When I had my first son, I took a year off maternity leave from teaching school. As the year was coming to an end, I considered going back part time. Once we figured in daycare, we decided it was not even worth trying to work part time. My husband was working as a full time firefighter in 24 hour shifts that changed every week and so the lack of consistency did not pair well for me returning to work. Years passed and that came with many changes including a second child, a move, and my husband retiring from the fire department. I started back to work on a very part time basis when my daughter was in preschool and this year have started to substitute regularly. My husband is fixing up a foreclosure and I am spending any non teaching time helping out over there while trying to balance out the house, kids, and dog in between. Some days I am exhausted both physically and mentally, but the kids are still here and I need to press on.
I need some tips and short cuts on how all those working parents are managing it all!
So far the biggest saver has been, meal planning and prep!
One day a week I make a big pot of soup which covers my lunches as well as my daughter’s lunches since she will not eat sandwiches. It is cheaper than lunch meat and much more filling.
When you have 45 minutes to eat dinner, do homework, and get dressed for soccer practice the food needs to be set when we walk in the door! The crock pot is the best answer here. I prep it the night before and as long as I remember to get it set in the morning, we are in luck after school.
The last trick is to get as much meal prep done ahead of time as possible. Easy ideas for this are casseroles, but unfortunately my husband is a casserole snob. Luckily, he will eat baked ziti!
So what are your tricks for balancing work and home life? Up next for me keeping my house clean, who am I kidding…