5 tips to stay organized

5 ways to stay organized as a Foster Parent
1. Color Coordinate
2. Buy a planner
3. Have a spot for homework and backpacks
4. Chore list
5. Filing cabinet

I know many people panic being first-time foster parents. I did! I decided to share some ways to stay organized. I hope it helps with those who struggle with being first-time foster parents or anyone who is needing help to get organized with kids.

 

COLOR COORDINATE

Color coordinating has been a lifesaver! I purchase everything from the dollar store when it comes to baskets and totes. I buy bulk toothbrushes, and brushes off my amazon prime account and make sure they come in all different colors, plus they come cheaper that way. A visit to Walmart and they have a variety of separate color towels and wash clothes. The pens I use for my planner I purchased at Sam’s club and bought the color bundle set. When it comes to their lotion and hair product I use my label maker to put their names on the items and highlight it according to their color. It may seem like a lot of work, but the payoff is so worth it. If children leave things laying around, I don’t have to search I just look to see what color it is. I have a closet that I put everyone’s basket including Dad and I we have all our toiletries in there as well as our towel folded in the front. Our closet is located right before the bathroom, so this has been very effective when it comes to staying organized. We also noticed that new placements aren’t so lost when trying to figure out what is theirs and where it belongs.

BUY A PLANNER

I use The Happy Planner to stay organized, it has a primary calendar, and it also has the day to day planning. I have a blog all about on my page if you want to know all the details. Whoever has an appt or school functioning I use my color coordinating system to manage my planner for their events or mine. Typically try to use sticky notes for reminders throughout the day so that I can stay focused. It helps with sports, visits, projects and so much more. This organization tip helps when you get a new placement in because Those next 48 hours are hectic. So being organized right off the bat will help with a smoother transition.

HOMEWORK AND BACKPACK SPOT

If you can find a spot in your house for backpacks and homework, I will encourage you to do so. If you are not able, my suggestion to you is set a homework time so that it stays organized where ever you decide to set the kids down to do homework. In our house, we have the backpack wall. I just used command hooks to hold the backpacks up off the ground and spray painted them to the color of each child. IF you don’t want a wall of bags, my other suggestion would be a spot in their room, so it is still off the ground and organized as well. Do what works well for your family. Everyone knows that Our homework spot is our dining room table! Every kid knows that if someone is there doing their homework, it is quite a time! I have extra pencils and paper laying out every day after school just in case. I use my cooking timer during reading to time the kids. Some of my children prefer to go into their room to read which is fine the timer is loud enough for them to hear it.

CHORE LIST

Every day after school everyone has a chore, they first do their homework and typically while I am cooking dinner they will start on chores. Mothers dream to walk out of the kitchen to a spotless house, right? If only but it is the thought that counts. You usually get kids who 1. Have never cleaned 2. They had to clean for punishment 3. They hate to clean and will throw a fit to get out of it 4. Love to clean.
At our house, we use an award system, and I am not talking like do a chore, and I will buy you a video game. NO! It is more like do a task, and we will earn our way up to a dessert from McDonald’s. I don’t want to just hand my kids a treat after one duty I want them to learn that when they get older, you must work hard and then comes the gift of life. I have had some many people roll their eyes, but I feel like in my household this system works! I get asked so many times how I raise my kids to be so respectful and well mannered. I don’t want to sugar coat life even with the smallest things like chores.
I made each child a magnetic chore chart ( I plan on making a separate blog on how I made them) It is labeled Monday through Sunday each day I change out their chores. I even have a “FREE DAY” magnetic that the kids try so hard to earn. They can earn it by helping mom without being asked or helping someone else as well. Using their manners while out in public or not fighting with their siblings. There are many ways to earn the “FREE DAY” I also included an everyday side, and I have magnetics made for showers, homework, brush teeth, put on lotion, do your hair, read, etc., everyday things.
The chore list has been a fantastic organization trick because the kids know what is expected of them. They just move they’re magnetic to the “COMPLETE” box, and all I need to do is go check the list and to see what they have done. It has improved our oldest son with being more responsible which I am loving watching this boy grow.

FILING CABINET

My good ol’ filing cabinet that I am quickly outgrowing. I am going to give you a tip just buy the medium size. I bought the smallest one because in my head I thought If I don’t have the room I don’t need it, and if it becomes cluttered it is time to organize it. Wrong! I need more space for filing. Utilizing my color coordinating tip I do it in the filing cabinet as well. So, each child has their file but I forgot I own business, a house and I also have bills! I went in only thinking about the kids. I purchased a bigger one keeping my organization tip in mind don’t go to big, or it will give me a reason to keep filing till I am knee deep in a mess of clutter. I purchased all my folders on amazon prime. It seems like anything that has a bundle of colors is cheaper which helps me in the long run. I use my label maker to stay organized with the filing system. I file by oldest to youngest as well. Now when they go home, I just send them back with the whole file. Any artwork or grades anything that you want mom and dad to have. I keep the things they have drawn me or written to me, and I put all of those in a separate folder for memories. Cause man oh man it is nice to go down memory lane to see just how far these kids have come.

I hope these 5 Organization tips have given you an idea of what may work for your family. If you would like to see any of these tips in a more detailed blog or have any questions, just let me know down in the comments below

– Momma K and the Bunch

The happy planner: foster parent life

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I use Create 365 The happy planner to stay organized with our busy life.

It has helped out so much and after many buys later I am very pleased with this one.

So I ended up paying a little over $21, which isn’t bad at all considering  I purchased the planner and sticker book.

The planner includes a box calendar and individual slot dates. Multiple other little features that can be utilized as well.

The Front

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It includes 18 months, notes, goal list, birthday list and so much more.

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The date slots Begin on Monday and end on Sunday. has additional space below for notes

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has the basic calendar in the beginning of each month

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I also purchased Stickers , I bought the Mom life addition. I was excited to see what stickers were going to be in there, I personally will be purchasing other ones. Only reason why is because I unfortunately wont be utilizing majority of those stickers. I enjoyed the purpose for them and it makes the planner fun and creative as well.

The Happy Planner- Sticker book: Mom life addition

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I am hoping to have a YouTube video up soon about the planner to give you all more detail on the planner.

https://www.amazon.com/Create-365-Happy-Planner-Beautiful/dp/B01NBJKTVM/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1505761033&sr=8-5&keywords=create+365

 

 

 

#6 Tips and tricks for clothes and personal items for foster care.

Even though every new Child comes with a clothing voucher, my husband and I decided to become more prepared. When you get a 1am phone call to take a sibling group and all they have is the clothes on their back you will be thankful for these few tips and tricks!

1. Utilize Facebook sale sites, yard sales, friends and good will. Typically, people are getting rid of clothes or shoes either for cheap or free. Now I am not saying over board and collect a bunch of clothes but at least purchase some and for all ages. We have boy sizes newborn to 38 size pants and 2x shirts for our girls we have newborn to size 18 pants and 1x shirts. Extra socks, undies, and flip-flops.
2. Buy a few bins. We have most of our clothes in bins. So it is easy to access if and when we get a new placement. I have it organized by gender and size. I have a total of 6 bins. 3 for boys and 3 for the girls. None of them are full but are there just in case we receive a call. We have a closet that has extra jackets, socks, undies, diapers, wipes, tooth brushes, etc.

3. Color coordinate — I give every child a particular color, so it is easy for them to remember and easy for me to keep up with everything. Basically what that means is I love colored sharpies! I make a dot on the tags of their clothes, tooth brushes, and any personal items I give them. So they can keep up with their elements such as their hair brushes, deodorant, lotion, medicine, etc. We have a colored basket that matches their color, and they get a shelf to help keep them organized. Julian and I also have our rack and basket as well. We decided that it would be fun for everyone. We purchase the bins at the dollar store.

4. Amazon prime has been a life saver when it comes to new placement. We just order everything in bulk now, and you save money in the long run as well. Needing to purchase something now and on a budget. !DOLLAR STORE! This place has been a life saver as well.

 

5. Let the kids take the clothes you have given them. Typically, our late night phone calls to take the placements end up being a short stay. They may not show it, but those extra clothes mean more to them than you think.

6. The Biggest tip STAY ORGANIZED!!! Every two weeks I go through my cabinets and make a list of what we need. I fold and clean up anything out of place. We are on a budget, so I utilize my sources and stick to my budget when it comes to this project.

Hope these were helpful. As of right now, that is all the tips and tricks I have and if I think of anything else I will make sure to update the blog. If you all have any advice, please leave a comment down below. I would love to hear everyone’s ideas.

Have a beautiful day!!
*not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned.