Five Ways I Stay Organised
Posted August 22, 2016 by Bethanie Lunn
Being a parent is tough isn’t it. A rhetorical question. Yes, the chaos is met with magic and despite the meltdowns, sleepless nights and the entire juggling act, being a mum is beautiful just the same, in my opinion…but it is tough.
So how do I stay in control and see that times are more magical than manic?
I get organised and I always look to make things as convenient and as fun as can be – for everyone involved.
Read on for my top five ways to stay organised (and sane) and watch the video for an insight into how I (try to) balance work and motherhood.
Watch the video >>>
From our family meals together to my outfits for the next day, I always plan ahead. Doing so helps me to stay in control and a little organisation goes a long way. If you’re new to it, take baby steps and start with the area that stresses you out the most. If it is mornings with the kids, try laying out their breakfast the night before, packing their bags and getting their shoes near the door that you leave through. Considering the little details really does help.
I have different lists, in different ways, for different purposes. Yes. Really. I have a travel list, a work bag list, a work action list, a meal planning list, a shopping list, a childcare list…the list, as it were, is endless. My nickname isn’t Monica Geller for no reason. Give me a labelling gun and I’ll love you forever.
Two lists I use every week are:
Family Work / Life Activities List
I don’t know about you, but my husband and I are often like ships in the night – both with busy schedules and missing each other. I therefore use an app to organise the family that gives us all access to a shared calendar. We get weekly summaries of it every Sunday and at any moment, members of the family can add or amend events and entries, making them visible to all. So if my husband has a late meeting at work or I have a press event planned and need to travel, we can notify each other this way and stay on top of commitments.
Our family sadly don’t live near us, so its just my husband and I and our two children living by the sea. When they come to visit, they stay a while so we get quality time with them but the day-to-day care of our kids in between working is using professional childcare.
Drop-offs and pick-ups are down to me so it’s important for me and my kids that I stay organised and in control to ensure they are well provided for when I’m not there. It’s a good job I have my trusty list and a few go-to conveniences:
- A teething toy – this will keep baby amused when you’re out and about and soothe sore gums when the teething starts, plus a familiar object from home is good for little ones
- Aptamil Follow-on Milk – this ready-to-use liquid makes it easy for the carer to give my baby what she needs when I’m not there and I know I’m doing my absolute best for her. Because it is so quick to use, I feel like I’m being considerate to everyone with this
- A spare change of clothes – I once went out without a set and my first born weed all over himself, right before we had a kids party to go to. In a grubby vest and make-shift trousers, he ended up looking like Onslow from Keeping Up Appearances minus the beer can. Never again.
Have a place for everything
I first think about my day and lifestyle then line up things to make that flow. For instance, I always exit our house by the same door – so that’s where I put our keys, in a tray on a table by that door. This way I’m never searching for them when I’m in a hurry; I always know where they are. We have a cupboard in the living room for toys so we can shut them away when the kids are in bed and ‘reclaim’ our stylish adult space. By having a set place, it also teaches my son to put his toys away himself.
Never leave a room empty handed
Whenever I enter and leave a room when at home with the kids, I always have something in my hand to either tidy away or use. This way, mess doesn’t mount up too much. Yes, with a toddler and baby, mess is inevitable and I let it happen because that is half the fun, but I don’t let it get out of hand – for everyone’s sake. Having baskets in each room helps to put things back where they belong before the day is out. I even have a stair basket to put things in that belong up or down stairs and when passing, I take it with me!
Make peace with imperfection
We’re all human and we can’t get it right all the time, nor can we do it all – and we shouldn’t be expected to! Prioritise and give those all of your attention, giving everything else just enough to simply get it done. When my baby is in childcare or we have a long journey to tackle as a family, I’d be lost without my smartphone to keep me in touch and my kids entertained (from time to time, THIS REALLY IS OKAY!), my Aptamil Follow-On Milk ready to drink for on-the-go speed and peace of mind and a notebook, so my toddler can draw and so I get to make more lists – yippee!
I hope this helps, I’d love to know your ideas for staying organised too but just remember to give yourself a break. xx
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Aptamil Follow on Milk but all opinions are my own and I personally recommend the product following personal use. I only work with brands I believe in and feel my readers will find useful.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: Breastfeeding is best for your baby. Follow-on milk should only be used as part of a mixed diet and not as a breastmilk substitute before 6 months. Use on the advice of your healthcare professional.