Five ways to Manage your Time as a Busy Mom

manage your time

Our lives are filled with many things. They are overflowing with relationships, commitments, responsibilities, and lists of things to do. There are the things that bring us great joy and the things that just need to get done. Some of us find ourselves going to work every day, others of us are working from home and some are staying home being with our kids. No matter where we find ourselves in the spectrum, we all have a different form of busy. And if we let it, busy can really rob from us. It can rob our passion, our contentment, our gratitude, and the little moments of delight that sneak into our days just waiting to be seen.

So, how can we manage our time? How can we manage our time in such a way that our days feel more energizing, more whole and with more room for beauty?

manage your timeIt is all about the calendar.

Write down every appointment and every commitment on your calendar! Place it somewhere everyone can see whether it be digitally or a physical copy. Plus, this will put to end the countless questions about what is happening when and put your mind ease as you get it all out.

Outsource.

Think about things that you can ask other people to do. Whether that be hiring someone to help you like an assistant, mother’s helper or if it is getting your children involved in the housework, you don’t have to do everything! You can bring other people on to share the work.

Set boundaries.

Be really clear on what your boundaries are. What relationships are most important to you to invest in? Where do you want to truly be spending your time? What do you really value? What are the non-negotiable? Knowing these things will help you say no to the extra and stay committed to what matters most.

manage your time

 

Use the Internet.

The Internet can be a wonderful place and it can truly be a gift to the busy life. Between online banking, paying bills, online shopping, finding a job, checking in with friends, and staying on top of what is going on in your kid’s school; you can get a lot done right from your desk! Utilize all the goodness it has to give.

Decide what’s important.

At the end of the day, it is really about determining what is most important to you. Decide what you really want to focus on and what is of high-value in your life. Rearrange so those things always come first and don’t get sacrificed on the altar of things that aren’t as important.

Breathe and enjoy the moments that you’re in. These days we live can be such a manage your timereminder of how beautiful and breathtaking life really is.

~ Karen Byker is a Professional Photographer in Grimsby, Ontario, Canada. With four little ones, a growing photography business and a loving husband who enjoys his job, she knows how it feels to be busy. It’s her goal to provide clients with an amazing photography experience, gorgeous portraits they can hold in their hands, and a little time away from the every day. At her photography sessions, clients bond with their children, pause life for an hour, connect with each other and she documents it all, creating family love stories.

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Mother ease Expert Series | Cloth Diapers Niagara

Cloth Diapers Niagara

Welcome!

Welcome to the first issue of the Mother ease Cloth Diapers’ Expert Series! I am so excited to be able to provide you with all of the tips, tricks and insider information that will make cloth diapering a breeze. This is just a quick hello and introduction to prepare you for the kind of information you will be getting from me over the next few weeks. I can’t wait to share my knowledge and educate the next generation of Cloth Diapering Experts all around the world.

Your new baby will bring a lot of changes to your home and lifestyle, particularly if this is your first baby, but also even if it’s a second, third or even sixth baby! There will be an adjustment time as you get to know one another. As new parents we tend to anticipate and over think what we need to be “ready” when the baby comes. We get all kinds of advice from well-intentioned family and friends. What we need to keep in mind is that life is easier when you don’t over-complicate or clutter it. Try to keep things simple, it will free up your time so you can spend it doing what you believe is best for your family.

Cloth diapering is a growing trend, but chances are no one you know even uses cloth diapers or those that have don’t recommend them. Regardless, you may still feel that cloth diapering is something you want to investigate and know more about. The internet is full of information, and much of it is conflicting and confusing. Everyone says their advice is the best. Somehow you need to cipher through all of the information available and decide for yourself what the right diapering system is for you and your baby.

Meet the Mother ease Expert

Cloth Diapers NiagaraI am Erika Froese, founder and co-owner of Mother ease. With over 30 years experience in the use and design of cloth diapers, I can confidently say that I am a proven source of knowledge relating to the use, care and design of cloth diapering systems.

I am the mother of five (now adult) boys and the grandmother of 7 beautiful grandchildren, giving me over 33 years of cloth diapering experience. Of course, cloth diapers have changed over the years, but I’d like to claim responsibility for many of those changes.

When I began cloth diapering my own children, I was unhappy with the options available. So I used the knowledge I gathered from years of cloth diapering to fix the flaws everyone just seemed to accept. I educated myself in what is required of a cloth diaper to make it user-friendly, what properties of fabric and its technology contribute to quality diapers and created functional leak-free designs that work. After doing my research and patenting my own designs, we opened Mother ease in 1991.

What you can expect from the Expert Series

It is my pledge to fully equip you for a successful cloth diapering routine. Our Expert Series will help you better understand all aspects of cloth diapering, from why you should choose cloth over disposables, how cloth diapers really work and how to care for your cloth diapers to maximize their life.

When we are through, you too will be an expert! I will make sure you are fully prepared to make the best choice for you and your precious new baby. And for those of you who have already opted for cloth, I’m sure you will learn some helpful tips to make your routine even easier!

Before I close, there is something I want you to keep in mind about diapering. Your baby is going to spend a lot of time in diapers. In fact, your baby will spend all of their time in diapers! You may spend a lot of money on the crib or the car seat or the stroller, but nothing will be used as much as their diapers. Diapers are what your baby will wear from the moment they’re born until the day they’re potty trained. They don’t have to be cloth, they can be disposable. But when you stop to consider just how much time your baby will be wearing diapers, it’s worthwhile spending some time researching and carefully considering what is going to work best for you and your new baby.

Once you decide which diaper system you want to use, you will quickly work out a routine that will be as natural to you as falling in love and caring for your new baby.

Be sure to watch the blog for the next issue of the Mother ease Expert Series, coming soon! Or, click below to get Expert Series reminders and information sent straight to your inbox so that you can refer back whenever you need to!

 






Teaching Kids Financial Responsibility | Niagara Region Money Coaches

“From the Mouths of Babes…”

I have a teacher friend who did me the favour of asking some questions to her Grade 3-4 students… The responses provide some wisdom for us all:

Q1: “When do you know you’re rich?”

From one: “When you have fancy houses, fancy clothes, and a fancy car.”

From another “I consider $50 rich because it’s more than $10 or $20.”

Q2: “If you had $100,000, what would you do with it?”

From one: “An i-pod, a laptop, house decorations, and my two favourite books ‘Amelia Rules’ and ‘Rainbow Magic.”

From another: “Most of it I would donate to poor people who don’t have food.”

Q3: “What are the best things money can’t buy?”

From one: “Money can’t buy your family or your love.”

From another: “Friends and family because they don’t have price tags on them.”

I had the opportunity to teach a “financial literacy” class to grades 7-8 that provided me additional insights. You’ll never guess how they answered the question “Can someone have TOO MUCH money?” The class quickly agreed that yes, with too much money you wouldn’t know who your friends are, you wouldn’t know who to trust, and being able to buy whatever you want isn’t very healthy. What?? Is this really the entitlement generation of greedy ungrateful kids, or has the media misled us; having us believe this next generation blindly wants for everything and has their noses on screens all the time?

Kids are far more insightful than they’re typically given credit for. Let me give them their dues. Being somewhat media-bound means they’re also media-savvy. They are also smart shoppers and know a deal when they see it, partly because they have more money than the generations before them had. And don’t get me started on how their brain neurons are connecting like no generation before them, thanks to the technological complexity they are exposed to early on.

Teaching kids financial responsibilityThat’s why I’m a big fan of starting kids out on an allowance as early in life as possible. As Barbara Coloroso says, “The best time to start giving your children money is when they will no longer eat it.” When you give your child their weekly allowance, encourage them to split it up into 3 jars or envelopes which together you can design and label: ‘Give’, ‘Save’ and ‘Spend’ (and have them think about money IN THIS ORDER).

I believe it is important for children to ‘experience’ each of these categories, and to start by allocating allowance money to each of these categories each and every week.

Make giving a personal experience. Have your child decide what charity or cause they want to give to. It could be as simple as giving a coffee to a homeless person, donating food to the Food bank, or donating money to a charity, church, or foundation they feel strongly about. Let them decide how much to give. The amount doesn’t matter as long as your child is learning what their gift of money can do for others, and they will benefit from an experience that will nurture a generous character (of time, talents and resources) over time.

Make saving for the future automatic. It is a good idea for children to save, just as adults do – and the sooner the better. Saving part of one’s income is a wonderful habit to form in the formative years. The power of compound interest truly is the 8th Wonder of the World and the earlier children are able to automatically save some of their money towards the indefinite future the better off they will be as adults when it is harder to start this money-savvy habit.

Allow your children to spend the rest! There are many important lessons to be learned when it comes to spending, and typically a child must experience them to learn from them. Understanding trade-offs between price, value and quality are best taught in the grocery store. Talk to your children about the decisions you are making with your money when you shop. Then let them take personal accountability for their shopping decisions, and remember mistakes are OK. In fact, when they make a mistake, don’t jump in and solve it for them – better they learn from a mistake early on with $10 (and realize Mom or Dad won’t always save them), than expect a bail-out when they make a $10,000 mistake later in life.

Our Guest Contributor Trevor Van Nest, B.Comm. (Hons.), CFP® Owner/Founder of Niagara Region Money Coaches with offices in Newmarket and St. Catharines, Trevor offers Financial Coaching and Financial Planning Services.