When your a mum and working full time it’s really tough. You’re the bread winner, the mum, cook, cleaner and a million other things.
Finding the work life balance is really hard. I juggled for 2 years whilst working full time and prior to that I did 3 years full time at university with a 2 hour bus journey there and back. So I can totally sympathise with anyone trying to maintain the balance.
I’m really lucky that I no longer have to work full time but here are my top five tips from my working days that I’d recommend to anyone.
1. Organisation: It sounds obvious but seriously get out your calendar or diary and plan ahead.
When the kids bring home their school letters put them in your diary and keep your diary in your work bag, that way you can have a proper read on your lunch hour at work. If its a school trip letter write it in your diary and place the letter into that week this way you’ve got all the info there ready. Do you need to buy certain items for the trip or world book week. Put a reminder in your diary at the same time for the week before so you don’t forget. Buy some of those handy mini brown envelopes and any money due in for school dinners or trip or clubs etc slot these into your diary too that way it’s all together ready for you.
There’s some great calendar apps out there that allow you to sync your calendars on all your devices. Me and my husband have this so both of us can see what’s happening with the kids and trips out etc even when we’re not together synchronising calendars with your significant other is an absolute must I used to highlight in red days when we didn’t have childcare organised for school holidays so he could see these days and speak with his mum on his lunch break or switch shifts. He’d then adjust the colour so I could see we were covered on my calendar. Very handy when one of you works shifts.
2. Domestics: They are the necessary evil that comes with having a nice home. When it comes to working full time none of us want to waste precious time cleaning that could otherwise be spent doing something nice with the kids or god forbid having a lazy day! I used to do 2 jobs per night after the kids were in bed to try and cut down on weekend cleaning. As well as doing daily laundry etc. This left the weekends free for family time.
3. Cooking: Once per month have a cooking weekend and include the kids. I used to bulk buy, after pay day, lots of meats etc and do a big cooking weekend and pre-make things like cottage pie, spag bol, curry, chilli, one pot lemon chicken.
There are these pour and store bags that are perfect because you freeze your food in them and can also heat food up in them once it’s defrosted which cuts down on washing up.
Get the slow cooker out and research some easy recipes on Pinterest.
When pre-making cottage pie put plenty of veg in and make it big enough that you don’t have to serve anything else with it on the side. Also make it in the foil trays which can be binned, again saving on washing up.
4. The Food Shop: I would always order my shopping on line to save on time and have it delivered on a Friday night after the kids were in bed. I would always make sure I ordered me and the hubby a chocolatey treat for after and something super tasty for breakfast the next morning like crumpets with soft cheese then we would have this in bed with the kids.
5. Lazy Day: Saturday mornings in our house were always lazy. I would get up and make a huge plate of crumpets with soft cheese (see number 4) and tea and take it back to bed. We’d feast and then I’d relax and read whilst the kids watched TV snuggled up with me. Then we’d all roll out of bed at 10.00 to get ready for the day.
To a non parent this doesn’t sound like much but to those of us with children staying in bed til 10.00 is a huge achievement! Not only have you managed to chill out and re-charge, an important requirement if your working, but you’ve also spent some much needed down time with the kids and it hasn’t completely knackered you out!
Those are my 5 go to tips for staying sane when your a working mum. What are yours? Is there anything I’ve missed? Feel free to hit the comments box and let me know. Also don’t forget to follow me on TWITTER FACEBOOK INSTAGRAM and PINTEREST so you never miss a post!