Finding a Morning Routine for Kids That Works. Mine Involves Screen Time.

Finding a Morning Routine for Kids That Works. Mine Involves Screen Time.

Don’t judge me. I let my kids watch YouTube. I know, I know. I’m a terrible parent, but hear me out. Do you remember my daily routine as a full-time working mom? It was bananas (b-a-n-a-n-a-s). Well, now that I’ve left the corporate world for awhile, life is still bananas but in a different way. I pretty much have to re-create new routines for almost everything, including a new morning routine. I feel like I’m re-learning and trying to figure out life. I’m grateful for YouTube to entrance entertain my children while I do super fancy things like wash my face and brush my teeth. Today I’m sharing what my new routine as an at-home mom looks like lately.

Before I get started there are a couple things you should know. First, I sleep past until the very last minute 100% of the time. Like every. single. day. At just over a month in, I haven’t quite figured out how to balance blogging, keeping my children alive, and managing household duties yet. Plus, my sleep patterns are still out of whack from working full-time and blogging; I rarely slept more than 4-5 hours per night. So, I often still go to bed at 3:00am or later (or is it considered earlier at that point?). That said, I am not a morning person. Not even close. Something else you should know is that my kids aren’t morning people either. They must get that from their mama. The three of us need to address the day on our own terms; don’t you dare engage us until we’re ready. Knowing that, I don’t bother waking my girls up unless we have to be somewhere; I let them wake on their own. The advantage to that is I get to sleep as late as they’ll let me. When they’re ready, they make their way into my room to pry get me out of bed kicking and screaming.

Our Routine

• 7:15-7:30: My girls wake up and play in their rooms solo. Sometimes the little one comes to get me and I send her back to bed. Mama ain’t ready to get up yet.

• 7:45: Clear all the notifications off my phone (I hate those red dots) and block the 40-50 creepy men who followed me on Instagram overnight.

• 8:00: Change E’s diaper and get her dressed for the day. Sometimes she demands to keep her pj’s on and who am I to argue with a girl who just wants to be comfortable?

• 8:10: Strap E to her booster seat at the kitchen table so she can’t run amok escape. Help A into her chair and start to serve them both breakfast. “Honey Bee Cereal” (as they call it) is usually what they request.

• 8:15: Get my husband’s laptop out and put on a toddler songs video. “Baby Shark” is the current fave.

• 8:16: Go upstairs to pick out clothes for my 4 year old to wear to school. Bring them and her toothbrush downstairs.

• 8:20: Go to my bathroom and start to get myself dressed and ready for the day somewhat presentable. Call out to the girls and/or poke my head out every couple minutes to make sure no one is choking. The 4 year old always lets her cereal get soggy and the 2 year old doesn’t actually eat anything anyway so I don’t worry too much.

• 8:30: Shout out to A to finish eating and start getting dressed (whilst still watching YouTube, of course).

• 8:45: Ask her why she still isn’t dressed.

• 8:50: Help her brush her teeth and put her hair in a ponytail in my bathroom.

• 9:00: Get E down from her chair. Put all the dishes in the sink and pop some blueberry waffles in the toaster for the road (for me).

• 9:05: Start to load the kids in the car. Tell A to stop crying about [insert ridiculous reason du jour].

• 9:10: Pull out of the driveway.

• 9:15: Arrive at A’s school. Unload E with me so no one calls the police on me for leaving her in the car for 1 minute.

• 9:16: Walk A to her classroom with E. Hugs and goodbyes.

• 9:22: Arrive home. Give E a snack since she probably didn’t eat breakfast. Start working on blog emails and miscellaneous work. E plays on her own during this time. Thank goodness for independent play.

• 10:00: If it’s Monday, we head to the grocery store. If not, we go to the playground or somewhere fun.

• 11:30: If it’s Monday, E’s speech therapist arrives. If it’s not, we’re probably out running errands or doing something fun.

The afternoon consists of lunch, E’s nap, a shower for me, blogging and housework, picking up A from school, and making dinner.

My routine isn’t perfect – it needs some fine-tuning for sure – but it works for us (for now). I’m confident that if I can figure out how to fit everything into my days, I’ll be able to get to bed at a decent hour at night.

Everyone’s mornings are different and I know I’m not the only mom with a hectic one. What’s your morning routine like? What’s your take on screen time? Tell me below!

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  1. May 16, 2017 / 1:48 pm

    We usually dropped this ball when I began staying at home, so I created an app to get better at it. My breakthrough: keep everyone together.

    • Shannnon
      May 16, 2017 / 4:06 pm

      Oh I’ll have to look into that! Thanks!

  2. The Everyday Mom Life
    May 10, 2017 / 10:48 pm

    Your kids wake up after 7 and then play by themselves? Oh my gosh my daughter is up at like 5 something every day. That means screen time is a must for us.

    • Shannnon
      May 10, 2017 / 11:29 pm

      I would die if my kids woke up that early! They do go to bed a little later than average kids so maybe that’s why.

  3. May 10, 2017 / 10:17 pm

    These products look great!

    • Shannnon
      May 10, 2017 / 10:22 pm

      They really are!

    • Shannnon
      May 10, 2017 / 10:22 pm

      Me too! It helps knowing your crazy isn’t so crazy! 😂

  4. nicoleandthecouches
    May 9, 2017 / 5:46 pm

    Our morning involves screen time because it slows my son down to eat!!

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 7:41 pm

      Precisely! It works wonders.

  5. May 9, 2017 / 5:06 pm

    Your routine is what makes you able to balance everything and multitask. I need to get into the routine of things, I don’t think I ever wrote one out. I should!

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 5:25 pm

      The key is to have goals but stay flexible, in my opinion. This works for us usually but sometimes kinks get thrown in and we have to adjust.

  6. May 9, 2017 / 4:38 pm

    I started to really limit screen time to 1 hour of either device (alternating between ipad and video games) and 2 hours of TV each night. It’s gotten my kids out of their obsession with youtube videos and increased their physical movement and creativity (they never max either preference now). Things such as, lack of attention, retaining information and behavioral issues started to creep up on us. I have a schedule that keeps them on track with a healthy balance of reading, exercise, chores, and screen time! Thanks for a great read – Christine – Sensory Friends

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 5:23 pm

      That’s so awesome! Thank you for sharing! My girls would totally be glued to the TV/YouTube all day if we let them but thankfully we don’t. And I’m glad they don’t freak out when we turn it off; they love playing outside and with their toys inside and are usually content to do so. It’s definite something we want to be sure that limit. Thanks again!

  7. May 9, 2017 / 12:34 pm

    Love this! LOL Trying to work from home and be a stay at home mom definitely has it’s challenges and most of the day I run around like a chicken with my head cut off lol

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 1:15 pm

      Ha! Sounds about right! 😂

  8. xokerry
    May 9, 2017 / 9:35 am

    I allow screen time after breakfast, while I clean the kitchen and start the laundry. Or whatever chore I have! My 2 year old loves egg videos, Peppa Pig and Minnie Mouse. Since I don’t see anything wrong with that I’m all for a little screen time!

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 12:12 pm

      Those egg videos are like kid crack!! It’s crazy how obsessed kids are with them. My 4 year old used to love them.

  9. May 9, 2017 / 9:20 am

    We don’t have time to watch anything in the morning, but you better believe I let my daughter watch YouTube for a little bit after Kindergarten and a trip to the park. She needs to unwind, too!

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 12:11 pm

      Haha we don’t have time either. My kids watch it while they eat. It keeps them quiet so I can do other things like brush my teeth.

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 8:43 am

      Thank goodness for YouTube!

  10. May 9, 2017 / 12:08 am

    Gotta love the Shark song. It’s better than Daddy Finger?! File this under “things I never thought I would type”

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 2:13 am

      Anything is better than Daddy Finger! Baby Shark is actually pretty cute and I like it because we used to sing that song when I was a summer camp counselor many moons ago. 😊

  11. May 8, 2017 / 10:59 pm

    can we switch children? my boys are up, bright eyed, and bushy tailed at 6:30am. on. the. damn. dot. like, let me live.
    we have very similar morning routines, except i skip the 8:20am part of getting ready, and i totally leave my kid in the car when i drop off my 5 year old to school. whooops.
    i squeeze in a nap whenever my younger son naps because pregnancy. sometimes i shower when he naps, but that’s a big sometimes…. lol

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 2:12 am

      Bahaha! I used to leave my youngest in the car but she started to cry every time I did so now I take her with me. Crying kid in a car alone has got to be recipe for a CPS call, right?! And yeah, 6:30 everyday would be the death of me. My kids also go to bed kinda late though (8:30-9:00 ish) so maybe that’s why? Oh and getting ready for me involves brushing my teeth, (maybe) washing my face, and putting on something other than what I slept in; usually yoga pants or LLR leggings. 😂 Sleep > shower any day.

  12. May 8, 2017 / 10:45 pm

    My daughter has recently discovered the wonder of YouTube – she’s been watching all the 80’s kids TV shows I grew up with.. and I find myself watching them with her 🙂

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 2:08 am

      Aw that’s so much fun! I love it!

  13. May 8, 2017 / 10:43 pm

    Aw mama you will get the hang of it soon! These are some cute products too. 😘

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 2:08 am

      Thanks, Nicole! We’re getting there!

  14. May 8, 2017 / 10:42 pm

    Hi Mama- so our morning routine also starts around 7am and I am constantly heckled by my friends for it being so late… but glad it matches yours! Pretty similar situation here where our routine works but still needs some fine tuning- Declan watches a show maybe once or twice a week as I try and save it for the afternoons when I am ready to explode!!! Keep up the good work lady!

    • Shannnon
      May 9, 2017 / 2:08 am

      Why would anyone heckle you for that? That’s so silly. Why start your day earlier than it needs to?! Ugh. Thanks for reading!

  15. May 8, 2017 / 9:10 pm

    I love reading what another mama’s mornings look like. Our days are anything but routine, but it sounds like you’re making it work just fine!

    • Shannnon
      May 8, 2017 / 9:21 pm

      We’re just surviving! Thanks for reading, girl!

  16. Ashley Peavey
    May 8, 2017 / 7:44 pm

    Wow!! That is quite the schedule! Looks like you guys are all set!

    • Shannnon
      May 8, 2017 / 8:14 pm

      Well it doesn’t always work out quite this way but we just roll with it. Thanks for reading!

  17. May 8, 2017 / 12:51 pm

    Sounds like you’re a pro at this whole routine thing!! Screen time definitely is a must in this house – sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do! Thanks for sharing <3

    • Shannnon
      May 8, 2017 / 1:50 pm

      Thanks so much! I definitely don’t feel like a pro at all and we end up leaving Way later than this even sat a lot. Screen time for the win, though! ❤️

  18. May 8, 2017 / 12:45 pm

    You have a fantastic routine! I have run a private practice for 15 years and always worked full time with kids. We often had pop tarts in the car and hot dogs at night. No one should judge anybody’s routine. Every mom that keeps her kids alive is a winner!

    • Shannnon
      May 8, 2017 / 1:48 pm

      Thank you for this! Eggo waffles in the car was our jam (and still is sometimes) when I was working full time! It’s all about keeping them alive!

  19. May 8, 2017 / 12:31 pm

    Barney while I’m prepping breakfast is a life saver for me – otherwise the little one is clinging to my leg! haha! And we love and use Playtex Baby also. <3

    • Shannnon
      May 8, 2017 / 1:48 pm

      Barney! Yes! My kids love that dang dinosaur.

  20. May 8, 2017 / 11:56 am

    I mean it sounds like you got it down to me….LOL that actually sounds smoother than if I were doing it. The weekend mornings are usually a lot of whining for breakfast and then only eating one of the things requested while watching Disney Jr to reduce the actual amount of whining possible.

    • Shannnon
      May 8, 2017 / 12:21 pm

      Whining reduction is the name of the game! There’s LOTS of whining mixed in with us every single day. E usually dumps her cereal out on the table, too. 🙈

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