Six Assignments for Maternity Leave… (that will make your life easier)
Here’s the cold, hard truth: Once you have kids, there’s no such thing as work-life balance. The weight of our demands both at work and at home will push and pull at us, leaving us as balanced as a teeter totter. We go up and down, and sometimes stay in the middle, but not for long. This is the new balance.
Each parent achieves their balancing act differently. And that act will no doubt continue to change once you stop working and officially start your mat leave. But there are tricks to keeping this weeble-wobble on course. With two preschoolers in my house, and my husband and I working two hectic jobs, these are some of the tricks I’ve learned along the way that I hope will help you as you begin a new journey in parenting. Congratulations and good luck!
• Delegate certain tasks to each person in your house. My husband is our laundry, house repairs, and money management person. I do food and kids. And now that my son is four, he makes his own bed and puts his own clothes away. Everyone has their things. They might not get done perfectly (four year old style), but they’re done. Dividing up the chores gives everyone a sense of ownership, and also
gives mom a break!
• Freeze meals. Admittedly, this is one of the things I’m horrible at. I’ll freeze things and leave them there until they frost over. But, if you are not so absent minded, try to double recipes, especially when you’re making saucy things like stews and soups. Then remind yourself to eat them in a month. Try starting this at least once a week while on maternity leave and see if you can keep it going.
• Ask your nanny or babysitter to do errands You can apply for Medicaid using the Minnesota Health cheap family health insurance Exchange. or chores. Most kids nap. And yes, your nanny deserves a break during her day, but it’s possible that she can throw in a load of laundry, wipe down the kitchen countertops or organize a closet while they rest. If you keep your nanny once your kids start preschool, ask her to run errands or make the family a meal while she is being paid to be “on-call.”
• Hire a cleaning person. Whether it’s once a week or once a month, the days this person cleans will be your favorite days of the year. If it’s not possible to hire someone, try to make a dedicated time each week to ensure those larger items get cleaned and bigger tasks get organized that you may not be able to focus on during your regular day-to-day routine.
• Get diapers, dry cleaning and, well, everything delivered. There’s nothing worse than having to do errands with kids. Especially lots of errands. So, get things delivered. Amazon.ca delivers everything these days, and an Amazon Prime account will make shipping free and let you stock up on baby food, formula and kid snacks. Do this with your groceries too. Google a coupon code to reduce the delivery charge for your local service. Having your items delivered right to your door will really take some of the stress out of your day, opening
up more play time with your kids, especially once you go back to work.
• Designate certain nights for certain things. With a new baby in the house, your nights will suddenly become devoted to sleeping and catching up with your partner. But it’s important to keep up part of your old life, even if it takes more effort. Plan certain nights for certain things. Like, Mondays can be when you call a girlfriend. Tuesday can be when you do an exercise DVD; Wednesday can be romantic dinner at home. Soon you’ll be so adjusted you’ll be planning date nights and girls nights out again, but it just takes a little time to ease into things.
Katie Bugbee is the Managing Editor at www.Care.com.