Single motherhood






Hi, I'm a Kenyan-born, Colorado-based single mom to twins Hodari and Milambu. I turned the challenges of single motherhood into a thriving YouTube community and blog. Here, I offer support and practical advice on parenting, lifestyle, and more. Let's navigate life's complexities together!


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single motherhood





Are you tired of feeling like a frazzled chicken every morning, running around in a whirlwind of chaos while trying to get your kids out the door on time? Oh, I feel you, mama! Mornings can be a wild ride, and it’s like a race against the clock to make it to school or work on time. But fear not, for I come bearing the ultimate mom hacks to conquer those chaotic mornings and transform them into blissfully smooth rituals!

Imagine waking up to a serene home, the aroma of freshly brewed coffee filling the air, and your little ones calmly getting ready without a fuss. Sounds like a dream, right? Well, it’s time to turn that dream into reality! Get ready to unleash your inner supermom because I’ve got 13 after-school night rituals that are about to rock your world and save you from the clutches of morning madness.

From preparing school essentials in advance to setting up a family command center, these time-saving tricks are going to revolutionize your mornings. Say goodbye to the frantic sock search and hello to a well-organized, stress-free start to your day. So grab your cape (or coffee mug) and let’s dive into these game-changing tips that will make you the master of mornings.

School Night

13 Time-Saving After-School Night Rituals To Save Time In The Morning

1. Pack Backpacks and Organize School Supplies

To ensure a seamless start to the school day, make packing backpacks and organizing school supplies part of your after-school night routine. Have a designated area in your home where your kids can place their backpacks, and create a checklist of essential items they need to bring to school.

Check their homework folders, ensure any necessary documents are signed, and place all completed assignments back in their backpacks. Additionally, organize school supplies, such as pencils, pens, erasers, and notebooks, so that everything is readily available in the morning. This practice will prevent any last-minute scrambles for missing items and ensure your kids are well-prepared for the school day ahead.

2. Pre-Prep Lunch Ingredients

Streamline your lunch preparation even further by pre-prepping some lunch ingredients the night before. Wash and chop vegetables, cook proteins like chicken or tofu, and portion out snacks into containers. Store these prepared components in the fridge so you can easily assemble lunchboxes in the morning. You can also make sandwiches the night before and keep them refrigerated, making sure to wrap them properly to maintain freshness. Having most of the lunch ready in advance will make packing lunches a breeze in the morning, allowing you to focus on other tasks.

3. Plan Breakfast

Mornings can be hectic, and finding time to prepare a healthy breakfast for the family may seem impossible. However, you can save a lot of time by preparing certain breakfast components the night before. For example, cut up fruits, portion out dry cereal or granola, and pre-cook oatmeal that can be easily reheated in the morning. You can also make overnight oats or chia seed pudding that will be ready to enjoy when you wake up. By having breakfast partially prepared, you’ll ensure that your family starts the day with a nutritious meal without the stress of cooking from scratch.

RELATED: 24 Best Healthy Breakfasts You Can Meal Prep

4. Set Out Clothes

Mornings can become a battleground over what to wear. Minimize the hassle by picking out your children’s outfits before bedtime. Ensure the clothes are clean, ironed, and weather-appropriate. Let your kids have a say in their attire to empower them and make the process smoother. As a bonus, lay out your own outfit too. By eliminating indecision about what to wear, you’ll all have more time to focus on breakfast and other essential morning tasks.

5. Lay Out Sports or Extracurricular Activity Gear

If your children participate in sports or extracurricular activities, ensure that all necessary gear and equipment are organized and ready to go the night before. Whether it’s soccer practice or dance class, have a specific spot where these items can be kept, so nothing gets lost or forgotten. Check the schedule for any special items needed for the activity, such as uniforms, water bottles, or musical instruments, and have them packed and ready. This habit will save you from last-minute searches for misplaced gear and help your kids feel prepared and confident as they head off to their activities.

6. Implement a “30-Minute Tidy-Up” Rule

Get everyone involved in a 30-minute tidy-up session before bedtime. Make it a fun activity by setting a timer and playing upbeat music. Encourage your kids to pick up their toys, put away school bags, and organize any clutter. This simple habit will not only keep your home neater and more organized but also prevent the chaos of searching for lost items in the morning rush. A tidy living space can also have a positive impact on your mental well-being, allowing you to start each day with a clear and focused mind.

7. Check the Weather Forecast

Before settling in for the evening, check the weather forecast for the next day. Knowing the weather conditions in advance allows you to make necessary adjustments to your morning routine. For example, if rain is expected, you can lay out raincoats and umbrellas by the entryway, or if it’s going to be cold, you can set out extra layers of clothing for your kids. This simple step will save you from last-minute scrambling to find weather-appropriate attire in the morning.

8. Set a Regular Bedtime Routine

A well-established bedtime routine is not just for children; it’s equally important for adults too. Ensure your kids have a consistent bedtime, as getting enough rest is crucial for their overall well-being and performance at school. A bedtime routine can include activities like reading a book, taking a warm bath, or practicing relaxation exercises. For yourself, consider winding down with a calming activity like reading or meditating. By getting enough sleep and maintaining a regular routine, you’ll wake up feeling more refreshed, energized, and ready to tackle the day.

9. Organize the Entryway

The entryway is often a high-traffic area where precious minutes can be lost searching for misplaced items like shoes, keys, or jackets. Take some time in the evening to organize this space, creating designated spots for each family member’s belongings. Invest in hooks, shoe racks, and storage bins to keep everything in place. Encourage your kids to place their school bags and shoes in the designated area before bedtime. A tidy and organized entryway will prevent any last-minute frantic searches for lost items in the morning.

10. Plan Your Own Morning Routine

Create a morning routine for yourself that allows you to ease into the day with less stress. Set your alarm to wake up a little earlier than your kids to have some quiet time for yourself. Use this time to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea, do some light stretching, or simply meditate and center yourself for the day ahead. Having this peaceful moment to gather your thoughts will help you approach the rest of the morning with a positive and calm mindset.

11. Check and Sign Permission Slips and Forms

An essential part of the after-school routine is checking your kids’ backpacks for any permission slips, forms, or notices that require your attention. Take a few moments to go through their bags and address any necessary paperwork. Sign permission slips, review school announcements, and respond to any communication from teachers. This way, you won’t miss any important deadlines or events, and you’ll avoid last-minute scrambles to complete and return forms in the morning.

12. Establish a “Tech-Free” Wind-Down Hour

One of the biggest time-wasters in the evening can be getting lost in screens, whether it’s TV, smartphones, or tablets. Set a “tech-free” wind-down hour before bedtime, where all screens are turned off. Use this time to engage in calming activities like reading, having meaningful conversations with your kids, or engaging in creative projects together. Limiting screen time before bed can improve sleep quality for both you and your children, leading to more restful nights and more productive mornings.

13. Review the Next Day’s Schedule

Before everyone settles down for the evening, gather as a family and review the schedule for the next day. Discuss any important events, appointments, or changes in routine that everyone should be aware of. This will help your kids mentally prepare for the day ahead and allow you to make any last-minute adjustments to the morning plan if needed. Having a clear understanding of the day’s schedule will set a positive tone for the next morning and ensure that everyone is on the same page.

RELATED: The Ultimate Checklist To Ace the Back-to-School Hustle

Wrapping Up…

By expanding your after-school night routine to include these additional time-saving tips, you’ll establish a well-oiled machine that keeps your household running smoothly. Packing backpacks, prepping lunches, organizing school supplies, and preparing for extracurricular activities are all essential components of a stress-free morning. Additionally, setting a digital curfew, maintaining a tidy home, and reviewing the next day’s schedule contribute to creating a peaceful and organized evening routine.

As a single mom, adopting these comprehensive after-school night rituals will not only save you precious time in the morning but also instill valuable life skills in your children. By involving them in these tasks and fostering a sense of responsibility, you’re empowering them to become more independent and organized individuals. Embrace these time-saving practices, and enjoy the benefits of smoother mornings and more relaxed family time before the start of each day. Remember, a little preparation the night before can make all the difference in setting the stage for a successful day ahead.

School Night

13 School Night Rituals To Save Time In The Morning

Aug 7, 2023

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