Need more help around the house? Here are 3 lists to get you started

Sep 27, 2023

Silvia de Denaro Vieira

Managing life at home is overwhelming. There are so many details to remember - and the job only gets harder if you have plants, pets, or babies to care for. It’s normal to need a little help, but it can also be hard to ask for it. 

For some people asking for help can feel like showing weakness - as if you just couldn’t handle it. For others, even the thought of repeating all the instructions makes you tired. You’d rather just get the job done.

But too often all that caretaking information takes up way too much precious space in our busy minds, or we find ourselves repeating instructions over and over. It’s exhausting.

So why not have all your instructions ready to go? The simple exercise of writing a list can be a huge time and stress saver, so that next time you’re getting help with one of your babies, it’s as easy as clicking a share button. 

Before you get started, make sure you have an easy-to-use and shareable system for all your household info. Make it digital to simplify editing and finding things in the future. We recommend checking out the Coexist home management app. 

Any sitter list should include emergency contact information and any house rules you’d like your sitter to follow while in your home. To make life a little easier for you, we’ve put together tips to help write a comprehensive list for all your plant, baby, or pet sitters. Now let's get started!

Plant-sitting instructions

This might seem straight-forward, but devoted plant parents will tell you what a big impact changes in temperature, water, and light can have on your plant babies. It’s important to get these details right for the person in charge of your plants while you’re away, especially if you're gone for an extended period of time.

Consider including the following in your instructions:

  • Total # of plants they’ll be caring for

  • Where in the home or garden the plants live

  • How much water to give to each one and how often

  • Temperature and humidity range the room should ideally stay within

  • Special instructions such as pruning, fertilization, pest control, repotting, etc.

Pet-sitting instructions

What you include here will, of course, vary depending on whether you have a cat, dog, fish, or pet snake. But for all pet owners, consider capturing the following:

  • Contact info for the vet

  • Play and/or exercise routines

  • Food type, amounts, timing, treats, allergies

  • Medications

  • Pet behavior and personality e.g. are they friendly with other pets or children? Do they have any quirks? 

There’s a great template for pet-sitting instructions in the Coexist app that’s especially useful for dog and cat parents.

Baby-sitting instructions

Being a parent is a full-time, exhausting job. Taking a night off from the kiddos can be the perfect reset so you can come back to them as your best self. Make sure your babysitter has all the critical information so you can focus on making the most of your time away:

  • Contact info for a parent and pediatrician

  • Child info e.g. allergies, special needs, medications, food restrictions

  • Safety precautions e.g. where you keep the fire extinguisher and first aid

  • House rules e.g. screen time, playtime activities

  • Daily routine e.g. typical daily schedule, bathroom routines, etc.

We’ve built you a great template for baby-sitting instructions in the Coexist app to get you started.

We hope this helps get you started on setting yourself up to have more help around the house. Whether it’s your partner, your teenage kids, or hired help - just remember, it’s always OK to ask others to step in so you can take a breather.