Once again, I’m in a rush to get out the door.
I quickly throw my hair up in a ponytail and to apply a quick coat of mascara to my eyes (it’s a necessity because people always ask me if I’m sick without it). I quickly snatch whatever clothes of mine are laying near the top of the laundry basket, which is full of clean clothes I’ve folded but haven’t managed to put away yet.
Meanwhile, my daughter is waiting for me to help her zip up her dress and my son is running around still in his diaper causing mayhem as usual.
After deodorant, a diaper change, and the perfect toy picked out to bring with us, everyone is finally clothed and properly groomed. We fumble our way downstairs to grab our shoes, water bottles, and lock up the house. “Go, go, go!” I shout like a commander sending troops into battle. I set the alarm and we dash towards the van.
There’s no emergency we’re rushing off to attend to, it’s just the typical morning of a mama with two little ones who’s perpetually running late.
I’ll be real here folks: I was often late even before I had kids. I can’t blame them. They just exasperate the situation. It doesn’t matter how much time I give myself to get somewhere or how early I wake up, I still ending up rushing at the end. It is one of my worst character flaws that I am forever fighting against.
Some of you reading this are like my husband: EARLY for things. You hate me right now and I understand. I really am sorry.
As the beginning of September crept ever closer I began to stress. You see, I had signed my daughter up for an art class that would meet every Thursday morning at nine. One of the perks of homeschooling is NOT having to deal with the daily morning craziness of getting everyone out the door at a set time. I enjoy our leisurely mornings and more relaxed schedule.
But that was about to change. We are paying a pretty hefty chunk of change to send my daughter to this class every week. Her being late is not an option. So that means I have to have myself, and everyone else, out the door on time. Especially since we have to deal with TRAFFIC…big city, stop-and-go, rush-hour traffic. Not what someone who’s already running late wants to deal with.
So I began planning and strategizing. How am I going to get us out of the house on time??? I turned to my fellow bloggers for help, real moms in the trenches doing this miraculous thing every day, and I am sharing their answers here with you!
The #1 Piece of Advice They Gave: Prep the Night Before
- Have all snacks and lunches packed the night before.
- Have a healthy breakfast for yourself pre-made so you can quickly grab and go, like these.
- Have kids lay out their clothes (even underwear and alternates) the night before.
- Have all necessary books and papers they will need already in the backpacks.
Stick to a Schedule!
- Put kids to bed early and be consistent. This way they get plenty of sleep and are used to getting up early.
- Create a morning schedule with a strict timeline for when specific tasks need to be completed.
- Create a checklist to help keep kids on track. There are lots of ways to do this, but Carlen at Real Mom’s Winging It has created these adorable “Golden Tickets” that work for a wide range of ages.
Location is Key
- Have a designated spot near the door for keeping shoes, jackets, backpacks, and car keys. This will avoid the hunt for missing items in the morning.
Other Great Tips for Getting Out of the House on Time
- If possible, walk or ride a bike instead of driving in order to avoid traffic and long drop-off lines.
- Encourage older kids to treat getting somewhere on time the same way they would a job and impose consequences if they are late. For example, if they miss the bus, they will have to pay you to drive them.
- Remember the ultimate parenting rule: Pick your battles!
So How Did It Go?
I am happy to report that after following several of the suggestions above I successfully got my daughter to her first day of class on time! Ten minutes early to be exact! Having the snack and lunches packed ahead of time was the most beneficial for us and undoubtedly saved me some time. It was nice to feel more prepared and in control of my morning. Now, if we can just do it again next week!
If I can manage to get somewhere on time, you can do it too! Choose a few of your favorite tips from above to try and I’m confident you’ll notice a difference!
Special thanks to all the great bloggers who helped us be on time: