3 Things I Do To Make The House Run More Smoothly

So many things to do. So many ways to do them. Here are three ways I do things to make our house with 6 children 10 and under run more smoothly.

1. Set a timer. I love my little black and white timer. We have a schedule that is blocked out in 30 minute increments. We set the timer at the beginning of each 30 min. time increment and the kiddos go to their name to see what they are supposed to do during that block of time. One of my biggest tips that involves the timer is what I call: “12 item pick up!” Every time the timer goes off the kids know they need to run around and pick up 12 items. This has changed recently though. I have my 3 year old only pick up 5 things and my 9 year old checks laundry (making sure no rooms have dirty laundry in them, if they do he brings it to the laundry room. He also switches the laundry over and brings clean dry laundry out to living room where I or my 7 year old sorts it and puts it in the right room). This helps in the upkeep of the house SO MUCH.

This is the timer I have. Only $5!

This is what my daily schedule looks like. Super blurry pic but just wanted to give you a glimpse:

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Here is the book I used to make up this schedule. I HIGHLY recommend it!

2. Subscribe and Save. I LOVE THIS! We hardly ever run out of: paper towels, paper plates, toilet paper etc. And I get an additional 15% off of the already low price!

Here are two tips in doing subscribe and save:
1) Make sure you check them every time you get an email from amazon saying: “Review Your Monthly Subscription Delivery”. Many people ignore this and get frustrated when the toilet paper shows up at their door and they have no place to put it because they have so much toilet paper already from the last delivery.
2) Be accurate in how often you receive the item. If you really only use some item every 3 months make sure your delivery button isn’t activated for a delivery every month. Make sense?

Here are some of my subscribe and save items:

3. Jurisdictions. Major game changer. I felt like my days were consisting of arguing over who did what. So I assigned each child (except for my 1 year old) a jurisdiction that they were responsible for every day. No, I don’t have a spinny wheel to spin and get a chore. I don’t “change it up” and have them do a different one each month to make it fair. Life isn’t fair and I am sure in the future my children will have to do the same things day in and out because that’s how life is and so, they have the same jurisdiction every day.

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Ricky, age 9, has the dining room every day. Johnny, age 7, has the living room every day (and because the laundry gets dumped on the couches when clean, he also sorts the laundry and puts it in the correct rooms). Rhea, age 10, has the kitchen every day. Chloe, age 3, unloads the dishwasher every day. Charis, age 5, cleans the girl’s room (including putting all the clothes away) every day. Throughout the day I will say: “Jurisdictions everyone!” There is no confusion. They all know what that means 🙂 We automatically do them after every meal and before bed.

Love, Katie

Be sure to check out my husband’s books! Both 5 stars on Amazon!

 

My Favorite Quotes On Homemaking

Sometimes I need extra encouragement in my career as a stay at home mom. Sometimes I need extra motivation and vision and focus…especially on Mondays 🙂

It is important we view being at home as a career ladies! The Lord and our husbands are our employers. How are you doing with your time? How seriously are you taking your profession?

I wanted to share some of my very favorite quotes on homemaking and I pray they encourage you in your calling from God as a homemaker!

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“Mothers, don’t let anyone ever dupe you into thinking there’s anything ignoble or disgraceful about remaining at home and raising your family. Don’t buy the lie that you’re repressed if you’re a worker in the home instead of in the world’s workplace. Devoting yourself fully to your role as wife and mother is not repression; it is true liberation.” -John MacArthur


“The world has enough women who know how to hold their cocktails, who have lost all their illusions and their faith. The world has enough women who know how to be smart. It needs women who are willing to be simple. The world has enough women who know how to be brilliant. It needs some who will be brave. The world has enough women who are popular. It needs more who are pure. We need women…who would rather be morally right that socially correct.”
-Author unknown

“What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow.”

 -Martin Luther

“Oh that God would give every mother a vision of the glory and splendor of the work that is given to her when a babe is place in her bosom to be nursed and trained! Could she have but one glimpse in to the future of that life as it reaches on into eternity; could she look into its soul to see its possibilities; could she be made to understand her own personal responsibility for the training of this child, for the development of its life, and for its destiny,–she would see that in all God’s world there is no other work so noble and so worthy of her best powers, and she would commit to no others hands the sacred and holy trust given to her.”– J.R. Miller

“The career of motherhood and homemaking is beyond value and needs no justification. It’s importance is incalculable.” -Katherine Short

Have you checked out my husband’s book, Marriage God’s Way?

Our Current Homeschool Routine

I am 33 weeks pregnant and have five kids 8 and under. I am currently homeschooling my 5, 7 and 8 year old. On top of that I am nauseated pretty much 24 hours a day my entire pregnancy. That’s a little overwhelming for this unorganized  mama. Ok, it’s a lot overwhelming.

One time I was whining to my husband about how incompatible my personality is for being a homeschool mama. I am a visionary. A dreamer. A fly by the seat of my pants kind of gal. My husband lovingly looked at me and said: “Take all that vision and cast it into your home.” I will never forget it. I suddenly felt excited about housework and homeschooling and mothering. I suddenly had this new found motivation to be the very best visionary homeschooling mama I could be!

The other morning I was lying in bed talking to the Lord about this very conversation with my husband and asking Him to help give me vision for my home. You know what I got? A vision of a schedule. A schedule?!!! How non-dreamy is that? How non-fly by the seat of my pants is that?! Oh, but how necessary it was! You see, around 5 p.m. everyday I was wondering why only 2 out 3 kids had done their piano practice or why the house was still a giant mess or why one of my kids, once again, had not finished his paces (we use ACE curriculum and it is perfect for our family… at least right now).

I had an idea to break my day down into 30 minute increments. I just set the timer for 30 minutes (sometimes 15) and do whatever is written down for that time. Sounds so simple. Well, it is. And it’s also a total GAME CHANGER! Our house is cleaner, I am less overwhelmed, the kids are consistently getting all their school work and piano done and I am feeling more “on top of things” in general. 

Also, as a side note, we do year round schooling. Seems to work best for us for various reasons. I like to be able to take random weeks off during the year and I like to do less work 5 days a week rather than lots of work with a big summer break. I enjoy the routine of a little school work everyday and it helps the kids to not forget things if we don’t take a huge 3 month break.

So here was our schedule for today:

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Doesn’t get much simpler than that! The rest of our day is planned out on the back.

Notice our day didn’t start till 9:45? I am not ashamed. With my extreme nausea during pregnancy I am lucky to get started on my day before 10 a.m. Even with starting this late we are still able to get lots done! Each day is a little different but something that each day has in common is what I call “12 item pick up”. 12 item pick up makes me happy! 12 item pick up is my favorite! Each of the three big kids know that when the timer goes off that they each have to run around the house and put 12 things away that are not where they belong. It’s kind of sad that we can find 36 things every 30 minutes to put away! I am working my three year old into this pick up time as well by starting her with three items each time the timer goes off.

So that’s it! Nothing too complicated but sometimes complicated just means it’s more complicated. Simple is often best because when things are simple we are more likely to do them. 

So what’s your daily routine? What are some your favorite homemaking tricks that make your life easier and your home cleaner?

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Rhea working on her PACES. Creative literature writing in this picture. She has a book assigned to her and then has a workbook to fill in to make sure she is actually reading and retaining what she is reading.
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Here is Ricky working on his paces with his little sister Chloebug sitting close by.

 

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Johnny doing piano practice. Our three oldest are all taking piano lessons and have all started around the age of 4 or 5.

Have you checked out my husband’s book, Marriage God’s Way?

It’s now available on Amazon!!