Prepping for the Work Week

Parenting, no matter how you do it, is very hard. Maintaining everyone’s schedule, meal planning, and just the simple idea of what to wear can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. I am a working mother during the school year, and it can be challenging. And as a high school theatre teacher and director, when we get close to opening night {which is next Thursday for me!} – the days get longer and the planning needs to be even more precise. In fact, if I don’t prep and plan, life becomes much harder!

Over time, I have found that there are things I can do over the weekend or the night before that really ease the stress of the day.

Prepping for the Work Week

Before the Work Week Starts:

  • Meal plan. My family does not like to eat out during the week if we can avoid it, and we like to eat as healthily as possible too. So if we know we will be home three out of the five weeknights, we make sure to plan those meals.
  • Grocery shop. We usually shop on the weekend mornings when there aren’t a ton of people at the grocery store, and we tend to buy everything we will need for the upcoming week too.
  • Wash, cut up, chop, and prep. I do that to all the produce when I get home, and then I put them in plastic bags – ready to go for the week. If one recipe I am working on calls for a cup of cooked quinoa or ground turkey, oftentimes I will cook that ahead of time to make preparing my recipe during the week much easier.
  • Write out the schedule for the week {including dinners}. We have a dry erase weekly schedule on the side of our fridge, and I will fill that out each Sunday with all the details we will need for the upcoming week.
  • Talk. My husband and I talk over the week to make sure we know what lies ahead and to make sure we are on the same page.

Prepping for the Work Week

Before the Work Day:

  • Pack kid’s lunch. We have the Dr. Sear’s Nibble Tray, and it perfectly fits a balanced meal for Kennedy, my 22-month-old.
  • Pack my breakfast and lunch. I try to avoid processed breakfasts at all costs, so I will usually prepare overnight oats and eat it with fresh fruit. I also pack a salad {I keep a bottle of salad dressing at work} and leftovers from the night before for lunch. I even prep the coffee, setting it to brew right before I need to leave in the morning. I’ll set out my Tervis tumbler {this thing really helps me drink water throughout the day!} and coffee cup, ready to be filled with ice water and coffee. I put it all in a plastic grocery bag and set it in the fridge so in the morning I can grab and go.
  • Pack kid’s school bag. My husband is usually in charge of this one. He fills out the daily sheets, packs Kennedy’s diapers, and any other necessities.
  • Set out my outfit and accessories.
  • Shower. I am totally not a morning person, and any time I can sleep in the morning – I will sleep. On nights I need to wash my hair, I will give myself a nice blowout so there’s less time to spend on it in the morning too. {I have trained my hair to go without shampooing to every two days – now that saves time!}

Other Things to Stay Organized:

  • Keep a family Google calendar. We have one where both my husband and I will enter in all of our schedules. He will enter in where he will be for work, I’ll enter in rehearsal times, and we put in every additional school holiday Kennedy has. At any point, I can pull it up and see what things look like for the week.
  • Ask for help. Your family and friends like seeing you and your kids. Heck, we’ve even had the elementary-aged school neighbors come over and play with Kennedy so my husband could take a work call.
  • Set reminders on your phone. I can’t tell you how often I tell Siri on my iPhone to remind me to do something at a certain point in the day. So many things to remember, and it’s so easy just to tell my phone to remind me to do it!

So tell me, moms – how do you prep for the week? Whether it’s you or your partner at work {or both!}, what things help keep you organized?


  1. Sooo many great tips! I need to take on one of these a week (first up – family calendar!!), so hopefully I can have it together for 2014. Ha!!!

  2. I tried to get my family to do a calendar, between band practices, union meeting and workshops I have no clue who is going to be home when. The jerks laughed at me.


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