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Smart Home: Morning Routine, Searching for Tips to Establish School Day Mornings

A morning routine. I love it. I get very type-A at times and like to have things scheduled out to the last minute. Enter 2 children intoMorning Timer that dream and it essentially flies out the window. With my near 5 year old, Isabella, a routine is necessary, it’s just not as precisely followed as I would like. During the summer months she goes to bed by 8 and is normally up by 7:00. Not bad. My 3 month old is a bit different, but not much – we’ll get into that a different day.
Isabella wakes up hungry – I promise I feed (or attempt to) her a healthy, yummy dinner an hour or so before bedtime. Typically, the 1st battle of the day is deciding what she wants for breakfast. I don’t play short order cook in the AM, but I do allow some decision making/requests. I give her 3 options, for example cereal, pop-tarts or waffle. She’ll go back and forth (talking outloud the ENTIRE time) figuring out what she wants. Then, 10 hours later (yes, a bit of an exageration) she’ll finally decide. The next part of the routine is simple on my end. After she has her breakfast in front of her I sit down here and eat my breakfast while catching up with social media (Facebook, Twitter….) She on the other hand, due to my very poor suggestion one morning, prefers to eat her breakfast while watching TV. It’s the summer so I’ve let that one go, possibly a little too long. I don’t see much of a problem with this…except…my “slower than a turtle eater” gets so caught up watching her shows that it can take her over 30 minutes to finish a bowl of cerreal. Ridiculous. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not just the TV that causes her snail pace. At preschool last year, she and a friend were made to start eating lunch 15 minutes before the rest of the class because they were so slow.
10 years later when she’s done with breakfast, the fashion show starts. Fear for her teen years because we’re in for it. Although she typically agrees with my outfit suggestion or mandate, she always has an opinion. Shoes seem to be her thing. She’ll try on a few pairs, commenting on if they match or are fancy enough for that day’s occassion. It’s sort of cute in a Fancy Nancy sort of way.
Well my friends, I’ve opened up to the chaos of my morning. I love a routine but there are no bells ringing in this house, we’re still in that you’re done when you’re done phase this summer. The real challenge starts in a little less than 2 weeks. Isabella starts preschool at a new school. We need to be out the door by 7:10. I think that’s a bit ridiculous of a PreK-4 class but there’s nothing I can do about that one.
What is your morning routine like? How does it differ in the summer?

Let’s share our “been there, done that” experiences as we all prepare for a new school year.

I will compile your experiences in an upcoming post.

See my next post in this series,Β http://smartypantsmama.com/2011/08/smart-home-how-and-why-to-establish-school-time-routine-before-the-1st-dayΒ to learn how the alarm clock is SET!

8 thoughts on “Smart Home: Morning Routine, Searching for Tips to Establish School Day Mornings

  1. Our summer has been a sleep-in, eat-whatever-you-want-whenever-you-want, no real plans for the day type of summer.

    We’re adding to our chaos by taking my neighbor kid (my son’s very best friend) to school as well. So instead of a 5yo and a 3yo to get out the door, we will have TWO 5yos and a 3yo πŸ™‚
    How we’re transitioning:
    -Starting to get used to the whole breakfast sans tv, get dressed, by a certain time thing.
    -We’re working on extending our meal times-my son eats ALL DAY LONG and I’m worried about him making it till lunch without a snack!!
    -We talk about how our day is going to be when school starts (right now, you’ll be eating lunch at your new school!)
    How we’ll make things go smoother once school starts:
    -The TV is off until breakfast is eaten and the big kids are dressed. The sooner you eat breakfast and get ready, the more TV you will watch.
    -We don’t eat cereal, period. So I will make a variety of breakfast items ahead of time every weekend and freeze for use during the week (there were actually some great suggestions at http://www.parenting.com/gallery/on-the-go-breakfast-recipes?pnid=114299 , to add to our usual menu of whole wheat pancakes, whole wheat waffles, toast and hard boiled eggs, etc.)
    -We MAY do a little homework before TV time, this is what we did last year, but will see.
    -We’ll pack a snack for the car every day, because I’m super worried about my kid starving during the day–he eats ALL THE TIME when we are home. Usually that helps–the sooner you get in the car the sooner you can eat your snack! (Usually a bowl of strawberries, a banana or apple, a pita w pb, or a granola bar).

    I think my 3yo will be the challenge, she’s old enough to give me a hard time but not quite old enough to be incredibly cooperative like her brother is.

    1. Wow!
      What fantastic advice!!! What a great friend you are to get your friend’s child set for school each morning. I’m pretty confident with my 4 1/2 year old as you are with your oldest. The challenge will be incorporating the 3 month old! Since she needs 30-40 minutes of feeding time in the morning, I haven’t figured out how to get that into the schedule.

  2. Right now, our schedule is very lax. I have to be at work by 9am, and the boys’ summer camp is in the clubhouse in our neighborhood, so I let the boys sleep until about 730am. Then they quickly get dressed and have breakfast while I get ready. Breakfast is usually cereal, a yogurt and a granola bar, buttered toast and milk, or leftover homemade waffles from the weekend. Ideally, we are out the door by 830am (though it’s usually more like 840). If they are ready and I am not, they can watch a bit of TV while they wait for me.
    When school starts in a little under two weeks (Where did the summer go????) the routine will be the same (without the TV time), but we will get up around 7am so that the boys are in school and preschool on time. My big one starts 3rd grade, and the little one starts PreK 4, but fortunately their schools are across the street from each other.

  3. Our schedule has been pretty laid back this summer, but my oldest starts kindergarten on monday, so that is all about to change πŸ™‚ New follower from MBC, have a great rest of your weekend!

    1. Thanks for visiting! My daughter starts in another week. I’m starting the back to school wake up time schedule tomorrow! Need lots of coffee πŸ˜‰

  4. it’s great to read about your post.. well actually, i really have a different routine when it comes to summer, i usually sleep late and wake up late too.. in short, i’m awake at night and asleep in the morning!

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