Fiona Wright of Mother & Baby mag­a­zine shares her top tips.

Homes+ (Australia) - - BEFORE & AFTER -


From a young age, even tiny tots can be en­cour­aged to pack away toys if you turn it into a fun ac­tiv­ity. Check out pack away songs on YouTube and get set to sing as you tidy with your tod­dler. For older kids, clean­ing their room and help­ing out with jobs like fold­ing the wash­ing can be chores re­warded with pocket money or a re­wards chart.


Keep their bed­rooms – and your liv­ing ar­eas – clear of clut­ter with stylish stor­age so­lu­tions like ot­tomans or wicker bas­kets, in which you can quickly pack items away at the end of the day. Cube shelves are handy for cre­at­ing a des­ig­nated spot for each child’s gear. They can place their bags and shoes in their cube af­ter kindy or school, and quickly col­lect again in the morn­ing when you’re all rush­ing to leave.


Keep track of your lit­tlies’ ac­tiv­i­ties and so­cial lives with a cal­en­dar that has a stor­age en­ve­lope at the bot­tom. When you make ap­point­ments or re­ceive party invites, write the de­tails on the cal­en­dar, then pop the let­ter in the en­ve­lope to be pulled out for ac­tion­ing when the date rolls around.


Cre­at­ing a chart which lists ex­actly what needs to be done can pre­vent nag­ging and gives kids a clear idea of what they need to do. For ex­am­ple, a morn­ing rou­tine lists tasks such as eat break­fast, clean teeth, make bed; an even­ing chart might in­clude tidy room, do home­work, have bath. A daily struc­ture like this will com­fort your chil­dren, know­ing the or­der of their day.


Yes, there are web­sites and apps just de­signed to get you or­gan­ised and save you time. Ever­note is touted as your “sec­ond brain” and lets you cre­ate notes, to-do lists and cap­ture ideas. The Artkive app al­lows you to store, share and print your child’s art­work. Google Cal­en­dar is a san­ity saver: mum and dad can sync cal­en­dars and keep track of move­ments and up­com­ing events.

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