you know how it goes. too many things to do, not enough hours in the day. the age old problem that plagues us all. but i truly believe that when God made time, He made enough of it. it's more about obedience than balance when it comes to it. read an amazing post on that here. i believe we must use wisdom in regards to spending time which must include efficiency, ordered priorities, and grace upon grace. He gives it to us; we must give it to others. especially those in our own homes - they need that grace as much as we do, and even though they tend to make messes and put more bullet points on our to-do lists, we are required to show them grace and slow down to embrace them.
i enjoy learning from others about how they order their home. there are so many wise women who have gone before me and have a better handle on this life thing. so i've adapted some tips, meshed them into what works for us, and hopefully you might get some good ideas in the meantime. first, here's the rythym of our household right now:
my business is going well, better than it should be (can you say grace, again?!!), i'm a full-time mom (Hunter goes to preschool two mornings/week, but Sage is still with me during that time), and so figuring out how to watch and shepherd and love and serve my children all day everyday, along with loving and serving my sweet husband, coupled with working 20-30 hours/week while maintaining our home is nutso. kelly sometimes has to work in the evenings; oftentimes things get shifted around; i have to be flexible (that f word is really a good one). during naptime each day, i edit photos. in the evenings i do housework, Bible reading, more photo work, blog stuff, and spend time with kelly.
1. the calendar: phone and paper. i have forever struggled over this one. i have a calendar on my phone that is synced to kelly's. that way we both have our calendars/schedules right in front of us. it's perfect. absolutely. but the trick has always been, how do i plan out my days? i've looked at the fancy planners that cost a lot and felt silly getting one when i have a calendar (for free!) on my phone. i finally found a solution. a $7.99 paper calendar pad from target . i keep our big tasks/meetings/appointments/photography session & wedding dates on my phone, but this daily calendar is for my daily to-do's. this way kelly doesn't have to be bothered by playdates or toilet cleaning day.
2. menu planning: crockpot chicken: make sunday for three chicken meals each week. i load the crockpot up with 8 chicken breasts or 12 tenderloins each sunday. then, throughout the week, we have three chicken meals (think enchiladas/tacos/burritos, soups, salads, pastas). i shred the chicken for most chicken nights. this chicken meal is also a go-to, for an easy dinner. so from that there's three or four meals each week. i plan to have leftovers one night. then we also have homemade pizza once/week. also, some sort of ground turkey meal is planned. oh, and i often pick out one quick healthy frozen meal from trader joe's to give myself a break. : ) that's my rough blueprint and it keeps our budget on track and my mind from screaming.
3. laundry twice/week only, ideally. sometimes the kids have a ridiculous amount of stains and things need attention asap, but i try really hard to only wash twice/week. i used to do a load/day, but that was wasteful for our family. with four people it's totally doable to wash wednesday and saturday. also, towels only need to be washed once/week. sheets? about once/month. don't think i'm gross. sometimes i stretch it to six weeks. or seven.
4. dishwasher: run each night. i don't know how we possibly make so many dirty dishes each day but we do. i run the wash each night and unload in the morning while making breakfast.
5. errands on the weekdays. i do grocery shopping and errands on the days Hunter is in school because everyone knows that one child is much easier to manage while shopping. also, it leaves the weekend open for family (if i'm not working).
6. a little housecleaning each day. this one is hard for me, but when i follow through with it, i'm always relieved. clean for 20-30 minutes each day mon-thur. it spreads out the daunting task of cleaning an entire house to a little each day making things more manageable. i.e., mon: vacuuming, tue: bathrooms, wed: kitchen, thur: dusting.
7. rest. when i am rested, i am nicer, more gracious, and all around a more pleasant person. so this last bit is key. God blesses our homes as we serve, of course, but we have to refuel in order pour out.
also, on working out: i work out with the kids. i run with them or do a workout dvd while they play. they also sometimes try to do the work-out dvd with me and that is my favorite. this keeps working out doable for me, as i need naptime and evenings for other things.
and if all else fails, thank God for new mercies each morning. : )
ps. it's your turn to give me a tip. pretty please?