I start a full time 9-5 job in 2 weeks, how will I fit everything in?!(27 Posts)
I am on my own (have been from 3 days prior to finding out I was pregnant) with dd who's 2 and a half and have worked part time up until recently where a rejig of hours has meant leaving my job to take a full time post in a completely different role.
Any experience in running a house/toddler and working full time would be greatly appreciated-time management is not my strong point. Yet.
You'll fit it in because you'll have to!
Can you afford a cleaner? If so, get one immediately. Never clean again if you can avoid it.
Make double sized dinners so you only have to cook once every couple of days.
I know you'll find it tough but 9-5 is good hours. Most FT have much much longer days than than and standard is 8.30-6 or 9-5.30 if you 're lucky.
I'm a single mum with a nearly 9 year old I work full time with nights and weekends. Firstly buy an Organised Mum Diary (I like the pocket one) it has your shopping list, things to do list and menu planner all in one place. Use all of these. If you have the pocket one it is always in your handbag.
Plan your menu so that you batch cook at weekends make huge casseroles and eat some and then freeze the rest in portion sizes. After a few weekends you have a nice variety in the freezer that you can rotate. When you finish something put it on the shopping list in your diary. I couldn't get on with shopping being delivered and prefer to shop myself, but can see how this helps a lot of people.
Sunday to Thursday evening prep everything for the next morning before you sit down to watch TV. I lay out breakfast stuff make sure school bag is ready to go.
I have someone else do my ironing, but do my own cleaning which I list in bite sized pieces on my to do list. So changing bed is seperate item to cleaning room.
This may seem a long way ahead, but write in the monthly to do sections the prezzies (b'day) that you need 6 weeks before you need them.
I am a great fan of the three Ps as you can see Planning, preparation and then finally patience. Things will go wrong you will drop balls don't beat yourself up over this you can't change the past you can change the future just learn from your mistakes.
I work full time and it is about being organised. A menu plan and online shopping work for me. I know what I am going to cook and have it set up so on nights where we have to be back out then it's a quick meal.
Buy and use a slow cooker, it's invaluable for just walking in the door and having dinner on the table. Plan your laundry so you have a wash on every day and have a to do list on the go. Mine is on my phone and ipad so I have it with me all the time.
I dont work full time but am about to increase my hours so have been thinking about this. I was going to say slow cooker too. And I have a little routine when I get in from work that involves sorting the post, doing a load of washing, a quick clean of one room and getting everything ready for the next morning.
Once a week I have a bit of time with my diary thinking about what I need to get done for when and when I will do that (eg packing for a night away).
And I make sure that I don't wear myself out and if I have a day off and don't feel like doing anything I don't. I find it means I can get twice as much fine the following day.
Find yourself the most amazing childminder! Mine cooks hot dinners for my two, so no cooking at home after work - more time for them. Do little bits of housework through the week to keep on top of it - 15 mins here and there. Online shopping is great too. You'll be fine - a routine pans out in the end.
I have just ordered the organised mum diary for. Amazon it's only £8 :-)
I would say make the most of your smart phone otherwise - I have a dozen lists on the go all the time. Online shopping is your friend - I can't hack town at weekends and it feels unfair on the dc.
Never leave pack lunches until the morning - always night before plus pack nursery bags etc.
Label everything that goes to nursery - losing stuff is annoying and time consuming. I get dishwasher proof labels online they are about £8 for piles of them
Do stuff at lunch time at work if you can - supermarket shop/pay bills etc - it's much easier with no kids!
I find getting out of the door in the am hard and getting home and feeding the dc something half decent before bed - I need a slow cooker don't I! I just don't know what you cook in it?
You have to keep on top of the stuff though. Dc have a bag for nursery, one for when they go to their dad, one for swimming plus a general changing bag and one for when I have dc2 in my own. The bags cons back, get emptied, stuff washed and re packed straight away. It's a lot easier than packing the same bag each day with different stuff. I keep what I can in the car too.
Assume you will never watch anything when it's actually broadcast but days later on catch up
Don't feel guilty about taking a day off work now and then but sending dc to nursery - you will need it!
I am a bed time stickler - the dc have to get up early and if I don't get done time to myself now and then I go a bit mental.
Put the dc and your clothes out the night before.
Check what the calpol policy is at nursery. My dc had to wait an hour with a temp because they wouldn't give it to her and I work an hour away but they would have if I pro ivied it or so e bollocks like that anyway
You have to be supremely organised. How long is your commute to work? What is your childcare arrangement? Really think about the most efficient use of your time, for example one of my colleagues lives a long way from work so she's been up for 3 hours before she gets to the office getting herself and 2 kids ready, getting to Nursery for 7.30am and then driving to work for an hour - for her it was more time efficient (and not much difference financially) to hire a Nanny.
Don't sit down to watch t.v or go on Mumsnet until all the jobs are done for the evening otherwise you'll never get up to do anything again during the evening!
Everything out and ready in the evening for the next day - your clothes, DD's clothes, DDs nursery bag (or equivalent), your work bag etc.
Buy a year's worth of Birthday cards and a few generic ones like 'congratulations' etc so that you don't have to constantly go to the shops for cards. Must admit I am v sad and also organise a years worth of pressies, mostly stuff bought in the sales and put up in the loft, or atleast I'll know what I'm going to but people and when I need to get it.
Put a load of washing on before you go out in the morning. When you get home tumble dry what you can, take it out and hang it up immediately - you won't need to iron it which takes up a lot of time.
Get a cleaner if you can afford it. Even 2 hours a week to whip through with a duster, clean the bathroom, hoover and mop would make all the difference.
Menu plan, shop online, batch cook and take out what you're going to have for dinner from the freezer and put in fridge in the morning, otherwise you'll get home, be too knackered to cook and will eat crap!
Always try and stay one step ahead of the game, if you or DD get poorly it's scary how fast even the most organised home starts to unravel.
If someone (friend, DM etc) offers to have DD for a few hours or a day please take them up on it and do not spend the day doing chores. Spend the day on yourself doing whatever is your idea of fun - exercise, shopping, movie, haircut etc. You have to have time to yourself otherwise you will burn out.
Eat properly - I got quite fatigued early on because I didn't. Prioritise health and sleep - I go to bed with the dc (eg at 7.30pm) sometimes if in really tired - no point staying up if I need the sleep and I do!
Hello my lovely, you will be fine.
Like the others say - you'll do it because you have to.
I have worked and been a single parent since my son was 5 weeks old and daughter 2 years old. We just got on with it.
Be kind to yourself. Eat well, get the asda man to deliver, make HUGE batchs of food to do in microwave.
Your house wont get messy as you wont be there to mess it up
Its all about the routine
Thank you all for your advice, to be fair I'm shitting myself as prior to this I've worked lates so dd has got used to "sleeping" until 7ish and we'll be on a 5.45 wake up once I start (half hour bike ride from nursery to work). If she slept in her room it would be fine but she comes in with me around 3am when I'm generally to knackered to keep putting her back in her bed. I already have a slow cooker and meal plan so food should be ok, cleaning is my big worry, not sure if I'll be able to afford a cleaner until tax credits are sorted-4 days at nursery and 1 with dps doesn't come cheap (I pay dps for sitting). Been a lurker until recently so hoping I'll be able to get more advice once I've started
Do you get an hour for lunch? Might it be feasible to negotiate half an hour with an earlier finish? I do this, it really helps.
Be careful abput leaving appliances on when you are out/asleep, this can be a fire risk
Half hour lunch but job is opposite a waitrose and an aldi so should be able to nip for all budget supplies
Just to add, realised dps may come across as partners?? Am very new to posting, mean parents!!
You won't need a cleaner when you are only home 2 days a week. Honestly - I thought about it when married friends started sharing a cleaner but I can do it myself and I have 2 dc. Not having a man to make a mess helps! You get in to a routine of just tweaking the house all the time and its fine. Unless you live I a 12 bedroom mansion then you might have a point :-)
I'm envious of the bike ride in the morning that would wake me up nicely exercise is something I struggle to fit in
I am really looking forward to the exercise, on the day my parents have dd am going to bus in to work and run back too, really miss it at the moment and have a big run to prepare for this year Think I need one of those diary things to log house work in, am a bit if a hoarder, have to move house a month after I start too!!
I do write housework lists partly to get the jobs done and partly to get a sense of achievement whilst cleaning.
Have a plan a, b and c for illness, bad weather, nursery closure etc.. Takes the worry out of unexpected eventualities.
Be prepared to be exhausted for the first few weeks and take up any extra offers of help during that time.
You'll be fine. Just take one day at a time and before you know it you'll be in a routine and realise you're coping well.
As already said you need to be orgainised. I have worked Full time always and now have two kids of 12 and 7 being on my own since before the youngest was born.
Online shopping as already said, getting stuff done the night before just in case you have a bad night for whatever reason, batch cooking and just doing a little bit of housework each day, saving the noisy stuff like hoovering till the weekend when kids are not asleep.
Keep on top of the washing pile by loading it the night before so you can turn it on the moment you walk back in the door at night. Only iron stuff that has to be done, leave towels, sheets, underwear etc that is not really that important and do things like Christmas shopping through the year not only to spread the cost but to avoid having to do a massive shop for presents just when you have a mountain of food shopping and stuff to also organise.
Also I find paying as much by Direct Debit as possible and having a spreadsheet running that shows when my wages go in, when monthly payments are due to be made and how much, and also changing the colour of them from black to red when the payment has gone out, or say the Child benefit has come in (as it is 4 weekly is it easy to work out then your next payments are due) means I always know how much money I have left each month.
Good luck, its not as bad as you think so long as you keep on top of stuff.
Thank you all so much for the advice, d-day on Monday, trial run of getting to work by bus (not biking the first week) tomorrow!!
I had the tax credits and child benefit paid weekly and then the wages came in every month to pay the utility/rent bills. That way there was always something in the bank for an emergency food/present/milk dash.
The saying "if you want something done ask a busy person" is sooo true. You will find a way to fit it all in because you have to. Now I am a lazy cow because I don't work I never get anything done.
Your DD will stop the 3am thing because it will annoy/be tiring for both of you. The early morning thing start will be OK. t's a great time of day and nursery is easy. Wait till you have to organise work around tiny bloody school hours...
service washes - ie quit doing your own laundry. I own a lot of cheap clothes and therefore ever 3 weeks or so send 3 binbags off to be washed, dried and folder. This costs me 29 pounds. I have not done laundry for 6 months.
This buys a LOT of time, believe me.
the second my WTC come in I transfer my monthly nursery fees over. I don´t sweat the small stuff. I cook a lot of rice or noodle based stir fry type dishes to increase veg intake for cheap and quick.
My amazing childminder does dinner, so I just have to collect them home, bath, bed. Makes life a lot easier.
First week done and we survived, my house isn't resembling a squat and we are both happy ladies
I have found I actually love my slow cooker and am considering myself as in a relationship with it though.
That's great op well done I wish my dc would eat food you can produce in a slow cooker damn them!
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