We’ve reached out to busy women juggling kids, career and housekeeping and asked them for their top tip in getting and staying organized this year. Their answers are do-able, don’t require a lifestyle commitment and will make your day run just a smidge more smoothly.
Samantha, Multiple Mayhem Mamma
Having identical twin boys and getting them organized and ready for school in the mornings is a challenge, to say the least. There are knapsacks to be packed, lunches to be made and boys to be dressed. Suffice to say that it’s chaotic in the best of times. One thing that has worked really well is the “sock situation”, that is, buying my boys’ socks in all of the same colours. In other words, most of their socks are either black or dark blue. What this does is that it eliminates the scramble and time-waster of trying to find matching socks when the clock is ticking in the morning and it alleviates the problem of missing socks that inevitably occurs every time a load of laundry is done!
Julie, Elliven Studio
I’m a huge fan of lists. I honestly have several going and they truly help to keep me organized and more productive. I makes lists of errands that I have to run, chores that need to be done and of course, work that needs to get done that day. It helps to keep my head clear so that I can focus.
Salma, The Write Balance
As a busy work-at-home mom of two kids, it’s definitely tough to stay on top of everything and keep life organized. One thing that I find really helpful is spending 20 minutes each night before going to bed, preparing for the next day. That means getting lunches ready, notices signed, clothes picked out and a quick wipe down of the kitchen. It’s amazing what a big difference those 20 minutes at night can make when you’re in a rush trying to get everyone out the door in the morning.
I have a little arsenal of things to keep me organized and I don’t know what I would do without them. My #1 go-to is my iPhone 6 – it’s an extension of me and keeps me sane! I use Evernote to jot down all of my crazy ideas and blog drafts, Shared Family Google Calendar to keep track of my family’s many extracurricular activities and whereabouts and numerous other specialty apps for grocery lists, self-initiated work-outs and so on. Bottom line: if it’s not scheduled, it’s not happening.
Shanice, City of Creative Dreams
Type it, write it, jot it down! I would not remember countless things if it wasn’t for my calendar and that can be in any form. Whiteboard calendars make great schedules for planning weekly or even monthly food menus because let’s face it, things can change on a dime. Wall calendars for everyday life that works as the brain of the family and does all of the remembering for me from doctor’s appointments to school schedules and pay days. Apart from stickers, colour coding pens are genius! It really keeps things organized and in its place.
Hannah, The Big To Do List
Since last year I’ve been working my through all the belongings in my home and trying to keep only the things that I really like. Downsizing from what I thought I needed (and backup after backup of excess) to gradually having less and less of everything has helped make my life much easier and more enjoyable. For instance, massively purging my closet (which you can read about in posts on my blog) has left me more clearly able to see the things that make me feel good when I wear them, which makes putting together an outfit that I like so much simpler. Not to mention it has drastically cut down on the amount of clothes that end up off their hangers from trying on an outfit that I decide I don’t like.
Erica, Everything Mom and Baby
As a busy mom of three, one of the most important organization tips that has helped me is meal planning! Every Sunday I go through my cookbooks and various food blogs and recently I discovered the Meal Plan tool on RicardoCuisine.com. It’s brilliant! It has a calendar, easily allows you to pick and print your favourite Ricardo meals and supplies you with a printable ingredient list for each meal you’ve planned for the week. One less thing to worry about!
Nancy, Elora Label
I like the idea of everything having a home, and I must confess I have an abundance of baskets, some might say it is an over-abundance? Another favourite way I like to organize my kid’s stuff is I have delegated a bookcase for both of them. They know this is there space to house all of their treasures, and when they are done, they just shut the doors on the shelves and voila, we have a tidy living room. Lastly, I must admit that I also love to label my kids’ stuff for school!