We are a busy family at this time of the year. Ok, not just this time, but right now things are quite a challenge. With DS12 being in Junior High, his wrestling practices are the three nights during the week when the 8yo does not practice. We are running to practice five nights a week.
Last year, before we moved, the school where practice was held was 4 miles away from home. Even suring rush hour it was not difficult to get there. Now in our new city, to get to the High School 13 miles away, we need to fight rush hour traffic. It can take anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes. Of course it take Hubby and I longer to get home from work also.
So my tip is about how to have a meal at home early enough so that the boys are not practicing on a full stomach. I fix a casserole and leave instructions for it to go into the oven usually about 4:30. The 12 Yo can do this. (Although one time the new-to-us gas oven did not fire up.) Which every parent has been more victorious in overcoming rush hour traffic then puts dinner on the table.
Casseroles - it's what's for dinner. This works better for me than the crockpot. With the crockpot the meal stays in it for over 10 hours, so I have to be selective as to which recipes can tolerate that long of a time. Of course it's only worked since my 12 yo has been old enough to be a latchkey kid.
For more great ideas, see Shannon's blog.