I had a moment of clarity on my way home from a Melbourne bloggers meet-up late last year.
Not only had I enjoyed chatting and sharing wisdom with some lovely bloggers, I had also witnessed the awesomeness of ‘The Planning Queen’.
Nicole from Planning With Kids, mother of five, blogger and RLP (really lovely person), whipped out a large container of beautifully made BLT rolls that she had prepared that morning to share with us all. If that wasn’t enough, she also had a separate container of rolls for one of her boys who preferred different fillings and she had come with small containers of snacks for each of the two children who had accompanied her, along with drink bottles etc.
I, on the other hand, had a box of half eaten biscuits for my boy, hastily chucked under the pram and I had to buy a bottle of water when we got there (and I hate paying money for water). I am pretty sure I hadn’t even had time for breakfast that morning, let alone time to make salad rolls! I was in awe… jaw dropping, heart stopping awe.
Then came that moment.
As I strapped my two boys into their car seats I suddenly knew how Nicole did it! I knew how she managed to be so organised. I’d figured out the secret! It was all in the containers!
If I only had a matching set of Tupperware containers in varying sizes, then, and only then, I could be as organised as The Planning Queen!
On the drive home it slowly dawned on me that my moment of clarity was perhaps more of a moment of insanity. Even if I had those matching containers I still wouldn’t have had anything to put in them, and knowing me, I wouldn’t have been able to find the right damn lid for the right damn container anyway.
Ok, so Tupperware was not the secret to Nicole’s success…. there must be something more.
I read Nicole’s blog. I’ve even been known to book mark the odd post, and write the odd sticky note. I’ve learnt a lot from Planning With Kids, but when I heard that Nicole was writing a book, then I knew I would finally know every one of her secrets. I would read her book! And read it I have!
Ok, so merely reading the book hasn’t miraculously made me into an organised person, but then neither has a selection of Tupperware containers! Nicole’s book has helped me pin down some ideas and make progress towards a more organised and less crazy day to day life, and to me that is what the Planning With Kids book is all about.
All through the book Nicole shares her personal journey. She tells us what has worked for her in the past, how she manages things now, and gives lots of ideas on ways to manage day to day tasks as well as bigger family issues and events. I love that she talks about systems needing to ‘grow and evolve with your family’, and I love that there are no ‘you must’ ‘you should’ ‘you have to’…. just lots of really good ideas.
The book covers every aspect of life with kids with loads of ideas, information and shared experiences to make life as a parent a little saner. From tips and tricks to help you cope when you’ve had no sleep during the baby phase, to things to think about when deciding if, when, and how much pocket money to give your kids (and I am in both those places at the same time on my parenting journey!). It’s very easy to read with lots of sub-headings, tables and highlighted areas so you can easily find the information you need even if you only have time for a quick skim.
After reading Nicole’s book I am less daunted by the idea of planning and more able to see how just the simple act of writing things down, making a list or plan, can help me gain a sense of control over things that previously seemed so scattered and unachievable. I may never have the Planning Queen’s love of spread sheets, but I am making progress!
Win The Planning With Kids Book! – Competition is now closed.
I have one copy of Planning With Kids to give away to a Picklebum’s reader! To win you need to leave a comment on this post and tell me why you need to read Nicole’s book. To be eligible you must be an Australian resident and you must leave a valid email address. Entries close Sunday May 29th, 3pm (EST).
Congratulations to Ash who won my copy of the Planning With Kids Book – thanks to everyone who entered and left such great comments.
You can buy Nicole’s book – Planning With Kids, directly from her blog or from many book stores.
Nicole will be at Dymocks book stores signing copies of her books on the following dates…
Sydney – Rouse Hill Fri 3rd June
Brisbane – Chermside Fri 10th June
Melbourne – Southland Sat June 25th
For more information visit the Dymocks Wesbite.