Getting the family out the door on time every morning is no small feat. Seemingly simple tasks like getting dressed, packing backpacks and making breakfast can quickly turn into chaos. Before you know it, you’re running late and the kids haven’t even eaten as you dash to the car.
Stop dreading the stressful start to the day and start taking control of your mornings. A few simple tips and tricks will turn the morning craze into smooth sailing. Plus, when you have a stress-free start with a morning routine, the rest of the day just seems to go better.
Select a week’s worth of clothes Sunday night.
Instead of choosing outfits the night prior, supersize your time-saving efforts by doing this task just once on Sunday night. Involve kids in selecting their clothes for the week so they feel empowered in their choices. Then hang entire outfits in the closet or stack in one drawer dedicated to weekday wear. When mornings come, kids know exactly where to find the day’s duds. Bonus: you don’t have to worry about midweek laundry.
Create a morning routine and set alarms.
Create a morning routine and stick to it. For example, kids wake at 7 am, eat breakfast at 7:15 am, get dressed and ready at 7:30 am, then out the door by 8 am. And if the kids need to share a bathroom, set a daily bathroom schedule with alarms to keep kids on track and avoid arguments in the morning.
Get ready before waking up the kids.
Trying to ready yourself for the day while helping the kids is a recipe for disaster. This is why waking before the rest of the family really makes mornings happier. Try getting up 30 minutes before the kids so you have time to get ready and enjoy a cup of coffee. You’ll be fully awake, much happier and can focus on helping the kids stay on-task.
Create morning routine rules.
Just like you don’t let kids eat dessert before dinner to ensure they eat well, set rules for the morning to keep things moving. For example, no TV until all morning tasks are completed. For teens, smartphones and other mobile devices must remain on the kitchen table until they are ready to go.
Sundays = meal prep.
If you have to prepare your child’s lunch, try to make five servings ahead of time, like even freezing PB&J sandwiches works well to pop in a lunch box and have it defrosted by lunch. Take it one step further and do the same for dinner. Then that just leaves you to worry with breakfast each morning. If you are really short on time, set out shelf-stable items the kids can make and take themselves, such as nut butter toast, fruit and cereal. Or want to up the ante for breakfast without spending extra morning time?
Get a recipe for delicious overnight oats that can be made in the evening and customized for each family member at www.familyandkidsga.com/overnight-oats-recipe.