By midday, like most days, my brain aches. It’s full. For the rest of the day, it will not hold on to one more thing or make one more decision.
There’s the grocery list, after school events, my mother’s doctor appointments or googling the list of 20 things my father has asked me to google because “I’m so much better at it.”
Note to self: must remember that my son wants shepherd’s pie for dinner. What about the name of the Pokemon he’s aching to catch? Can I remember to remind him, for the twenty-seventh time, to check to see if he left his water bottle at school? Or will I just give up?
What if I told you that I’ve found a way to save time and money even when your brain is full..
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With all that I’ve got going on, keeping up with daily tasks feels overwhelming. For the last eight years (yes, that coincides precisely with how long I’ve been a mother and no, I don’t think it’s a coincidence), my mantra has been “If it isn’t written down, it’s not part of my reality…you’ve been warned.”
As an attorney, I had a bizarrely organized cacophony of sticky notes posted everywhere. The difference then was, those sticky notes were my backup system. All the information really was in my brain.
But here’s the weird part. While I can’t always keep track of everything every day, I can remember some REALLY bizarre and useless stuff! For example, I know the name of the wallpaper pattern that was in my playroom as a child. Posey Plaid. Don’t google that or you might start screaming “MY EYES! MY EYES!” and you might curse me for things you can’t unsee.
Posey Plaid? I got ya’ covered. But if you ask me to tell you who replaced our hot water heater last month? I might get that deer in the headlights look, tilt my head to the right, and ask you why we needed it replaced.
I have three things that I do routinely to help me save time and money even when my brain is full.
First Tip: Where to Store Things
First, I organize things in my home not by “similarity,” but by task. In other words, for the boys’ bedtime, I have a small bedtime “box” that has everything I need in it for bed. No more running to the bathroom for this, my bedroom for something else (nail clippers, for example). Everything I need to put the boys to bed is in one tiny box next to their beds. Clever, right?
Or when I make oatmeal in the morning, what I need is in one cabinet together and not necessarily where you might expect things to be. So the raisins, oatmeal, and cinnamon are there right together to the right of the stove.
Second Tip: Don’t Rely on a Full Brain
Second, for reals. If it is going to exist in my world, it needs to be written down. That is just my currently reality and I’ve learned to embrace it. Thank you, “Notes” app on my phone. I love cute little lists for different things as well as planners and organizers. I also just use a good ole’ fashioned method many times as well!
Third Tip: Systems To Do Things Automatically
But the truth is, there is so much to keep up with that I decided I needed help. And since a butler isn’t in my budget, I’ve enlisted help in the form of “systems” that put some of my tasks on autopilot. That’s right – with little or no effort on my part…they just function.
For things that I need on a regular basis – like paper products, lotion, or dishwasher tablets – I calculate how much I need in a month and pre-order for automatic delivery to my doorstep. AND, many items are less expensive than shopping at my local store. PLUS, they carry many brands that I can’t even find at my local store. Crazy, right?
So my system for these items is called Grove Collaborative. Grove Collaborative is a FREE on-line service that lets you select items that you need each month while you are snuggled up on your sofa. Prices are super competitive and I definitely save money overall. So Grove Collaborative saves me money!
It actually gets better. Grove Collaborative has collected the very best non-toxic cleaning, household, and personal care products. Eliminating toxins in our home is paramount to me! So now that I groove with Grove, I no longer have to spend hours researching ingredients that I can’t pronounce. I don’t have to make multiple trips to my local store. And I don’t ever run out of the items that I keep on my order from Grove. So Grove Collaborative saves me time!
Finally, I also make many of my own products at home. Grove Collaborative has the items I need to make my own products. And, I always want to have non-toxic backup products at home for when I just don’t get around to making my own for a couple of weeks. (Cuz, yeah, that happens sometimes.)
Every month you can update the contents of your shipment or the date that you want it shipped. Oh – and in case you’re wondering if the shipping expense makes it a bum deal? FREE SHIPPING is available through the VIP program which provides you with free gifts five times a year (like soy candles that burn for 70 hours or Ms. Meyers cleaning products – you know, awesome stuff!) PLUS free shipping on every monthly order for only $39.99 a year!
So how does this work?
- Click here to sign up with Grove Collaborative for free and your mind will be blown. They will ask you a couple simple questions to get to know you and to suggest products that you will love!
- You are free to change what is in your order or the shipping date any time you wish;
- Reminder e-mails are sent to you before your order ships;
- You can cancel anytime you like with no hassle. Grove Collaborative is all about NO HASSLE!
- Returns are refunded 100% and Grove Collaborative will even pay the return shipping fees!
These are three of my best tips and systems to keep me both functional and sane while raising two young boys! I hope these ideas help your full brain stay sane!