Being away 40 hours a week can take a toll on working moms and dads when they have a lot of responsibilities and also want to be there for their children. This is especially true for single parents. Over time, the mental and emotional health of the parent can begin to suffer. Fortunately, through careful planning and implementing a few simple strategies, parents can maximize family time, lighten their stress load, and reconnect with their children. This means everyone will be healthier and happier.
Coming Home to a Warm Meal is for Families with Working Moms Too
Take advantage of your Crock Pot or Instant Pot to have dinner ready when you get home or make quick work of dinner. Working moms and dads have little time for cooking, but some planning ahead can be a life saver. Electric pressure cookers like the Instant Pot can quickly cook meat from frozen. This means you can get a meal on the table with minimal effort, even if you forgot to put meat out to thaw. Now you can spend an hour snuggled up on the couch reading a book or discussing the day’s events. Our One Dollar Per Person Ham Hock and Cabbage Stew crock pot recipe can save you time and money while putting a super healthy meal on your table.
Get Creative With Your Schedule
Change up your hours to maximize quality time. Ask to go into work an hour early if possible. Also, consider a thirty-minute lunch over an hour break. This strategy alone can get you home an hour and a half earlier. Your children can hang out with a relative or at before school care and eat breakfast before they start their day. Your children are likely to need more time with you in the afternoon. This gives you a great opportunity to improve your relationship. The truth is your kiddos are probably groggy and cranky in the morning, so you will all likely enjoy your time together even more in the afternoon.
Get More For Your Childcare Money
Consider a sitter over an after school program or child care center if your hours keep you at work until well after school is out. An in-home sitter or nanny can be a godsend for working moms and dads. They can help with laundry, clean up, and dinner prep during the after-school hours. This strategy leaves you more time to spend with your children when you get home. The price is usually very similar to childcare facilities if you have more than one child. It’s important to find someone you can trust completely. Ask around for recommendations or register on Care.com to find a quality caregiver.
Eliminate Unhealthy Distractions
Nix the TV and limit computer time to homework use only during the week. Television is a major time sucker. It’s a money sucker too if you have cable. Screen time has been proven to negatively affect the moods of children, as well. You can spend your time hiking, playing board games, crafting, or just having a good conversation. Your time spent together will probably be more enjoyable, as well. After all, your kids’ behavior won’t be influenced by questionable TV programming. While you’re at it, resolve to put away your smartphone while spending time with your children.