At my house, there’s not much organization in the morning.
When my alarm goes off at 7 a.m. my struggle for cooperation begins with my own body.
I beg my legs to fall over the edge of the bed so the rest of me can follow. Five hours of sleep isn’t enough for this busy momma.
Juggling my family’s schedules is no easy task, but I know it won’t be long before this school year’s routine becomes second nature to me.
It’s only been a few weeks since the kids — and I a non-traditional college student — returned to school. But we’ve already had our share of difficulties. For instance, my fifth-grader Chandler is having a hard time adjusting to both his new teacher and classmates.
And, my youngest sons — Liam, 4, and Jett, 3 — are fighting for their independence.
My husband recently started a new business, and it keeps him pretty occupied.
So, working out the kinks to a new routine has become my solo project.
I’ll be overjoyed (if and) when I finally figure it out.
The best method to get into a comfortable schedule — for me– is trial-and-error.
My new best friend for the next few weeks is “flexibility”.
One thing I’ve learned is to create small routines: wake the kids in a particular order, lay their school clothes out the night before and keep order of the things I can control.
I don’t sweat the small stuff. If my son wants a doughnut instead of cereal, I’ll give in. If my 4-year-old wants to wear a sweatshirt when it’s 90 degrees outside, I’ll look past it. If my youngest son carries his toy into the car, I’ll allow it.
The most important thing to remember is that routines don’t happen over night. It takes time.
Back to my fifth-grader, I spoke with his teacher about his problem. She’s providing us with a school planner for my son to bring home with short notes about what kind of day he’s had. Sometimes lengthy messages, and other times she writes “Great Day!”
Who knew those two words would mean so much? The feedback is helpful.
As for my preschool-aged kids — who by the way are extremely demanding — I keep all of their favorite clothes and foods on hand. This eliminates stressful mornings and bedtimes.
Before I know it, I’ve made it through another back-to-school madness day.
Anna Backhaus, 29, is a mother of three boys and a student at University of Nebraska at Omaha, interning for momaha this fall.
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