Johnny needs to be dropped off at soccer at 4:30. Suzy should arrive with hair up and tights on for dance class at 4:45. Dinner needs to be prepared and on the table at 6 which leaves just enough time to chat about the day before clean up, baths, homework, and preparing treats for tomorrow’s field trip. You hope to hit up a yoga class or potentially do a load of laundry. This is all before a concentrated half an hour to talk to your spouse and then mentally gear up for the morning rush and your full time job.
You may find yourself asking, how does anyone keep up with it all? The answer is, we all just give it our best and if along the way we can find a few tips to save a couple of dollars, a few hours, and gain peace of mind, then let’s do it! Here are a few topical ideas for making the most of the limited resources we have for our abundant lives.
Create A Hub: Your family, whether made up of 2 or 15, needs a common communication “hub”. This is a place that anyone can go to at any given time to check the schedule, share paperwork, and retrieve important memos. Create a mudroom bulletin board, back pack station, or even a digital calendar, but the important idea is to have a common location to communicate that is available 24/7.
Prioritize: There are only 24 hours in a day and we are awake at best for 16 of them. That leaves little time and we must choose wisely. Decide with your spouse and later with your children what is most important. Is it sports, school, church, activities, family, friends? You will have all of these things in your life if you choose at some capacity, but you’ll have to make hard calls along the way and you’ll want to be able to determine and stick to your purpose and convictions by thinking about that ahead of time.
Carpool: This one is practical and useful! You can spend your entire evening and afternoon in a car, but it doesn’t have to be every day. Find a family in your activity group that you can help and they can help you. It builds community and helps get everyone where they need to be on time without you spending 4-6 precious hour in the car each night.
Set Realistic Expectations: You are one person and you can not be all things to all people. Set the expectations of others aside. Your child may be gifted at piano and soccer, but if that takes up five nights a week and there is no time for homework you need to be realistic that resources are in fact limited. Maybe the cost of an activity outweighs your ability to pay for it. Don’t be ashamed, be honest, work hard, and catch up when you can. You can only stay up until 3am so many nights in a row before you turn into a zombie grouch parent/co-worker/friend and then no one will want your help!
Family Night: Time spent together is never wasted. Make your time count by playing and creating together. At Duck Worth Wearing we carry a line of activities, games and toys by Melissa & Doug which will help bring quality and entertainment to your time together.
Maximize your Money: Last but certainly not least take advantage of the world of consignment. You can make money by bringing in your gently used items, save time by getting all of your back to school, Christmas shopping, and clothing shopping all at one convenient place. Finally you’ll save a lot of money by purchasing previously loved items that will work like new for you!
At the end of the day your family’s schedule may be full, but as long as you know your time investment is worthy of your attention, you won’t easily tire or burn out. Get sleep, eat well, and shop at Duck Worth Wearing!