The morning routine. For some, probably those of you who work outside the home or who have school-aged children, there are certain things that MUST be done at certain times in order that everyone is where they're supposed to be at a designated time. I find this sort of amazing, that people manage to get so much done SO EARLY. Yet, I do not envy you, even though you are probably smugly blow-dried and reading blogs by nine o' clock, while I am still dealing with Pop Tart crumbs and coffee breath.
I am Bad at Mornings. Even on my good days, it's still prettty dismal, frankly. We usually get up between eight and nine in the morning (I KNOW, you hate me now) and even when I'm functioning at my peak, the whole morning routine usually isn't complete until around eleven. In theory, it doesn't seem SO bad- change two diapers, nurse one baby, feed one toddler, feed self, let dog out, dress baby, dress toddler, dress and groom self...
I think my problem is estimation. I always underestimate the time it's going to require to do certain things. Just as I generally underestimate how much it's going to cost to grocery shop per week. This is another of my pitfalls- shopping. Not even unnecessary shopping. I'm really not a big clothes or shoes person; as long as I have what I reasonably need, I'm not too tempted to buy ANOTHER pair of shoes or ANOTHER bag just because it's cute. No, my problem is just in not budget shopping for necessities very well. I never remember to use coupons, and invariably forget to buy enough of something at the cheaper big box stores (like DIAPERS) and end up having to run to CVS down the road and buy it at twice the price.
So my goal this week has been More Efficiency! Less Laziness! For example, I used to do showers in the morning, and that was usually okay, but I had to set Addy up with a movie in order to accomplish it. Lately I've been trying to shower at night to cut down on time in the mornings, and to avoid having Addy start her day with TV constantly. I mean, it still happens, but I've been trying to at least DELAY resorting to movies to entertain her.
Also, I made a list of the things we ALWAYS need, and split it up into two categories: one for produce, meat, dairy, things which are really better purchased at the local grocery store or at Meijer. The other is for hygiene stuff, paper products, baby care, cleaning products, dog food, cereal, crackers, etc. This stuff is ALWAYS cheaper at ye olde Wal-Mart (gag cough hate.) This is doubly true for diapers. I have had time to experiment WIDELY with diaper brands since having Addy, and have found that the best brand for non-leakage is... Parent's Choice! Who knew. I did a diaper run to Rite Aid the other day, forked over ten bucks for thirty Huggies, and the frickin' things leaked all over the place every.single.night. I don't know if my kids have weirdly shaped butts or what, but the cheapies work better (and also have less dye in them, I've noticed, which for some reason comforts me.)
So there you have it. Belated New Year's Resolutions, if you will (Lenten Resolutions?) to be more efficient in time/money management. May the force be with me.