I am an official ambassador for Pearls and was provided with compensation for my time. As always, all opinions expressed in this post are mine.
Back to school is exciting, but it also can be stressful for parents. You may be adjusting to new schedules, a new school, packing lunches or spending more than you anticipated on Back-To-School shopping.
I wanted to give you a few ideas to Save Time on School Mornings.¬†If you are¬†responsible for getting everyone out the door,¬†by following a few of these ideas, hopefully your mornings will be more pleasant and everyone’s day will be a little bit brighter!
11 Things to Do the Night Before a School Day
Get the Kids to Bed on Time
It’s challenging to keep a bedtime, but try to be consistent as much as possible. My kids know 8:00 is our goal, so we work towards that whenever possible. I’m being real here and going to say that doesn’t always happen. We have activities that run late and the kids still need to bathe and eat when we get home. But, if they have gotten enough sleep, they’ll probably be a little easier to get up in the morning!
Do as much as possible to get your children’s lunches ready. We have a few lunchbox staples so I know what I can and can’t put together the evening before. Some of our shelf stable items are really easy to get ready. I just get them out and put them in the lunchbox and set it on the counter, then I can add in the cold items in the morning.
Also, some shelf stable items can be refrigerated so you could just put them in the lunchbox with the refrigerated items if it works better for you and then the lunch is basically ready to go!
Have you seen Pearls Olives-To-Go at your local Target and Walmart? I was school lunch shopping with my kids at both stores this week and we saw these containers of olives that are pre-packaged and have NO JUICE so they’re super easy to add to your child’s lunch and offer a great alternative to other items that aren’t as healthy.
There are 4 varieties and all four are gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, cholesterol-free, trans-fat- free, GMO-free, vegan and kosher. Each package comes with 4 cups of olives.
Many¬†pre-packaged items with all the juice can get messy. We’ve had a few lunchbox spills that I haven’t loved cleaning up. But, by having the pre-packed Pearls Olive-To-Go I love knowing there won’t be those messy spills!
I also like packing lunches in the evening because then in the mornings I can focus on my kids more and spend a little time with them before they run off to school. This is what really matters and if I’m busy in the kitchen every morning packing up my fruit, veggies, and other lunchbox items I’m missing out on that small window of¬†time with my kids that’s so precious.
Fill Water Bottles
Every evening I make sure the kid’s water bottles are clean and filled 3/4 with water and in the refrigerator. In the morning I’ll top them off with ice. This is a time-saver and it’s so easy to do.
Sign All Forms/Logs
This is the first year my daughter has a log that needs to be signed every day. We have a designated place on the counter in our kitchen for any papers that need to be signed. If they are there, I know that I need to look at them and when I’m done signing any forms I’ll have her put them back in her backpack.
Send Teacher Communication
This week our schedule is a little different so I needed to e-mail my son’s teacher to let her know our pickup plan would be different. I don’t like waiting until the day of the change to reach my teacher because I worry that she won’t get my email or something may get missed. If you can, contact your teacher at least one day before your change of routine and the night before is when I try to e-mail our teachers!
Set out Breakfast Items
Every morning my daughter eats a pancake with peanut butter on it. So the night before, I set out her plate, fork, knife for the peanut butter, peanut butter, her glass for water and her vitamins. Sometimes she’ll eat a banana or I’ll grab her a yogurt from the refrigerator. It only takes a minute, but I feel like it saves so much time in the morning when I’m running behind.
Pick Out Clothing
I could talk to you about clothing battles for 45 minutes, but today I’m just going to tell you how we’ve managed over the last 7 years to figure out this clothing dilemma we’ve had starting at 2 1/2.
Every day after school, I ask my daughter what she’d like to wear the following day. If it’s not washed, she can’t wear the item. This Summer we cleaned out all her clothing and decided to organize her clothing in outfits so she can see what goes together easily. Before we had the clothing in drawers, and I felt like things would get buried and never worn. Already, she has worn so much more of her clothes, and I love that!
We only did this for all her summer clothing. When the season changes I will go through it all with her again and we’ll add her capri pants, long pants and shirts and move the Summer clothing out. It’s been working great!
Have a Hair Plan
My daughter can make her own bun and ponytail now. However, sometimes she wants me¬†to do a¬†braid, side ponytail or curl her hair. I feel bad when she wants me to fix her hair and I don’t have time, and I think it makes her feel sad too. It helps me to ask her the night before what she wants to do with her hair, so that way I can plan extra time in my morning if she’s going to need my help.
Both my daughter and I love the way this sock bun looks on her. It’s not hard and she can even do it herself now, which is awesome for me because it saves me time in the morning!
Another idea is to have a day of the week that is pre-planned for fun hair. So maybe every Tuesday and Thursday you do your child’s hair and then the other 3 days they do their own.
If your child’s clothing requires any ironing (and believe me we try not to have to iron clothing) then iron it the night before. Last night I actually forgot to iron a shirt for my daughter and I told her I would, so guess what, I was ironing it this morning but I hadn’t allotted time for that.
It’s so much easier to do it the night before and hang their clothing in the kids rooms so they can get dressed on their own.
Set an Alarm
Set an alarm for your kids if they’re old enough. If you don’t have one or want to wake them up yourself, you should at least tell them what time you’re going to wake them up and what time they need to be out of their bed. I know this won’t work for every child (I have two totally different kids, one who wakes up on her own early every day and one that drags out of bed that we have to wake up every day). If they can see the clock in their room, at least they’ll know to get going or you can try and work with them on that.
Tell your Kids the Goal Time to Leave
Every night we remind the kids what time we are walking out the door so they know what to expect. My daughter can tell time and is very good and checking the clock to see how much time she has before she’s supposed to be ready.
Be honest with your kids about the time you need to leave. But, set your schedule based on a time with 5 extra minutes built in so you can have a few extra minutes for the unexpected things that may come up.
Remember those handy little Olives I talked about earlier to pack in your child’s lunch? Well Pearls is hosting a sweepstakes you can enter!
If you’re interested in winning a family prize pack or the grand prize of a $1,000 gift card go to the Pearls Facebook sweepstakes. You can enter to win daily through 9/11/16.
#BetterWithPearls Mini Moments sweepstakes Go
#BetterWithPearls Mini Moments sweepstakes
Disclosure: I received compensation by Pearls in exchange for my inclusion of their product in this post. All opinions are mine.