As every parent knows, getting your kids up, ready, and out the door on time in the morning is nearly impossible to do without losing at least some of your sanity, if not all of it. Between getting dressed, eating breakfast, brushing hair and teeth, and getting lunchboxes and backpacks ready, mornings can be the craziest time of the day for both kids and parents alike. The good news is: there are plenty of ways to make busy mornings a little less hectic. With these 7 parenting hacks, you can start saving yourself some time AND sanity in the mornings.
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Source: Once A Little Girl
It’s hard for some kids to stay on track when getting ready in the morning, especially younger kids. Having a checklist to follow as a guide not only makes it easier for them to stay on track, but also makes it a lot more fun! A colorful chart with stickers is a great idea for younger children, while a dry erase board may be ideal for older kids.
If you’ve ever worked out, you know that listening to the right music is just what you need to really get moving faster and working harder. Well, the same is true for other situations as well, including getting ready in the morning! With the right family-friendly playlist, you can really pump up your sleepy kids and get them moving and grooving and out the door on time. You can even use the music as a timer for certain things. For example, when their all-time favorite Frozen song comes on, they know it’s time to head to the bathroom to brush their teeth!
Source: Hip Healthy
Allowing screentime in the morning is where a lot of parents go wrong. While many kids want to wake up to a TV show, or watch TV while eating breakfast, parents don’t realize how much of a distraction this is and how much time it ends up wasting. You’d be surprised by how much time you can save just by cutting out screentime in the morning. Not to mention, you can use it as a bribe… er, I mean incentive! If they are completely ready to walk out the door early enough, they can watch TV for the remaining time.
For many families, getting dressed is what takes up the majority of time in the morning. To solve this problem, plan and organize your kids’ outfits - or help them with this task - for the entire week on Sunday night. Just be sure to check the weather first! After you’ve chosen an outfit for each day, store them in gallon-size ziplock bags, in a hanging shoe organizer, or even onto different shelves if you have the space. If using the ziplock bag method, be sure to label each bag with the day of the week.
Source: Ren Behan
Making lunches isn’t typically something the kids do, but making them in advance is certainly a time-saver for the parents! Just like with the outfit hack, it’s best to make a week’s worth of lunches on Sunday night so that you don’t even have to worry about doing it during the week. Make sandwiches and freeze them until you’re ready for them, and separate snacks into plastic baggies and store them in the pantry or refrigerator. This way, the lunch items are all ready and all you have to do is throw everything in the lunch box the night before!
It’s probably best to save the gourmet belgian waffles, bacon, and eggs for the weekends. As far as the busy weekday mornings go, meal choices like cereal, toast, frozen waffles or pancakes, or overnight oats are probably the smartest and most efficient options for the kiddos. These are all things that are fast and easy to make, and just as fast and easy to eat. There are some breakfast choices that are even great on-the-go options.
There’s nothing worse than thinking you’re ready to walk out the door and then realizing the kids’ homework and school supplies are spread all over the house, rather than in their backpacks where they are supposed to be. To avoid this issue, and cut down on morning chaos substantially, have your kids pack their backpacks the night before, or even right after school when they are finished with their homework.