Sunday, October 30, 2011

Staying organized: Give yourself an hour on Sundays

One of the discussions during the Power of Moms retreat revolved around moms feeling overloaded. And one of the ways they encourage you to feel less overloaded and stay in control of the load you carry as the mama of the to take time to plan. I know the more I plan, the less stressed and the happier and smoother things go.

When I know what lies ahead of me each day, week, month...I can better make time so I am not booking us every weekend. I am balancing outings with quiet time at home each week. I am able to allow enough time daily so that when we are leaving the house we have plenty of time for dawdling and distractions.

One way to have that plan is to set aside time where you can concentrate and get things straight in your head for the week ahead. Ideally, you don't have to wait until the kiddos are in bed and you are ready to zone out yourself. But Sundays are family days for me. And I hate to think of ditching the family time. But giving yourself an hour on Saturday or Sunday to sit down with your calendar and make sure you have everything clear in your head. Sitting down with your notebook and thinking out your goals for the week. Taking a moment to think out your meals. You might go through your "important" pile so that you have forms filled out and a list of calls you need to make.

So this Sunday I sat down with my paper/pencil calendar and iPhone calendar and laid out my week. I have used these to organize my week for the last two years.  And I took an hour to get things straight in my head.    

So this Sunday I used my time to...

1.  Fill in my week planner and jot down on a post it note any dates and times that are important for Ed to know.

2.  Plan the meals for the week (chili, salmon, tatortot hotdish, homemade mac and cheese).   Set out the November hot lunch menu so Charley can look at it and pick his four days on Monday morning. 

3.  Set two goals for myself...
     a.  I am going to take some time to think out more finger foods that Sydney can enjoy.
     b.  I am going to pay attention to our after school routine and try a few different things (snack ready to go, homework right away, homework in the morning, cartoon, etc).  So that by Friday the boys and I can identify the flow to our afternoons and I can see a possible tradition that might appear in our after school chaos time.

4.  Decide on a couple little projects/activities for the kids and I to conquer during the week...For Henry:  writing the letter N, arranging the letters in his name in the correct order, sorting candy and identifying the numbers 1-10.  For Charley:  getting into the habit of mastering his first week having spelling words, and continuing to write birthday thank you notes.  For Sydney:  The girl will be crawling by Friday.  I fear feel it.

5.  I also worked on a few posts for my blog.

Last week after returning from my trip I didn't sit down and think out my week.  And even though I had a really great week.  I had some overloaded moments when... on Wednesday I realized Henry had a holiday party and he needed a costume.  On Friday I was in a panic over getting to Target for groceries to feed our guests this weekend.

How do you attempt to be more organized when you look to the upcoming week?
What is on your agenda for the week?  Goals? Activities? Meals?


Swimmingmom said...

You are awesome Sarah!!! Way to get right on it and get organized!!!! Admittedly, I let this Sunday pass with no "Sunday Session". That organizational and planning piece is really what is missing for me, but I avoid it because it is SO hard for me!!!! Next week.... ;-)

Cara R. said...

I use It is my BRAIN! I can easily add to it any time I am online. It is FREE! Another blogger told me about it and it has transformed my life! LOL! Seriously, take a look! :)

I also use COZI, an online calendar to keep up with my schedule. It's also free. It is more intuitive and customizable than Yahoo calendar (what I used to use). I do have a printed planner, but I rely on COZI more than anything.

shellycoulter said...

My goal is to be "in the moment" ...wherever I am at. I want to "test" Simeon by taking Wed/Thurs to stay at home in "big boy underwear" and see how he does. By Thursday night I hope to know if we/he are ready to take the full plunge into potty training. The menu for the week includes "pork green chili tacos, pasta and steamed broccoli, frozen leftover soup and Grilled Cheese, Chicken Enchiladas, and White Chicken Chili." Excited for parent/teacher conferences. Really need to watch some continuing ed videos online since the end of the year is coming up and CEU's are due. Ack! Love reading about your outlook and how you are mothering with purpose. We really would be such good friends in life. :) haha!

shellycoulter said...

PS...I have a big calendar on the side of my fridge that I DEPEND on. I look at it every evening...glancing over the week and reminding myself what the next day looks like. I write meals, meetings, playdates,...EVERYTHING on it. I even write pep talks/reminders of little things to myself on it sometimes regarding my attitude and purpose!

Goings on at the Glenn's said...

I so need to do this more often. I find myself looking at the calendar and finding that I have an appointment that I had forgotten about coming up in an hour or less. That makes for some stress! This week we have parent teacher conferences and I am gearing up for my zumba event this weekend.

Crystal said...

I am just now starting to feel frazzled over the amount of activity going on and after flying by the seat of my pants for a month or so and having an enormous amount of stress, I am finally getting more organized. We have a calendar on the fridge but I wanted something that is just for me so I ordered a new planner that I think will help. I should receive it this week and my goal is to start making a lot of lists and organizing my day a lot better. So many small things get completely overlooked because I just forget. Also need to be more deliberate about activities with the kids, and I think thinking about it a week ahead of time will work so much better.


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