You go girl! You have a lot on your plate but you can do it. I am not a newlywed but SO and I have been living together for almost 4 years. I don’t commute as far as you do, but I understand how work + school + driving = exhaustion and little down time.
For dinners, I found this amazing website where the blogger creates a grocery list for you and then gives you the recipes for 15 crock pot meals that you can put together in an hour, and freeze for the rest of the week/month. All you do is pull them out when you need them and plop them in the slow cooker and voila! Dinner when you get home.
As for helping out with keeping the house picked up, there was a wonderful post on here from the other day and NAvery gave some great tips:
NAvery (message) April 13, 2013 Indiana
#1. Work with your habits, don’t try to change your habits to suit your organizational system. If you always drop your bag when you come in the door – try and figure out a way to put a hook or shelf near or on that door where your bag can go. If Fiance always drops his dirty clothes in the bathroom – move the hamper in there instead of in your bedroom. That sort of thing. Think about your key problem areas and how you can fix the area instead of trying to fix yourself. MUCH easier to change your surroundings.
#2. Get ready for bed an hour before you want to go to bed and do a 10 – 15 minute pickup then. It will go SO fast if you do it every night.
#3. Make the bed. It changes your room and your whole house’s organizational mood.
#4. Clean as you go when you’re cooking – don’t put something on the stove and then go work on something else while dishes are still in the sink. Put the dishes away ASAP. If you can sit down to dinner with all the dishes in the dishwasher OR put away, you’ll be in much better shape.
#5. Along those lines, keep up with the dishwasher. If you have a dishwasher, there is never a reason for dishes to be in your sink (unless a pot is soaking or something). Unload the dishwasher the first time you go to take a clean dish out or as soon as you realize it is done. We put it off but it truly only takes 3 – 5 minutes and makes a huge difference in keeping the house tidy.
#6. Contain things. Got a bunch of magazines? They need to have a place they go. Is your coffee table always messy? I would always have some magazines, a couple coasters, the remotes, and maybe some hair ties or other little fiddly things on my ottoman/coffee table. I got a tray, and the rule is – all the “stuff” goes on that tray. It keeps the coffee table clear, looks stylish, and doesn’t require me to change habits much.
#7. Keep supplies where you use them. If you have 2 bathrooms, keep cleaning supplies in each of them versus having to carry the supplies around to each bathroom to clean. It’s more expensive up front to have two sets, but you go through them at half the speed and it evens out quickly – plus you use them more. Keep the vacuum somewhere easy to get in and out.
Hope some of these help – this is just off the top of my head.
Hope this helps!