Precision strategic planning is all it takes to get kids to school on time, to music lessons, karate lessons, tutors, play dates and games while you are juggling work, kids, grocery stores, house cleaning, laundry and perhaps, dare I say it, a social life. How to keep all the balls in the air? Along with the planning, you need a good sense of humor, a wee bit of luck and infinite flexibility.
I’m all about calendars — all shapes, sizes, paper or electronic. Brian and I sync our individual calendars then I put entries on the big family calendar that lives on the fridge. Everyone has his or her own color so we can see who needs to be where and when.
- I make sure everything is set up on the counter before I go to bed. Purse is ready, items for the kids, lunches all set up in the fridge. Then we can all make breakfast and head out the door in one charge! We even put the trash by the front door so we can grab it as we run out instead of making a trip at night. Streamlining is key for a family of 9. –Suzanne Bastien
- I use the GroceryGadget app on my phone so I never lose my grocery list. I am able to quickly jot down when I need something, and have an organized list when I get to the store! -Kristi G
- I utilize cute carry bags for my 5 year old daughter’s different activities. Every weekend after laundry is done I fill the bags for each activity: polka dot drawstring has tap shoes, socks and leotard for Monday’s dance class; mesh Hello Kitty bag has swimsuit, towel, clean underpants and warm up suit for Thursday’s swim class; etc. This way, no matter what adult is handling the activity that day, all the items are in one central place and ready to go. –Teri Rees Momeyer
- Before bed, I pack lunches for both children and put them in the fridge. If anything needs to be put in a thermos (warm food), I set the thermos on the counter, put a measuring cup of water in the microwave, and set the microwave to “delay start.” By the time I’m out of the shower and in the kitchen, the water is warm and ready to heat the thermos. It also serves as a reminder to add the food-filled thermos to the lunch box! –Jayme Johnson
- I learned about a great idea from the women in my local Mothers of Multiples Club – “Kid of the Day.” With 3 kids – twins age 4 and a 2-year-old – we had many fights over choosing TV shows, who sits in which spot in the car, etc. Now, I write each child’s initial on our large wall calendar, in his or her special color, and the fighting has virtually evaporated. When there is a question, we just look at the calendar – even the 2-year-old can see that if there isn’t a blue mark on that day, then it’s not his day! -mvbobs
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I love being a mom and all the stuff that comes along with that title. Thank goodness there are lots of moms out there who are happy to share their knowledge to make the job easier! eBay Classifieds has several ambassadors who are professional organizers. They’re a great resource and you can find them on our blog’s home page!
Please, share your favorite organizing tip with us. Thanks!