Six Steps to a Simpler Family Week.
Chaos in the kitchen is the order of the moment. We’ve decided it’s time to actually keep track of what the heck everyone is doing each day of the week.
It’s about time…we’ve made it for 15 years without keeping a family calendar.
Things are getting a little crazy around these parts, though.
This is totally new ground for us since we completely fly by the seat of our pants. And it’s mainly my fault because I have an aversion to calendars and planning. They make me feel boxed in, like I’m committed to things that maybe I don’t want to be committed to.
The extent of my plan-making is limited to lists.
I realized recently though that I have kids who function much better when there is a plan. And especially better when they know that everyone else knows the plan. They like to know what to expect and not be surprised.
Even tough I’m not crazy about calendars; I suspect I’ll be happy to not have school projects (that require a trip to Walmart at midnight because they are due tomorrow) jumping out at me at the last minute.
So, here we are all gathered in the kitchen around our board, with a calendar up on the wall that I drew on butcher paper.
Everyone is a a little crazy.
Emmett just grabbed a brownie which made another person get a glass of milk and scoop up a brownie for themselves. “Anything else on Monday?” I ask. We scribble some more notes into the Mondays slot. Twenty minutes later I’ve asked, “So any thing else for this week that needs to be mentioned?” for what feels like the 10th time…
It feels like a little miracle to know where everyone is going, when projects are due, and what events will take place and what we can’t cut out.
I’m a little surprised that this fees so good.
Our 20 minute calendaring session helped us to know where the car needed to be all week since we are now down to one. This crazy meeting of the minds helped me to realize that Friday is going to be complete chaos but, with a plan, it’s doable. We found out that Mike, Emmett, and I all needed to use the car on the same evening….these are the kinds of details that have been eluding us.
My kids, especially two of them, seem relieved to not be flying around by their pj bottoms anymore. Without realizing what they need, I may have gone on guessing from week to week for a long time.
I also LOVED knowing what everyone was up to, where everyone had to be, and having everything written in one single place so that everyone could reference it at any time.
I realize that I may be the only mom in America that hasn’t been keeping a calendar. In case there’s a sliver of chance that there’s more than one of me out there…
Here are our steps that might help you:
*tear off a huge piece of butcher paper
*draw a calendar on it
*let your 8 year old decorate it because she doesn’t have much else to add to the calendar
*gather your family together
*write in all of the stuff you have going
*ask questions like:
- What do you WANT to do as a family?
- Which night is family game night?
- How will you make dinner time work each night?
- Who will start dinner each night?
- What’s the plan with the car? Who needs it? When?
- Remember we have date night on Friday. Who will be babysitting?
- Three people need to be a four different places on the same night. How are we making that work?
We’ve gotten better and faster at our calendar. We do one week at a time and try to keep the whole thing under 20 minutes. It’s sometimes chaotic but I’d like to have the feel of us all gathered together for fun rather than a formal, sit still and be quiet variety of family meeting.
Stay tuned for the other super cool (and fun) family meeting that we have. It’s surprisingly awesome!
Now that I know what a difference calendaring with our family makes, I’ll be doing a lot less flying by the seat of my pants and a lot more planning.
Family meetings are the perfect complement to calendaring.
What do you do to keep track of your family’s week? (I know there are lots of awesome apps out there for moms).
Make sure to sign up for all of the super fun stuff I send from the Familyness Fort!