Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Time Saving Tuesday: 10 Practical Time Savers

When was the last time you thought, “I just don’t know what to do with all my free time?”  Never you say?  Yeah, me either! 

We all lead such busy lives today.  With working, school, extra-curricular activities, laundry, cooking and cleaning, there is always something that needs to be done.  When I find a way to cut corners and save a little time, I am all in!  Seconds eventually add up to minutes and minutes to hours, and so forth.  So on this fantastic Time Saving Tuesday, I would like to share these 10 practical time saving tips with you.  

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said, “Time is fleeting.”

So I will not waste any more of yours… Let’s get to it!  

1.  Designate a Spot
Do not put your car keys, purse or cell phone in a different spot each night when you get home. Give those items a home; choose a spot and always put them in it.  They will always be where they are supposed to be, and you will not need to waste precious time frantically searching for them in the morning. There is nothing more frustrating than looking for the things you need when you are trying to get out the door in the morning.

2.  Get Ready the Night Before
Before you go to bed, prepare for the morning.  Have the kids pick their outfits, lay out your clothes, make lunches, pack all bags and backpacks.  Have a plan for breakfast, put coffee in the coffee maker and set the timer.  Prepare as much as you can the night before for a stress-free morning.  

3.  Secretly Blend in VeggiesHave a picky eater who will not eat their veggies? Be sneaky and hide them!  Add carrots to Pulled Pork, green beans to Spaghetti Sauce, blend healthy greens, beets or carrots into smoothies or juice.  They will never know and it will taste great to them and they will never know.  It is a Win-Win, eating veggies without the fight!

4.  Weekly/Monthly Meal Planning & Cooking
Weekly or monthly meal planning, along with once a month or week cooking can be a great time saver!  Planning your meals and cooking them once a week or month and then freezing meals in meal sized portions that you can take out and finish cooking or reheat for dinner is one of my biggest time savers.  Check out all the freezer meal recipes I have here or here.  

5.  Double The Recipe 
So when I don't have a freezer meal ready, and do decide to cook dinner, I always, always make extra to freeze.  I try to double every dinner I cook so I can freeze a meal for those busy nights that I just don’t feel like cooking, which is most of the time. Last week I made chicken with jambalaya and taco meat and froze enough to feed all 5 of us again 2 more times.

6.  Grocery Shopping
How well do you know your grocery store and where everything is located?  Get to know your store and write your grocery list according to where items are located.  It is easy to spend time backtracking for one or two forgotten items.  With a little pre-planning, you can avoid this time waster and make grocery shopping go faster.  Publix even has a list maker that tells you which aisle items are located on.  I love this little feature!

7.  Socks and Underwear
Buy each person in the household 2 small mesh laundry bags, I found mine at 
the Dollar Store.  In one bag keep all the dirty socks and underwear, and in the other all the clean.   When the dirty bag is full, throw it in the laundry and then the other empty bag becomes the dirty bag.  You will be AMAZED at how much time and heartache this saves!  No more searching for a pair of socks or undies, they are always in the same place!  This is the best $2.00 I have ever spent.

8.  Streamline Your Makeup Routine
Use a BB Cream.  These three-in-one products are well worth the money!  They moisturize, offer sunscreen and even skin tone all in one. They are less messy and time consuming than using three separate products.  

9.  Purge Weekly/Monthly/Regularly
Designate an area for things to go to charity.  Whenever you will be passing your local Goodwill, grab the items and drop them off.  Most areas have an express drop off area, and you can drive-thru and donate your items.  You can also call to see if they have pick up service.  By doing this on a regular basis, you will never have major clutter to purge all at the same time.

10.  Just Park
How many times do you circle the parking lot, searching for a space closest to the door?  Do you really save any time going around and around again and then waiting for the car to back up and vacate the perfect spot?  Park when you find a spot, it probably will take less time to walk to the door then it will to circle another time, definitely less gas, and will be a whole lot healthier for you! 

Is your favorite time saver in this list, or do you have one that you practice with your family?  I love time saving tips, please share yours!

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