Monday, 17 November 2008
by Mama Fox
As per request, I am going to break it down and tell y'all how I manage to commit to all a bunch of wonderfully domestic activities:
First: Join Fly Lady, Oprah's new Clean Up Your Messy House, or take out a piece of paper and create your own cleaning schedule. I like how Fly Lady has the house divided into Zones. I typed up every Zone week (from her "sneak peeks" on Mondays that outlines the whole week). I have tweaked her schedules a bit to fit my family's then printed it out on pretty purple paper and put them in my home management binder.
I use my binder every day and it helps me with running a smooth household. I cannot say enough great things about having a HMB. I am in awe that I ever accomplished tasks without it.
I am a list person. I keep a lot of lists in my HMB but I also have dry erase boards around the house. We have a smaller one on the fridge for immediate to do lists. Right now it reads:
- Put away laundry.
- Bake biscuits and sugar cookies.
- Kitchen Detailed Clean.
- 3pm - Start pizza dough.
This week's Fly Zone is the kitchen and I picked today to do the detailed clean. I don't do detailed cleaning on the same day every week. Being flexible and doing it when I feel like it helps me from becoming too overwhelmed with my schedule.
We also have a dry erase calendar in the school room (the kids are homeschooled). It's basically a more visible version of the one in my HMB. It has the days Mike works (they are a bit random this month so he wanted me to know what to expect), anything going on with the kids such as field trips with the homeschool group or park days, and sometimes reminders that a certain television program we enjoy is going to air a certain night Of course all the birthdays and holidays going on that month are included as well. This calender keeps us from forgetting events and prior commitments.
1. LISTS! Always write things down. I am extremely scatter brained. If I didn't make lists, I would be so lost. I have lists for everything --to do lists, menu planning, cleaning schedules, grocery lists, even a "want list" for things we want to get when we have the extra money.
2. Meals don't always have to be perfect, made-from-scratch meals. Heck, make easy boxed stuff. Anything you make with love is a good meal. Don't get caught up in impersonating Betty Crocker. From scratch is usually healthier and cheaper though. It doesn't have to be difficult. A lot of the things I make are actually fairly simple. Check out allrecipes.com. Look on Kraft Foods. Get a cook book from the library, pick out a simple recipe and try it. Dinner should not be a hassle.
3. Break the day up. I rarely do any one thing for more then 20 minutes. For example, I pop on the computer during nursing pit stops with Ethan, clean the kitchen while the kids are playing outside, and vacuum during a commercial. It makes me look extremely busy but it actually is a lot less stressful then trying to tackle everything at once.
4. ASK FOR HELP! Have a Honey Do list for your spouse, talk with the kids about what they can do to help you out. Make chore lists. While I do a majority of the cleaning here, I do have quiet a bit of help. If I feel overwhelmed, I know I can ask Mike and he will help me.
5. Rarely do I write a blog in one sitting. I'm serious. I usually get about half way through and have to do something for the kids. I save it as private and return to it next time I get a chance. Big blogs can take a full day to type out.
6. Eat nutritiously and keep yourself hydrated. Keeping you body healthy gives you the energy to do everything else. I have a 64 oz mug of water that I fill up every morning. I usually drink two full ones a day.
7. Remember that you are doing this for yourself and your family. Don't push yourself too hard and don't run yourself ragged. If you are too exhausted to enjoy your efforts what good is it? Take things slowly and you will get caught up in no time!
What are your tips for managing your home and family?