Morning mayhem anyone? Yeah me too sometimes. Just like breakfast is the most important meal of the day (so they say), I would say that morning is the most important time of the day. It may not be our favorite time of the day but it is important because it sets the tone for the remainder of your day. A hectic morning usually leads to a hectic afternoon and so on. Do you agree? For us this is so true so I have a few tips to help make your morning a smooth and peaceful one.
Prepare the night before.
This is the most important step to create a peaceful morning. This is very general and I’ll be more specific in a bit but think of anything you can have finished ahead of time. Snacks packed or at least laid out, homework put up and backpacks by the door, keys located, coffee set up, etc. The more you have finished the night before the less stressful the morning will be. While the kids are asleep setting up the night before usually only takes 10-15 minutes.
Lay out clothes the night before.
This is especially important if you have a strong willed child who is particular about their outfits. Debates over outfit choice must happen the night before. Morning time is all about speed. J This is also really helpful now that a 1-2 of my kids (depending on the morning mood) can dress themselves. I know this is pretty much the same as the first point but it saves so much time for me that I wanted to specifically mention it. We usually decide on Sunday what outfits we will wear for the week so it is just a matter of making it easily accessible to the kids. It probably would be a good idea to do this for yourself too (I’m not good at this part).
Fix breakfast before you wake the kids.
Now this point is assuming your kids aren’t waking you up which sometimes happens to me. In that case, cartoons it is. I usually wake up before the kids and immediately fix breakfast. Once breakfast is ready I wake my kids up and send them to the table. They eat breakfast, watch TV and have a few minutes to really wake up before the rush sets in. I am not a “children should be seen and not heard” kind of person so typically the noise and activity level is high in my house. However, this is not the case for morning time. Too much idle time or chaos sets the morning up for time-outs, forgotten homework and leaving the house on a negative note which I do NOT like to do. EVER. It happens but I absolutely HATE sending the kids to school after a bad morning. Ugh!
No toys including the IPad.
I touched on this in the previous point but will reiterate it here. We love play time and have a huge toy room in our finished attic space. It is off limits in the morning before school. The #1 reason is because no one wants to stop playing to brush their teeth or get ready for school. This just sets you up for a battle and it is usually not necessary. Mornings are for cartoons, breakfast and getting ready. Another reason is if we do have time to play, we likely won’t have time to pick up. This means that instead of having the maximum amount of time to play after school we will be picking up. No fun for anyone.
I guess you knew this would make the list. Sleepy kids are not easy to deal with. Well, at least mine aren’t. Bedtime can be difficult but it is so important for development, mood and happy mommas. J Well rested kids are going to be much better prepared for the day. You can check out this night time yoga post if you want a fun bedtime routine.
A hug and a kiss.
If every point I have shared falls through because at times it will, this is the most important. When every preparation still doesn’t make up for the fact that the socks are itchy, the breakfast is yucky and school is boring this last point takes precedence.
The most important reason to have a peaceful morning is not that our ducks are in a row or that we make it on time. The most important reason is that our kids leave our home ready to take on the day, feeling loved and happy as they exit our cars. The previous points make our lives easier, helping us to be better parents with an end result of well adjusted, happy kids.
However, if the house is a wreck, if they stayed up too late and if you fought over which outfit to wear what they will likely remember is the last part. The hug, the kiss and the words, I love you and have a great day. So when all else fails…hug them tight, kiss them goodbye and send them off with a smile.
Today my morning went as planned but chances are another morning this week won’t. This is not a full proof plan but a “most of the time” plan. I hope these tips help you as you prepare for the rest of your week and that your mornings set you up for a successful day. What is your morning routine? I’d love to hear from you!
© Godfer | Dreamstime.com – Kid with alarm clock