Monday, January 27, 2014

The Key to My Success...

A well meaning friend asked me on facebook not so long ago what the key to my success was as a busy mom of four.  While the intention was encouraging, I couldn't help but grimace and think of all the failures I've experienced.  I enjoy facebook and the ease of sharing all the fun stuff, the good stuff, and sometimes the crazy stuff that I do with my kiddos.  It's also very easy to choose not to share the not-so-fun stuff, the not-so-good stuff and the downright maddening stuff that also happens in life. It is easy to share how wonderful the good things are and sweep away those pesky times when I've yelled at the children or we've all had a melt down or what have you.  But the truth of the matter is those times do happen whether I like to share it on social media or not.

That being said, I have come a long way since beginning this trek in parenting eight short years ago.  I have made discoveries that have helped me love more and yell less, enjoy my children more and worry less about every last thing that might happen.  I enjoy reading my Bible and I find that just spending time reading it and sharing it with the children helps me to keep my focus. 

Another major discovery has been the need to think less.  Yes, I said think less.  During the day many things may happen and take the daily routine way off kilter.  Perhaps one of my cherubs decides to play slip n' slide in the tub causing a rather substantial amount of water to pour out all over the floor which then causes the ceiling to leak, or one or two of them decide to play with a full bottle of baby powder and end up decorating the entire hall as well as themselves in tremendous amount of white!  These kinds of situations could easily get me completely discombobulated so if there are some routine decisions that I don't have to think about, such as what chores the children need to do or what are we going to have for supper; then all the better for me.

So here I present our chore list:

This is just one of my Brain Savers.  Every day the children have daily chores that they do for a month and then we rotate them.  This month Sean is sweeping the kitchen floor after supper, Emma-Lyn is setting the table and wiping it, and Nate is bringing down the laundry.  Then on Fridays we do our major household cleaning and this month Sean is emptying garbage cans, Emma-Lyn is cleaning the bathroom and Nate is wiping windows and mirrors.  They also have a portion of vacuuming to do upstairs.  I have this posted in the kitchen where we can all see it and know what jobs everyone is doing. The activities are posted on laminated cardstock with velcro so they will be easy to rotate come the end of the month.  I find this list is really useful, there is less quibbling about which jobs one has and things get done efficiently.

Another Brain Saver is my menu plan.  We use the dry erase calendar in our kitchen.  I don't have a picture of it for you as it looks fairly messy.    Marko and I usually discuss what types of meals, or parts of meals we have on hand already and then go through the flyers to see what is on sale.  From there we put together our meal list and post it on the calendar for the week.  So for this week we have: Monday--chili, Tuesday--stir -fry,  Wednesday--left over chili, Thursday--lasagna, Friday--nachos, and Saturday--left over lasagna.  Just knowing what I'm making or reheating puts me in a good mood.  Also, none of the meals are written in stone, so if there is a need to switch them up we can do that easily.

These are just a couple of our favourite Brain Savers.  Is there a Brain Saver that you swear by?  I'd love to hear what helps get you through the day!

1 comment:

Nelleke from P.E.I. said...

This is great! I don't have any keys to success yet, but aspire to someday... :) I really need to get my kids doing some chores!