As a mom of 5 busy, active kids my schedule can be a bit overwhelming. I’ll admit there are seasons I want to say no to everything and just hunker down and stay home, but in the end the joy my kids get and the life lessons they learn are worth it. All 5 of my girls are involved in lots of activities and they often overlap so I need to be super organized so no one misses an event. It also means I need to be on top of organizing carpools, it takes a village no matter how many kids you have. Here are a few of the tools I use to keep me on track and not loosing my mind!
Digital Calendar – My husband and I both use our phone calendar and we sync them so we both always know what is going on. there was a time when I tried to give each kid a color and make it all color coordinated and fancy and then I realized that all I needed was a clear title so when the reminder pops up I know exactly who needs to be where for what. I also have my calendar set for a 30 minute and 10 minute reminder that way even if I get involved in something and loose track of time I have at least 30 minutes to get where I need to be.
Paper Planner – I also have a paper planner, writing things down helps solidify them in my memory. Each Sunday I fill in my paper planner from the digital calendar to go over the week and know what is going on plus make arrangements for any last minute car pools. A friend told me about these amazing erasable pens that I love, they are a must have for a paper planner since things are always changing.
Dry Erase Board: I got these amazing glass dry erase boards at IKEA and each night I write the next days information on the board. I tell the kids what is for lunch (so they can choose to buy or pack) I tell them what activities each kid has so they can pack accordingly and I tel them which uniform to wear. This board has been a lifesaver for us and it helps to give the kids a sense of control and ownership of their activities.
Garmin Watch: My Garmin Vivomove HR was a birthday gift from my kids and it is amazing. Not only does it track my health goals it monitors my stress levels and all alerts on my phone show up on my watch. It allows me to walk away from my phone yet still get important reminders (this is where clear titles in my digital calendar are really helpful) on my wrist that I can’t miss.
These are the ways I keep my big family running like a well oiled machine. There re days it all falls apart but more often it works just right!