Routine and organisation are something I need to have in my life! As a mother of 3 whose partner is away a lot of the time, I find that having my routines and a few rules that I live by each day make life run a lot more smoothly for my family.
Contrary to what the TV shows depict organisers as - often charismatic, maybe pushy, quite flamboyant - these things I am not. I am just a person who is sometimes quite forgetful, a time optimist (always think I have more than I do!) and a mother who has a lot on her plate! The thing is that I am very aware of these traits and because I don't like feeling chaotic I have found ways to organise my home and life so most of the time things run smoothly and I'm not overwhelmed by my to do lists, housework, calendar etc. and I've found I'm actually pretty good at it!
For this article I'm sharing a few of the things I do to keep the chaos at bay and the home running smoothly:
Always make sure the dishes are washed before you go to bed, no matter how much of a drag it seems at the time it'll be worse waking up to them tomorrow. If you don't have a dishwasher (unfortunately I don't - future goals!) let them dry in the rack overnight, it's a lot easier to just put them away in the morning than to wash them in the morning - and DO put them away in the morning, clear that rack (or dishwasher)!
Clear off and wipe down kitchen benches, stove top and dining room table before bed, it's much nicer to wake up to, especially if it's the school/work hustle in the mornings and you're trying to get breakfasts, coffee etc on the go quickly. Also if there are less spills and crumbs around there's less to attract pests to the area - there's nothing worse than finding a line of ants marching along your kitchen bench first thing or a bit of mouse poo on the stove top!
Make school lunches the night before and have everything they need for school ready to be thrown into their bags in the morning (or have them pack them the night before), you can also get the school uniforms out and ready for the kids to chuck on when they roll out of bed.
Clear the floors in the main living areas after the kids are in bed, it's not fun stumbling over toys bleary eyed and half asleep first thing in the morning, it definitely won't set you up to be in the best mood to start your day in.
If your washing machine has a timer and you have a full load to go in, put it in before you go to bed and set the timer for when your household usually starts waking up in the mornings, it might not seem like something that's time consuming but you'll be pleasantly surprised by how nice it is that the washing is washed and ready to be hung out or chucked in the dryer.
Open your blinds or curtains and make the beds in the morning, even if its just a quick straighten up or you get your kids to attempt to make their own. Bedrooms automatically feel more tidy with beds made and when your house is filled with natural light it feels more spacious and airy.
Whenever you run out of something or notice something is running low, immediately write it down on your shopping list! For this purpose I have a magnetic whiteboard on my fridge where I write my shopping list and "to do"s". When I'm heading to the supermarket I take a quick inventory of the fridge and pantry to make sure everything I need is on the list, add what I need to add, then take a photo of it on my phone to use as my list when I get to the shop.
I hope these tips are as useful to you as they are to me, I know sometimes it seems a drag doing some of these things, especially in the evenings when you just want to relax but trust me, you won't regret it in the morning and the more you practice it the more it becomes habit rather than a chore and your days will run just that little bit more smoothly.