Friday, March 2, 2012

{printable} family schedule + a weekly planner :: making time

Are you a schedule kind of person? I am. I love having a schedule because I am very easily distracted and extremely good at procrastinating. Instead of trying to deny those things, I find what works to help keep me on track, and that my friends, is a schedule. A full on schedule.

Here is what my schedule looks like {before I fill it up with all our stuff}

I am a big believer in that you will never FIND time, you have to MAKE time. I make time for all the things that need doing, and all the things that are important for each member of this family by popping it onto our schedule. We're always tweaking it and changing it to suit, sometimes something doesn't work or it needs to be shifted. It's never set in concrete, it's not always followed to the letter, but for us it is a great guide on what should be being done each day, and helps our household run more smoothly. So what do I put on the schedule? Lots of things!

Household chores:

I designate certain days for certain chores. This helps me not feel overwhelmed by cleaning EVERYTHING in just one day or never feeling on top of things.
For example:
Mondays: Dust, Vacuum + Mop
Tuesdays: 2 chore items from the list
Wednesday: Bathrooms + laundry
Thursday: 2 chore items from the list
Friday: 1 chore item from the list

* 'the list' is a list of chores I have that include jobs that don't necessarily need to be done on a weekly basis, but can get overlooked and then become a bigger job than it needs to be such as cleaning the exhaust vents in the house, the glass + windows, spot cleaning the walls, de-clutter magazines + junk mail, sweep front porch, wipe stainless steel appliances, clean the fridge, clean oven, etc

I try to keep on top of the kitchen and family areas everyday by doing the following
Stack / unstack dishwasher
Clean kitchen bench tops and wipe down cabinet doors if needed {i don't have a lot of cabinet doors to clean in the kitchen so literally only takes me 4 minutes to wipe them all}
Wipe down dining table {haha who am I kidding this is like 5 times a day, not once!}
Sweep floor {also like 5 times a day}
Pack away playroom
5 minute sweep of the house for any items that need to be put back in their home {shoes, hats, toys, books, etc}
All this cleaning stuff gets popped into the 'morning' part of my planner - when I usually only have one sweet babe at home with me.

I also have specific days for laundry. I have a laundry basket in each of the kids rooms, one in the actual laundry and one in the master bedroom.
I wash Noah's clothes on Wednesday and Saturday for example. When I wash his stuff on Wednesday it means we will have enough clean uniforms to last the rest of the school week, and I throw his sheets in with this load too as I'm really not fussed about keeping them separate. I wash his towels in with the rest of his laundry on Saturday.
The laundry basket in the laundry houses all our tea towels and other cleaning cloths we've used. These all get washed in one load during the week in which I often add a bath mat or two as well.
I try to fold and put away the laundry on the day it is washed.

Family stuff:

Kiddo stuff:
Noah indicated he wanted more computer / ipad time and we were happy for this to happen but we kept forgetting and of course he'd remember at the most inopportune times and we'd feel bad having to say "no" while also realising we weren't making a time for him to do this. So on the schedule it goes - twice a week. He likes the predictability of this, he knows that he gets to have that time for him to enjoy the computer or ipad as long as we don't have an appointment or what have you {in which case we 'reschedule'}.

I also pop time for our crafts or activities on the schedule so I don't forget to plan something.
Swimming and other activities also get listed on the schedule.

Hubby's stuff:
Hubby likes to go for bike rides but we never seemed to 'have the time' for him to do this. On the schedule it goes. We make time and ensure that he gets this time for him.

My stuff:
I am back at uni, and designate nights for study and also designate nights for some 'time off' - I think that's important, otherwise my other interests or hobbies always get put aside.
I also schedule time for working on albums and project life, and for exercise. Most of these things are in the 'evening' part of the schedule.

Hubby and I also have date night once a week. This is just at home but it's a lovely way to make sure we are spending quality time together. No computers / phones / ipads or other distractions. Just us time.

Family walks also get stuck up on the schedule, this helps as these walks usually occur just before dinner, and I need to keep that in mind when menu planning so I plan something that is either super quick to cook or that I cook before hand and just reheat.

Now I don't want to be writing this out every single week as it's a lot of info, so I use the above schedule printable and I fill it in and laminate it. I keep it near my desk as I refer to it multiple times a day to remind me of what I should be doing and to help keep me on track. I write any other things I need to remember to do in my diary, such as phone calls, bills to pay or appointments etc.

However, I was asked by a lovely reader {hi Stace!} if I had a printable that included a spot for meal planning and such, and so I modified my planner for those of you who might want to plan your schedule week to week instead of what I do above. It has space for you to write what's on for each day, as well as chores you would like to get done and a spot to write your menu planning for the week.

Here it is below: 

Here are the download links:
Family Schedule
Weekly Planner with spot for menu planning

I have been asked a few times how I 'do it all' and how I 'fit it all in' I need you to know that I don't do it all and I don't always fit it all in! I am a normal mum, who gets behind in laundry even though I have a schedule for it haha! I can't see my desk some days and I occasionally forget to pay a bill until the last minute. I also have some days where I'm completely overwhelmed and feel like there is just too much to do.
But I have found since doing up our schedule that I procrastinate less and spend less time wondering what I should be doing, and more time actually doing it :o} Making time for things has also shown me that I do have enough time {only just!}, if I don't procrastinate and just get into it! I've had to let some things go {will post about this soon} but the rest I can keep.
I'm not uptight about my schedule though - our world doesn't end if we don't do a craft on a designated afternoon {sometimes we're not here, sometimes the kids are too cranky, sometimes we play outside instead} or if I don't do the bathrooms on the day I'm supposed to - there's always tomorrow. We still do things spur of the moment sometimes, life is supposed to be fun. But I'm happy to have a schedule that works for us to look at and remind me of what I need to do today when I am finding myself getting too easily distracted by Pinterest!

I hope you enjoy these and that they help you!
If you use either of these printables for your weekly scheduling, I would really really love to hear how you go with them!

So what about you? Are you a planner + scheduler or more go with the flow? I would love to hear about how you make things work!

ETA: I just needed to add that I just do what works for my family, and what works for yours might be completely different! I don't at all think that you have to do things this way and I'm certainly not saying that this would suit every family. Please feel free to share what you do - so everyone can benefit from all the fantastic ideas there are out there to help our lives run a little more smoothly. :o}


As always, these printables are free for personal and classroom use only. Please do not use for commercial purposes.
They are © 2012 - a little delightful.
No derivatives of this printable are permitted. Please do not alter these and share them as your own.
Freebie printables are offered 'as is' and cannot be changed without incurring a personalisation charge.
Please contact me with any queries regarding this {or other} printables.
I am more than happy for you to share these, but please link to my original post {this one} and not to the direct download file. Thank you.


  1. Geez you shouldn't have to justify how you manage to lead a busy, organised & fulfilled life. Scheduling & planning are the key to success & if things don't go to plan it is much easier to get back on top of things if you know where to start. Keep up the good work.

    1. Exactly how I feel and this is what works for us :o} thank you! x

  2. Thanks for sharing these Bianca! I am always looking for ways to streamline my things so i don't forget anything and these are perfect. With a house, business and family to take care of, scheduling and planning are the only way anything gets done. Beautiful as always :-)

    1. Thank you Jess xx We are all busy bees I love finding ways that will help my family too! I hope you find these useful!

  3. I've been trying to write "To Do" lists lately to keep me on top of all the things I need to get done. I have a calendar with everyone's schedules on it, as well as a personal diary. The boys have a list of daily chores, for which they earn game time or stickers, depending on age. I don't schedule chores, just do them as I think of them.

    1. I like the idea of earning game time Dorothy!! Thank you for sharing! x

  4. I'm sorry I usually love your blog.... And I get the schedule for cleaning I have a cleaning roster too and it works for me.... But a schedule for laundry? Do you have a schedule for who gets to use the bathroom first too?... Sucks everything out of life doesn't it if you are always running to look at the schedule and needing to follow it in order for life to run smoothly... Live a little....

    1. Have you actually read this blog? Because if you had it is evident that Bianca not only lives a little.... but lives ALOT!
      In future please keep non constructive thoughts to yourself.

    2. I wish I could LIKE your comment. Thank you xxxxxxxxxxxx

    3. Bianca I completely agree with the first reply, your blog is amazing and you inspire me so much to really make the most of every second I have with my little girl. People who feel the need to comment annonymously on your blog with negative comments such as this are not worth a second though. You have found a system which works for you which is great! I too have a cleaning schedule, and it has made me so much more productive with my time, but like you said, not everything gets done on the 'correct' day all of the time, but it's a great guide to have! Love the printable :) xox

  5. Actually Anonymous, I have a schedule for Laundry too. It is even stuck on the laundry door and my bathroom door. My household is very busy with 5 kids and two parents who both work and study. In saying that though even small families can be very busy. By keeping the schedule where everyone can see it the kids know what days to strip their beds, put their towels in the wash and when to come and collect their clean clothes to put away. It works well for us and I don't end up with Mt Washmore filling up my hallway because the baskets are overflowing.

    I also have two laminated cleaning schedules stuck on my fridge (a work week one and a weekend one) along with a children's school schedule (so they know what days are library, sport, afterschool activities etc). I also have a computer roster so there is no arguing about whose turn it is. There is also an afterschool schedule for the kids so they know what has to be done before I get home from work - afternoon snack, playtime, homework, chores, anything etc that needs to be done.

    I have also blackboard painted my pantry door and anything that needs to be bought in the next shop gets put on the board. I also have a shopping list which I print out and use to double check supplies before I go. It saves lots of trips because I have forgotten something silly.

    Yes, I am probably a little OCD but it works for us. The kids know what I expect of them and it saves alot of grumbling from me. It defintely helps me to stay in control and not end up having a mummy volcano moment.

    Bianca, gorgeous printables. Thank you so much for sharing with us.

    Dawn Louise xx

    1. Dawn Louise, I always love your comments xx
      My 2 stepkiddos lived with us full time for 7 years and I can tell you I learnt A LOT when I had 4 kids in this house! Your house sounds super busy with 5 sweet kiddos but I don't think you are OCD! You just know what works for you and your family and that is the best feeling! xxxx

  6. I'm exactly the same Bianca, I have a laundry schedule too. It ensures my kids always have clean school uniforms and bed sheets. I'm a scheduler through and through. Keep up the great work hun, love the planner x

    1. I love your planners and that have shared a bit of how your week goes. I love to see how other people 'fit it all in'. I am always feeling that there is so much to do. I have even had trouble this year finding time to actually sit down and write a schedule. Thanks so much for helping here. I am a proctinator, dweller, I need schedules to keep me going. So if I do have a busy week and a few days out, I know I only have a bit to catch up on to be back in some sort of control instead of writing the week off (sounds a bit like a diet..) I love my laundry schedule. Well the washing part goes well, it's that ironing part that I struggle with :) Thanks so much for sharing. Great stuff!!!! Kerry T (sorry I don't know how to post as another profile)

    2. Thank you Kat!! I love my laundry schedule!! x

      Kerry I always feel like there is a lot too and I am easily overwhelmed and when I am overwhelmed my focus goes out the window. I think there are people out there who don't need a schedule at all and are able to function just fine without one, but some of us need a schedule to help not feel like we're drowning! xx

  7. Great planner ideas! I think your point is creating one that works for your own family! IF only I could get my husband to follow one too we would have a much better run house! Thanks Bianca xx

    1. Thankfully hubby has realised the greatness of the schedule lol and he loves it just as much as I do. It makes his life very easy! xx

  8. i really dont see how you can have a life at all with a schedule like that. i like for our life to be spur of the moment and fun and scheduling in computer time and family walks just seems like you make life more complicated than it is. maybe you need to schedule in some chill pill time.

  9. Thank you so much for the inspiration and the planner, I love hearing about how others organize their lives, homes and families, and I love trying out new things to see how I can make our life more simpler and harmonious! .
    I also think that people who are negative about things like this miss the point ... your blog, your snippet of life, you opening up a conversation just as if we were at playgroup or mothers group together, and therefore the same level of respect should be shown, if not more so. People need to be kind, no one likes to read another's narky words, you only make yourself look bad.
    Thanks so much Bianca, I'm looking forward to printing out your planner and trying it out with some of your ideas, dawn Louise's (comment above) and things that already work for us. xx

    1. Hi Megan! Thank you for your lovely comments and I love that analogy about the playgroup / mothers group. I love trying out new things too, it's all about finding what works for us as unique and individual families! x

  10. Love it. Thanks!

    And I thought everyone had a laundry schedule? We sure do!

    1. Tee hee MaryRuth!
      Long live the laundry schedule!

  11. Up until recently I was the polar opposite to you, I had no schedule or plan for anything and it was really not working for us! I have found that just putting in to place a couple of routines I have been able to cut down my stress level a lot, which believe me can only be a good thing for my family. I am always interested in hearing about the strategies other people learn to organise their lives. They give me ideas and ways to organise myself and family life, because frankly I am not naturally that way inclined and would never think of these things myself!! So, thanks for sharing x

    1. Hi Heidi!
      thank you so much for your comment! I know what you mean about the stress levels, amazing how sometimes a simple routine can help!

  12. Im a frequent reader of your blog - not a frequent poster... 13 delightful comments = I think not, not quite anyway.
    I agree with the other posters. I am not naturally organised and have to try really hard. I once scoffed at routines but now realise theyre what keep me sane.
    I read this article on Friday night and did not want it to end. I am not going to emulate what you do, however like any good Manager (in or out of the home) I will take what I like from this example, and impliment in the workplace.
    What I like about what your blog stands for, is the fact that I am inspired to optimize all facets of my life - child development and home organization, and generally self improve.
    Thank you so much... please keep it up :)

    1. Hi Jacqui-Jac!
      I am so thankful that you decided to post a comment :o} Thank you! That is exactly what I like to do! I look at it like a recipe in a cookbook - if it's full of ingredients I don't like - I probably won't even try to cook it - no big deal. If it's got one or two ingredients I don't like - I might leave them out, or swap them for something else. Or I might like only two things about the recipe, and change it up so much it's hardly the same but we loved it and it's all good!

  13. Thanks Bianca! As always, inspirational and you make organising fun! xx

  14. Find it so funny that there are only a few people questioning what you do. I am sure there are a lot more of us that think this is so silly. Life is meant to be lived and messy and not so routined and structured. your children would benefit from you being a little leess ridgid.

    1. Hi Cath
      thanks for your comments. They don't need to be so thoughtless though. I do live life and we do messy and we do unstructured and we do fun. My children have a good life and I can say that confidently. They are happy, I am happy, hubby is happy. The way I do things will not work for everyone.

  15. Why do you need to question what she does? If this is working for Bianca and her family but doesn't suit yours, don't follow it. Who are you or some of the other anonymous repliers to comment on how this will affect Bianca's children? I personally enjoy reading about how she does things and take from it what I need. You are not putting yourself out there and describing how you do things, keep your negative comments to yourself. Also, loved the descriptor 'mummy volcano moment' Dawn Louise, I have too many of those and interestingly, do not follow a schedule. Certainly needs a re-think. Thank you Bianca, for putting yourself out there and inspiring so many of us. I am always so impressed with your ideas, especially kids crafts - oh, your dessert tables always look incredible as well. I loved your goals for 2012 and ideas like a 'different country night' (can't remember what you called it sorry, but it has stayed with me). Please keep your ideas coming!! love Mel B xx

    1. Thank you Mel B xx
      that means a lot to me!

  16. Thanks Bianca ... I am so going to try this schedule, mainly for cleaning, maintenance jobs and child one-on-one time. To those who are criticising, it's obvious that this schedule is just the 'ideal' and it flows and changes as required - it's just a routine really but we have so much to do that we need things written down as a reminder! A house of kids with no routine would be a total nightmare!!

    I guess if something on the schedule doesn't happen, you might just write it down for the next day or the following week. This is how I see me using it.

    I am so busy lately that when I get a moment of time to do something, I don't know what to do first. So I think writing it out from week to week will really help!


    PS. I also love the idea of the laundry schedule stuck on the laundry door (in one comment). What a great idea ... will remind me as I walk past every morning to put the load on!

  17. Hi Michelle,

    Thank you for your comment!! Yes, if something doesn't happen - I find another time for it, whether it is tomorrow or next week. Doesn't matter :)
    I know what you mean about being so busy. I get really unfocused when I don't know what to do. I love having a guide.
    Hope you have a great week!

  18. Hi Bianca, a read this post back when you wrote it and didn't get a chance at the time to comment so have popped back to read it properly. I love reading about how others manage their family life and organise themselves and it is for this reason I enjoy these posts of yours so much. I like getting ideas and inspiration and adjusting things and making them suit me. I too am a schedule person - I have a daily routine written up, more as a reminder for myself of the 'definites' each day, and a weekly planner where I menu plan, jot down our morning and afternoon activities and so on. Keep these great posts coming!! x

  19. Thanks Bianca ! Great to see how other families do things. Love your printable organising templates :)


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