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I have a list of things I went to get done each day...once a week I deep clean the kitchen, once a week I do the living room, and so on... If I am pressed on time I just spend less time on the jobs. 15 minutes spent straightening looks a lot better than none. I do laundry every day. I try to get the big kids to help here and there. The older two are good at doing dishes and all four can help with the pets. I'm a sahm, so I try to get the bulk of my big jobs done during the day. Katy has a morning dance class I run her to once a week, and I volunteer one morning a week, but mostly I keep our weekdays open. Afternoons I am busy with the older kids and their sports and church activities...same with weekends really.
Playdates and activites? I am sorry, could you explain these to me? LOL
We don't do those really. My 15 yo plays football for high school, and the 17 yo works (thats an activity to me), and we just get them there. Sometimes my oldest son or DIL will help out with a ride. As far as the middles and littles, they are each others playdates.
I only work p/t when I am not on leave (like now), so I have more time at home to get cleaning and cooking done. It just is what it is. Sometimes a room is messy. Oh well. LOL
Jenifer....The Queen Bee
Nehemiaah Franklin 11/10/14 4:16am 9lbs 9oz
Welcome to the world lil' man!!
We really limited activities. The kids all had piano lessons and did do anything church related, but while they were younger we hardly had them in anything. When my older kids were younger I felt pressure to have them in stuff, because everyone else did, and then I realized that there's lots of them for them to pursue their own interests when they're a little older, and that my sanity is more important, and, with lots of siblings comes lots of entertainment. As far as playdates, they did happen, but much less frequently than with families with 2 or 3 kids.As far as getting things done (again, going back to when they were little) I just planned to get 1 or 2 weekly jobs done every day between everything else. Now it's different...I clean my whole house in one day, and then have another day that I do laundry and tidy the house and then we're good to go. Good thing too, the kids are older....they're doing stuff
My 6 year old does rainbows and my older girl 7 does brownies, these are both on a monday night, i pick them up from school at 3.15.. drop 6yr old of to rainbows for 4.30pm.. pick her up at 5.30pm at the same time drop of the 7year old at brownies and pick her up again at 6.30pm thats enough activity for me!
I clean during the day while they go to school, after drop off i come home and do general tidying etc
My kids are still pretty little, but able to help out with some things--like when I get the groceries they help prep all the produce and portion snacks. They are in charge of cleaning their own rooms, making their beds, putting their laundry in the hamper, and they each have a common area in the house to tidy up every day, as well as general self-maintenance and clearing their table. So that helps (although, at this point, I can't really say it's saving me any time, it will pay off when they're bigger!)
I also have a schedule for my cleaning, cooking, errands, bills and correspondence.
When I volunteer, I try to make it at church or something else that the kids are already doing so it happens at the same time and I don't need a sitter.
I have a housekeeper 9 hours a week and a sitter for 3 hours on Friday afternoons so I can go on a date with my husband.
For play dates, unless the mom and I are really good friends, I try to just do drop off play dates, when another kid is here they are generally ALL out of my hair and I can get a lot done. I love to schedule play dates on freezer cooking days!
And we had to cut back on activities. This summer, we did martial arts, ballet, camp, art class, preschool class, play dates, swimming and music. It was way too much. For the school year, we insist they do swimming and church choir. And they can each pick one more thing from a list of activities we approve of that fit our budget and schedule. It was really hard for me to decide to drop martial arts and art classes and all the "fun" stuff, especially because most kids in our area are doing all that stuff. But, most families in our area are not similar to ours and we have to cut back to do what is best for us--a sane mother who isn't driving all day, time to spend together as a family, and unstructured time for the kids to just be kids and get bored and live.
So, I'd say share the work, schedule the mundane chores (check out FlyLady if that's an area that's making you feel swamped) and talk to your partner about what your priorities are concerning activities away from home and set up boundaries that reflect those priorities.
Great responses, thank you all. We already do less than my mommy friends do but still seems to much at times. I don't know how my friends go to all the things they go to, this is the first summer I tried to "keep up" and now I'm just tired and want to stay home some!
We try to limit activities but it's hard when you have so many kids, even if each child only has 1 activity' that's still a lot! We pretty much stick to the same things (Sunday and Wednesday church; everyone goes, soccer; 3 play, xcountry; 2 run, and 4H shooting; 2 do that). So not everyone does everything but when things overlap, like this fall, soccer, xcountry, and 4H shooting will all overlap so it will crazy for sure. During times like these, we eat frozen pizza more often than I care to admit. I am trying to use the crockpot more often though, and that helps a lot.
My house isn't as clean as I'd like but we get by. We also have a routine where we do the same things every day and that keeps it manageable.