Category Archives: Family Life

Eight Homemaking Tips To Make Your Life Easier

There is a lot that goes into successfully running a home and caring for your family. As a new wife or mother, you may be feeling a bit overwhelmed at the thought of managing a home. One of the best things that you can do to help maintain your sanity is to come up with a system of doing things.

A good homemaking system or routine will help you to get your household in order, and ensure that your home is a haven for both you, and your loved ones.

Keep in mind that homemaking is not about perfection, but instead, it is about being able to properly care for your family all while maintaining some sense of structure.

Here are eight of my favorite homemaking tips that have made my life so much easier.

Start Your Day With Prayer

The daily trials of life can be hard. Therefore it is necessary to spend some time each morning reading the Word of God and engaging in prayer so that you can receive guidance and strength for the day ahead.  

Mornings are not the only time to engage in prayer.  You can and should also talk to the Lord throughout the day.  He cares about every single detail of our lives, and he is always there to help us in our time of need.

Follow A Daily Routine

I’m sure you are familiar with the phrase “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Well in order to be an effective homemaker, you should follow a daily plan.  Write down a daily list of things that need to be done and follow it to the best of your ability.

We all know that life happens, and sometimes your plans might be interrupted, but nevertheless, you should always have a plan in place.  

Make Your Bed

Get into the habit of making your bed every morning if this is something that you don’t already do.  Not only does your room look neat and tidy, but it will also give you a sense of accomplishment, and you’ll be ready to tackle the rest of your to-do list for that day.

Write Out A Weekly Meal Plan

It took me a while to get into the habit of actually writing out a weekly meal plan.  I wasted so much time trying to figure out what we would have for dinner each day. By writing out your menu each week, you know exactly what to prepare each day (and if you want to have leftovers) and exactly what ingredients you should shop for. This will save you both time and money!

Eight Homemaking Tips To Make Your Life Easier

Never Leave Dishes In The Sink

ALWAYS wash the dishes before going to bed at night (trust me on this).  There is no worse feeling than waking up in the morning to a sink full of dishes.  If you use the dishwasher, you can run the load through the wash that evening, and wait until morning to unload it and put the dishes away.  

Tidy Up Daily

I have a schedule that I follow as far as what rooms are deep cleaned each day.  But I also make sure that I tidy up throughout the house a couple of times each day.  Make sure that toys are put back into bins and remote controls and things like that are put in place. You don’t have to spend but a few minutes of your time doing this every day, and it will help to keep your house somewhat clutter free.

Spend Time With Your Family

Don’t get so busy with day to day chores that you miss out on the most important aspect of homemaking – family.  Spend some time with your loved ones each day. Run around and play with your kids. Take the time to enjoy some of their favorite activities.  

Make time with your spouse a priority. I know that once kids are introduced into the equation, it becomes harder to enjoy time alone as a couple.  But spending time alone together helps to build intimacy and strengthen the bond that you have with each other. When necessary, get a babysitter so that the two of you can enjoy a night out.

Set Aside Me Time

This is one area that is often neglected.  It is important that you spend a few moments each day to yourself.  I know it may seem difficult, especially if you have little ones at home. But understand that in order to properly take care of your family, you have to take care of self first.  I recently wrote an article on how you can carve out me-time when life gets busy. You can read it here.

What are some of the ways that you manage your household?  

Preparing Your Child For Back To School

It’s almost time to head back to school.  Those lazy, carefree days of summer are about to be over, which means no more staying up late and sleeping in.  Help get your kid’s school year off to a great start by establishing a back to school routine.

To get them back into the swing of things, you will need to implement your plan as early as possible.  The longer you wait to get your children into the habit of going to bed at a set time, the harder time they will have getting up for school the next morning.  

This post is not sponsored, but it does contain affiliate links, which means that I may make a small commission if you purchase through my link.

You as a parent will also want to make sure that you are prepared as well.  Don’t wait until the last minute to shop for supplies and other school essentials.

Before you get overwhelmed, consider these tips for easing back into the school routine.

 

 

A good day starts with a good night’s sleep

 

Preparing Your Child For Back To School

It’s not unusual for parents to allow their children to stay up later during the summer than during the school year.  My son stays up past midnight on occasion during the summer and then, of course, sleeps late the next morning.

If possible, have your child start going to bed earlier two weeks before school starts.  Explain to your children the importance of getting a good night’s sleep. Getting the proper amount of sleep will help them have the energy they need to stay awake during school. It will also help them focus on the tasks before them.  

Wake up at the same time every morning   

Most experts agree children need between 9 and 11 hours of sleep each night to be at their best. Make sure that your child wakes up in time to wash, dress and have breakfast without feeling rushed.  

Stock up on school supplies

Most schools will give you a specific list of supplies that will be needed, but you can make sure you have the basics on hand: pencils, paper, erasers, and for younger kids, you will need to add crayons, markers, and glue.

Preparing Your Child For Back To School

Prepare your wardrobe the night before

By preparing your wardrobe the night before, your child won’t feel rushed or waste precious time in the morning by trying to decide on what to wear.  I am a huge advocate of preparing for the next day the night before.

Have your child gather clothing, shoes, and any accessories that they plan to wear at night so that things will go smoothly the next morning.

Arrange carpools or other transportation

Know how your child is getting to and from school and any after-school activities. Make sure that transportation arrangements have been made ahead of time.

Register for after-school activities

In order to ensure that your child gets to participate in the activities of his/her choice, remember to sign up before the deadline.

Stay on top of paperwork

Go through any papers sent home with your child on a daily basis.  Read each piece, then decide if you should trash it, or put it in a “to do” or “to file” pile.  Mark significant dates on your family calendar.

Image Via StyleandDwell.com

Create a command center or calendar central

Create a centralized place or command center like the one above by Style & Dwell , for all family calendars and schedules in order to avoid over scheduling. I personally use the Day Designer as my family’s calendar. 

Choose a calendar format that works for your family. Include a family event calendar to track all after-school activities and any special school programs. Be sure to include school lunch menus, class assignment sheets, and sports practice schedules. Post your family calendar in a place that is easily accessible to all family members.


We as parents want the best for our kids.  By getting your kids re-adjusted to a routine before school starts, they are more alert.  When kids are more alert, they are able to function at their best, which of course is our ultimate goal. Here’s to an awesome school year!

Preparing Your Child For Back To School
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40 Fun Summer Activities For Kids That Will Keep Boredom At Bay

 
School is out for the summer!  Now, how in the world are you going to keep the youngster’s entertained these next few months?  

Some of you may be sending your kids off to camp, or some type of sporting league. But if you are like me, your kiddo will be with you 24/7 all summer long.

No need to fret, there are many ways to keep the kids occupied with fun and engaging activities while school is out.



Here is a list of forty free or cheap summer activities for you and your kids to enjoy and make memories in the process.


1. Go on a backyard scavenger hunt.
2. Pay a visit to your local library.
3. Arrange a play date with neighborhood kids, or kids in your mom group.
4. Visit the park.
5. Watch educational movies on Netflix or Hulu.
6. Teach your kids to cook. Bake cookies and other desserts.
7. Go on a hike in the mountains or a nearby forest.
8. Build a lemonade stand.
9. Go camping under the stars in your own backyard.
10. Spend the day at an amusement park.
11. Make and bake a homemade pizza together.
12. Build a birdhouse.
13. Make your own homemade board game.
14. Plant trees in the backyard.
15. Visit a local splash pad or water park for some fun water play.
16. Learn how to play a musical instrument. Purchase a used instrument from places like Craigslist or a yard sale.
17. Make snow cones out of crushed ice.
18. Go swimming. If your kiddo cant swim, take swimming lessons.
19. Have a water balloon fight.
20. Explore your neighborhood. Go for family walks in the mornings or after dinner.
21. Read news stories together. Explain the story to your child in an age-appropriate manner.
22. Write letters to distant relatives.
23. Search for “free admission” days to the local museum, art gallery or zoo and make a day trip out of it.
24. Go on a bicycle ride.
25. Feed the ducks at the local pond.
26. Grab the garden hose, and play in the sprinklers.
27. Have a “mathlete” competition – see which kids can solve math problems the fastest!
28. Plant a garden and watch it grow.
29. Play a trivia game. You can find questions from the internet.
30. Host a sleepover for your kids.
31. Play frisbee or soccer.
32. Attend a baseball game.
33. Make mini-popsicles using ice trays and juice.
34. Play hide-and-go-seek.
35. Fly a kite. As an added bonus, have your kids make their own.
36. Visit an aquarium.
37. Build a backyard obstacle course.
38. Go bowling.
39. Have a picnic in the park.
40. Have a backyard luau.


As an added bonus, why not make a photo journal or a family yearbook showcasing some of the activities that you did over the summer.  

 

What are some of your favorite summertime activities?

5 Tips to Finding The Perfect Car For Your Family

Thank you Cars.com for sponsoring this post.

Are you in the market for a new car? Car shopping can be a seemingly daunting task. Besides being a large purchase, it is also something you and your family will be using daily for years to come. This is especially true if you have kids.

Being that my family and I are looking to purchase a new car soon, I thought I would share some of my tips on finding the perfect car for you and your family.

*This is a sponsored post on behalf of Cars.com. As always, my opinions are 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand. Please read my full disclosure here.

Determine Your Needs

When you’re in the market for a new vehicle, one of the first things you will need to do is determine exactly what it is you need in a new vehicle.

For my family, we need a lot of back seat and trunk space. Even though we are a small family, we need lots of room in the back seat. Groceries take up a lot of space in our trunk, not to mention all of the extra things that I like to keep stored in my trunk. Know ahead of time everything you need and/or want.

Set A Budget

You will want to make sure that you have a set budget before you step foot on a car lot. You know exactly how much you and your family can afford, not the car salesman. If the sales person really wants to sell you a vehicle, he/she will make it work for you.

Always keep in mind that there are plenty of car dealerships around, so don’t be pressured into a situation that you are uncomfortable with. If the sales person is unable to meet your needs, it is perfectly okay to walk away.

Do Your Research

Now that you’ve determined what your exact needs are in a vehicle, and set your budget, it’s time to do your research.

Cars.com makes it super easy to find exactly what you’re looking for. Start with the desired body style, and Cars.com will show you everything you need to know about many different vehicles – pricing, mileage, seat capacity, and safety ratings to name a few.

On top of that Cars.com offers expert and consumer reviews, as well as recall information.

Features

This may seem a bit trivial to some, but the features in a car are very important. If you spend a lot of time in your vehicle (running errands, kids after school activities, etc.) like I do, you want to make sure that the vehicle comes equipped with the things that you want.

Whether it’s blue-tooth capability, a sunroof, or a remote start, be sure that the necessary features are available in the vehicle that you are eyeing.

Go For A Test Drive

Lastly, you will want to take a test drive of the vehicle of your choice. You may have multiple vehicles that you are eyeing, but honey test drive them all! You need to get a feel for the car, and play around with all of its features.

Test driving is your opportunity to get a feel of what it would be like if you actually owned the car.

Final Thoughts

Car buying can be an exciting time and when you’ve been driving the same car for a long time (like me!), it’s hard not to make a rush decision.

Know that your new vehicle is an investment – one that you will likely be paying for over the next several years. With that being said, you don’t want to make a hasty decision and wind up driving a vehicle you really don’t like, or one that ends up not being what your family needs.