needs some tips from you experienced mom's-- how do you manage to get your kids fed, dressed, teeth

Ashanta - posted on 10/06/2009 ( 26 moms have responded )

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How do you manage to get your kids fed, dressed, teeth brushed, out the door AND TO SCHOOL ON TIME? I have 5 year old twins daughters who started kindergarden last month and a 2 ½ year old who is now in daycare. Mornings in our house are busy to say the least! I am looking for any suggestions you experienced mom’s may have that will help us pick up the pace in the morning and get to our destinations on time.

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Kim - posted on 10/10/2009

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this kind of ties in with it, i have an organizer that hangs off the bars in the girls' closets with 6-7 sections. each section has an outfit (socks and underwear included). when i'm putting away laundry, i put the outfits together, so i dont have to do it in the morning before school. for the fussy one who wants to pick out her clothes, just tell them, to choose a section, and say they cant mix and match. if they're late gettting up, you just grab and go.





good luck!

Sue - posted on 10/09/2009

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Here are things we do. (I haven't read the other posts, so I apologize if I'm repeating some of their ideas.)
First - I MYSELF get up EARLY. That's the ONLY way to make it work. I have to be able to get ready before they get up and around. Second, I start making noise as I'm getting ready. I turn on the kids' lights/lamps so that they can start to wake up on their own. I always try to have breakfast that they LIKE! They never get up if it's cereal that they don't like. Poptarts is a real winner in our house. :) We lay clothes out before - my daughter is sooooo picky and I make her pick everything out the night before. Down to the color of her hair scrunchy. Baths and showers are always the night before. School bags and coats are next to the door. What else? Oh, NO TV. NEVER EVER turn the TV on unless they are 100 percent ready. Teeth brushed, hair combed, ready to walk out the door. Sometimes they'll hurry just to have a little time to watch TV. Good luck with your mornings! If your morning at home doesn't go well, sometimes it can set the stage for the whole day. It's so great to start the day off GOOD! :)

Beth - posted on 10/11/2009

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Quoting Kim:

this kind of ties in with it, i have an organizer that hangs off the bars in the girls' closets with 6-7 sections. each section has an outfit (socks and underwear included). when i'm putting away laundry, i put the outfits together, so i dont have to do it in the morning before school. for the fussy one who wants to pick out her clothes, just tell them, to choose a section, and say they cant mix and match. if they're late gettting up, you just grab and go.


good luck!



this is was going to be my suggestion also. The other is that if you do allow a little tv in the morning [we do] I insist that my 7 yr old is dressed with her shoes on before she's allowed any tv. Also have a launch pad [so to speak] with shoes, jacket and backed school bag already to go.

Heidi - posted on 10/10/2009

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we have 3 kids, 1 at school, 1 at kinder and a toddler. here school starts at 8:45am so my alarm goes off at 7am and thats when we all get up, i found if we get up any later the kids arnt ready in time (my kids are slow to do anything there asked/told too).

Wendi - posted on 10/10/2009

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It is all about routine!!! If you can get yourself and them into a routine that works for you all they will feel more comfortable with the mornings and so will you. Of course 5yr olds can sometimes "forget" the routine they will still keep you more sane in the long run because they know what they are suppose to be doing. Have baths done the night before and clothes and things laid out ahead of time. Give them responsabilites! They are old enough to get dressed on their own and brush their teeth etc... make them accoutable for what they can do so you can focus on you and the baby. This will also give them a sense of accomplishment and make them better adults in the future! Hope this helps and good luck!

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Louise - posted on 10/16/2009

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my son is also 5 and he now dresses himself and gets his own cereal well i do the milk since ive started letting him do this he thinks he is so grown up even to the point that he askes if he can help when im cleaning around the house. teach them to get themselves ready in the morning its a great help and makes them feel all grown up

Tania - posted on 10/16/2009

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I have three childrne ages 2, 4, and 6. I work at 6 and my husband works at 7. THe bus coems at 7 to pick up my oldest. And the other two go to the sitter. We get everything packed and ready to just grab in the morning. I wake up at 5 and get myself ready for work then i wake up my oldest and get her ready for school. The other two are woken up and just put in the truck when ready to leave and they change at the sitters. But it is much easier and time saving if everything is ready at night. Clothes, school bags, shoes, jackets, you name it. Get it all by the door and make sure you dont forget anything.

TNell - posted on 10/15/2009

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I was having this struggle this year too. I have a 6 yr. old, a 4 1/2 yr. old, a 3 yr old and one on the way. I finally told the older two they had to be ready to walk out the door with coats by the door before they got breakfast. This included having shoes on and everything. The first couple days they were eating breakfast on the road until they figured out I meant it. Now they are doing better. That way I can take more time with the younger one and get him ready without stressing and there are no fights of missing items for the older ones.

Sandi - posted on 10/15/2009

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I didn't read the other replies, but up until a couple months ago I had a bear of a time with this! I have 6-year old twin girls and a one year old in daycare. I made up a chart for the girls and put it in a sheet protector and they use a dry-erase marker to mark off what they have done: go potty, get dressed, put on shoes, brush teeth, brush hair, eat breakfast, get backpacks, and they even have a chore in the morning of either swiping the bathroom counter down or swishing the potty clean. Since I made the chart they have been so eager to get their checkmarks that they don't really piddle around in the mornings! Every day I count up how many checkmarks (they have evening stuff too) and if they have aquired at least 120 checks in two weeks, they get a reward of some type. It doesn't have to be big. Oh - another thing - I put the baby to bed in her clothes for the next day and have her bag ready to go so in the morning I just change her diaper and she's ready. The girls pick out their clothes the night before and sometimes sleep in their clothes - that saves time in the morning too!

Ashanta - posted on 10/12/2009

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Quoting Julie:

I only have two kids but I manage to get a hour workout in before the kids get up in the morning. Like others have said, get things ready the night before. Cloths layed out, book bags ready with homework and etc. Lunch packed in 5 minutes, breakfast ready in no time. But my two like to play around in the morning. I just have to stay on top of them. Checking on them, making sure they are getting ready like they are suppose too! You basically just got to stay on top of them. Good luck!



..an hour workout before they get up, plus everything else...YOU ARE AMAZING! Bravo!!

Julie - posted on 10/12/2009

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I only have two kids but I manage to get a hour workout in before the kids get up in the morning. Like others have said, get things ready the night before. Cloths layed out, book bags ready with homework and etc. Lunch packed in 5 minutes, breakfast ready in no time. But my two like to play around in the morning. I just have to stay on top of them. Checking on them, making sure they are getting ready like they are suppose too! You basically just got to stay on top of them. Good luck!

Tracy - posted on 10/09/2009

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Hi! I have a five year old son that just started kindergarten. Sometimes it is a fight in the morning. But I started a routine and I stick to it. This way he knows what he is suppose to do in the morning. I pack his cold lunch the night before. Anything that has to be refrigerated goes in the frig and I just grab it in the morning. Anything that is not cold I stick in the lunch bag the night before. I wake him up for 6am and the bus is here for 7:10am. When he gets up he has to brush his teeth and go pee. While he is doing that I lie his clothes out that I want him to put on ...on his bed I tell him to get dressed and meet me down stairs. While he is getting dressed I put his lunch that I made the night before in his lunch box and get his breakfast ready. Every now and then I will call up stairs or check on him to make sure he is getting dressed and doesn't need any help. Once he is down stairs and eating breakfast I put his coat, back pack and lunch box on the chair near the door. So that when it is time to catch the bus I can just get his coat and he can grab everything else because it is right there. Sticking with the routine seems to works for me maybe give it a try. He also has a set bedtime too and is required when it is time to go upstairs get pjs on , brush teeth, and make a bathroom run. Good luck

Sandy - posted on 10/09/2009

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I work and get two kids to school..the trick is to get yourself ready first...get up a little earlier than they need to start getting ready...I put the clothes on my kids when the were young just to make sure they were dressed to...Then feed them..while they are eating I get lunches and papers ready to go for school..when they are done they brush there teeth and hair....If you start out doing everything you want done for them in the order you want them done in eventually they get used to the ruotine..mine are 7 and 9 now and all I do is get their clothes out so they match and tell them to get ready and they do it...they need to get used to some order.....make sure you are ready to go before you even think about getting them up

Gina - posted on 10/08/2009

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wow, you've got your hands full. Have their outfits set out the night before with shoes and everything (let them help pick them out so they don't argue in the morning). Establish a routine that the girls can get used to. Eventually they will on their own go do what they are supposed to do, the older ones anyway. For example if they first eat breakfast, then brush teeth, then get dressed. As much as your twins can do themselves, the better. My 2 and a half year old I get her out of bed, put her on the potty, get her dressed while she sits on the potty, then when she's done she brushes her teeth while I do her hair. Hopefully that helps

Tara - posted on 10/08/2009

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if you all get up at the same time in the morning and eat breakfast together, try brushing teeth together all of you, i tried a little thing with my girls for dressing, everynight just before bed i would pick out 2 outfits for each girl and set them on the dresser, then in the morning when they get up to dress i get them to pick 1 out of the two out fits each, and get them dressed, I have found this works wonders if i give them a choice, and i brush my teeth with them every morning and everynight.

Crystal - posted on 10/08/2009

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My house can get really crazy in the morning, too. I have found that if I lay things out the night before, and not allow morning TV things go a lot smoother. I also set the timer on my stove so everyone know just how long we have left. First beep is our 10 minute warning which means we need to get shoes on! I also have my boys get their backpacks ready the night before and shoes and jackets are kept by the door. Just find your own routine that works and stick to it! Good luck! :)

Stephanie - posted on 10/08/2009

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i keep things very simple, and I allow plenty of time. I have twin daughters in 1st grade and a 2yo stay at home.
We do things in two sections, first I take a shower and get dressed while they change their clothes, brush their teeth and hair.
Then part two, they eat breakfast, put on their shoes and grab a sweater, while I finish up getting ready and get the toddler ready.
I give us an hour to get ready and an alarm tells us when to leave. and we leave when it goes off, no matter what.

Homework goes in their backpacks by the front door the night before. I don't have to make their lunches, we buy them, it's just cheaper and easier for us. but if I did we'd do it the night before. Kid showers are taken at night a couple nights a week.

Breakfast is a bowl of cereal with milk or a cup of yogurt. They know where everything is. I don't have to do much. The big kids make sure the little one gets some food too.
We walk to school every day, so we can't be late in leaving. It takes 10 min. and I give us 20 min. just in case.
Haven't been late yet! and at our old house- they didn't miss the bus. :)

Sharon - posted on 10/08/2009

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My two tips are 1) routine and 2) make it fun. If it is the same routine everyday then they start to do it just because it is automatic for them. But of course making things fun always helps. We play games and sing songs at the dinner table and the kids have to stop and eat a mouthful between rounds/verses etc. Of course it is hard when we have had a hard day and don't have the energy to be fun!

Vanessa - posted on 10/07/2009

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wow! u r busy. um,..my kids aren's that young anymore- i have 4 myself- the oldest ( 14 ) is the only one that does it all on her own. the other 3 - wooh! for me,..my kids have to be to school at 9. i get up at 7:30am. we leave at 8:30. i got there clothes ready the night before so they wouldnt be looking for anything. now,...they get up at 7:30. they get dressed right away ( socks and shoes ) then have until 8 to lay around or watch cartoons or generally move slow. at 8 they eat breakfast ( keep in mind i am always saying " ok stop talking and start eatting" ) . at 8:25 they have to brush their teeth ,..weather they are done eatting or not. they brush their teeth then we leave. my kids have learned that if they dont eat breakfast they will have to wait for lunch. after a couple of days, they wouldnt dare miss breakfast. breakfast used to be the only thing that kept us from leaving. now they know better and we dont have any problems. not sure if this would work for you but if not,...get creative. make surprise charts or something. every day they do what their supposed to and get out on time,...at the end of the week,. if they did good all week,..take them out for a treat after school. something that makes them getting ready fun. good luck!

Jen - posted on 10/07/2009

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I did put a schedule up on the fridge. It can help:
7am wake up
7:10 change Some of my kids aren't morning ppl, they take awhile to wake up)
7:20 Eat breakfast
7:30 brush teeth etc etc...

I schedule about 10 minutes for getting shoes on and out the door. With three kids it can take about 10 minutes for that, even if all their bags are right there and ready.

Jen - posted on 10/07/2009

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I think it also depends on what they're dragging their feet on? One of my girls really drags her feet on getting clothes to wear and changing. So I make her pick out an outfit the night before, even putting a pair of socks aside with her clothing. Oddly enough, even picking out socks in the morning can take her half an hour or more. So I make her get it all ready before going to sleep.

I make sure the book-bags and lunch-kits are ready the night before too. It's hard on some schedules to do that; sometimes I make my kids do that before bed too. They leave the book bags by the door, and the lunch kits in the fridge. If you or the kids have the time to get everything ready the night before, all they really need to do is wake up..change...eat and go. Even if eating is a problem, grab something they can eat in the car. I've made my youngest get her shoes on in the car once. Because she was taking too long. The walk to the car is very short, and we can carry her if needed. lol.

Kelly - posted on 10/07/2009

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Be consistent every morning...set a schedule and try to ever stray...and if you do stray don't beat yourself up about it. Also have as much done the night before so less to accomplish in the morning.

Robin - posted on 10/07/2009

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I agree with Nancy. We get as much ready the night before as we can and it makes our morning go much smoother. Their clothes are laid out and the backpacks are ready to go and by the door. You can put cereal in plastic bowls with lids. All they have to do in the morning is pop the lid and add milk.

Lisa - posted on 10/07/2009

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My kids are much older now, but we still use the TV as our timer. I love watching morning cartoons, always have. And they've always finished at 8.30am which is exactly when I have to leave the house to get my kids to school, even when I had the 5 and 2 year old (now they are 15 and 12 and I also have a 4 and 1 year old) So our routine was 7am up, get breakfast, watch first cartoon. By the time it was finished you have to have eaten. 7.30-8am was time to get dressed and between 8-8.30am they would brush hair and teeth, make sure they were clean and tidy.

These days the older ones get up at 7.30am, it takes them until 8am to get dressed and come out, then they have 30 minutes to get breakfast and get tidy... needless to say we often run late LOL Teenagers :P

Nancy - posted on 10/06/2009

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My suggestion is to have everything laid out and ready to go. For example: tootpaste on toothbrushes, clothes to wear for the next day (shoes, socks, pants, shirts, belts and undies) and even breakfast. My child loves some eggo waffles in the morning so we lay out the cup, plates, forks and butter knives by the toaster so that all she'll have to do is take out the waffles, butter and her milk to drink in the morning. For us it saves a whole lot of time to have everything prepared the night before. Boy, has it saved us on times we've woken up late (not everyone's perfect). LOL! This same advice was given to me by another mommy. Maybe it'll work for you too. :o) Goodluck!

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