Organized Home Tips
People can sometimes get overwhelmed with advice so if you could recommend just three things to maintain an organized home (on an on-going basis), what would those be?
Planning, routines and organizational systems are the three keys to an organized home.
Planning – Planning goes a long way to keeping your home and family life organized. At the beginning of the week, plan for the week ahead. This could involve making grocery lists, menu planning, consulting the family calendar for activities and making a plan as to how to accomplish everything and fit it all in.
When you have plans in place you are better able to deal with the unexpected. Knowing what you’re having for dinner during the week, having all the ingredients on hand for healthy school lunches and making sure everyone gets to their extra-curricular activities on time goes a long way to keeping stress at bay and things organized on the home front.
Routines – Routines are essential to maintaining an organized home. Efficient morning routines will get everyone up and out on time with a healthy packed lunch, completed homework and anything else they need to take to school.
After school routines that include emptying backpacks, putting permission forms and papers needing to be signed in a particular spot, getting started on homework right away (or right after dinner) and having a good supply of school supplies handy will help prepare for the next day.
Evening routines that include making school lunches, setting the table for breakfast, laying out school clothes and putting completed homework (and related papers and equipment e.g. musical instruments, gym shorts, library books) in backpacks, go a long way to maintaining order in your home despite the busyness of your family life.
Organizational systems – Having a place for everything is a must have in the family home. Everyone needs to have their own place for frequently used items e.g. a place to hang their backpack and a cubby (or bin/hanging organizer) to put items in that need to be returned to school.
Having a snack system in place e.g. a cupboard and/or section of the fridge that stores grab and go and/or easily prepared foods is ideal for after school snacking as is having a supply of pre-packaged pantry items available to pack in school lunches.
Preparing foods in advance e.g. chopping up extra veggies and labelling and storing in the fridge for those nights when you need to whip up a quick dinner is also a great organizational system to implement.
When it comes to kids rooms – organizational systems need to be age appropriate e.g. low shelves and easy to slide out bins for little ones. Use photos or draw pictures on labels to show young kids where things go.
The ultimate key to keeping an organized home is to tailor your plans, routines and organizational systems to your family’s lifestyle and schedules and to make things fun and enjoyable.