I forgot the MOST IMPORTANT "little thing."
This has CHANGED my life. And that's NO exaggeration.
Many of you may have discovered this and I don't know why it took me so long to incorporate into my own routine. My mornings are 100% improved. My childrens' mornings are 100% improved.
The secret: having the fellas lay out their clothes the night before.
I don't know what it's like at your house, but often, too often, the kids were digging through laundry baskets or piles to find socks, pants, and shirts. The BANE of my existence! We wasted oodles of time and even tears trying to find clothes--appropriate school clothes--I'm not okay with old soccer jerseys from when they were four that have gross, black remnants of old bubble gum strewn across the front. That's just NOT okay.
No joke, if my kids ever become homeless people, they will be expert garbage-dump-pickers. "Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it." I'm seeing a book title in my mind, How I Trained My Children to Become Homeless: an insider's guide. Don't all run to Barnes & Noble yet, I'm still formulating the particulars.
Joking aside, this has done great things for me, too. Laundry has always been a struggle. The "folding and putting away" part. Because we're trying to stay on top of clutter, piles, clean bedrooms, etc. I feel motivated to keep the ball rolling. My laundry piles are becoming non-existent (ask me in a few months...that may change). I had so much guilt sending my kids to school stressed out because they couldn't find socks and "...THE BUS IS COMING!!" Poor little guys.
I'm happy to report that we're all happier. The kids are out the door fully-socked and pants-ed with smiles and kissed-cheeks.
Thank heavens for the "little things" in life that make such a difference.