That is a scary phrase. Especially to someone like me who tends to be a bit sidetracked when it comes to household tasks.
However, as a mom to 3 kiddos- I have had to learn a bit more of it as of late. Otherwise- I'd be going insane (actually, I'll be honest, I am a bit crazy anyways because you know- small children). So- I've learned some new tricks to help around the house to make certain tasks easier and more time efficient.
First, I want to share a bit of my daily schedule with you.
8:45 am - Kora and Renly wake up. By this point, Kasey has been up for awhile but she likes this time for playing with her dolls by herself and making up stories. I wake up with Kora and Renly. I know that getting up earlier would help with time management but then.. the little ones wake up early and are cranky all day.
9:00 am- start the morning routine: change diapers, give meds, get kids dressed.
9:30 am - start breakfast. Or start washing dishes while the children try to figure out what they want to eat.
10:00 The kids are eating so I toss laundry in, wash some dishes (I'm always behind on dishes and laundry).
10:30 at this point the kids have hopefully finished eating. The two little ones go in the living room to play while Kasey and I sit at her table in the kitchen to start her schoolwork.
Noon: Kasey finishes her schoolwork and the kids go off to play for a bit. At this point I start attempting to figure out lunch. I do something light and easy to make so that I can get them fed quickly.
1:30 this is usually when Renly is going to nap IF he decides he's tired. As I type this- its around naptime but he shows no signs of sleepiness. If he isn't tired we've started going on a walk around the neighobrhood. I switch out laundry and off we go.
2:00 The kids start getting antsy because they know daddy will be home soon. This is when they play together, watch a tv show or commit shenanigans. I start realizing I don't know what to do for dinner ( meal planning doesn't work well in our household these days) and figuring that out while realizing I have several phone calls to make (I always have a to-do list of phone calls, etc.) .
3:00 Eric gets home, the kids get all excited, I figure out dinner completely and get it start. Eric sits down on the couch while the kids use him as a jungle gym.
Now at this point- things go one of two ways. Either I hurredly try to complete more phone calls while making food for dinner at a decent hour or I have to run to complete an errand (meds need picked up, mail needs sent off, etc. that sort of stuff) and dinner is a drop later. Either way by ...
7:00 we've eaten dinner, and its time to start getting Kasey ready for bed.
7:30 Kasey is in bed. Kora and Renly are running around exhausting energy and I start looking at the clock anticipating when they might decide to crash.
Usually by 10'ish they are asleep or thinking of sleep. Bedtime used to be earlier but Kora and Renly switched up their sleep schedule and all attempts to change it have been futile as of late.
Now- there are some things that do change about this schedule depending on appointments, family health, potty days (on potty days school gets moved to the afternoon and potty time for Kasey is in the morning which takes 2 hours),etc.
As you can tell- I stay pretty busy. However, some days you can't tell by looking at my house. There are dishes piled in the sink, laundry hampers everywhere (which are actually clean clothes- I'm great at washing laundry- putting away though... more on that in a minute), the living room needs picked up, the floor needs mopped, etc. However, the kids have survived the day and so have I.
So I'm slowly trying to come up with ways of streamlining some things to make it work better.
First of all, during bathtime (which is about 3 times a week depending on how many times the kids have been outside acting loony- plus they get wiped down daily) I've started standing at the closet door/bathroom counter and hanging up clothes while the kids bathe. I can get about 3 loads done while they splash and amuse themselves.
I also recently have bought some lingerie bags for socks and underwear because socks seem to disappear amongst all other laundry and then the husband has no socks for work and I can't find any underwear for myself.
I have also stopped using my dishwasher. This may seem counterintuitive to my cause but really- my dishwasher sucks and I have to rewash things anyway- so my dishwasher now is our drying rack for dishes. This works out well because it gives me plenty of space without having to stop 5 million times to dry dishes in between washing them.
I also don't sort most of our laundry. The only things that go off by themselves now are socks, undies, kitchen towels (all rags and kitchen towels go in a wetbag and get bleached when washed), and diaper laundry/personal hygeine laundry. I do plan on doing a separate load of towels soon but its a slow process.
Basically, its a very slow overhaul of how I do things but it seems to be helping.
I'm also incorporating ways the kids can help- I'm going to be having them match their own socks, Kasey is going to pick her clothes up and put them in a bin every day. etc.
How do you streamline things to make life simpler?
Disclaimer: I have a lot of room for improvement so please don't take any of this as tooting my horn or me being all "look how crazy my schedule is," I just want to share what is currently working/not working for me:)