In general, we know what's good for our kids. But sometimes we need to know how to master family habits. While it sounds simple to make sure your child gets X hours of sleep or watches less than Y hours of TV or eats Z amounts of vegetables, the demands of real life can derail these goals. But there's no need to throw in the towel. "With any routine you're finding hard to establish, you need to ask yourself what the obstacles are and deal with those first," says Claire Lerner, director of Parenting Resources at Zero to Three, in Washington, D.C. "And you have to be flexible and make adaptations, or you'll end up feeling like a jack of all trades and master of none."
We've rounded up lots of moms and experts with real-life perspective to explain not just which routines are important for kids but how to actually make them happen.