One month ago I started a new regime. I would harness technology, ring fence my time and become that paragon of perfection – an organised mum.
Oh I know that I should be able to do this naturally, while simultaneously helping one child with his homework, ironing second child's school shirt, stirring tea and scheduling work, being a fabulous wife and arranging to meet up with friends for coffee.
But I'm human. I can't (or at least not without help). I believe in honesty and I believe there are about a million other things I could be rubbish at so I'm not too bothered. Still, being organised would be nice. So how did I get on?I was lucky enough to have an online time management session with the super organised Nadine Hill. She went through a typical day and gave me a plan of action that would allow me some breathing space and to make better use of my time.
Her tips included scheduling work tweets, getting my computer to ping me when it's time to do the online shop, working in the mornings to allow afternoons for some free time and getting to grips with the laundry a family of seven generates by using one mesh bag for each child's underwear and socks.
I relished her tips, partly because they were all aimed at me. When you're a mother and giving all the time it is nice to have a bit of attention focused on you and not of the "ugh, not shepherd's pie" variety.
But I have to confess I haven't accomplished all of Nadine's tips. I don't think voice-recognition software is for me and I keep forgetting about ring fencing my time and working til 12. It is very hard when the garden beckons.
So what has worked for me? It is the simple things that have been easy to implement, such as the shopping list on the fridge door, the mesh bags, scheduling tweets, making my computer ping at me.
I've been using my computer more in my organisational quest after discovering that I had a hitherto undiscovered love of spreadsheets.
Copying another idea of Nadine's from her website, I've been busy adding all the relatives' birthdays and will, come next month, have a quick look to see who I need to buy cards for (it may take some time, my husband has a large family).
Seeking out tips like that from the web has become a bit of a favourite of mine, although I'm aware this could easily be a procrastinating ploy.
Are you organised? Do you have any tips or favourite websites to share?