Category Archives: Household Management

Organizing/Reorganizing Your Household with TJ! Part IV


Our Family Control Center thus far I (I’ve started a series here at the TJ blog about my journey to get more organized:


  • Yearly Calendar (just to know what certain days fall on)
  • Hijri Yearly Calendar (not sure if I’ll put this one up as its approximate; I am planning on using a monthly hijri calendar for daily school calendar activities so I’m thinking I won’t post one here; I’m just mentioning it here just as a suggestion).
  • Master Monthly/Year ( I poster sized printed a blank monthly calendar (4×4; 16 sheets) and took out the day names of the weeks before I printed it, so its generic to fit the whole year.)
  • Weekly routine/cleaning schedule

I poster sized printed this (2×2); 4 sheets

Daily Routines based upon the prayer times as blocks of routine periods

Fajr – Dhuhr

After Dhuhr

After Asr

After Maghrib

After Ishaa

  • Morning and Bedtime routines

These fit into the daily routines above, but I’ve pulled them out because they are subroutines consisting of many steps.

I’ve just written them on index cards for now for the center. Other ideas I have used are checklists and pictured cards.  For me, the index cards work great at the center and then the cards or pictured checklists get posted in rooms for the kids.  Umm Abdul Basir has a nice bedtime routine/center you might want to check out.

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Posted by on January 9, 2010 in Household Management


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Organizing/Reorganizing Your Household with TJ! Part I


I’m in the process of reorganizing our household (chores, schedules, etc) and thought I’d share what I’m doing to try to get more control over things, insha Allah.

So here’s my method. I thought I would share a step by step method in case anyone wanted to give it a try…..

I felt that organizing our days would be the best place to start………….

Organizing our days

To organize our days, I needed to see what we NEEDed to do, what we WANTed to do………………..

1. So….. I listed my major activity categories, i.e. Asked myself what categories do our usual duties fall under?. Here is what I came up with:

· Cleaning

· Cooking

· Homeschooling

· Work (for those who work outside of the home or have a home business); for me I count maintaining my sites under here

· Child care (making sure the little ones diapers are changed/potty breaks, naps, etc)

· Hygiene

· Manners

· Religious Practices/obligations

· Quraan

· Umm free time (well, just threw this one there, I have to work on this area)

I just looked at my different roles as a Muslim woman to help me see what the major areas were that I felt I needed to make sure were addressed in our daily plan. I’m a chronic brainstorming so this just helped me get started.

Can you add anymore to this list?

2. For each category above, I list as many activities that fall under the categories that I could think of that we/I do:

Here is what I came up with. Of course, this will vary depending upon each family, so add/delete accordingly (this is just to give you a head start). To save time, write down a M for things that need to be done Monthly; W for weekly, and D for daily! (But you can leave this for later if you you want.)



Child care


food prep

diaper changes/potty breaks


clean up



meal/menu planning

playtime with ummy


grocery list making

story time

living room

grocery shopping


outside the house



























bathroom etiquette



menses hygiene


good speech


review/skill building

being helpful



eating etiquette

cleaning up after self







Religious duties/practices

Work (for me is my sites)

Umm Time


blog posting

activities that Umm likes to do

equate everyday actions with the religion

site maintenance

e.g. read, crafts


site design


Recite/hifz Quraan

link checking


encouraging/praising good deeds

researching/adding new content


study/Islamic Studies

file management


Don’t forget to put in frequency if you can right now (weekly, monthly, daily), but you can always do it later, insha Allah!

So now I had a clearer picture of what I need to do. Yes, it’s a lot, but it quantifies things for me and makes the work seem less endless. Of course, some things may slip your mind at this point. Just add on when you think of them, insha Allah. For example, doctor’s appointments, outside the house activities (we don’t really do too much of either, so I didn’t include them for me).

As this can get kind of long, I’ll split this up into several posts, insha Allah…………

Next, insha Allah: Part II: Planning Your Days Around the Five Salaat


Posted by on January 6, 2010 in Household Management


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Dinner is Breakfast

Ok, nothing earth shattering here, but it was a lifesaver (ok, maybe that’s too strong of a word, but as a homeschooler….maybe it was) for me this morning.

I raided the fridge and pulled out some rice and potatoes from dinner yesterday. I scrambled some eggs and added it to the rice (one of our favorite ways to eat rice) and came out with a filling breakfast, masha Allah.

The significance of this, obviously was that it was a super timesaver.  If we don’t have cereal (which I am trying to cut back on due to costs), then its this game of “what’s for breakfast?” I love French toast and biscuits, but am not in the mood to make these everyday.

Why is this leftover thing so big for me? Because I am absolutely Horrible (with a capital H, see?)  at using up leftovers. Really.

I think part of the problem is that I hardly go in the refrigerator. …..

……………When we were in Damaaj, a small village here, we had no electricity. So I got used to living without a refrigerator. (wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be).

Then, when we moved back to the ‘city,’ I actually forgot to use the refrigerator.  I like had a bottle of ketchup and maybe an egg or two in there, I kept forgetting to use it.  So, we ended up selling it.

We were refrigeratorless for about a year because I really saw no need to get one or rather I just didn’t think about it…..  The milk comes in tetra packs and can last unopened for up to six months. With so many people in my family, it  wouldn’t stay around for very long once opened. ……

So, its a big deal most of the time for me to remember to check the fridge for leftovers (my 13 year old daughter does the dishes and puts the food up, so I might not see what’s left over)………………..

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Posted by on April 21, 2009 in Household Management



Getting it all done?

Getting it all done?

Is there such a thing?

How do you homeschool, clean house, take time for yourself, raise children, etc, etc etc. As Muslim women many of us are mothers, housekeepers, teachers, wives, and slaves of Allah.

How can one person be so many people?

How can you get it ALL done? In many of the homeschooling groups that I belong to, this question comes up all the time. Although I haven’t been able to open that door totally, I have found that the key for me in getting MORE done is to “simply” organize my household. That is my advice to all homeschoolers, but especially new homeschoolers. Before embarking on the homeschool journey, I highly suggest organizing your household as much as possible before you begin making up class schedules or routines.

And if you are a veteran homeschooler whose homeschooling has been sporadic and you are looking to jumpstart it, perhaps starting with the household itself is just the trick to begin revamping your homeschooling.

As I said, I never am able to accomplish everything I would like to. First of all, realizing that very fact, has helped take some stress off of me, masha Allah.

Next, I found that the more organized the household was, the more time we had for things and the smoother things ran and maybe even an improvement in the kids’ behaviors (somewhat).

So, I offer a few suggestions and tips for homeschoolers to get that household in order, insha Allah. I’m no expert, this is just what has worked for me, alhamdulillah.

  Household Schedules

The top of the list for me was scheduling. When it comes to classes, we can NEVER, NEVER stick to a schedule, however, household schedules are generally easier for me to stick to, masha Allah, and help our days run more efficiently.

Insha Allah some of the areas I will hit upon are morning and evening routines, laundry schedules, and menus.

Set a daily routine.

 I think all of us probably have a general routine, even if a loose one, that we follow. I didn’t really realize it until I wrote it down.

Borrowing some tips from FlyLady, she suggests setting up a morning, afternoon, and evening routine.

You can put times down for tasks if you want to, but what sets the routine apart from a schedule, is that it is moreso based upon the sequence of events rather than time frames. I do set loose times for our routines, but find that the sequence is the key.

My kids used to stay up really late and it drove me crazy. Then I put bedtimes into effect and that helped tremendously. I have read that kids thrive on routines, they generally behave better if they know what is coming next.

Setting up bedtime routines and morning routines are the most crucial for me.

Here are some simple tips (probably common sense but sometimes it just helps seeming them in “print”) that you might try:

Step 1: Take a look at what you currently do when the household wakes up and goes to bed. Write it down. Are you doing all the things that you would like to be doing? If not, list other tasks that you feel are important to get your day started and wind it down.

For example, in our household, our morning routine (for everyone, including me) goes a little something like this (or ideally does :): wake up, say wake up duaa, make beds, straighten clothes in shelves and clean the room, get dressed, comb hair. The rule is that we do not eat breakfast until these tasks are done. I try to schedule an inspection time so that I will remember to check these items, but I do not always formally inspect the room as I forget to. Sometimes I offer incentives for having these tasks done before the set time, however the biggest incentive is usually, eating breakfast, lol. I send back those who sneak to the table and haven’t finished their duties. Somedays we are kind of lax on this, but masha Allah, we generally stick to this.

Step 2: Sequence the events in a practical order. Be realistic. Just because something is normally done in someone else’s house in this or that order doesn’t mean it will work for you.

Step 3: Put your routines into practice, focusing particularly on one at a time. Set up/write down a morning and a bedtime routine, but say, get a good bedtime (or morning) routine going, making sure that everyone is following it, then move on to the next routine. Keep chunking away until you generally have a routine for the whole day that you are actually following. If something is just not working, adjust the routine, insha Allah. Maybe there is something that you would like to do, but find that it is just not realistic, chuck it, if its not essential, save yourself stress, insha Allah.

Get into a rhythm and make that rhythm a habit. Fine tune as you go, make it a priority to see that that routine is carried out as much as possible each day. It should be a natural routine that feels right.

Don’t get too rigid or it will probably fail. Make sure everyone does their part and stay on the kids and yourself to stay on it. Some kids will fall into the routine naturally, perhaps, and others may never totally get with the program. (I’ve got one of those) Don’t frustrate yourself. Just motivate yourself as mom to try to see that the family as a whole sticks to it as much as possible.

Also, give yourself time to make it a habit. Don’t give up after the first day. Try to stick with it, but again, tweak it here and there so that it is realistic. I find that having a good morning routine (not necessarily schedule) sets the tone for the day and a good evening routine helps us wind down. Right now, our morning routine is pretty much working and automatic more or less, I still have to work on our evening routine. But, establishing regular bedtimes years ago, helped us tremendously.

Some things you might want to include in the evening routine are baths, brushing teeth, free reading time, cleaning the house before we go to bed, quraan recitation, Ummy and me time, etc.

When you set up your morning and evening routines, and are starting to implement them, move on to another aspect of household organization……

 Next up, (insha Allah)……..getting control of the laundry?

 I have 8 kids and find that having a plan/schedule, I keep on top of the clothes better than I did with four kids……….

Stay tuned………………..

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Posted by on July 11, 2007 in Household Management