Work and Life Balance

Guest Posting:
The Structure-Stress Ratio..
10 Ways To Simplify Your Home Life

Whether you’re a stay at home parent or work outside of the home but we all know most parents have several “full time jobs.” Work, house, kids, laundry, pets, little league, cooking, laundry, lawn care, homework, bath time, meetings, laundry, doctor appointments, birthday parties, shopping…did I already mention laundry? Looking back on raising my children there are several things I wish I had begun doing so much sooner and other things I did that made my life so much easier and less stressful. Creating more structure in our homes is good for everyone…not just our children. Here are 10 ideas to increase structure and decrease stress:

1. Keep School Clothes Separate From Play And Dress Clothes

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Photo Credit: Creative Commons/TwentyFour Students

Sounds silly, but boy is it helpful! When my son was in school he wore uniforms but this tip even worked for my non-uniform wearing kiddos! I converted a typical “coat closet” (that almost all homes have) into our “school clothes closet.” To prepare the closet:

* I hung a second, lower clothes bar (and I just bought one that hangs from the upper bar…cheap and nothing to install!)

* I hung one of those plastic shoe organizers on the inside of the door

* I purchased hangers with clips for pants/shorts

* I put two bins on the floor of the closet: one was for school shoes/tennis shoes, one was for extra school supplies (I kept packages of loose leaf paper, spiral notebooks, etc.).

Every Sunday afternoon/evening I prepared my son’s clothes for the WEEK! Later, when I used this closet for my daughter, she and I would select her non-uniform outfits for each day of the week. Each hanger held pants/shorts, under shirt, shirt and a belt that I hung over the hanger…so he could just grab it and go (of course I had them in order from left to right for Monday through Friday). In the shoe hanger on the door was a pair of underwear and socks together in five of the pockets…again for the “grab and go!” For my daughter I used the shoe hanger pockets for hair bows, clips and the rest of her ‘blingy’ accessories that we picked for the week. I also used these pockets for additional school supplies to have at the ready (packages of pens, pencils, erasers, colored/map pencils, etc.). This closet was a morning LIFE SAVER! Everything was ready to go, so no running around looking for anything.