As a fellow Mompreneur – I’m sure you understand just how very tricky it can be to keep everything moving along smoothly. For myself, I find that I work very late into the night after I have the children in bed and then get up at about 6 a.m. to start the morning ritual of getting the kids (3 of them) all ready for school.
One of the things that causes me the most stress I have discovered is telling the kids every gosh darn step they need to do to get ready. “Go get your teeth brushed. Did you put on underwear? Those socks don’t match. You still need to brush your hair. Did you pack your homework?” You know the drill.
Now that my daughter is going to preschool I have not just one extra person to get ready, but two – because I actually have to get out of the car and walk into the school. Yikes!
So this Monday morning I became determined was going to mark the last stressful morning I had. One thing that I have learned over the years is that it isn’t enough to have an idea, however good, unless you implement it! So I needed to take some action steps. Hopefully some of these ideas will help you too!
1. I decided the kids needed a list. Why wouldn’t they? I know I need lists! So I did a quick Google search and found these great little chore charts. I brought them into photoshop and edited them a bit because what I wanted was a list that broke down responsibilities in the morning, after school, and before bed.
2. I vowed to myself that I would get back into the habit of laying out the children’s clothes before going to bed. I did in fact follow up on that last night and cannot tell you how much I loved myself for having done it this morning!
3. Where else does a Mom turn when she needs help but to other Moms? So I sent out a quick twitter to my list and waited with bated breath for their advice. Happily it came!
4. @MyGOMOM to the rescue! MyGOMOM founder Molly Gold was kind enough to let me know about this absolutely fabulous website she’s been working for 10 years now to help Moms that were in just my particular state of mind! The website, GOMOMinc, is filled with organizational tips, free checklists to download and the website features what looks to be a lovely little DIY (Do it yourself) planner.
5. @JenPowter advised Moms to plan their meals ahead! Jen shared that she plans her meal menu for the week on Saturday night and does her grocery shopping Sunday morning. Not for long mind you because she’s going to be getting her groceries delievered! Imagine the time that will save! Jen also prepares her meals in the morning and cooks what she can then before her busy day takes off. Really smart tips – I’m at least going to try the menu planning this weekend.
6. Pack Lunch Ahead of Time! @Thien-Kim of I’m Not The Nanny shared that her sanity saving tip which was to have the kids lunches packed and ready to go the night before. That way the kids can just ‘Grab and Go’ in the morning. Another terrific tip!
When the kids came home from school and discovered their ‘Responsibility Charts’ hung on our freshly decluttered fridge they were really excited. I’ve never seen the family room get cleaned up so quickly with so little resistance! Homework was done (and packed into their backpacks) before any games could be played and bed time was a pleasure as we all joined forces to put 10 minutes into cleaning their bedrooms.
They loved checking the items off their list – especially the ‘Hug Mom and Dad’ item :-)
This morning was also a breeze as they referred to their list instead of me chasing them around with a multitude of orders. We actually had 10 minutes to spare!
I’m all about systems that work in 2010 and replacing old habits that don’t serve us with new ones that bring some ease to our very busy lives. So PLEASE – feel welcome to share your sanity saving tips in the comments below!
Follow Up: Here’s a website that has valuable tips on how to get organized :-)