8 solid ways to avoid completely losing your sh*t in the mornings
There are some areas of parenting that I can hand on heart say I'm really good at: getting goofy and playing games with the kids, bed time stories and making them feel better when they are sad are a few.
But there is one major area that I am completely shit at and that is known as 'All Of The Morning Time'.
For starters, I am naturally a grumpy bitch in the mornings. Even if I had twelve hours' sleep, I would still wake up with a head on me to rival Twink on a 'someone stole my puppy' day.
Secondly, I don't like a lot of noise. This is obviously a major oversight on my behalf when it comes to my decision to have one West Hyland Terrier and two kids share the house with us.
Then there is the small matter of getting out the door by 8.45am with forty-eight different tasks under your belt. When it was just me to organise, that was stressful enough (my makeup routine used to be very high maintenance), but now? WTF?!
Breakfasts, clothes, the dog, the kitchen, the car seats, the battle to get dressed, the bottles, the bags, the lunch, the FLIPPING dog!, the lost items, the bill that we forgot to pay yesterday, the bins - and where are the car keys?!
We run around like headless chickens, racing up and down the stairs and snapping at each other to get out of the way until we *SIGH!* finally leave the house.
By the time I drop Jacob off to school I almost need to be sedated.
So what can I do to avoid the morning stress?
1. Make a bedtime check list
I'm talking kids shoes, school bags, fuel in the car, phone chargers, keys, car seats in the right car.. you need to know that all of this is sorted before you go to sleep. The amount of time we spend looking for all of those items when we should have calmly sorted it the night before is ridiculous.
2. Eliminate things that annoy you
Do you hate the sound of your alarm clock (yes) or want your partner to avoid speaking to you until you've had your morning tea (yes). Then make it happen! There's nothing to say you can't have a tiny bit of the morning that you want so have 'the talk' and respectfully request at least one thing that helps you start your day in the right way.
3. Plan the next day's meals
If I wake up in the morning with absolutely no idea of what we are eating for the day, he day will run into total chaos pretty quickly. Breakfast needs to be laid out on the table, lunches pre-packed and if the childminder is coming, the kid's evening meal ready in the fridge. I know that seems like a lot of work to do the night before but the peace of mind it gives me going to bed PLUS the time back to just get ourselves ready and have breakfast is so worth it.
4. Drink a glass of water when you wake up
We've all woken up with the dreaded 'dry mouth' but did you know that even mild dehydration can contribute to mental fatigue? You need your wits about you to get through the morning unscathed so add this little tip to your list.
5. Pick out everyone's clothes the night before
This might seem like a no-brainer but it can be easy to get caught out and having to iron something at 7am is NOT my idea of a good time. If, like me, you have a kid whose life goal is not to get dressed int eh mornings then let them pick out their own clothes or get them involved in a way that helps them feel they have some control over the situation.
6. Mop those floors
You will not do the dishes in the morning and you will not mop the floor before the childminder arrives. It will take ten minutes if you just horse into it when the kids go up to bed so, you know, get it done, Holly Housewife
7. Get a good night's sleep
"Yeah right!" we parents cry! I know, I know, the challenge of having a good night's sleep is completely upon us. My meaning of good night's sleep is very different from the years B.C. (Before Children). It can now mean 'I got into bed at 9pm and only woke up with the kids for a few minutes at 1am and 5am'. A bad night's sleep is getting into bed at midnight, being woken at twenty past and sleeping sitting up with a sick baby until 3am. Figure out what 'a Good Night's Sleep' means to you, and make it happen.
If you need a breather, just put food and bottles in front of everyone, stand behind a door somewhere and breathe. You can do this.. you can do this.. you can do this..
What do you do to ensure a less stressed morning? Let us know in the comments on Facebook.