They say that having an organised mind makes life so much easier. Well my head is in a permanent state of chaos. As mentioned previously…
However, having 4 sons under the age 9, my homelife does have to be very tightly run, and the purse strings kept a close eye on.
I won’t profess to being an expert by any stretch of the imagination, but maybe some of my tips will be useful.
Even if you don’t have 4 children….
So the morning. Every mother’s daily battle to get children up, washed, dressed, breakfast and through the school gates on time.
As a makeup artist, I can’t cope with being makeup free. I scare small children if my bare face is on display!
So that means getting up 15 minutes earlier than the children.
I make sure their uniforms and day clothes are ready the night before. That way, if I find I’m missing a shirt or jumper, at least I can locate it with plenty of time to spare (we’ve all done that frantic rubbing of food stains before now!)
I pack their book bags the night before, including snacks for break time.
My boys have school dinners, so I don’t have a lunch bag issue every day, but an old acquaintance told me that she spent Sunday evenings making freezeable sandwiches for the week so the family could grab and go, and the sarnie would be defrosted by lunchtime!
Shoes are polished the night before.
In the morning, the boys who are able to dress themselves hit the bathrooms first, having all bathed/showered the night before its not a big tussle in the bathroom stakes!
My 4 year old still needs a bit of guidance, so I get him ready before that toddler who’s usually singing to himself in his cot, so he’s the last to get ready, before then making our way downstairs for breakfast.
This has taken all of 15 minutes from waking them up, to walking through the kitchen door.
Call me a mean mother, but I don’t give the boys choice at breakfast. They get something different each day, weetabix, toast, honey hoops, but I am not going to entertain 4 different choices, and then 4 possible “I want what he’s having” battles.
So while I’m simultaneously microwaving milk for Oliver’s breakfast, boiling the kettle for my coffee, I’m pouring cereal in bowls, milk into cups and bowls and laying the table.
The boys have tried to help in the past, but on a time strapped morning, I’d rather the space and let them help later in the day!
Straight after breakfast, according to age, they go off to brush teeth.
Less than 30 minutes from entering kitchen to exiting it again!
We usually have about half an hour now to watch some breakfast tv (I clear up!) and a good 10 minutes before we need to leave, we start the loo/shoes/coats round. Again, starting with the eldest, because they’re the ones who suddenly decide they want to take a football card or moshi monsters to school to swap, and they do tend to take an age to find just the one they need!
So from me getting up at 7am, getting boys up at 7.15, starting breakfast at 7.30 to brushing teeth at 8 we are out for 8.30, getting the eldest to school for 8.45am and the 4 yr old in for 9, I can hand on heart say I’ve never yet been late for school and have never been without full makeup.
It’s just about organising yourself ahead if time, and watching the clock.