I saw a friend reference an article on Facebook recently about spending time with your kids and balancing that with cleaning the house. It’s a bit of a sarcastic read but pretty good. It reminded me of some things I dealt with as a single parent, trying to juggle work, school, raising kids, homework, house cleaning (never did very good here), paying bills, doctors, sports, church and anything else you can think of that you run ragged and become exhausted.
All the time.
Take a look at that picture above of all the socks. Can you believe how many different styles, colors, and sizes of socks there are?
Saving Time – Anywhere You Can
When you are a single-parent, you look for any way that you can save 5 minutes. Ask my kids. I was always exhausted. I could save a few minutes by doing certain things to maximize my time.
Here are just a few things I did to help simplify things.
- I bought the exact same type of socks. I had two colors. Black and Grey. Since they were all the same, I never bothered putting them together in pairs. They all got shoved into a drawer and that was that.
- Why bother folding your underwear? Do you really plan on stripping to your undies every time you see someone? No one is going to see if your underwear is wrinkled. Again – throw them in a drawer and call it good.
- The wash was started when I went to bed. The washer can run overnight without my help. I would get up a bit earlier in the morning and put the laundry in the dryer while I got a shower, dressed, had breakfast (maybe), made coffee, and got the kids moving for school. If I had time, I would fold or hang clothes before heading to work. If not, then they were tumbled and folded or hung when I got home.
- I was the only one that ate leftovers. When I cooked the evening meal (sometimes that was around 9pm), I would make extra so that I could pack a couple of lunches for work during the week. I like a hot meal for lunch.
- Quick meals. So, maybe it’s not the best diet but we always had $1 pizza, hotdogs, hamburgers and boxed mac & cheese in the house along with soup. If I was running late getting home or if I was just too out of it to cook, it became “fend for yourself” night. Everyone would pick a quick item and cook their own. Thank goodness for a dishwasher.
When you have no time, you find ways to cut down on time consuming stuff. Even grocery shopping with a list saves time (and money).
Having plenty of available snack foods is important too. As long as that doesn’t become the lunch for the kids. A tale for another post perhaps.