One simple and sure-fire way to make the school mornings run a bit smoother is to lay out your kids clothes in advance. This means that on Sunday, you will need to lay out 5 outfits to prepare for the upcoming school week. For me, this means laying out 15 outfits in advance because I have 3 daughters. Trust me, I understand this is asking a lot of you. If you follow what I say below, you will be on your way to a less hectic morning. This makes for happier kids and happier moms.
The goal here is to figure ways to make the mornings less stressful. I blogged about this once, a blog post so appropriately named
“Clothing Chaos“. The process of figuring out what the girls would wear each day before school was a particular pain point for me and my family. Things have gotten SO MUCH BETTER since I’ve started to follow this method of pre-planning what they will wear to school.
(1) Be sure to pay attention to the weather
For the obvious reasons you need to pay attention to the upcoming weather forecast. This is so you are not laying out shorts when they are predicting snow! Since the weather can often fluctuate with little notice you might need to make some adjustments in the morning – like replacing shorts with leggings.
(2) Have your girls be involved in choosing the clothes
If possible, have your kids get involved in planning out their clothes for the week. Yes, it may take you an hour, possibly longer depending how many kids you have! There may be some weeks where they want to be involved and weeks where they will not. Just go with the flow…
(3) Select clothes THEY like
This, I learned the hard way. Please do not lay out clothes YOU like. Lay out clothes THEY like. So long as they comply with rule #4 you should be good to go. Enough said on this one.
(4) Know your School Policy
If your school has certain clothing rules, be sure they know them and stick to them. My personal battle lies with tank tops. I’m thrilled that winter is coming. Heck, I never said I was perfect!
(5) Don’t forget the socks and underwear
Yes, the details are important. What’s the point if you forget the socks and underwear?
(6) Accessories are fun
On days they don’t have gym, you can fun selecting accessories in advance. I find this is definitely not something you have time to deal with in the morning.
(7) Make outfits as you fold the laundry
As you are folding up the laundry pair up some outfits and save them for the following week. This is less clothes you have to put away!
(8) Sweatshirt in the backpack
This is particularly helpful if you live in a climate where the weather fluctuates. I always place a sweatshirt in their backpack and I never tell them about it. If you tell them, they will only insist they don’t need one. When they need one, they will be happy it’s there.
(9) Don’t freak out if they change things up in the morning
Despite your attempt to follow all of the above, there WILL be days when they want to change things up. Have patience. Don’t freak out. Not every morning can run smooth, no matter how much planning you do in advance.
(10) Bonding time is good!
On the days you can convince them to participate in the clothing selection process, you will no doubt realize that this makes for some fun mom-daughter bonding time. Have fun with it! Encourage them to “model” the clothes. My six-year-old loves this one!
I have learned that each child has their own sense of style and this can’t be forced. Some may care less what they wear or they might be very picky. I have one daughter that won’t go near a skirt and I have another that won’t go anywhere near jeans. Finding what works for each kid definitely helps avoid the mom-daughter clothing debate.
Understanding your child’s unique sense of style will also save you money. You will stop buying things you like and start buying things you know they will wear! There is a big difference.
Hopefully in implementing this routine into your weekly schedule you will find your mornings run a bit smoother. Let me know how it works for you!