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When you have too much to do and too little time! – Hf #101

on November 15, 2017 by Jami Balmet 6 comments

It’s so easy in the hustle and bustle of busy life to get overwhelmed. To feel defeated. To feel like you are drowning with every day chores and work. So when I got an email from a reader expressed feeling some of this herself, I knew I could identify! 

So today’s episode is all about that: How do we survive when we feel like we are drowning! 

Listen to the Podcast:

We also recorded this blog post as an audio podcast. If you want to listen in instead of reading, click play below or do a combination of both :)

And don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.

Right click here and save-as to download this episode to your computer.

Here’s the question I got this week: 

“I work outside of the home 40-42 hours a week. I have three kids. I leave early and don’t get home until 5-5:30pm. Basically my question is do you have any ideas, tips, tricks, etc on how I can squeeze 10 hours (not really but it feels like it) of home chores into 2 hours? Once I get home it’s time to fix supper, then spend an hour with the kids in the floor playing, load the dishwasher and maybe throw in a load of laundry. Bed time for my 2 littles is 8pm. I have to be in bed by 9-930 because I’m up at 5am every morning. I feel like I’m drowning!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

I get it. I have totally been there. And working outside the home throws a whole other element into the mix. So here are some suggestions or ideas to work through: 

Freezer Cooking & Simple Meals 

I discovered freezer cooking when I was working full time outside the home and it radically changed the way I approach my kitchen. Now, several years later, I still do routine batches of freezer cooking. 

Here are some resources for freezer cooking & simple meals: 

Prep/meal plan on Sunday evenings

Along with simplifying my meal planning and freezer cooking, I usually do a quick prep/meal plan meeting on Sunday nights. I’ll quickly review my week, see if I need to stop at the grocery store, etc. 

This is the concept that PrepDish does so well! They do all the work for you and then just tell you what to prepare each week!

Have kids do the after dinner clean up

I hear from a lot of moms who get overwhelmed with dinner and clean up. It’s easy to let this get out of control and for it to take several hours each day for dinner time and clean up. 

If you don’t already, get your kids to help or DO the after dinner clean up. If you have older kids you can assign them the tasks of cleaning the kitchen after dinner. Even 2-year-olds can take their plate and fork to the sink or dishwasher. 4-year-olds can do the same, help unload the dishwasher, wipe down the kitchen table, etc. It’s all about training them young to help and participate! 

Creating a weekly cleaning list – move through different target areas per day 

I love this concept for keeping up on the deep cleaning chores of your house when you don’t have a lot of time! You can easily assign different tasks or areas in your home to different days. I.e. Monday is bathrooms, Tuesday is mirros and windows, etc. 

Marci from Thankful Homemaker has some great examples of this for weekly, monthly, and yearly cleaning plans

Getting a solid night time routine down

I think the nighttime routine is one of the MOST important routines you can establish. If you establish a solid evening routine, your morning will be set up so much better and will flow into the rest of the day.

I personally aim for a few things in my evening routine: 

  1. A neat and tidy kitchen (notice I  didn’t say perfect!)
  2. I peek at my schedule/meal plan for tomorrow
  3. Set the timer on coffee for next morning

Marci has a great evening routine article with some more things to think through.  

Pair down to the essentials in this season

I think this is a huge lesson to remember: God has each of us in different seasons and each season of our life is unique in what is expected of us. This means that God gives us different priorities in different seasons. 

We need to be seeking HIM to determine what’s important in this season we are currently in! I LOVE this quote: 

“We can accomplish everything God has ordained for us to do in this life. Hint: It’s probably not half of what’s on your to-do list.)” – Shopping for Time

A book you might enjoy if you are in a similar season: The Fringe Hours by Jessica turner 

Need some help with your routines?

I’ve got an incredible free resource for you called Refresh Your Routines – Getting on Track with Your Daily Disciplines! 

It’s a FREE kit I’ve put together for you. It includes 3 training videos on routines as well as a 9 page downloadable kit. 

Download your FREE kit here!

Meal Planning Help: 

I am really excited to share with you the sponsor of today’s podcast episode: PrepDish! If you ever feel like you wish you had a little help in your meal planning, then I highly encourage you to check out PrepDish. They offer gluten free meal plans and paleo meal plans. 

But you don’t have to eat a gluten-free or paleo diet in order to take advantage of all that PrepDish has to offer! In fact, almost half of their customers don’t eat those diets. The meals are healthy and non-processed and work well for anyone who is trying to eat a healthy diet. And PrepDish is offering a super special TWO week free trail when you sign up through this link (how awesome!!)

When you sign up, you’ll receive an email every week with a grocery list and instructions for prepping your meals ahead of time. After only 1-3 hours of prepping on the weekend, you’ll have all of your meals ready for the entire week. I absolutely love how easy they make it. 

Free TWO week trial of PrepDish

Get instant free access to my Finding Joy in Your Home video course.

  • Do you want to discover more joy, peace, & tranquility within your home?
  • Do you feel overwhelmed and like your house is out of control?
  • Join my free course and learn the essential habits for Christian homemakers
  1. Thanks for another great episode! I will definitely be trying out some of your suggestions. Here are a few other helpful tips I’ve learned along the way:

    1) Prioritize your cleaning. I started this when we first had a newborn in the house and just could not get ‘everything’ cleaned on a regular basis. Talk with your husband about what makes you both feel the best about your house. Like, my husband really prefers the bathroom to be clean and I HATE clutter. So we just focus on the areas of the house that have the biggest impact (for us).

    2) If something can be done in less than a minute or two, just do it immediately! Example: this morning as I brushed my teeth, I was thinking about how the bathroom counter really needed a quick wipe-down. So guess what? Right then, I reached under the cabinet, pulled out a cleaning wipe, and did it! Boom! The bathroom instantly felt cleaner and nothing was added to my mental to-do list, haha. Same principle can be applied to things like putting away coats or shoes, a quick sweep of the kitchen, whatever. It’s almost funny b/c of how obvious the idea is, but it’s been a game changer for me!

  2. Have you considered ordering your groceries for pick-up? Many grocery stores are doing this now. I happen to shop at Walmart for my groceries and they are beginning to offer this service, free of charge (and they don’t accept tips). It’s so convenient! I only took me 15 minutes to do my Thanksgiving shopping at my computer, and then went and picked them up the next day!

    And if you use the Walmart Savings Catcher feature on the Walmart App, you can still use it and get money back on price-matching!

    Here’s the link to get started for anyone who’s interested. http://r.wmt.co/glvSJ

    • I know, I LOVE that idea!! We live really far out from a big town. So we have one store nearby that does pick up, but it’s a more expensive store that I never shop at. Our two walmarts near us don’t do it yet – I’m waiting for it LOL!!

      • I see! Hopefully your Walmart stores will offer it soon!! It makes a world of difference!

        P.s. thanks for all the great podcasts! I really enjoy them!

  3. Thank you so so so much for answering my email 🙂 I love all the tips and YES I need to meal plan. I plan on getting my kids more involved as well in helping around the house. I think I forgot to mention that my 21 year old has a 5 month old son. So that does hinder her help at times as she’s not very good at multi-tasking 😉 I just wanted to thank you for listening and helping, it means so much to me!!! <3 <3