If you’re anything like me, mornings in our house can either be seriously chaotic or calm, organised and actually quite enjoyable. Over the years, though, I have learnt some pretty hard lessons when it comes to giving myself the best opportunity to let this play out my way, and not the mad way.
- Lunch box prep: If your kids are like mine and just love a fresh sandwich, make them in bulk. Sundays are the day I prepare 15 sandwiches for the week and pop in the freezer. Now when it comes to the freezer I am pedantic about that funky smell and freezer burn! Anything in my freezer is in an airtight container and snap lock bag (I am enviro conscious so they must be recyclable). Sooo much easier to pull them out the night before, pack the lunch boxes and pop in the fridge ready to roll. I’ve found most spreads, cold meat and cheese all freeze fine. Just experiment with one and see how you go. I also do the same for baked goods such as cakes, breads, muffins and biscuits. This is an absolute game changer for me!
- No calls allowed: I would consider myself a fairly experienced multitasker but this one just tips me right over the edge. Nothing turns the morning quicker than phone calls, distracting me from the time and monitoring every move like a military officer. Whatever happens between 6:30-8:15am is what sets the mood for the entire day. I love leaving a clean, organised house and headache free day because I haven’t been screaming like a raving banshee in the morning. Phone calls are a no no.
- Create a visual list: Kids love structure and guidance! Let them create their own morning list with you, ensuring everything is done but they’ve tapped into their creativity (I’m all about the stationery, too) and are appealing to them every morning. Eg. make your bed, washing in the basket, brush teeth etc. Set a time on each activity and remind them throughout the morning. 5 more minutes before you need to leave for the bus (Miss 4 has no perception of time, but for my girls aged 10 and 8 this works well. Give them some responsibility, accountability and independence- they will have you doing everything if you let them.
- Me time: Getting up before the rest of the house and giving myself the space to get ready is blissful. I’m a morning shower girl, kick ass skincare routine, hair (buns or ponytails for me and a 2 minute makeup routine of foundation (sometimes), brows, cheeks and nourishing lip treatment and I’m good to go (I can share more on this later – let me know if you want to see how I get ready in record time!).
- No technology: Monday-Friday is technology free! No ipods, laptops or devices during the week in our house. Now I’m all for technology, but in small amounts. There’s nothing worse than speaking to a brick wall that doesn’t answer, move or respond to anything when technology has taken over! Creating conversations, sharing stories,colouring/drawing and reading are our choices for critical development but the main thing is to keep our kids busy and interested without reaching for an ipod.
There is no secret sauce to creating the perfect morning, however from my experience these 5 tips make it a whole lot more achievable and always find it much easier im working with them not against them!
From one Mumma to another, always remember to be kind to yourself and strive for progress rather than perfection.