How to Keep Your Family Organized: Tips to Keep Life Running Smoothly
No matter the size of your family – big or small – life can get pretty hectic. Between balancing schedules and trying to keep everyone fed and clean, it’s easy for things to get a little chaotic. That’s why it’s important to have some family organization tips up your sleeve!
Keeping life organized might seem impossible when you have work, chores, sports practices and games for the kids, homework, appointments, and a million other things. Luckily, there are quite a few organizational tips and tricks to help you keep your home and family members organized.
In this post, we will discuss ways to keep your family organized with calendars, schedules, meal planning, chore charts, reminder apps, and more. With a little bit of effort, you can keep your family life running smoothly!
Tips for Family Organization
There are a lot of ways to keep track of everything going on in your life, your spouse’s life, and your kids’ lives, but here are our top tips to help you stay organized and create an organization system that works for the entire house.
One of the most important tips when it comes to family organization is keeping a calendar. When it comes to a large family (or even a small one), a calendar is a necessity.
Keeping a calendar for your family will help everyone know what is going on at any given time. You can write family events like birthdays, anniversaries, vacations, family outings, and parties.
You can also keep track of individual family members’ appointments or activities: your daughter’s soccer games or practice schedule; the day your son has a special project due; when you have a check-up at the doctor’s office… and the list goes on!
Organizing a calendar is a necessity for keeping the home running smoothly!
SHOP CALENDAR OPTIONS
Make a command center
So “command center” might be a weird thing to call it, but you basically just need a communal space that has the calendar. The kids need access to that too, so keep your family calendar in a space that is easy to access.
You can keep a planner or binder, or just a massive calendar on the wall, but make sure both you and the kids can write important activities, appointments, friends’ parties, and school information (like parent-teacher conference, late start, early release, etc.) on the calendar.
One of my favorite tips to help you keep your calendar organized is to color-code your calendar. Highlight school functions in blue, doctors appointments in green, fun parties in pink, sports functions in yellow… whatever works for you! It makes it a lot easier to stay organized as you can just glance at the calendar and see what category today’s events and appointments are in.
You could also color code by child! Keep all appointments and activities for you in one color, your spouse in another, and your children in their own colors as well. Find which way suits you, and your calendar will already go a long way to organize your family.
When I say schedules, I’m not referring to the bigger things that would go on the calendar. I mean that you need to organize your morning routine and daily schedules in the home. Have you ever had a child running late for something but they can’t get in the bathroom because their sibling is using it?
If you have a large family, it’s easy for the bathroom, laundry, and other household schedules to get crazy. Here are a few bathroom organization ideas in regards to scheduling.
Kids Daily Schedules
Teaching kids how to adhere to a daily schedule (or a checklist) is a really important task to teach them. Not only that, but it really helps your house run smoother.
Having a daily schedule for kids can really help them to know what to expect for the day and give them consistency.
This might not work for every family, and if you have plenty of bathrooms in your home, then you might not even need to worry about it. But if you have a large family and limited bathroom space, you might want to consider using a bathroom shower schedule to keep things running smoothly.
Implementing a bathroom schedule for your children can help teach them about time management and responsibility. If each family member knows when it’s their turn for a shower, and it’s scheduled based on when they have to leave for school or go to bed, it will help keep everyone organized and hopefully minimize bathroom conflicts.
You don’t have to be too strict about the timing or track it to the minute – just make sure when you’re going over what events your kids have that week, you discuss what time each child should be ready by and help them create a schedule for their shower time.
The same goes for laundry! When organizing your schedules for the week, figure out when is the best time to do laundry.
If your children are older and do their own laundry, or even if you just have to do multiple loads throughout the week, creating a schedule for laundry will help keep the chore from taking over your day. It will also ensure that you don’t have a white shirt to wash at the last second, but a load of darks is already in the washer.
(Okay, so that might still happen, but hopefully, it will happen less with a schedule.)
It’s super common to get behind schedule with any sort of cleaning but the trouble with falling behind on your cleaning is that it just makes it harder to clean the next time. So it’s really important to keep up with the cleaning because in the end, it truly does make your life easier and living in a clean, tidy home (within reason) can significantly improve your home and family life.
A cleaning schedule can make a HUGE difference in your life!
If you are in the process of trying to teach your kids (or your husband!) how to clean different areas of your house you know that it’s no easy task. Having a specific cleaning list for each area really lets a lot of pressure off of you so that your family members know exactly what to do!
You can even tape the checklists onto the back of the door so your family doesn’t have ANY excuses when it comes to knowing what to do.
Shop Cleaning Checklists
Another of my favorite organization tips for keeping life organized and keeping the house clean is to implement a chore chart. A chore chart is a great way to visually see what needs to be done and by who.
You can either keep it simple with just two people or have one for each family member with specific tasks assigned. This is a great way to teach children responsibility at an early age!
What chores should you assign?
Keep your chores age-appropriate, of course, which might mean that some of the chores are just to put away their stuffed animals or organize their own room or space. As they get older, you can add things to the chore chart like cleaning off the paper clutter on the counter, folding up the kids’ clothes when they get out of the laundry or sweeping the floor after dinner.
If you have a large family, you can easily think of a few different chores and have each child do one or two a day. I don’t think you need to make up time-consuming or difficult chores for a child to become responsible, just easy tasks they can accomplish to help clean up a mess will work.
You can have things that are always expected – like keeping their room clean, tidying up their bed space, having clothes put away, etc. Then just add in a daily task like wiping down the table after a meal.
It might seem small, and often might not even seem helpful, but it really will go a long way to help get teach kids about responsibility. With kids involved, they will learn how important it is to pick up their mess and keep the house organized.
Shop Kids Chore System Printables
We’ve talked before about meal planning, but it definitely has to be included when discussing family organization. If you want a more comprehensive look at how to meal plan, you can check out those posts, but here’s the gist of it.
To meal plan, you want to start with family schedules. Who will be home at what time? How many people will be eating at home each night? Are there evenings where you only have 30 minutes in between other activities to eat?
If you’ve already gone over your weekly schedule, then you can plan a weekly menu and see what nights you need a quick meal and what nights you might have more time.
Then, using that information, you can make a shopping list and plan meals. When you’ve planned ahead on what meals you want, it’s way easier (and a lot less stressful!) to cook each night. Meal planning is one of my top tips for a reason – it will help you manage your time so much better.
With so many things going on, it can be easy to let something fall through the cracks. Even with a calendar or schedule set in place, it’s easy to forget about a bake sale or those cleaning supplies you needed at the store.
That’s where reminder apps come into play.
Using reminders is a great idea to help you keep track of all the things you need to do throughout your day. Whether it’s a phone notification, an email reminder, or even just a sticky note on your bathroom mirror, setting reminders for yourself is a great way to make sure you don’t forget anything.
Do you need to buy more cleaning supplies? Make a reminder on your phone. Do you need to go through your kid’s clothes this weekend and donate some or put them aside as hand-me-downs? Make a reminder.
Whether it’s setting an alarm or reminder on your phone, hanging a sign on the wall in your room, or to-do lists on the refrigerator door, creating a system for reminders is a great way to make sure you don’t forget about anything you need to do.
It’s always important to plan ahead, especially if you have a large family since you’re planning ahead for multiple people. Have you ever had one of your children tell you that they have a birthday party to attend tomorrow, and you haven’t gotten a present yet? Yeah, not a fun feeling.
Planning ahead is an important aspect in organizing your family’s schedules. There are lots of ways to plan, but I like to keep a storage space full of last-minute gifts.
When there’s a sale on kids’ toys or board games, I buy a few and set them aside. Then I have things prepared for birthday parties, housewarming parties for different families, or any upcoming holidays.
This also works with supplies! Get extra cleaning supplies, shampoo, toothpaste – you name it – and store it somewhere so you won’t run out. Then you can just replace that later on, and you always have a backup.
That’s one of my best tips to stay ahead of things! Store gifts and extra supplies in a closet in the house so you’re never out of something when you really need it! This can also help you save money since buying in bulk is usually cheaper.
Keep Your Family Life Organized
Families can be chaotic and homes can be a mess, with school and work and other activities going on. It can be really hard to manage everything!
I hope these tips can help you realize that while it requires a lot of work, organizing your family’s schedules is definitely doable. There are a lot more ways to organize, but this should get you started!
Once you have planned ahead and made schedules, you can rest easy knowing you’re organized for anything. Now you can just have fun with your family!