Reminder of the goal:
Relationship: I will reorganize the command center in the kitchen by April 30, 2018 to help daily life be simpler and more focused so I can plan individual time with each member of the family. It will include calendars, rules and consequences, job charts, bible study, and weekly menu. (Book: Life Management for Busy Women by Elizabeth George). Ephesians 5: 15-16
This took longer than the month, which is okay. Sometimes we hit areas that resonate deeper, and for me, this was one. I ended up doing more reading on this topic, so my command center has the parts that spoke to me the most from all those readings. I also want to point out that the command center is a work in progress because my family is growing and changing. As I do more reading, this will change. When we realize something no longer works for our family, it will change.
Remember how I was Branding earlier in this series? Well, it’s back! Based on my reading, here is the command center piece by piece.
First things first, the top right hand corner is our family rules. Because I’ a school teacher, we stuck with the teacher training on rules:
- Fewer than 5
- Include following directions and cleaning up
- Include rationale (in our case, Bible verses)
Below the rules is the menu. I got information for this from The Frugal Farmwife. Elise’s eCourse, The Complete Grocery Budget, was a great read and gave me some new ideas about meal planning and budgeting. I don’t know about you, but meal planning is one of my biggest struggles — especially during school. I used to plan a month out, but then things come up or the meal that had been assigned for the day wasn’t one that sounded interesting, and by week 2, I usually had ditched the whole thing. We switched to a weekly plan and each person was assigned a day (I got two). They were responsible for picking the meal, checking to be sure we had the items or they were on the grocery list, and then making it. This has worked ok until we get into rehearsal schedules, meetings that ran late so we are behind, or life in general. Our new plan incorporates the two, plus we have meals and the necessary ingredients for a month (ok, 41 days since I like to have a bit extra around). Next step here is to figure out how to get meals prepared ahead and put in the freezer so on those crazy nights we are still eating healthy (and according to the F.A.S.T Metabolism diet).
Editor note: This picture refuses to be viewed upright. I’ll keep playing with it, but I apologize if it appears upside down.
To the right of the menu is the infamous Job Chart (dun, dun, dum music entered here). We have tried job charts several ways, still haven’t found anything that we really liked. The latest one had the jobs broken down by room, and we focused one day on each room (Monday = living room, Tuesday = kitchen, Wednesday = bathrooms, Thursdays = bedrooms, Fridays = playroom). The problem here was the same kids asked to do the same jobs and I realized I wasn’t preparing them to do all the jobs necessary in each area. The search for a new job chart that also included accountability started. I found a few sources that I completely love!
Two books I recommend (surprised?) are Cleaning House by Kay Wills Wyma and From Pampered to Productive by Debbie Bowen. No matter where you are in your journey of creating job charts, both are a good read (and refresher) with the whys, hows, and who to help kids from 18 months to graduation be accountable and productive members of the family instead of just consumers.
I got the great printables (and more information) from the Not Consumed website. I absolutely love Kim’s posts and her product! I think I mentioned before how she was the blogger who inspired me to blog. This was part of her Ultimate Family Discipleship Collection. It was AMAZING! I edited her job chart to include four rotations that the kids (C, R, K) and I will follow next year. It also lists their individual jobs that need to be done daily, family laundry schedule, and who is in charge of the meal each day.
In the blank space above the job charts, I will post our schedule. I like a schedule because it gives parameters to where we are supposed to be and helps keep some of the craziness and anxiety down. I know some people who are super strict on their schedules, but we are more relaxed. We do take time during breakfast to review the plan for the day so there are (hopefully) no major surprises.
As you may have noticed, there are two calendars. The erasable one is the current month. Each member of the family has a specific color (I’m green) so at a glance I can tell who has what going on that day. The paper calendar is the upcoming month. I also have the calendars on an app on the phones Cozi is my preferred calendar because anyone can add things to the grocery list or the To Do list. I also use the google calendar to schedule work and visitation with the big girls.
Finally, my “office” space.
For some help and inspiration, I tuned into a very informative webinar from Learn Do Become. I took a few pages of notes, and want to sign up for the classes. Staying true to what I’ve been learning, I will wait to sign up for more classes until the ones I’m currently enrolled in are completed. Recommended reading from this site is the book Getting Things Done by David Allen. My copy just came in the mail today, so it will be on my Currently Reading list by the end of the day!
Before I let you go, leave me a message about what area you have worked on, or want to work on. What are the things that have worked for you? What is still stressing you out?