Recently, I’ve noticed that my little ones have been getting a little, well, ridiculous. Fighting, sassing, screaming, hitting, disobeying . . . I know all kids do this to an extent but it was getting over the top. So I was thinking about what changed. Was it a blood sugar issue? Had they been taking their vitamins? What was their diet like? Did the routine change?
Uh oh. When was the last time we did our routine? When was the last time the little did “school?” Face smack. That was it! We had gotten off of our routine and filling little people’s love tanks in the morning goes a long way to having a good day. Here is how to set the stage for a calmer DAY in just 35 minutes.
35 Minutes to a Calmer Day:
0:00-5:00 Hugs & Kisses
Little kids are very snuggly. They NEED touch and love and reassurance. Start the day off right by giving them a little love first thing with a proper (big) hug & a kiss and some kind words. If your love language is touch, this is probably a brainer. It’s probably the only LL not on my radar and my family is all over it. I need to be very purposeful about this one.
5:00-10:00 Fix Breakfast
You don’t have to cook a big breakfast. If you eat cereal, pour their cereal. If you eat toast or oatmeal, serve it to them. Whatever you serve, try to prepare it for them as an act of service, even if they are capable or usually make their own. It’s good for them to be self-sufficient, so maybe pick a day or two a week to take care of it for them. Alternately, you could clear their dishes or do a surprise morning chore.
10:00-15:00 Words of Affirmation
Words of affirmation is another love language that at least two or three in my house are in need of. You could fit these in after you serve them, while they are eating breakfast, or at some other place where it fits in well. For me, it would be while doing my daughters hair. Be specific about the complement and that its about what they ARE.
This is the love language that the rest of my family holds dear, which is why it’s here twice. Since I’m NOT a toucher, I need to make up a reason. For my girls, I take a few minutes, individually, to talk with them while I brush and style their hair. For my son, I do a little baby massage while I change him & get him dressed. Do you need to work a little more touch into your day?
I find that our day goes better when we start it with God. After awhile, even our 3 year old felt she knew most of prayers well enough to join in. We start with an Our Father, the Guardian Angel prayer & the Glory Be, but you may prefer a free-form prayer of praise & petition. Do what feels right. If your kids are older, let them lead!
My kids love to be read to even if they can read well themselves. Since my kids are so touchy, I prefer this to be a book we can all enjoy while snuggled up on the couch. You might prefer leading family devotions during breakfast before sending the kids to school. A fable or story about character may be a good choice, too.
30:00-35:00 Free Time
If your kids love tanks are a little on the empty side or someone seems like they are in need of a little extra time, talk or touch, spend an extra few minutes with them before starting your day, whether that means sending them to school, starting school or running errands.
All of these tips may not work for your family. Maybe they will trigger a thought of some other thing your kids need to start the day off right. Feel free to substitute as needed. I just know that a little focused time filling up my little people’s love tanks in the morning makes them happier and more cooperative which makes MY busy day go smoother.
What things do you notice gives your children a good start to their day?
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