As a mom of three with two kids in school (1st grade and preschool), a 6-month-old who still likes to wake up and party with mom in the middle of the night, and a job working from home, I’ve had to work really hard to streamline our weekday processes to stay organized with some mom-friendly tips and tricks.
There are three main areas that needed some attention when I started thinking about how our weeks were going to go once school started: meals and lunches, getting kids ready for school, and school papers/homework. Oh, the number of papers that come home from school! Am I right?!?!
These tips are not magic and I’m sure there are other great methods out there, but these are just a few things that have worked for our family. I hope there is something you can use or adapt to fit your needs!
1. Meals and Lunches
I have been meal planning for a while now and it makes such a difference for me. I like having a plan for what I am making for dinner on any given night and knowing that I have everything I need without any panicked trips to the store. Grocery pickup is totally my jam, so once a week I sit down (most likely in my PJs) and decide on meals for the week while simultaneously adding the needed groceries to my shopping cart. As far as lunches go, I pack my daughter’s lunch while I am cooking dinner. I am in the kitchen anyway and it’s easy to do while waiting for other things to cook. This also ensures that it gets done the night before and not frantically the next morning. I also have a designated basket for school snacks as well as a specific spot for the containers I use in her lunchbox. I do not want to rifle through my often disorganized Tupperware cabinet to find what I need, so keeping some designated containers together works for me.
2. Getting Ready
Both of my daughters are very opinionated about their clothes. I love that about them and welcome their self-expression – just not at 7:30 in the morning while getting ready for school. So to prevent any fighting and to help everyone be as independent as possible with getting dressed in the morning, we choose all of our clothes for the week on Sundays. I have a hanging closet organizer with six compartments that hangs in my closet and it holds all of the clothes for the week. Everyone gravitates towards Mom and Dad’s room in the morning, so it just made sense for the clothes to be there. Everyone knows where their clothes are, so when it is time to get dressed, they just get them and go.
3. School Papers
It seems like every day more and more papers come home. Some important, some not, some worthy of hanging on the fridge, some needing to be snuck into the trash so certain little people don’t see. Last year, I had one wall basket where all the papers went. The problem was that it was just too big and stuff got lost. This year, I got some new clear wall files that I personalized with each child’s name. School papers and notes go directly in their own bin from their folder to be sorted through. Anything that needs to be returned to school goes in a separate bin so I know it needs my attention. This seems to be much more manageable and I’m hoping we can keep it organized the whole year.
I hope these tips help simplify your week and keep things running smoothly. I’d love to know your tips for keeping everything organized during the hectic work/school week!