Time to Streamlife (plus a giveaway)

(a SLiPping Through the Day post)

Cartoon J & PB

Here we go.  At the end of the year I find myself thinking, “once the kids and I are out of school I’ll get so much more accomplished.”  Then the summer brings its own set of challenges, and as we hit August I start thinking, “once the kids are back in school and we have a regular schedule again, I’ll get so much more accomplished.”  The reality is I’m doing as much as I can and I should just learn to live with it.  It’s just that I’m not so great at letting go…

So, before the craziness really sets in, I’ll share a few tips I have to streamline my life (“streamlifes”) and then, pretty please, will you share some of your own.  I’m particularly interested in those of you who have tamed the laundry beast…

1.  Choose an outfit (or 5):  My day goes much better if the morning isn’t chaotic.  This means laying out my clothes the night before (like my mom preached and I now insist with my 16 year old).  Is this always possible?  No.  So I have a few “just in case” outfits planned.  The ideal way to do this is to have the ensemble hanging in your closet with its accessories draped artfully on the hanger.  Since I can’t seem to manage that, I’ll periodically throw an outfit on the bed and snap a photo (or you can take a selfie when you know you look great).  You can create an album on your phone so its easy to flip through in the event of an emergency.

Streamlife snacks copy

2.  Keep snacks on hand:  Maybe this doesn’t seem like a streamlining tip, but I don’t operate well if I’m starving.  I always have snack bags of almonds in my purse and these Go Picnic boxes I discovered a few years ago are an incredible item to keep in a desk drawer for a quick lunch or assortment of snacks.  Now they sell them at Target in a bunch of flavors.  The Breakfast-To-Gos seem like a great option too, but they’re my daughter’s favorite so it’s usually a “hands off” for me.

3.  Write shopping lists on the phone:  I don’t do this if I’m doing my weekly “big” grocery run, but when we run out of something non-critical or something I pick up at Target, it goes on the phone.  That way if I find myself in that area with a few minutes to spare or run in for something we need immediately, I can pick up everything at once.  This might sound like no big deal, but cutting down on shopping runs is a huge time saver for me.

Streamlife wallet copy

4.  Have a recipe or two in your wallet:  Again, this might not seem like a big help, but it works for me.  On those days when there’s nothing in the fridge and I only have a few minutes to grab some ingredients at the store, I’ll work off my wallet recipe (take-out/delivery options aren’t extensive around me and we do try to eat healthy when possible…).  Is it just me, or is sometimes deciding what to make the hardest part?

5.  Keep reading/writing material in the car and all your contacts in your phone:  I find myself stuck in the car waiting so often, I keep a bunch of to-do items in there to stave off boredom and help me keep up with household chores.  Forms?  Cards?  Setting any kind of appointment?  Chances are I accomplished it in the car.

Now it’s your turn!  Let’s hear what saves you time and keeps the day running smoothly.  I’ll choose the best tip and send you a $10 TPT gift certificate!  If you missed the BTS sale in early, early August, you have a chance to make up for it tomorrow, Wednesday, August 20.  My store will be 20% off and by using the code:  BOOST you can score an additional 10%.  It’s a great opportunity to pick up what you forgot or even to start planning for Halloween.  (Hmmm…we need to be quick about this.  Leave your tip before 7am EST, August 20, 2014 and the winner will receive the email by 10am!)

***Lisa English was my winner because socks are a particular issue in my house!***

BTS Boost 2014


This Post Has 10 Comments

  1. Alex Trichilo

    LOVE this post! I definitely need to organise my outfits better! I thought it may be helpful to hear about evernote – it is available on any mobile device and on Mac and Windows computers and I use it to store recipes, shopping lists, and to do lists all in one place (amongst a hundred other things that I do with it. Hope this might sound helpful, I’m not affiliated, I just love it!

  2. Lisa English

    When my 4 children were younger, it was always a hassle trying to match up socks when they came out of the dryer, as well as keep track of whose socks were whose (they were all very close in age!) I solved this problem by buying each of them a mesh bag (used to wash lingerie in), and I wrote their names on one of the seams on the bag. They simply put their dirty socks in the bag, and then I threw the bag in the washer with the rest of the load, then threw it in the dryer. No lost socks! Then I had them match up their own socks and put them away. This is a just a little tip, but it saved me lots of time and frustration trying to find lost socks, as well as saved me from having to buy new socks as frequently!

  3. Valerie

    I leave everything I need for the next day right in front of the front door so that I cannot open it without picking up what I need for the day.

  4. Latrice S

    I find it easier to prepare everything the night before, since I tend to be more sluggish in the morning. For some reason if I wait until morning to choose what to wear it takes longer. So I have my outfit already hanging in the bathroom the night before, that way I don’t have to waste time figuring out what to wear!

  5. Annie Doyle

    Great ideas!! It is sooo hard to stay level! In order to keep the laundry behemoth at bay I throw a load in before I leave in the morning and put it in the dryer upon my return home. I also ask everyone to bunch their socks in pairs BEFORE they go in the hamper so I don’t end up with piles of singletons. I also create a menu, with input from my family for the week. This year, since my kids are older I am going to ask them if they would like to plan and cook one meal per week. That may be a challenge with the sports and homework load, but certainly worth a try. Good luck for an awesome school year! Bring it on!

  6. Stephanie K

    I always keep a big water bottle handy, gather my therapy bag the night before, and at least have an idea of what I’ll wear the next day before I go to bed.

  7. Lisa H

    I keep all of my family’s activities on my iCal, which is sync’ed to my iPhone and iPad, and I color-coded based on who’s activity is it (I’m a visual person). For example, all of my work obligations are green. Our children’s activities are brown. My husband is yellow…etc. I can quickly see all of our comings and goings!

  8. Anne

    I would never get out of the door on time each morning without setting everything out the night before!! I’m a huge fan of freezer/once a month cooking to make life easier in the evenings…a couple hours of cooking one weekend and you’re set for a while!! plus I try to take advantage of my commute by listening to books. I’ve always loved reading, but with two little ones, it doesn’t happen much! At least this way, I feel like I get some ‘me time,’ which helps me function more effectively in general! 🙂

  9. Vickie Jones

    I’m not a morning person, so I fill my water bottles the night before and prepack lunches and stick them in the fridge lunch box and all. I also have the dishwasher totally ready to fire off so I can throw the breakfast stuff in and hit go! Not huge tips, but it saves my sanity a bit

  10. K showalter

    My tip is to exercise every day. Research just came out that showed people who found time to exercise were not as tired when they got home from work. So if you find a little “me” time while it might seem to use up your time it really gives you more time because you don’t collapse from exhaustion. And you can spread it out 5 min stretch in morning, 10 min walk with friends at lunch, 15 min dance with your kids after school…whatever works for you!

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The views expressed in this blog are my own and are intended to inspire other speech-language pathologists in their own practice. If you are a parent, teacher or other educator, these ideas are not intended to take the place of treatment by a certified clinician. Read full disclaimer here.