This post is sponsored by Stitch Fix. All opinions are my own.
It’s without a doubt back-to-school time at my house. Between my nagging the kids to go to bed because “it’s a school night” and having that feeling that getting them out of the house feels like I’m herding cats… my kids are adjusting to saying goodbye to our relaxed summer schedule.
It’s in this adjustment period that I push to establish a back-to-school morning routine for my kids so I don’t have to turn into “mean mom” in the morning while trying to leave the house on time and making sure everyone has eaten breakfast and brushed their teeth.
Well, at least they’re dressed well” I tell myself. But the truth is, that I haven’t really gone clothes shopping for my kids in two years since I discovered Stitch Fix Kids. You can read about my experience with Stich Fix Kids, a personal styling service for kids here.
Perhaps, you’re here because you LOVE learning how others spend their mornings, I know I do! Or maybe you find yourself in a state of panic morning after morning. I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum and let me tell you morning chaos is not fun.
I don’t know about you, but my kids are not morning people. Washing faces, brushing teeth, and getting dressed – oh, that last part, can be a slow crawl. There have been many mornings in which I found myself running out the door in a frenzied state with my kids barely dragging behind.
It wasn’t until I worked out a routine for our mornings that I found a peace of mind and got more accomplished throughout the entire day.
Establishing a Family Daily Routine
Observing how others manage time or set their day up is a great way to get a fresh perspective and inspiration for your own routine. It’s what helped me to find a morning rhythm that worked for me and my family.
Hammering out a realistic routine for your family takes a little insight and a lot of flexibility, but we’re mom’s, and we know how to do both.
1. Write it down
Start by identifying the activities and goals that are most important for your family to accomplish each day. Once you’re there, find the right time and place to accomplish each of those activities.
I find that having a “house calendar” of activities posted in a visible place helps everyone know what they are doing and where they are going that day. This helps us grab the right after-school activity bags and make sure we don’t forget anything (like extra snacks).
2. YOU Time
Something about those first few hours set the standard for the remainder of the day. Having a morning routine for yourself, meaning one you follow BEFORE everyone wakes up, will help you get yourself ready and feel that you’re on track and energized for the rest of the day.
Establishing my own morning routine has helped tremendously since now I’m not trying to get myself ready at the same time as my kids. By the time we all walk out the door, we’re ready –well, almost.
3. Be flexible
Accepting what comes with each day, the ups the downs and everything in between, is how I manage 2 businesses, a household, and live to tell the tale #justsayin. I can guarantee that things don’t go as planned most mornings so a routine and being flexible is key.
I’ve learned to leave room for spontaneity, which is great because I know I can always pick up right where I left off. There are many nights where I turn on the dishwasher while we sleep in hopes that I’ll empty it in the morning while I wait for the coffee to brew. The reality is that most of the time, it doesn’t get unloaded and it happens at dinner time when I need to empty it so I can make room for everything I used to cook dinner and the containers from empty the lunch bags. More reality, less perfection is my motto.
4. Eliminate Unnecessary Decisions
We’ve seen this idea followed by some of the world’s most successful people. For instance, Steve Jobs, along with others, choose to wear the same style outfit each day to reduce the number of decisions they would have to in a day.
This idea goes a long way and can be applied in several places to save us time. For instance, I use Stitch Fix for my family’s wardrobes. Outsourcing the task of shopping and styling outfits to professional stylists, saved time, and we got some incredible outfits. It also means, less time spent each day, choosing what to wear, with great pieces making an outfit is a second thought.
5. Make and Prep Ahead
Whether it’s packing lunches ahead of time or having easy breakfast ideas on hand, having food prepped will save your mom-sanity and a lot of time in the mornings. Lunches seem to take the most time, so here is a complete post with easy lunch ideas you can make the night before or watch this video with 5-minute lunch ideas.
There are many benefits to having a morning routine for kids. As you know, mornings set the tone for most of the day so it’s not just about getting the kids dressed, fed, and out the door. Having a routine for my kids has helped us tremendously and it can help you too!
When you and your family know what to expect, it reduces stress and anxiety. I know it sounds minuscule, but it’s true.
2. Routine Makes Kids More Confident
Once kids get into the habit of accomplishing responsibilities such as cleaning their room of finishing homework, it makes them feel more confident and capable.
3. Creates More Time for Fun
Every daily routine should build in time for something fun it helps them to establish a healthy approach to daily routines. For kids, this could be an activity they enjoy- playing outside, video game (my kids are OBSESSED), crafts, etc.
4. Creates Stability
Kids are sensitive to change whether it’s starting a new grade level, changing schools, or a move. Routines can act as a support system to help them through any uneasiness they may be facing.
Just like us, it helps them to be more productive and better stewards of their time. A flexible schedule only sets them up for success and isn’t that what we parents are striving to do?
Easier Mornings Start the Night Before
The secret to a smoother morning is to prepare the night before. I’ve used this tactic for years and it WORKS!
From setting the coffee pot to “auto-brew” the night before to laying out my kid’s clothes over a chair so they can grab them and get dressed, these are all small but important tasks that can be done ahead of time.
If you’re wondering why their clothes are laid out in the middle of the living room; that’s because my sons can never find something to wear in the middle of Legos or in between their folded clothes that are waiting to be put away. And, when left to their own devices, they are just not good at figuring out what to wear.
That’s one more reason I LOVEEEE Stitch Fix Kids. The clothes come with a styling card that helps my boys learn to pair outfits. This way, they begin to feel more confident about what they are wearing and it’s one less thing this mom needs to think about
Years ago, letting them pick out their clothes was a bit scary, since my sons have zero sense of style and there were a lot of wardrobe mismatched days and some malfunctions; but since I turned to Stitch Fix Kids for their clothing options everyone’s a lot more stylish.
They’ve come through for us on so many occasions. Based off the styles you select; Stitch Fix stylists coordinate outfits and pieces to match your or your kids’ taste.
My youngest son loves bright, trendy, and comfortable pieces of clothing. He’s somewhere between athleisure and life-of-the-party. My middle son is an introvert, likes a very monochromatic look, and also comfortable.
Their personal stylist has nailed their fixes every single time and the experience is much better than me going to the store with two boys in tow –and a lot more affordable. In addition, Stitch Fix has access to many brands I don’t have locally and I’m just not the type of person that will spend hours shopping online for my kids.
It’s also great that each box is what we call a capsule wardrobe, so you’ll find maybe 2 pairs of pants and 5 shirts, but those selections make several outfits. Having a few, really nice options is a much more efficient way to getting dressed. It also eliminates time wasted on figuring out what to wear and creates more closet space.
School Outfits for Kids
In your Fix, you get outfit pairings that can be combined in so many ways! This year, we have done two fixes and I am feeling pretty confident about my kids having a “capsule” wardrobe for back-to-school.
At 13, my daughter has a style of her own. She loves to coordinate fun, trendy pieces, with classics like jeans and sandals in the summer. She’s also 5’7” making it very difficult for me to find age-appropriate clothes that fit locally.
Having a morning routine can be a huge time saver with kids. You know what else is a huge time saver? Having someone else do all the back-to-school clothes shopping. Get your first kid’s styling fee waived when you sign up for Stitch Fix Kids here.