Just getting to daycare each morning requires careful planning, coordination and pinpoint execution.

How were mornings without children? You wake up, get dressed, drink coffee and may eat breakfast. It does not take that much time. You know exactly how long you need. There is little variation.

How are mornings with children? Unpredictable some of the time. There is variation depending on number of children and number of adults involved.

Scenario 1 – The ideal world: You got the diaper bag/ backpack ready the evening before. You also decided on clothes the evening before. I read about one executive who even put her kids to bed in their clothes for the next day. I know one mom who on Sunday evening organizes clothes for the week. If lunches are required, they are ready the evening before.

You get up and get ready first. When you wake up your child, he/she gets up quickly. The child either lets you dress him/her or gets dressed alone right away. The child and you eat breakfast talking happily in no rush. Then you pick up all bags and get everyone in the car without mishap.

Scenario 2 – Real world: You wake up late so everyone must get ready at the same time. There is some shouting between rooms, “Get up.” “Are you up?” “Are you dressed yet?” “I can’t find my socks.”

Somehow everyone is dresses and teeth brushed. You quickly shove diapers, clothes, toy, etc. into the diaper bag. The back pack gets loaded with blanket, sleeping bag (did you bring it home?), extra clothes or sweatshirt, etc.

You grab a travel mug of coffee and a food bar. If lunches are needed, you shove food in each bag. Breakfast can be eaten at daycare.

Scenario 2 – Real World plus: Today a child is sick. Now you must still get to work, but first must find someone to take care of the child.

Another day is underway! Are you exhausted already? Give yourself a big hug. You are caring for your family in the best way you can.

Do you have suggestions for other parents/caregivers to help the morning go more smoothly, at least most of the time? Please share at: