Start tomorrow's To Do List.
Make sure what I need to take with me is at the door on the hooks.
Load the washing machine.
All up it probably takes half an hour but it is worth every minute of time for what it saves me in stress and time the next morning. Once it is complete the rest of the evening is mine, until 9:30pm that is! Occasionally I push my bedtime to 10:30pm but I pay for it the next morning.
There you have it...the daily rhythm of being a Triple T Mum!
Remember though this rhythm is not set in stone. It flows and changes according to the ages and stages of my children and according to our family circumstances. I have found it best to have certain anchors in our rhythm. These are non-negotiables, they are set in the daily rhythm and then I adjust the activities around them. This helps in maintaining the rhythm and stops me from becoming overwhelmed by the immensity of what needs to be accomplished.
My anchors are:
6:00am I have to be up.
10:00am Morning Tea (flexible to within half an hour either side of it)
11:30am Lunch (flexible to within half an hour either side of it)
12:30pm Nap or quiet time
3:00pm Afternoon Tea (Family rule: Kitchen closes at 4:00pm)
6:00pm Dinner time (can't wait for the littlies to eat at this time too!)
7:00pm Littlies Bedtime (flexible to within half an hour either side of it)
9:30pm My bedtime
Find out what your anchors are and start to plan out your family rhythm. Your anchors will give your children that sense of knowing what is coming next and will allow you to play with what happens in between. Children are happier and calmer when they know certain things are going to happen and when they are going to happen.