A mom often wears many hats, taxi driver, cook, housekeeper, bread-winner, shoulder to cry on, and more. So, how does mom juggle it all? The following are six secrets of organized moms to help make things easier:
1. Routines. Organized moms serve dinner at the same time each night, have strict bed times, have after school routines with homework and socializing. If you want to be an organized mom, you have to have a routine you stick to. This might mean that you get your child up at the same time each day, and expect them to get dressed and make their bed before they come in to breakfast. You may have a few different routines, such as your morning routine, your after school and evening routine, and your weekend routine. A routine helps you, the mom, keep things on track, and helps your children to know what to expect, and what is expected of them.
2. Meal plans. Organized moms do not spend extra time in the grocery store, or standing in front of the refrigerator trying to determine what to prepare that night. Organized moms take a few minutes once a week to create a meal plan for the week. Monday: Soup, Tuesday: Chicken, Wednesday: Pizza, Thursday: Hamburgers, and the list goes on. The idea is that if you know what you are going to make you can be prepared throughout the day. For example, if you are going to roast a chicken for dinner, you will need to get it out of the freezer in the morning in order for it to be defrosted by dinner time.
3. Rules. Organized moms have rules or guidelines for their families. They may be simple like dinner is at 5:30. Or they may be more complex like, no friends, television, or snacking until your homework is completed. A mom can't keep the whole family organized without some participation, so rules, and guidelines are helpful. Make them clear, and enforce them.
4. Time off. An organized mom does not let herself get overly stressed, or overwhelmed because she knows when to say no, when to de-stress, and when to take a break. She knows that when she is starting to lose her cool, that letting dad take the kids to McDonald's rather than fixing a nice meal, is sometimes better, even if it is not the healthiest option. The organized mom knows when she needs a break, and figures out how to take one.
5. Organized home. The organized mom has an organized home. She creates a place for everything so that school mornings are not spent hastily trying to find shoes, backpacks, pens that work, etc. Instead, everything has a place, and the kids know where things go, and contribute by being sure to put their backpack on the hook, in the cubby, or whatever the case may be, the night before.
6. Back-up plans. Organized moms always plan ahead, and prepare for the worst. They carry a spare outfit, some cash, and phone numbers of friends and family, just in case. They take things in stride. So, for example, if your tire goes flat while driving, and it is your day to do carpool, the organized mom has the numbers of the other carpool moms on hand, and knows which ones can typically swap days. So, have a back up plan.
Beverly Frank is a stay-at-home mom and writer. For more parenting tips, visit http://www.surfnetparents.com.