This year, I resolve to spend less time doing chores and more time with family. I am going to put some thought into ways to make the “chore” part of our lives easier. These days are flying by and I am spending too much time at the kitchen sink and in the laundry room. Those baby snuggles and chubby cheeks are disappearing right before my eyes. I don’t have time to be super mom and lets face it, that’s a no-win anyway. My kids won’t care or remember that I packed them an organic lunch everyday that included all the food groups. They will remember that I had time to sit and talk to them while they ate breakfast before school every morning.
Here are some things that I am going to do this year in the hopes that they will simplify life and result in more time for the best parts of my life; my family.
Tips to simplify and make more time for family
- Let them eat school lunch. It didn’t kill me and it won’t kill them. That’s fifteen more minutes in the morning, less dishes to clean, and less stuff to put away at the end of the day.
- Have plenty of easy and healthy go-to snacks. Limit snacking to a few times a day (one between breakfast and lunch and another between lunch and dinner) so that they aren’t asking for food constantly.
- Never leave the house without at least one bottle of water and one snack for everyone. Hungry and thirsty kids will ruin any outing.
- Put them to bed on time every night. Kids need sleep. It’s a medical fact. When they are well rested, they are happier = I am happier.
- Teach them how to pour cereal and milk into a bowl. Mama might like to sleep in once a week or even once a month. Oh, and teach them to turn the TV on too. There’s nothing wrong with morning cartoons once a week.
- Lay out their clothes for the week, so we aren’t scrambling around in the morning. And what I have set aside for the day, is what they wear for that day, no exceptions.
- Let them wear whatever they want after school and on the weekends. There are enough battles to fight everyday. This means a lot of superhero shirts and cozy pants (read: pajamas) on the weekends but who can blame them? If it were acceptable, I’d dress like this when not at work too. In fact, it’s why I love the whole Athleisure trend.
- Spend ten minutes after dinner neatening up. Get the kids involved. Set a timer if necessary. It’s amazing how much can be accomplished in those few minutes.
- Let them (read: force them) to carry their own stuff in from the car and put it away. They need to carry their backpacks, jackets ,and any toys they have brought out, back into the house. Mama has enough to carry.
- Get rid of stuff. This is a popular theme in my life lately as we prepare to make room for another life. The less we have, the less stress I feel. I’d rather have purposeful stuff – clothes that I like for my kids, toys they actually play with, furniture that is functional and attractive.
I’m hoping for more time to enjoy meals together, family movie nights, story time and play time. I’m hoping to have more time to talk and to listen. I’m hoping to feel less rushed and more present. Let’s face it; life is busy. I won’t be able to do all these everyday. But I will do what I can, when I can.