Have you ever found yourself running around the house, with a high-pitched voice trying to get your kids off to school? It’s something I am unfortunately, very familiar with. But, then again, what mom doesn’t struggle with getting out of the house on time? I think many of us can relate to the daily morning challenge.
At my children’s elementary school we get a 15 minute window to drop off the kids before the bell rings. It’s a nice system that allows parents to drive up and drop off with volunteers ushering the children to the playground.
I get up with 45 minutes to (1) get myself ready, (2) get all three kids ready, (3) cook breakfast, (4) assist with teeth brushing (of course), and (5) get packed and ready to start the day off on the right foot.
Unfortunately, it rarely goes as smoothly as it sounds. My husband leaves at 5 am every day, so the morning routine with the kids is all on me. By the end of the morning, I constantly find myself very flustered and eager to raise my voice. I cannot blame it on the kids either, since they are truly too young to do everything for themselves.
So I decided I needed to cut my stress. I needed to change something about my mornings: Here is what I did:
- Set my alarm 15 minutes earlier so I could get ready with a nice hot cup of joe before I wake my little ones. You would be surprised how much you could accomplish in 15 minutes. Just do it, trust me the extra 15 minutes of sleep is not worth it.
- I am making their lunch at night so I am not scrambling in the morning. Lets face it, if you have a big family like I do, you really have to make those lunches at night. You simply do not have an extra 15 minutes to make lunches in the morning and if you are out of something that’s a whole other level of stress a mom doesn’t need!
- Set their clothes out the night before. I gave birth to a mini fashionista who values what shoes go with what outfits. I’ve found that if I pick the clothes out with my daughter, the experience is so much fun for her, as it is for me. On the other hand, the boys do not care as much about what they wear, but if you want them to look presentable it’s necessary to lay their clothes out too.
- Backpacks are lined up and ready to go the night before. My kids have a tendency of leaving their school projects, library books, and more in their backpacks. Now, I’ve made it a habit of asking the kids to empty out their bags so I can see what they are working on at school. At the same time, this organizes the kids for the week and contributes to a well-organized morning. Also, I recommend packing a have a diaper bag the night before. Make sure to pack a change of clothes, snacks, diapers, wipes, and anything else you may need to run out the door.
- I am also mentally planning before I go to bed what I am serving for breakfast. The goal is to not scramble in the morning, so knowing what the kids will eat for breakfast is crucial in accomplishing this. Inspect your cabinets and know what you are serving the night before.
Instilling these changes has made our morning routine so much better. I’ve found that I can finally tie the shoes, help with the socks, tuck shirts in, potty train, and style hair without feeling rushed. Now, I can give my sweet children the attention that they need before starting their day. A bonus? I’ve noticed that the kids are going to school in a much better mood and I am starting my day in a much more pleasant state of mind.
My grandmother always said, “To be early is to be on time.”
Do you feel rushed in the morning? Do you think these little changes could help?