Coming home from a long day to tired and hungry kids is draining. Coming home to a house that needs cleaning makes it worse. My weekends are precious. Personally, my husband and I don’t want to spend half our Saturday cleaning the house. Thanks to Milly’s Maids in Hamilton my house is clean every Tuesday. Some people may think having a cleaner is a luxury but by factoring it into the household budget, at $30/hour it’s certainly affordable. It’s also a great job for a student. However, I have to admit that with three boys and one still a toddler, by Tuesday night I want Milly’s maids back again.
2. Order your groceries onlineJust like you don’t want to spend half your Saturday cleaning, you don’t want to spend the other half at the supermarket. Countdown Online is my weekly go-to. Every Wednesday night I sit down and plan our dinners for the following week (Mon – Sun). I then place my Countdown order and pick it up Thursday afternoon so the pantry is full over the weekend. I do go to the green grocer and butcher on top of this, but I quite enjoy looking at what fresh produce is available!
3. Become an expert plannerOk, I might take planning a bit too far, but then as Director of Strategy at HGB, planning is what I do. Plus, without a plan I’d be screwed.
Every Wednesday, my kikki.K planner is filled out with our weekly meal plan, the hours we have childcare, any events we’re attending, and a dinner date at mums (thank god for mum!). I then order my groceries from Countdown Online based on what I’ve planned we’ll eat. Sometimes I’ll plan the kid’s lunches at this time, but generally just dinners. At work, I have PaleoMe meals on hand in the freezer for the days I don’t have lunch sorted.
4. Cook up a stormI like a varied diet, and it’s something I want to ensure my boys have too. But don’t get me wrong. I’ll eat dinner leftovers for lunch the following day. Leftovers in a house full of boys you ask? Absolutely! That’s because instead of cooking 500gm of whatever the recipe says, I’ll up it to 1kg. I also prep dinner the night before as well as cooking a couple of dinners on a Sunday to see us through the week. Let’s just say, it makes for some very creative meals when you’re eating pulled pork for the third night in a row.
5. Make lunches at nightThis may not apply to those with older kids, but with boys aged 8, 5, and 2.5 I still make their lunches. I want to fuel my boys with good food that keeps them focused in the classroom and gives them energy for their activities after school. As we avoid a lot of processed food, it isn’t a matter of grabbing a muesli bar and a packet of chips. Instead, I prepare wholesome lunches for them each evening, usually while we’re tidying up after dinner. Fruit, veg, main and a sweet. Done.
6. Leave the laundryYou can imagine the amount of washing we go through as a family of five, particularly with three active boys. But one thing I’ve learnt is not to try and do the washing in the morning. Sure, being able to hang it out on the line, so it dries in the warm breeze of the day would be nice, but there simply isn’t the time. The school drop off and morning meetings take priority. Our washing machine has a delayed start. We set the timer and deal to it in the evening.
7. Exercise while everyone is asleep“How do you find time for exercise?” is a question I often get asked. My answer: get up before everyone else does! Our wellbeing is incredibly important so make time for it. I see my regular CrossFit Taurus morning crew at 5.30am on weekdays.
This bunch is the older crew, most have kids and work (it’s the young ones with no families that go to the 5.30pm session each night). We do look like we just rolled out of bed because, let’s face it, at 5.30am you want to set your alarm for as late as possible.
For me, CrossFit and Yoga are my two go-tos. CrossFit gives me physical and mental strength. I don’t want to keep up with my boys, I want to challenge them. Swimming at Surf Club with the kids over summer, running up Mt Paku in Tairua for King of the Mountain, handstand and handstand walking competitions at the park – bring it on!
As a mum to three boys, I’m proud to show them what females can achieve.