Anyone else feel like yesterday was May 24 and school was just letting out? Now we’re quickly sneaking up on August and the Back to School Displays are out? I don’t know about you but I’m not ready.
We’ve had so much peace and enjoyment soaking up the sun, the moments with family and friends and the vacations that I’m not ready to go back to the madness that the school year usually brings. SO we aren’t.
This year is going to look somewhat different than years past.
Last year, January (after maternity leave) until about April, I constantly felt like I was juggling plates and dropping them as fast as they were stacking up. The harder I tried to keep them stacked and juggled, the harder they fell. Anyone else feel that way?
Then I started two things that gave me back my sanity, helped my marriage thrive even more and helped me feel like I had my life together.
1. I started saying NO. If someone asked me to do something and it didn’t align with my goals or helping myself or my family thrive, it had to be a no. This year, I’ll continuing this trend.
2. I got intentional and mastered the art of planning and preparation. Sounds like 3, but it goes together. I created two sheets. One for my husband and I to work through once a week that helped keep us accountable to each other, our goals and connect better as a couple. The other is for the whole family. It gets filled out over the weekend, hung on the fridge for all to see and reference and we live by it. The first row is for events- school, church, home, all of them. This is for kids to be involved with to see “oh, I have a soccer game on Thursday and a guitar lesson on Tuesday”. This helps them plan ahead as well. (Read: child, do not come at me on Wednesday night telling me you need your uniform washed. I will lose my marbles.)
The meal plan is the next row. I plan meals every Saturday, put in a grocery pick up order and do as much meal prepping on Sunday afternoon as I can. Sometimes, I’ll cook 2-3 meals at once so I don’t have to cook every single night. Since I’m already doing it, it doesn’t take much more time to add to what I’m already doing and it saves HOURS during the week.
Last, the family chore row. This is secretly my favorite. Dusting, floors, bathrooms, laundry, all the big chores that take FOR-EV-ER are not my sole responsibility as the mom/wife. Everyone gets to help and it takes about 20 minutes to 1 hour to finish instead of 1-5 hours by yourself. I highly recommend this hack.
Mason will be involved in the things that truly bring him joy but I’m not forcing him to join things that don’t. Teacher’s gifts, holidays, vacations, everything is already on the calendar so that if it comes up later, I can ask- If it were really that important, wouldn’t I already have planned for it? If not, then I can ask the additional question “Is this an excited YES or is this a “I’m saying yes because I feel obligated so I’m changing my answer to an excited NO”?
Also, at the beginning of every year, I have Mason write out his top 5 goals for this year. What does he want to be known for this year? How will he be a leader? What 3 things does he want to improve in? How does he plan to make them happen?
All this to say, these are just a few hacks that I started last year because it’s not the physical game that will wear you down. It’s the mental marathon that we’re about ready to start running and if you aren’t prepared, you’re gonna burn out real quick.
P.S.- To get the family organizer and/or the relationship reflection sheet, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me which one (or both) that you want and I will subscribe you to get my weekly newsletter and I’ll email you the ones you want. 🙂