 50 hours a week plus managing family and home life can be quite daunting for most working parents. It can be quite a challenge, but it is very doable. Here are just my own two cents on how our family does it.
1. Plan Ahead. Every Sunday or Monday night, I jot down and go through what we have in store for that week in terms of work, errands and meal planning.
2. We Start Early on Weekdays. My husband is much better at waking up earlier than me. He wakes up at 4:30am and exercises early in the day. In my case, I try to run 3-5miles every other day and be out running by 4:45am to get my body and mind going. And wake up our son at 6:00am and aim to be out the door by 7:00amish to drop Sky off to summer camp or school and I get to work a little before 8:00am.
3. Meal Planning. As mentioned on number 2, I do my best to make up a meal plan for the week ahead. Our small family of 3 are very basic in terms of what they like for dinner, so we usually have the same fare of meal every week and I tend to choose recipes that can be cooked within 30 to 60 minutes at best. And I do my best to inject a little bit of Filipino fare every now and then. Also, if I know that I was going to have a particularly long and taxing day at work, the crock pot is every working woman’s best friend. All you have to do is place everything in the pot in the morning and dinner is perfect by the time you get home in the evening.
3. Clean as you Go. This one, I learned from my mom. Everytime I cook or do something, I wash up and clean up right after. When I need to use multiple bowls while cooking, I wash and place the clean bowl on the drying rack as I cook and prepare. This way, you don’t have a mountain of dishes to wash at the end of cooking a meal. This holds tru around the house, if you see a piece of paper or what-nots on the floor – it will go to the garbage for sure.
4. Train your Family. Having a boy and a bigger boy
my husband with little sense of organization is another challenge. Thankfully through some of my constant nagging, they both know to leave their things at a designated spot. Bags, toys, keys and electronics belong in a particular spot in the house – so we all know where to get it when we need them.
5. Prioritze. Instead of buying a cup of fancy coffee before heading for work for five bucks a pop. I make a big brew of coffee at home for 1/8th of the price. We also bring lunch to work and have a lunch out at least once a week or none at all. The money that we save from there, we use to have a housekeeper come in every other week to clean the house. So, on weekends instead of doing more household chores, we spend good quality time together – even if it just means hanging around the house, watching a movie, having friends over or just recuperating from a busy life last week.
6. Just Let Go. And being only human, there are times that I just let go of things that would normally annoy me (I am a bit of an OCD – ask my husband) and to let go that we can only do so much with our time. As much as I want to blog on a daily basis here or on Pass The NPTE every night, I’d rather choose resting my mind and body from a long day or just simply spending time with my family.
Even if I have already developed a habit of managing our home and our time, I am constantly on the lookout for more tips on how to be better at it.
How do you manage your time?