Family and friends think I’m crazy for packing a month in advance or even stocking up on soap and towels. I like being prepared for just about anything, so it shouldn’t shock anyone that I don’t like surprises.

My parents will be here in less than a week, and you can imagine how much in advance I’ve prepared myself and our home.

Although there’s a mountain of unfolded laundry in the guestroom, everything else is ready for their arrival. I even sent them a schedule last month of all the things we’ll be doing to help plan their days. Sadly, the day they arrive I will be at a conference.

Planning For Setbacks
A diaper bag is sometimes like an emergency bag. You keep extra clothing for your little ones, snacks and drinks and even an emergency kit for cuts and scrapes. After all, I do have very curious boys.

Every time we travel, there’s a possibility our toddler will forget to use the bathroom and wet his pants, or our infant will throw up on himself from moving around after breastfeeding.

Planning For Fun
I like to buy Jeff and our boys simple and inexpensive things that I know will make them smile. It’s not about having the latest gadgets or looking super flashy, it’s about family fun. We love having a good time together, so whatever allows us to do that, is worth every penny.

I will admit that I do get a bit carried away with some purchases. Like the time I bought four beach towels and bought another three more because we were having guests over that summer. It did benefit us at the time, and we still use all of them these days (because who likes doing laundry every single day?)  

Planning ahead allows me to be a better parent and spouse. I’m less stressed when I have a balance between family and work. It hasn’t always been this easy, but I think I’ve developed a pretty good system that allows me to focus on the people and things I love while keeping an eye on potential setbacks.

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