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The Busy Family: 5 Tips for Managing Households on the Go

It’s hard to keep a family organized. Who am I kidding – it’s tough to keep yourself organized at times. Imagine trying to keep a household together with kids who are involved in activities and sports, working full time and having a spouse that works full time, too. You can easily get overwhelmed and disorganized and once you get there, it’s tough getting back.  We put together some tips and helpful tools to help you stay organized and sane.

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Keep Your Schedules Straight

Are you always running late or missing appointments because you forgot them?  It happens to all of us.  Google Calendar is great for keeping your schedules straight. You can keep the whole family as one calendar or each person can have their own calendar and you can have access.

Cozi is another great solution. Cozi is a free smart phone app that keeps a family schedule and emails or texts the members of the household when they have somewhere to be. Cozi also keeps shopping lists or to do lists that you can easily disperse to members of your family. Want your son to do some errands from his way home from school? Send over the to-do list. Disclaimer: Just because they send it doesn’t guarantee he will actually do it.

Schedule Family Time

With everyone in the family so busy, you may feel like you never get to see each other. A great way to make sure that you have family time is to schedule it in. Schedule family dinners or family fun days. Put it on the calendar and make the attendance mandatory and no reschedules (unless it’s an emergency). Carving out that time will let you all regroup as a family and talk about what’s been going on in your lives.

Send Reminders

Set up alerts for your phone to send you reminders a few hours before appointments or activities.  This way you will never forget an appointment or a special occasion. I would recommend also setting alerts for your bills as well. Life gets busy, but it’s crazy to pay your bills late because of it. Don’t pay another late fee because of being disorganized. If you have an android smart phone and have your Google account synced, you can set reminders right in Google Calendars when you schedule something and they will alert on your phone.

Make Mealtime Simple

The Busy Family: 5 Tips for Managing Households on the Go

Getting a hot meal on the table every night is difficult and figuring out what to make, shopping for the ingredients and putting it all together is time consuming. On the other hand, who has the money to eat out every night? Take a few minutes each week to jot down what meals you want to make. Come up with a meal plan and then make your grocery list. If you need help with meal planning, you can check out Say Mmm. It’s a free meal planning site where it makes the grocery list for you!

Manage Your Finances like a CFO

Run your household finances like a business. Set a family budget and stick to it. To track your progress, make sure you are keeping track of your expenses. Going through receipts can be time consuming, so use your smartphone to log purchases as you make them.

Mint has a great app to help you keep track of what you spend and what you spend it on. Also, set up your bills on auto pay so you never pay a late fee again. If you don’t like multiple companies having your banking information, see if your bank has a bill pay option like Wells Fargo, where they send out your bills for you.

The easiest way to manage your household is to stay organized. Take advantage of the technology that you have on your smartphone or tablet to make organizing your life easier.

Do you have any tips to stay organized in this crazy busy world? Share them with us!

Photo Credit: saikofish

Jen Carl
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