Yes I know.
No coffee. Let me just hang up my cape for a minute.
I do all the other days without coffee too. The last two years actually.
But that’s not really what this is about.
I have a friend ask me to blog what we do for our mornings because – in her words – yours doesn’t seem like a mind fuck.
And it really isn’t
Wasn’t always this way though…
We have a list.
Once all the list is done for all the children, you can do whatever you want.
T.V. doesn’t go on until the list is done.
No tablets, phones, 3ds or anything else until the list is done for everyone.
The FOR EVERYONE part is important. It means they get in and help each other, encourage, motivate, sometimes yell angrily, but that’s pretty much every sibling ever.
IT goes like this:
– Lunch boxes out of school bags and on the bench
– Uniforms for the next day on the end of the bed
– Towel hung up
– Get up
– Get dressed
– Make bed
– Take dirty washing from bathroom downstairs to laundry
– have breakfast
– put away the dishes
– Bowl in the sink
– Make sure room is tidy: no clothes, books etc on the floor
That’s pretty much it.
Why does it work?
Because I make sure my kids know that I know they’re competent (albeit small) human beings.
I refuse to let them not help out.
It isn’t my job to pander to their every need, it’s my job to get them ready to leave my house.
I make it easier for myself by making all the sandwiches for the week and freezing them with their names on them.
I probably don’t have to do this because most days I’m up making Pat’ lunch anyway but on the days I decide to stay in bed longer, they can pack their own lunches.
I make a massive massive effort to NOT use that exasperated mum voice.
You know the one.
I can pretty much see eyes glaze over as soon as that one creeps in and we can write off the rest of the morning so I try to keep that one under wraps.
I also try not to yell (which I’m sure our neighbours are pleased about) because it just makes my kids defensive.
Not everything happens perfectly every day.
Sometimes they forget to take the washing down.
They’re pretty crappy at making their own beds. If I think they’ve let it slide too far I’ll call them back and we make it again together so I can show them what to do.
Sometimes they wake up on the wrong side of the bed and have a shitty morning (like everyone is entitled to) and it is an argument.
But then they don’t get to watch T.V. so they pay the consequences of their actions.
I’ve also found this routine helps me keep the rest of the house clean too.
I’m not spending time in their rooms picking up all the shit or straightening the bathroom. I can just chuck on washing. Wash the dishes first thing (which I usually get going while they’re cleaning in the morning.
It all makes me feel organised and like I’ve accomplished something.
AND it makes it easier for the days I just cannot get out of bed because you know, newborn, because I know a lot of the chores are already done so it isn’t too rough to get up to.
We also have a list for the weekends called “Things to be done before we have fun” but I’ll share that another day.
I really hope this helps.
I know that it is easy to roll your eyes and say “My kids won’t ever do that” but I was the same.
Until I told them I knew they could do it.
Until I told them they couldn’t play skylanders until the lists were done.