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We've discussed how to Conquer the Day as a SAHM, and now it's time to decide on the next step. Where should our focus go next after the kids have woken up for the day and breakfast has been served? As a SAHM, the next part of your day should be prepping for your child's day. Follow along with the Boot Camp Mom as I outline how to revamp your morning routine!
Tailor Your Morning Routine for You!
The order of the following steps is not set in stone. Please feel free to switch any items around so that they tailor to your day. The point of this post is to give you insight into how the Boot Camp Mom stays ahead during the day. After my quiet time and morning routine, it's time to get the boys ready for their day!
Pick Up and Prep Work
In our household, the boys eat breakfast first thing in the morning. After they are sat down with their food, I start the following processes to get my house ready for the day ahead:
Clean the Kitchen
First things first, I start cleaning the kitchen up. I clean our kitchen the same way no matter what meal was just finished. The below steps work best to clean the kitchen regularly and efficiently:
Step 1: Start as Far Away From the Sink as Possible
It is always best to start by picking up all the farthest items from the kitchen sink. This would likely include clearing the dining table/eating surface, putting away any pantry items on the counter, picking up condiments, and placing them near the fridge in a staging zone.
Step 2: Store Leftovers
Next, you will want to focus on getting the leftovers put into storage containers and prepped to go in the fridge. Once all of the condiments and leftovers are ready, you can set the items in the refrigerator. Ideally, all of the dishes and serving utensils will be at the sink after these two steps.
(Possibly Unload the Dishwasher)
We run our dishwasher at night, so I have an additional step to unload the dishwasher for breakfast clean-up.
Step 3: Wash the Dishes
Now it's time to rinse any dishes that I can put in the dishwasher or handwash any items that are not dishwasher safe.
Step 4: Clean the Counters
The final step in the kitchen cleaning process is to wipe down the counters. I use a microfiber cloth to wipe every countertop, clean the dining room table, and wipe down the sink and around the sink. And, just like that, the kitchen is spotless and ready for the next meal!
Prep Kids Clothes
You may allow your kids to pick out their clothes in the morning, which is excellent; however, I do not. I take any debate and stress out of the situation by choosing my child's clothes. Before I call them downstairs to get dressed in the morning, I already have their clothes laid out on their bed, ready to go.
I also recommend laying out socks and shoes in the living room if you are ready to leave the house. It is one less thing you have to hustle to grab when your kids are dressed and you are prepared to walk out the door.
Pick-Up the Kids Rooms
While you are in your child's room getting their clothes ready, go ahead and pick up their room from the night before. For me, this includes making their bed, rearranging the stuffed animals, grabbing water glasses, and gathering any night-time toys they were allowed to take to bed. This is a swift step that you can add to revamp your morning routine.
Get the Kids Dressed
Once I call the boys down to get dressed, Declan dresses while I assist Bodie with the clothes I've already laid out. We then head to the bathroom to do their teeth and hair. If we are leaving the house at that time, we immediately head to get their socks and shoes on. Whichever boy is finished in the bathroom first goes and waits for us on the couch in the living room. Having all of these items prepped before getting the boys' attention greatly streamlines the getting dressed process.
Don't Keep a Laundry Basket in the Bedroom!
One of the biggest hacks I've learned as a SAHM is not to keep a laundry basket in the kids' room. We do have two hampers in the master closet, his and hers, but we always take the boys' dirty clothes directly to a laundry basket in the laundry room. Why? I'm glad you asked:
The boys have fewer clothes than my husband and I. This is because they grow like weeds, so we only keep essentials on hand in their current size. If we put a laundry basket in their room, we risk forgetting that the clothes need to be washed! By placing their dirty clothes in the laundry room, both my husband and I know when a load needs to be started. I typically wash the boys' clothes 2-3 times a week. They are small loads because I stay up on them, and we don't run out of clean pajamas this way!
While I am hustling around the house to get ready for the day, I always plan out what we will be having for dinner. By doing this at a time I am prepping for what's ahead, I understand what our evening will look like and can make an intelligent decision on the best dinner for the amount of time we will have.
Also, planning gives me plenty of time to thaw out any meat that will be needed, run to the grocery store for missing items, and allows me to know when I need to start dinner. Thinking ahead is never a bad idea!
More Ways to Streamline Your Mornings
The steps mentioned above are all things that I complete daily during our morning routine. Now I will discuss some weekly/monthly suggestions that can help revamp your mornings even more!
Plan a Staging Zone
I love staging zones! We have them implemented all over the house. Our staging zones for our morning routine are mainly in the laundry room. We have built-in storage to store the boys' shoes, backpacks, sporting goods, and seasonal items (hats and gloves for Winter or sun hats and towels for the Summer). My husband and I also keep our daily necessities in the laundry room. After our streamlined morning routine, we can quickly grab what we need out the door.
Prepping and changing out bags depending on the season you are experiencing is a good process to put into practice. I talk more in-depth about the process of switching your staging zone over each season, but for this post, let's focus on what this might include:
- School Bags
- Lunch Boxes
- Sports Bags
- Accessories (hats and gloves, sun hats and bug spray, etc.)
- Shoe Bins
- Coats (if needed)
It really does help to keep a dedicated bag for each event throughout the week. This might seem excessive, but I am much more likely to forget something necessary for an event if I am constantly unpacking and packing the same bag with different items. Being prepared helps!
Use Your Calendar
I am very adamant about updating my calendar. Everyone in my family knows that if I don't put it on my calendar, I will not remember it. On Sunday evenings, my husband and I check our calendars to see what we have coming up for the week. While his calendar mainly has work meetings and kid's sports, mine will have doctor's appointments, items I need to get from the store, family outings, reminders to call people, etc.
While some might look at my calendar and wonder how I would consider it organized, I love it! I can easily open it up on my phone, anywhere and anytime, and make a note to complete something or check to see if we already have a commitment. I highly recommend making a routine of using your calendar as much as possible. It can streamline things!
Revamping your morning routine is a simple process that can make a huge difference in your mornings! Your house will get a little pick-me-up, and your kids will not be running around frantically trying to find their shoes as you walk out the door. Adding in a bit of prep work before getting your children dressed in the morning can significantly relieve the stress! When staging zones are readily available and you use your calendar wisely, you will always know what's ahead. You've got this, momma!