I was taking a shower and I heard the door creak.
Immediately, I knew who it was and my heart sank.
“Mom, can I have a snack?”
I didn’t answer. 3 seconds pass and a small hand pulls the curtain. A head peeks into the shower. “Mom?”
My daughter persists acting like this is normal. At least she isn’t asking me to help her find a toy or my son asking me to help put a puzzle piece together.
IN. The. Shower.
Yes, these things have actually happened. Yes, they have a father. He’s very involved, loving, available, hands-on.
And yet, they (the children) are here…stalking me.
We need to work on boundaries, I think, yes, me, more boundaries. Bah!
Easy Tricks and Hacks for the Busy Stay-at-Home Mom to Get Household Management Done More Efficiently
This was several years ago, and since then, I’ve learned some core ways to get household management done more efficiently.
Not to be confused with taking on more and more and more.
1. Teach your children independent play.
For those of you that read my post on how to teach your kids to play independently, you know that it’s possible to get up to an hour a day of additional time to get things done. For children who are a bit older, I wrote a post about starting independent play late or after a long hiatus to help you get started.
Teaching independent play offers children time to learn focusing skills, creativity, problem solving, and self-play adeptness. Learning to play independently is also a valuable life skill for all children to learn.
It is also very helpful for busy moms…
During this time you can get chores done, catch up on bills and emails, or also take a break to breathe and doing something just for you.
As moms, it’s okay to take some time each day to recharge and invest in ourselves. I’m a way better mom when I make time for myself. Plus, when I get a few things done without interruption, I feel really good about myself.
- The Secret Way to Raise Independent Children
- Can Toddlers Really Learn to Play Alone?
- 10 Totally Awesome Tricks to Raise Independent Kids
- 25+ Easy, Healthy Lunches for 2 Year Olds
2. Get sleep in order.
Having a good schedule and a child who can fall asleep independently offers up additional time each day to get things done. If you have a good sleep schedule going, it offers tons of predictability to help you plan your day.
In our home, we have a 5 minute nap routine and a 30 minute bedtime routine. No muss. No fuss.
This means when it’s nap time, I set the stage about 20 minutes before the nap to help him calm down. 5 minutes before his nap, I take him to his room, put on his wearable blanket, and we cuddle for a bit with his blanket before he lays down. That is all.
Bedtime Resource Guides:
- An Easy Morning and Bedtime Routine Chart to Keep Kids On Task
- This Baby Bedtime Routine Is Easy and Works Like Magic
- 7 Parenting Hacks for an Easier Bedtime With Kids
- A Quick and Easy Toddler Bedtime Routine That Works Like a Charm
- How to Put a Toddler to Sleep Fast
Sample Schedule Resource Guides:
- 6 Tried-and-True Baby Sleep Schedules
- 5 Sample Daily Toddler Schedules
- 1 Year Old Schedules
- 2 Year Old Sleep Schedules
3. Child no longer napping? Implement rest time.
Rest time is basically a set time each day where your child is required to lay down in his bed and read books or do another type of quiet activity. This ensures your child gets some wind down time each day, and bonus, you can get some stuff done around the house!
4. Get Organized.
I know easier said than done, right? Truly though, staying organized really streamlines my day to day life. I can find things quicker and get done what I need to more efficiently.
Inside Family Routines Reboot I walk through our simple guide step-by-step.
5. You and your spouse are a team.
Be authentic in your boundaries on what you need.
I know as stay-at-home moms, we often feel like we should be doing it all without assistance. But my husband and I are in this together. While I manage the majority of our household, my husband does laundry, dishes, and basic household stuff.
Because getting the kitchen cleaned up together after dinner means more time for just us in the evening. When we both take on the laundry, it goes twice as fast! Which again means, we have twice as much time to spend together in the evenings and on weekends.
6. Get your kids on board with family contributions.
I created a set of 100+ printable chore cards for kids. They are easy to use, teach kids responsibility and they are vastly different from chore charts.
I used the exact same approach to teach him how to use these chore cards. Within a few days he was doing jobs on his own, and I didn’t have to nag, yell or dangle M&Ms in front of his face.
Talk about a parenting miracle.
Printable chore cards for kids.
Once you have your chore cards, you’ll want to print them on card stock or matte photo paper. If desired, you can laminate them using some simple laminating paper, but I usually skip this step to keep it simple.
7. Know it’s okay to NOT do it all.
After doing all of the above, there are still many days when the floor is a mess, the laundry is piling up, and I’m behind on emails. Life happens. And that’s okay.
Some days my son just won’t do independent playtime, or he refuses to nap for longer than 20 minutes, or he gets up really early: all of these things are understandable. If the bills get pushed back a day or two and my to do list is rapidly expanding, it’s okay.
Print this free printable!
This post comes with a free printable to give you an easy step-by-step guide to raise independent kids. Plus, remember what independent skills are age-appropriate for your kids!
Here’s a sneak peek…
Download Your Free Printable
- Download the checklist. You’ll get the printable, plus join my weekly parenting newsletter!
- Print. Any paper will do the trick, but card stock would be ideal.
- Place it on your refrigerator. Use it as a quick reference to keep parenting simple!
More posts on motherhood:
- 7 Core Following Directions Activities for Kids That’ll Improve Listening
- 2 Year Old Sleep Schedule That Works Every Time
- How to Build Cooperation, Independence and Listening Using a Printable Daily Schedule for Kids
- These 31 Affirmations for Moms Helped Me Get Through The Really Hard Days
- 50+ Best Simple Games for 2 Year Olds and Up
- The Ultimate List of Board Games for 2 Year Olds
I've created a free email series just for you! If you are struggling with finding a routine, rhythm or schedule, this email series will help you find one that will work for YOUR family. Yes, really. I've seen my sample routines work time and time again for parents. I know it can work for you too.
This free email series will help you:
- Free sample routines for your child
- Best morning routine tips and tricks your kids will actually follow
- All-time favorite parenting hacks for getting more cooperation at bedtime
- Step-by-step guide for using a printable daily schedule with kids