Close your eyes for a minute. Remember the days in college or before kids

when “Saturday” was really just another word for “sleeping in?” Neither do we.

These days it seems that the weekends can be just as packed with activity--if not more so--than days of school and work during the week. If you want to take a stand against weekend madness and actually enjoy your few precious moments of freedom before Monday comes crashing in, like any true warrior, you’ve got to have a plan.

Here are three fail-proof time savers inspired by mommy blogger Jamie that will help you relax once Saturday comes by freeing up your energy for what matters most:

 1. Run errands during the week.

There will always be last-minute things that come up on the weekends, but if there’s things you know you’ll need--popcorn for Friday night movie night, that prescription waiting at the pharmacy, snacks for soccer practice--try to knock them out little by little during your week. 

Try to find times when you have about 20 extra minutes—like on the way to pick the kids up from school—and sneak one thing in each day. That way, once the weekend comes, your to-do list won’t be three miles long, and you can spend time with your kids, not with the cashier at the grocery store.

2. Stock a gift cabinet.

Birthday party? Baby shower? Wedding? It may seem like one of these events is hogging every weekend in your day-planner. One way to stay on top of your party schedule (and be prepared in case you forget about Aunt Ruth’s anniversary) is to keep several inexpensive gift items on hand like candles, houseware, and toys. 

It’s not a bad idea to stock up on wrapping paper and bows, either. Check out sales at craft stores and convenience stores after holidays to wrap items that can be used year-round. 

3. Divvy up cleaning duty on Saturday mornings

Saturday morning is the perfect time to get your kids involved in keeping up the house. Why? Because believe us—there is no greater motivation for kiddos than the carrot of Saturday morning cartoons. 

Whether you use TV, computer time or playtime in the great outdoors to motivate them, create a chart with rotating duties for each kid that they can check off before going on to the fun stuff on Saturdays. You’ll be teaching them stewardship and discipline while helping ease the load of weekend housework from your shoulders.

Getting the housework done first thing lets you—and them—relax the rest of the weekend at a leisurely pace.

Start using these tips and some of your own ideas to reclaim your weekends in the name of fun and family!

 

Photo Credit: Carolina Parent