How to Stay Organized During the Summer!
When the kids are out of school for the summer, everyone's schedules change. Whether you need to get up on time to drop the kids off at day camp, or whether the crew will be hanging out with you while you run your own summer camp at home, chances are you'll be losing a few hours of free time every day. And of course by free time I mean time to do laundry, clean your house, run to the grocery store, etc. So while summer may not translate to a lot of time off, I can promise you that the more you figure out how to stay organized, the better your summer will be!
Plan in Advance!
If you still have some time before the last day of school, then set aside a few hours to do some summer planning. What activities do you want to do as a family this summer? Make a list and then solicit the family for input and add their ideas to the list, too. Grab your family calendar and pencil in commitments — days the kids have classes or camp, vacation days, doctor's appointments, etc. Then take your activity list and start adding specific activities to days on your calendar. Having things listed on a calendar in this way will help you to make sure that you actually follow through with these good intentions and do these things together!
Looking for ideas? Why not plan some local field trips to do some hiking in the park or try geocaching, visit a waterfall or a cave, head to a science center, visit a zoo or an aquarium. You don't have to go far to have some fun together as a family and create some awesome summer memories!
Re-work your daily schedule
During the summer, I know that I need to flip my regular routine upside down in order to find time to get some things done. So when I normally get up early so that I can get the kids ready for their day, during the summer, I get up early to write and work online before my kids, who will sleep in later in the summer, wake up. Normally, I will work during the day while the kids are at school; however, during the summer, I spend the bulk of the daytime hours hanging with the kids. And during the school year, when I spend afternoons helping with homework, in the summer, that 4-6 p.m. time period becomes my own time to finish up work-from-home-related tasks.
The point is, sometimes you will have to flip your normal routine on its head in order to prioritize summer hours spent with the kids! Look for ways to be creative! Can you get up a bit earlier to get some quiet time to yourself? Can you have your husband take over kid duties on Saturday so that you can grab some time to get things done alone?
Tackling Household Chores
For me, this part of the summer schedule always seems to be the hardest to juggle! Because really, who wants to spend time in the summer cleaning the house and doing laundry? Not me! So my advice is twofold:
First of all, the kids have a lot fewer demands on them during the summer in terms of school, homework, and activities, so I don't mind requiring them to help out a little more around the house. It doesn't take long for each one of them to individually dust and straighten their rooms, fold and put away their own laundry, or manage one cleaning chore such as vacuuming or mopping. Every little bit that they do means the less that I have to do!
Secondly, I allow my standards to drop during the summer! If I don't get around to all of my chores this week, well, I can always try to find the time next week!
Keep That To-Do List Around
Sure, I still keep a running to-do list all summer long, but most things are added onto the section titled “Tackle These in the Fall”! I use my to-do list to keep me organized and remind me of the things that I want to get done, but I just add a lot less to it! And one of the reasons I like to keep the running list of things to tackle in the fall is because, when I write them down, it truly frees my mind from thinking about it or worrying about when I will get to it. Just write it down and deal with it later!
What's your best trick for staying organized during the summer?Read More