8 Tips To De-Stress Your Morning Routine With Kids
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photo credit: Allen Daniel Photography 

Mornings are tough for anyone--but especially when you have kids. There have been mornings where I thought I was living a literal nightmare. I once made it all the way down our street before I realized we forgot Brooks' backpack. When I went to turn the car around, I spilled coffee down my dress. And we were already late! Does this sound familiar?

Even though the inevitable is bound to happen, there are ways to de-stress your morning routine. Obviously, a good sleep and waking up early help but it also comes down to being prepared for anything. Repeat after me: no more chaotic mornings!

Here's some of my tips that have helped me and may help you, too:

TIP #1: Make getting dressed the first priority 

In my opinion, getting dressed is always the biggest struggle. Brooks is at that age where he is beginning to have an opinion about his clothing choices. As much as I love his sense of style, flip flops to preschool isn't going to happen.

I tackle my most dreaded part of the morning first so everything else seems like a breeze. If your child insists on dressing themselves, give them the independence to do so. Do yourself a favor and start the morning a bit earlier to allow for this. Also, easy on/off clothing like elastic waistbands and velcro are a godsend!

TIP #2: Pick outfits the night before 

photo credit: Allen Daniel Photography 

This one takes a little trial and error. If your kids are picky about what they wear, make it a nightly routine. Pick a few options that they love and set them out. If something needs to be ironed or steamed, you'll already be prepared and have it done. I know this may sound like more effort--but it pays off when you're struggling to get out the door.

TIP #3: Meal prep your breakfasts and school lunches 

I always mention this tip but it deserves repeating. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day but can also be the hardest. That's why I meal prep our mornings. If we don't have time to sit down for a meal, I already have things ready to take on-the-go.

Prepare your servings for the week, pack in air-tight containers or bags, and eat on the way. I know that sounds terrible but it's the reality of being a mom. As long as they are eating a healthy breakfast, that's all that matters.

Here are some simple ideas to power your kids through their day:

  • Fresh fruit (grapes, apple, and orange slices)
  • Mini quiches
  • Mini protein pancakes (recipe here)
  • Homemade granola bars (recipe here)

It helps if you pack their lunches at night and stick in the fridge, too  You'll be surprised by how much time you've cut down! All it takes is one easy grab and go.

TIP #4: Always make time for morning cuddles 

photo credit: Allen Daniel Photography 

Since Scarlett was born, Brooks loves to wake up Scarlett. Every morning, he jumps on our bed and yells "let's go wake up Chicka Chicka Boom Boom!" That's her nickname. It's become our routine to go wake up the baby and have our cuddle time.

Since we started this tradition, I barely have problems getting him out of bed in the morning. I'm serious! This sweet moment to reconnect sets a great tone for the rest of the day.

TIP #5: Create your own calendar and chart system 

I'm all about an organizational system. To keep everyone in sync, we have a family calendar. If it's in plain sight or right by the door, you'll probably glance at it each day and not forget. Create your own calendar DIY or buy a chalkboard so you can change it up from year to year.

Brooks loves checking things off a list (just like his momma!) so charts work really well for him. In his room, we've made a chart with all the things he needs to do before school each morning. Get dressed, brush teeth, eat breakfast, put your shoes on. It keeps us on a time schedule and is a great learning tool to hold them accountable. Plus, he sees checking things off his list as a game. As a momma of a boy, that means everything!

TIP #6: Pump up the music 

photo credit: Allen Daniel Photography 

Putting on music is an instant motivator. Create a morning playlist that you know will help keep your mornings fun and productive. Your playlist can also be used to help with timing. For example, when that Justin Timberlake song comes on--it's time to get out that door!

TIP #7: Keep a #SUPERMOMMA emergency pack 

This is where that "prepare for anything" comes in. A lot of times, the craziest part of the morning doesn't even happen at home--it happens in the car on the way. Instead of having to turn around, keep your essentials in a travel bag just in case.  Keep one in your car or wherever you foresee disaster hitting. It's about damage control, people!

In my bag, I have: cleansing wipes, hand sanitizer, medicines, extra clothes and shoes, crackers. I mean, new things are added every day! It never hurts to be ready.

TIP #8: When all else fails, stay calm

photo credit: Allen Daniel Photography 

Do you have tips and tricks to help make the mornings run smoothly? I'd love to hear. Comment below! 

Actress, model, active humanitarian, & Mom! Author of 'Everyday Chic'.