Here are 7 things you can do on the weekend to ensure a better week for yourself (not a perfect one, but a better one):
1. Play. You may be surprised to hear play from this worker, but I do make sure that our family gets enough play on the weekends. I feel much better about making the kids get down to business on Monday if I know they have had plenty of fun on the weekend – late nights with friends, play dates, birthday parties, sports games, community events, family gatherings, cultural experiences, video games, movies, crafts,etc. My living room and kitchen were covered with Barbie paraphernalia all day Saturday and Sunday as proof that we do play hard.
2.Change your sheets. I’d put crisp, clean sheets on my “Top 10 Favorite Feelings” list, right up there with a sun-kissed car and baby naps on my chest. Chad and I change our bed sheets together every Saturday. (I have an extra set of sheets for my bed so I don’t have to wait for the dirty ones to get washed.) Usually we change them in the morning, but sometimes it is at night before we go to bed. Both of us pitching in makes the task go much quicker. Starting off the week with clean sheets is symbolic of starting off the week with a clean slate.
3. Fill up your car with gas. Yes, even if it is not on empty. I used to wait until I was absolutely empty before I would fill up for gas. Then inevitably it was snowy or rainy or extremely windy on the day I NEEDED gas. Or that particular day was really busy and I had no time to squeeze in a gas stop. I am always out on Saturday heading to some game or another activity so I stop while I am already out. The runs to gymnastics, soccer, dance and piano during the week are less stressful when you aren’t worrying about running out of gas.
4. Know what you are going to eat. Every one meal plans differently. Some do it a month at a time; some do it a meal at a time. I fall more into the latter category, but I am improving. I try to plan dinner meals one week at a time. (My breakfast and lunches are pretty set.) I get my family’s input and I draft out the week’s meal plan over the weekend. I go shopping on Monday because I run errands in the afternoon while kids are at classes. Not having to think about dinner definitely makes for a better week.
5. Go over the weekly calendar with your spouse. …and get down to the knitty gritty. Plan a time for dinner and scripture study and exercise each day. Review start and stop times for activities, sports, meetings, and lessons. Coordinate who is driving which shift, who is starting dinner, who is attending what event, who is picking up the birthday present, etc. This way you can start anticipating and troubleshooting early in the week for all of the events coming up. Surprises still happen, but an overall game plan can calm a busy week.
6. Pick up the house Sunday night. I am not saying deep clean; I am not even saying vacuum; I am just saying tidy up from the weekend. After all #1, did happen. Toys gets put back, dishes get loaded, clothes get in the hamper, and floors get swept. If we are home Sunday night we clean up after dinner and before our family game or movie. If we are not home, like at grandma’s for dinner, we clean up before we get in the car. Monday morning is so much easier when the house starts off at zero rather than in the negatives.
7. Keep the Sabbath Day Holy. I used to think that God gave us a bunch of rules and commandments to test us – to see who would be obedient and who would not – to see who he could trust. But now I know, he gives us commandments to make our lives easier and to bless us. “Keep the Sabbath Day Holy” is one of those commandment that is designed to bless, not condemn. When you keep the Sabbath Day holy, when you rest, when you recharge, when you take a break from what you do the other days of the week, your cup is filled. Your energy is renewed. You have more to give. And if not in reality, but in theory (I had 4 little kids and my husband was in the Stake Presidency. Sunday was anything but restful), you are entitled to the blessings. God will make your week go better if you do your part on Sunday — even if you didn’t actually get a rest.
I don’t always do every one of these tips every weekend, but I sure do try because I know they help my week go smoother. I pay a price during the week if any of these slip.
What do you do on the weekend to ensure a better week for yourself?