It can be hard to tell by looking at the Instagram accounts of many bloggers who are also moms, but underneath the filters, carefully orchestrated family photos, and the meticulously curated feeds, we all feel the same stresses of being a work-from-home mom. It's not easy taking care of a baby (or a few children in many other's situations) and juggling work, hobbies, or even just your own personal life. It's easy to lose yourself in the fray and sometimes it's more convenient to just let that happen. For my own sanity I've chosen to not succumb to losing my own self after becoming a mom, although it has been hard to juggle everything and still keep everyone afloat, I will be sharing some of my tricks and tools that I use in this post to stay on schedule and still make sure the house doesn't burn down and everyone gets fed on a daily basis!
I keep a notebook with me at all times, and if I happen to forget it I always have my phone handy that I can take a note to transfer to paper later. I prefer taking notes on paper because it's fun to cross out items as the day goes, I feel so much more productive! I've also noticed if I have a thought or idea and I don't write it down in the moment I will forget it later on so I write EVERYTHING down. I love using the notepads from the Target Dollar Spot and just leave on one my kitchen counter so every time I walk by I can see my to-do's and it helps me stay accountable for what I must complete. I never put too much pressure on myself with lists though, I find when I do that I get overwhelmed and then nothing get's done so my list is sort of a revolving, never-ending list. I may make a new one each day but there's usually (if not always) overflow from the previous day's list.
The one thing I LOVE about using the Google Calendar app in particular is that when I update it from anywhere (Gmail, my phone, my smartwatch) everything syncs and I can access my calendar events from virtually any device as long as I have my Google login information. My Misfit Vapor watch has been a lifesaver for creating and accessing my calendar when I am carrying a baby around 24/7 and need hands free help! This little baby is a handful now too at 8 months old, I feel like I need another set of arms just to wrangle her. She's so curious and wants everything in her mouth including dirt from the floor and people's shoes. NOPE.
My Smart Watch
I never had an interest in a smart watch or fitness tracker until I was given the opportunity to try one when Misfit sent me their Vapor watch for review. Not only is this gadget great for using the calendar function, but this one in particular has a standalone music player so whenever I play Spotify from anywhere I can change the song, turn up the volume, etc. from my wrist. I also am living for the text message and email functions! The watch with vibrate when I have a message and I can quickly reference if it is something time sensitive or I can swipe it away to review later. I love this thing and it has definitely made me less dependent on my phone! Side note on this thing, since I have been trying to get back into summer shape, this watch came just in time to keep my accountable with my workouts. It not only has a step counter, but you can access home workouts from the device which is the only way I am able to workout these days. I LOVE this feature and it is the one I've used the most by far. Also if you're a swimmer, it is water-resistant and you can swim or shower while wearing the watch without damaging it! Click here to view more specs on the website: Misfit Vapor.
Having a Daily Routine
Having a baby really made me realize that my lack of routine was really detrimental to my efficiency and getting things done. Now that Stella is here and we have her on a great routine of naps, eating, playing, and bedtime, I cherish the few moments of predictable quiet that I get, and I really make a point to keep to a solid routine during the day so I can do whatever I want during those times whether it's work, paint my nails, do my makeup, organize my closet, read a book, whatever. I think routine is important for anyone baby or not, but really when you have a baby I feel like there is no other option if you want to be able to get any personal things done! This is what a sample of my morning routine looks like:
- 7am Stella wakes everyone up.
- Daddy takes a shower first while Stella and I cuddle for a few minutes before getting out of bed
- 7:30 Stella and I eat some breakfast until Dustin is done getting ready. They'll spend time playing and rolling around on the floor/tummy time until he has to go.
- 8am I shower and get ready. If I get fully ready during this time so when I do have free moments I can get more done.
- 8:45 Dustin leaves for work and I get Stella ready for nap time, read a book, listen to some music, chat.
- 9am Stella goes down for her first nap and I get some me time! Her first nap is usually a long one from 1-2 hours.
- 10am we eat a snack, play some more and maybe run an errand.
- 11ish or 12 we eat lunch and then nap and repeat! Bed time is 7pm.
This one isn't anything new or unheard of, but Dustin and I have always made a weekly meal plan so that when we go to the grocery store every Sunday we can get everything we need for the whole week without having to make multiple trips back. Of course here and there we might need to go pick something up that we forgot, but very rarely, and this saves so much time! It also helps on a daily basis, we save so much time because we never have to figure out what to eat for every meal. Plus we save a ton of money on not eating out at restaurants frequently! Now that Stella is eating solid foods too, this has been hugely helpful because I honestly can never think of what to feed her on the fly. We usually try to plan family meals that she can also enjoy with us since we all eat together for our meals.
Really when it comes to having a baby and still working, you'll need to come up with the tools and routine that work best for your own personal situation but I hope if you're struggling (or just curious) that you took a couple ideas from this post to try out yourself to stay organized!
As always, thanks for reading!
*Thank you to Misfit Wearables and Statusphere for supplying me with the product for this post, all opinions are my own*