Monday, October 18, 2010

Saving Time is like Saving Money

Crunchy Mama and I were having a discussion recently about how you have to find time to save time.  The idea is very similar to having money to save money.

My dh and I got married right out of college and we both had loans.  We scrimped and saved until we had enough money to pay off  the balance of our smallest loan.  Then we took the amount we were paying each month for that loan and saved it to help pay off the next smallest, and so on.  We had to accumulate a little money in order to save the interest on that smallest loan and hence on the subsequent loans.

Flash forward almost 18 years.  The loans are paid off.  I am a homeschooling mom of 7 kids ages 2-15.  My husband has a demanding job with hours that can get crazy in cyclical whirlwinds four times per year.  This leave me with some (but certainly not all) of the the other items around the house.

It's hard to find time to get the extras done.  I am a very organized person and love my spreadsheets but I've been feeling like if only I could find a little time to make up a list for (    ) then everyone would know what is expected and I can expect them to take care of things a little more without my direct input.

So, the very first thing I did was to email Crunchy Mamma to see if she has created something like this already (we are quite similar in this odd sort of way), but she hasn't.  Therefore, I took time off school today in order to save time.  I may take time off tomorrow as well, but we will be back on schedule by Wed.  (BTW, this is the reason I don't take MEA and other holidays off, I take them off when I we need them).

In addition to making Esme's doll quilt for her birthday (with help from Terese), I am working on some lists.

So far the only one that is totally complete is for the bathroom.  I listed everything that needs to be done daily (with little boxes to check when it's complete), weekly, and monthly.  It looks like something you would find on the back of the restroom at Target (which is where I got the idea).

My kids have their chores divided up by zones.  One child wipes the bathroom daily, cleans it once a week, etc.  Another takes care of the living room, entry, and hallway....

Now, the daily items they pretty much knew but they would sometimes forget the small details, like bringing the used/wet hand towels to the laundry room.  They have gotten pretty good at the weekly cleaning as well but don't necessarily remember all the little details.   And....when it came to the monthly cleaning I would have to sort of monitor the whole thing.... it's about time the shower curtain is washed, etc.

I have a lot of good workers here and they are all assigned something age appropriate, but multiply this by 4 kids and I would pretty much be walking around directing for 2 hours, at the same time I am trying to directly direct my 2, 5 and 7 year olds.   This is certainly not the best way to manage a work crew.  I am pretty certain they would all be done in about an hour, or less, if only they had a list to go off instead of waiting for me to get back to them. 

So, I will take time off tomorrow morning as well so that I can save some time by completing  these lists.  I intend to hang them someplace virtually unnoticed in each room, like on the inside of cabinet door.

Until then

Please help me wish a big  
  to my god daughter ESME, Crunchy Momma's dd.


to two of my god sons  

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