I think it’s true that our mornings set the tone for the day ahead, if you have a rushed and chaotic start–that seems to cling to you for at least the first few hours of the morning.
Here are a dozen things we do in our home that help us start the day on a positive note, all but the last two are done the night before. As small and insignificant some of these may seem, I find each do make a positive difference…
- Get the coffee ready the night before, preferably the timer set too (if your machine has one). If not, set everything up so it just has to be switched on. If you’re a morning tea drinker instead, have your tea cup out with a tea bag set inside, kettle waiting to be turned on the a.m.
- Know what’s on the menu for breakfast and have all food items that don’t need to be refrigerated set out. Kitchen table is wiped down, fresh tablecloth placed, table set (or at least the clean dishes and utensils set out). Some breakfast ideas: How To Make Overnight Crockpot Oatmeal & Oatmeal In A Thermos and How To Make Breakfast Burritos for easy breakfast ideas. Toast, cereal, bagels and muffins are easy too, just make sure to check the stock the night before and bring out frozen supplies so they’ll be thawed & ready in the a.m.
- Prepare the next day’s packed lunches and snacks. Everything is bagged and ready to grab and go.
- The next night’s meal is planned, take out meat & frozen items from the freezer. If I don’t do this the night before, sometimes I’ll forget in the a.m. and you know what that means: ordering take-out for supper. If planning a slowcooker meal, prep the veggies and food needed for the meal the night before so all you need to do is toss everything in the crockpot when you get up and turn it on.
- Have all clothes for the next day set out (press if needed), including shoes and accessories. If cool, cold or rainy weather is expected, have the necessary outerwear ready to go too.
- Everyone has their own fresh towels and washcloths set aside for the next morning’s shower, put them with your bathrobe. Too simple to make a difference? I find it really does add a nice touch to the mornings. If you’re someone who can shower or bath the night before and skip this in the a.m., go for it! Myself, I need a coffee drip line & a hot shower to get going in the morning.
- Review your next day’s To Do list, calender, household binder so there are no last minute surprises while running out the door. Take a few minutes to review the next day with your spouse and kids too.
- Pack totebags, briefcases, backpacks, diaper bags for the next day. The kiddos homework is done & packed, gym clothes packed, bus tickets, lunch money, etc.
- If for some reason I forgot to pay attention to the vehicle’s fuel situation on the way home that day, I’ll check it sometime in the evening and go fuel up if needed. I really don’t need to be fighting the morning rush at the pumps. I’ll also pick up any last minute supplies that are needed for the next day.
- The dishwasher is emptied of all clean dishes, kitchen sink dishes are loaded in the dishwasher. I found this really made a difference, after breakfast everyone took a minute to load their dirty dishes in the dishwasher and there were no dirty dishes waiting when we got home.
- Get up 15 minutes earlier than you have to. Wow, who knew that 15 minutes could mean so much? Less stress, less rushing, a more peaceful pace to start your day. If your mornings are too rushed with the kids, get them up 10 or 15 minutes earlier than they do now–that should be enough to reduce the racing around.
- Leave 5 minutes earlier than you have to. I think 90% of road rage would disappear if everyone simply allowed themselves a few extra minutes to get to where they’re going. No rush, no stress or Indy 500 driving–and you might even enjoy your morning drive!
These are 12 simple ways to help your mornings go well, and the beauty is that most don’t have to be rushed through at bedtime the night before, they can be done anytime throughout the evening–and each only take a few minutes to manage.