I was woken this morning from my dreamy cocoon by my excited husband whispering, “How was your sleep in?”
Blearily I registered that there were no children in my bed, it was light and it didn’t feel like that had just happened.
“What’s the time?” I said, scared I had missed Kidz in Sport for Julian.
“7:40!” He’d obviously been up for a while, taking phone calls for work. I put the pillow back over my head but within five minutes Leo was crying to be released from his baby prison.
Jet-lag has been rather pleasant. On Saturday morning the kids were at my parents and I woke up at 9am! I can never sleep in so this has been bliss. A deep, languid sleep with the interesting side affect of being able to stay awake longer in the evenings. I quite like it. Though I am getting a taste of what it’s like to be a night owl – getting out of bed in the morning really sucks for you guys!
Anyway this got me thinking that I might coin a new term that takes into consideration everything that has happened to me since having children. It can be summed up now in just one term.
It lasts longer than baby-brain and encompasses more than just the brain fuzz – I have habits that have been deeply ingrained since having babies that seem to have stuck with me.
And it’s making me rather inefficient.
For example after dinner and putting the kids down my habit is to sit down on the couch and not get up….except for a cup of tea or to charge my iPad.
Whilst on holiday it occurred to me that this was a habit gained from those heady, no-sleep days of having a newborn.
Baby in bed – Mama sits down.
Now I’m tired, don’t get me wrong, I’m just not that tired. In fact I usually get bored of all that sitting and head off to bed, sometimes before I need to. But then in the morning I’m racing around without pausing for breath or bathroom breaks (another bad habit from baby-lag).
So that got me thinking – does anyone else get baby-lag? And if so, how do we overcome it?
The Busy Mum’s Guide To Getting Things Done
When the kids go – stay on your feet
You complain that you have no time in your day (I’m obviously giving myself here a stern talking to) so….the first rule of order – take an extra hour after the kids go to bed to get things done. You have just created more time. You’re a genius!
Allocate certain days for doing things
Organise a routine like you used to have at work. Monday (Wednesday and Friday) are for washing ; on Sunday cook for the week ahead; take the kids somewhere fun for lunch on Friday when the cleaner’s around so you don’t have to cook and mess things up!
Never touch the same thing twice
For example ; Clean your kitchen as you cook or take your washing upstairs and put it away. I normally do washing in a few stages, take it from the line, leave it in the basket. Later on do some folding and put it upstairs. Then leave it there for a little while until I feel like putting it in the drawers. By this time there are so many baskets lined up it all gets shoved in the drawers. Wouldn’t it be great if you just took it in and put it in the drawers…….
To Do List
YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALL. But write it down or you’ll forget about it altogether (This is a classic move of mine!). Put things like “Cuddle My Children” on the list to make sure it happens often enough you feel thoroughly satisfied giving that “to-do” a big tick.
The day when you get all your shopping, allocate some time to preparing. Wash your fruit and vegetables, cut them up and pop them in the fridge in containers so they stay fresh and when you need them they are already prepared. I always use way more mushrooms, spinach, broccoli etc this way – I can just grab a handful to fry with my egg in the morning or pop into my stir-frys. I know have to add to that routine, “putting together juice bags” to make it an easier and cleaner exercise.
At The End of The Day Put Away
There is nothing worse than waking up to a mess. Try to get your chores done before bed and start the day fresh. It always puts a smile on my face to cook breakfast in a clean kitchen and look around my clutter free home.
As always I thought about most of these things whilst on holiday. A break from the burden of domesticity always gives me a decent perspective of things. I wrote these tips as a reminder to myself and to hopefully help you guys get more time to yourselves and stop chasing your tails.