Bailey Nicholas, 33, and her husband have to get their two-year-old twins out the door every morning so they can go to work. Their tips for an efficient—crying free!—Monday morning lift-off.
My husband and I work outside the home and our two-year-old twins, Henry and Nora, go to preschool. Weekends are filled with friends, fun, and relaxation, but once Monday rolls around it’s back to the grind. We have developed a fine-tuned routine that makes it easier to get out the door each Monday morning, and it starts the evening before.
- Set out clothes: We figure out what outfits the twins will wear, laying out shirts, pants, diapers, socks, and shoes. We check the weather to see if the kids need rain boots or a coat. And we lay out additional clothes for any extracurricular activities, like soccer.
- Pack lunches: We make lunches for the kids—meat, cheese, fruit, and crackers—and throw them in the fridge.
- Get linens ready: We need to bring fresh sheets and blankets to school every Monday morning for naps, so we make sure that those are clean, folded, and ready to go.
- Carve out adult time: My husband Richard and I wake up at 6:15 am and get ourselves walk.out-the-door ready while the children are still sleeping.
- Tag team the kiddie routine: We wake up the twins at 7:30 am and then split up. Richard changes Henry's diaper or takes him to the potty and then makes breakfast for the kids. Meanwhile, I change Nora or take her to the potty.
- Be strategic about getting dressed: We put on the kids' pants before breakfast but leave on their pajama tops until after the meal to avoid spilled oatmeal or sausage on their school clothes.
- Reduce shoe drama: We used to chase both little ones around the house, trying to put on their socks and shoes. Now we put them on while they eat breakfast in their high chairs. It's easier and faster to do this while they're strapped in and occupied.
If our routine isn’t derailed by an epic toddler meltdown, we're ready by 8:10 am, leaving five minutes for Frisbee in the front yard before leaving—a reward for good behavior.
—Bailey Nicholas, 33, of Tampa, FL