It’s time to get back to the office, school run and the daily grind so today I’m sharing 20 time saving, life hacks for working Mum’s. After eleven years juggling children and career, I’m happy to report that these things really do work and really do save you time. Basically it pays to be organised so here they are.
- Set your alarm for at least 30 minutes earlier than necessary to build a buffer into your day. If all goes well you can just enjoy the extra time.
- Invest in a coffee maker that has a timer. Set it to make you coffee for when you wake up. Life changing.
- Write out a list of all the tasks/activities and chores that need doing in a month. Once you have your list, sit down with a month-to-view calendar and schedule in every task and chore in priority order. This sounds incredibly OTT I know but trust me and give it a go. I swear by this and it’s the only way I feel in control of things amidst the chaos of work, childcare and running a home.
- Menu plan. Stop trying to cook gourmet meals for the family and just feed them easy, fuss-free fodder. Plan it all out for a full month and then make a weekly shopping list for each week.
- Online grocery shopping. It’s the only way to go for time-poor parents. All of the high-street supermarkets have the ability to create lists of your favourite items in your shopping account. Make a list of the recurring items that you need each week and save it. Then make a list for each week of the upcoming month with the extra’s or one-off’s that you want. Book your delivery slots online ahead of time and all you need to do is add your two lists to your trolley and check out each week.
- Once a month take a trip to a cheaper shop. Home and Bargains, Wilko’s, Pound Stretcher etc and buy big items like washing powder. It will save you a lot of money over the month.
- Put up a family wall planner somewhere highly visible, like the kitchen. Have a column for each member of the family and a pen surgically attached to it so you can add in events as they appear. Back it up with an online calendar. Apple have their own that you can sync with anyone who also has an icloud account. Google have something similar. This is basically how my partner and I communicate. Seriously.
- Use your slow cooker. There are a million, fuss-free recipes available online. Check out my Pinterest board for some of my favourite’s or buy a book like this one. I have used mine to death and I swear by it.
- Lay out everyone’s clothes the night before and that way you just have to get dressed and go.
- Same for any bags that you are taking out with you. Have it all ready to go the night before and waiting at the front door. Packed lunches can be left in the fridge but make sure they are ready.
- Wear a dressing gown over your work clothes in the morning to protect yourself from sticky fingers and boogers. Ugh.
- Get into the habit of putting on a load of laundry last thing at night. Hang it out to dry (or tumble dry it) first thing in the morning, fold and put away when you get home. Keep that cycle going and you should hopefully stay on top of it.
- Keep an emergency kit in your car. This has been learned the hard way with one too many projectile vomit on the way to nursery incidents! Basic first aid kit, bottled water, baby wipes a-plenty, old towels and a change of clothes for the kids.
- Keep a small cleaning caddy in the bathroom’s with everything you need. Then do a quick daily wipe round when you are in it each day. I actually clean my shower whilst I’m in it.
- If you’re kids or youself attend any extra-curricular clubs or sports then wash and dry their kits and re-pack straight into the bag so it’s always ready to go and you aren’t hunting for goggles or swimming trunks at the last minute.
- Make a list of family and friend’s birthday’s for the whole year and then buy all of the cards in January. It might seem a lot but it will mean you won’t have to think about it again that year! Same goes for gifts if you’re organised enough to take advantage of the January sales.
- Wash & blow dry your hair in the evening. Then stick it up on top of your head using a pair of (clean!!) knickers. They don’t leave any bobble marks and I promise your hair will look fresh and perfect when you let it down again in the morning.
- If you have a commute to work then use the time to answer emails or catch up on a bit of admin away from the kids.
- One for the bloggers – schedule your social media! Many of you are parents, working full time AND blogging so make your life a little easier and schedule all your tweets and Facebook posts.
- Say “no” more often. Learn where your limits are. You cannot do and be everything no matter how great your multi-tasking, superwoman skills are.
Let me know what your most useful time saving tips are in the comments box below so we can all benefit from them. I hope that you’ve found at least some of these life hacks for working mum’s useful.
Until next time lovelies