Logistical Bliss: Family Planning for 2024

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Both my husband and I are planners. He’s the spreadsheet, circle graph kind of fun and I just love a good old fashioned handwritten list. In the past couple of years, my husband and I have spent our January family planning. Not that kind of family planning—our headcount has maxed out at four. Our family planning is all about the year ahead. And it’s freeing and fun to make sure we’re on the same page.

We have a lot planned for 2024. And sure, I want to eat more vegetables and start taking better advantage of our Y membership, but that doesn’t even make the discussion list. This family planning session isn’t about resolutions—it’s about being intentional with the choices we already know are coming our way.

How will we celebrate the boys’ birthdays this year? Do we want to go on vacation during spring break or fall break? Should we sell our second car that has largely been dormant in our driveway since Covid? What age-appropriate chores can our boys manage, and how will we incentivize and track success? How will we ensure consistency in our parenting strategy?

Our discussion categories include five categories.
  • Major events—birthdays, anniversaries, summer camp for our kindergartener
  • Travel—spring break, fall break, summer family weekends, parents-only weekend away
  • Financial events—bonus, taxes, summer daycare, bedroom renovation, a monthly breakdown of when these larger expenses will hit
  • Goals for kids—screen time, age-appropriate chores, extracurricular activities, increased exposure to theater and music
  • Miscellaneous—home renovation projects, aggressive decluttering strategy, charitable giving goals, managing and incentivizing our family budget

We break many of the goals down in weekly increments and have an “official” family meeting once a week to keep our decisions and plans moving forward.
In January, we discussed a topic each week and made any necessary plans at the time. We also have intentional conversations about the division of household labor, how we’re managing to our monthly spending budget, scheduling challenges and upcoming travel schedules.

January topics included:
 Birthday party plans for both kids’ February birthdays
 Summer daycare plan and budget impact
 Finalize declutter plan
 Align on screentime goals and strategy
 Family vacation ideas
 Research upcoming deadlines for summer baseball and camp sign-ups

We know this all won’t go to plan. But we leave each planning session on the same page. We’ve agreed on priorities, budget, and who will own researching baseball schedules while the other considers the best age to tackle a Disney vacation.
Our family plan is ever-evolving, but our communication is solid. The plan is highly logistical and not very romantic. But it’s such a relief to have an idea of where we’re headed. And as a mom, I don’t mentally own it all. We’re partners. Partners in marriage. And partners in family planning.


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