10 Tips for Getting Out The Door On Time

I have never been a morning person, but at the same time, I cannot stand rushing around gathering things at the last minute before I walk out the door. Luckily, I had a steady routine for my mornings from about 13 years old until I became a mom. Mornings became a breeze for me, once my coffee or orange juice were down. This did not guarantee how alert I was, just that I was on time. For example- I didn't start drinking coffee until college when my 8am poly sci professor demanded I drink coffee because I was never alert until half way through the class. In fact, he showed up one morning with a caramel macchiato, and demanded I drink it. To this day, that is my special drink of choice.

Once I became a mom, things turned into a whirlwind in the mornings. All mornings have their challenges now, but especially when we appointments or errands. In fact, because of the chaos, we get as much done in one day as possible, so we can stay home most days. I used to leave the house in a panic knowing I have forgotten something. Usually, I was right. I finally had somewhat of a morning "errand day" routine going, and Kodabug surprised us, with no time to prepare for the adjustment. One of the hardest things adjusting to was getting myself and 2 kids out the door on time. After being over a half hour late to an appointment and being warned that next time I would have to reschedule, I was determined to get a morning routine that worked for mommy me. Here are some tips.

10 Tips For Getting Out The Door On Time

1. Create a launch station. This can be as complex or simple as you want. You can get inspiration for a gorgeous one on Pinterest, or sit a chair by the door for gathering what you need and a hook for your keys. Tip: Install a bulletin board so you can stick papers you need to remember and a list of what you need that morning. 

2, Do what you can the night before. For me, this is the most important part of my "morning" routine. I make sure the diaper bag is stocked, my purse has everything I need, and Tbomb's backpack is ready for a day of excitement, with plenty of things to keep him busy. I also gather library books, packages to be mailed, and other items to be dropped off. I actually have a specific folding bag I use for this and put items in them as I realize they need to leave. This also includes replenishing snacks. 

3. Make a morning list. This is extremely important to my sanity. The night before our errand day or appointment day, I make a list of what I need to do and take the next morning. For example, lay ingredients for dinner out and grab Tbomb's blanket, which we only take with us for doctor appointments. This way, I do not forget anything. 

4. Have a static list. I put my specific morning list beside a list that stays by the door. This is for those days when I can't remember my shoes. It has things like diaper bag, purse, coffee, Tbomb's backpack, and even phone (which I am very likely to forget). After I double check my list for that day, I glance at this one on the way out the door. This is something everyone could benefit from. You can even make it pretty! 

5. Simplify Breakfast. I'm not one to eat breakfast, instead I drink coffee. When we have an errand day, I make my coffee in a travel mug and refill before I leave. I also drink my shake while I am running around to avoid taking it with me. I keep special quick breakfasts on hand for these busy mornings. Tbomb only gets pop tarts on these mornings and very nerve wrecking days. Kodabug gets her breakfast in a pouch. (I prepare it the night before to save even more time.)

6. Plan an easy dinner. This may not seem to go with a morning routine, but for me if I am not worried about dinner, everything goes smoother. I plan to either pick something up, have left overs, or something quick and simple for dinner. We actually keep quick dinners on hand for this. Its nice to come home, pop a pizza in the oven and be done. It helps throughout the day too, because pizza is Tbomb's favorite, so he is excited. 

7. Plan something fun. The kids being happy is essential to my stress level staying down. One way I have found to do this is to have a picnic on errand/ appointment days. That makes Tbomb happy and if he is happy, Kodabug follows along. We will either pack a picnic (in the fridge the night before) or grab fast food and take it to the park. Sometimes, we even plan a reward for after we're home. For example, eating dinner outside or popsicles. 

8. Keep extras in your car.  One thing I learned as a young lady in the work force that I continue to do is to keep back ups in the car. Then, it was flats (for when I ran out the door in flip flops), a blouse and pants, stockings, and an emergency makeup supply (for mornings I was really late). Along with a sewing kit, I was ready for anything. Now, I keep a shirt for me, outfits for the kids, diapers, wipes, tylenol, and a secret stash of snacks, water, extra sippy cup, and surprise toys. Now, I leave the house knowing I have this stock, even if I forgot something. Yes, I did forget the sippy cup one day and it was miserable until I picked one up at the store. 

9. Simplify as much as possible. This is different for each person, but anything that you can do to make things simpler will help. This might even include having doubles of things so you do not have to worry about if it is in the diaper bag (for example- get an extra of their favorite sippy cup). It also may mean breakfast in the car for the kiddos. Then, you can get everything ready, wake the kids and get them dressed, put them in the car with breakfast and you're good to go. This will depend on the ages of the kids though. Tbomb I let eat in the car, but not Kodabug. 

10. Stay prepared. Making sure you always have the things you use every day on hand is vital to a smooth morning routine. I always have backups of those extremely important things like mascara, eye liner, gum, deodorant, applesauce, and razors. While some of these you have to get at a local retailer, subscription services can really help with this. For example, Dollar Shave Club delivers the razors you need right to your door for as little as $1 a month. Always have a razor and save time and money. 

By the way, these tips are especially handy for the morning of a trip!!! 

The most important thing is to find what works for your family and your situation. Mornings may not be complicated for you. If they are not, you shouldn't change anything. 

What helps you get out the door on time? 

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