One thing about catholic families I’ve noticed is that mostly we have more children than the average family, and well, that requires organization and it creates more of a sense of community. Here are some bits of wisdom I have had to learn the hard way or have learned along the way that have been so life changing as our family has grown! I am so happy to share a few of my favorites with you!
Faith and Prayers
Start each day with prayer! …the date, the readings for the day and the saint of the day and a discussion on these topics!
Faith does not have to be or look ridged. Cuddle when you pray the rosary! Make prayer a personal time for family to reflect with God upon the day and open hearts to each other and the Lord and creating a deeper union with Him! Pray the Rosary Daily. If you wonder how to do this a a family look on the "Praying the Rosary" section.
Tell everyone in your family you love them and something you love about them that day at least once a day! It makes everyone’s heart soar!
Time is something that happens that we cannot control, but we can try to control how we use our time, and if we plan our days by the hour, we really feel like we have accomplished a lot, and what we need to!
Schedule in a quiet time daily! Use this time to pray, recenter and do what you need to do to recharge. Kids should play quietly on their own or take naps. If you are not used to this, over time you build up the amount of time.
My dear friend gave me this wisdom, and now we love this. We put all our dishes on the lower cabinets. We purchased non-breakable dishes. The kids now help with washing the dishes and with putting the dishes away! (other than the knives. They leave those for us.)
Kids also love to help in the cooking department in any capacity! Use that excitement to get them excited about cooking and helping!
Yes, sometimes when we let them “help” It actually takes way longer than when we do it ourselves, but in the process, they are learning so much and it’s really like an investment of your time into them!
Dinner at Lunch!
I make dinner at lunch time. Meaning, that when I am making serving lunch for the kids I prep dinner as well. I will do the chopping and necessary preparations for dinner then! The beauty of it is, that there is only 1 kitchen clean-up for lunch and dinner, other than the plates! I will put things in the crockpot, or put them in foil ready to bake for later!
Make a loafs worth of peanut butter and Jelly, and prepackage it and put it in the freezer! This is so wonderful if you are on the go or short for time!
Use this amazing invention to your advantage. Learn about as many recipes as you can that you would like. It’s so wonderful and really saves so much time, when time is precious to just pu the right ingredients in the crockpot and let it get delicious for you over time on its own!
BabyBreeza is the best thing out there for making baby food! Just chop up veggies or fruit and add it to the babybreeza, and press a button and it seams and chops and purees it for you! Best and easiest way to make baby food!
Grocery store list and meal planning
Take time to type out all the meals you make and what the ingredients are in one spot. When meal planning, you can copy and paste, or have a rotation going! The investment in time is worth it every time you meal plan! We don’t mind left overs, and it saves so much money and time to do 1 meal for Monday and Tuesday and 1 meal for Wednesday and Thursday, then do a cheese pizza or cheese meal on Friday since we do meatless Fridays.
You can make a list of all the ingredients you normally purchase by aisle, have a print out of it, then highlight or circle what you need. It makes it easier to know what you need when you see what you normally get.
(My wonderful husband made this piece of furniture in one day, and I painted it and added hooks and baskets! It was well worth the effort, and a fun project together, that we use daily!)
Shoes and Socks
This was one of those things I just had to change. I couldn’t stand how long it took to match so many little socks and how many socks would not have the matching pairs.
We get all one color and one kind of solid color sock. We get black socks for many reasons. They don’t look dingy as white ones over time with playful kids. Not sock matching involved!
We keep our sock bin right next to the shoes.
Each person has their own basket for their own shoes. To simplify, only 1 summer, 1 winter, 1 church shoe pair…
Each basket is in each person’s cubby along with their own jacket or church sweater. Another basket for hats and gloves and such.
I purchased drawer dividers! They are awesome! 1 big drawer divided into 3. For example, shorts, t shirts, and short sleeve collar. We just place the clothes in each section without folding for the smaller ones. 1 big drawer divided into 3 with pants, long sleeve, and long sleeve collar. They also make little boxes you can put in drawers. These are great for underwear and such!
As we had more children, I realized how many holiday clothes we had, so I decided to keep all the holiday specific clothing in separate bins and it makes it so much easier to go to the bin and find the right thing that will fit a certain child that particular year. If we have matching to something where everyone but 1 fit into, on a budget ill search for the specific brand and size on ebay! Usually I find it!
It makes my heart so happy to see when kids look put together, cared for and somewhat coordinated! I try to stay in the same color family as I purchase clothes for the kids, so they look put together! I do get some more purposefully coordinated outfits too!
All kids have favorites! Take the kids around the house and show them how to do different chores, and see which ones they like and can do well! Assign favorites to them as a way to get them excited and able to help with chores. Overtime, they can graduate to different things and “Train” other siblings and get them excited through their passion for cleaning up.
Everyone needs to contribute on same way in their own way!
Cleaning up after each time playing to create the habit and keep a tidy house
I have tried every method out there, and the one that literally and statistically and mathematically takes the least amount of time and is the easiest is doing 1 person per load, and giving each person their own clean bin back to put away after you teach them how of course! Or for much younger ones, this makes sorting so much easier! There was a youtube video done, where this husband did the math to actually show that this way is indeed the most time efficient! Also, of all the methods, I have enjoyed this one the most. Everyone gets their own laundry basket, and everyone has their loads done separately, so there is no sorting!
In the Kitchen!
For homeschooling families
I assign everyone their work for the day
Everyone is working as I take turns with each child
I start from youngest to oldest
This way the youngest and I feel fulfillment right way from getting that fun time reading and doing fun things together on our own! When I get to the oldest, they have already done so much work for the day, and we go over their work, homework, new lessons and anything that they want to take a look at!
We have done uniforms for school. Basically, we choose 1 colored collared shirt, we buy many, and that is the uniform! This is great for differentiating between play and school time, or really setting the mood!
Bigger ones can be so helpful with the smaller ones in so many ways!
Always clean up at the end of the day
Start each day new fresh and organized. Everyone can help. We teach that we help each other clean up even if we didn't make the mess to make the habit of just cleaning a mess.
Habits and life lessons
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