4 top tips to take the stress out of your morning

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Jun 112015

Let’s face it, being a mum is hard work. In the midst of all the caring and looking after it can be hard to find time for yourself, yet it is so important to look after YOU. If you need a bit of help in this department you can count on super-mum Eva van Strijp to get you on the right track with her 7-day Self Care Adventure. Just one week to make a change, who is up for the challenge?

Here’s a little taste of hands-on Eva advice to help you get your day on the way, without stress:

Self Care Adventure

How to Create a Fail-Safe Morning Routine When You’re Not an Organised Person

Guest post for Hip Little One
By Eva Van Strijp

They say morning sets the tone for the entire day. We know from experience that this is true. We also know that a morning routine is key to achieving the tone we want for our day. But there a lots of pulls on our time and lots of things to keep track of as a parent. The morning may well be something that we just try and survive through.

Hand up if you feel that:

You have too many competing priorities
You’re not an organised person – it’s just not you
You struggle to get from the bed to the shower in the morning without being called off somewhere else
You just want to get through the morning to a calmer period in the afternoon

If any of the above describes you, then taking the time to create a morning routine that works for your family will be an absolute game-changer. I really believe that a morning routine is one of the most important things we can implement in our home.

Even before you meal plan or create a job roster or an evening routine…
Even if you’re not organised by nature…
Even if you don’t have time…
get your morning routine right.

Even if you don’t have time pressures of needing to be somewhere at a certain time, having a solid morning routine in place will greatly assist a peaceful start to your day.

So here are my four top tips for getting your morning sorted (even if you’re not an otherwise organised person!):

1. Speed clean the night before.

One of the quickest way to destroy the peace of the morning is to find yourself dealing with yesterday’s mess. So put your favourite music on, set the timer for 5 minutes and get the whole family involved in a full house pick-up before the kids go to bed. You can achieve a phenomenal amount in 5 minutes when you’re feeling energetic and you’ll be surprised at how quickly this becomes a fun family ritual.

Some things you really don’t want to have to deal with from yesterday if you can help it:
• clean laundry (put it away)
• dirty dishes (wash them)
• toys and games (pack them up)
• paperwork (file it)
• garbage (empty the bin)

2. Start a little earlier.

If your kids have a regular rising time, try and get up 10-15 minutes before them so that you have a few minutes for yourself before the day officially starts. Taking just 7 minutes for some self care in the morning can have a huge impact on your mindset over the next few busy hours of the day.

If your kids are early risers or don’t have a regular waking time, try setting them up with some books or quiet games that they can do in their room until you come to get them up.

If setting aside time for self care is something you struggle with, why not join my Self Care Adventure? With just 7 minutes a day, I’ll help you form a new habit for regular, simplified self care.

3. Get your to-dos sorted.

Either the night before or early in the morning, take a few moments to set your most important tasks for the day. Alternatively, if you know what you want your week to look like, you can do this on a Sunday afternoon for the entire week ahead.

4. Get the kids involved.

Take the time to create a morning routine with your children. Even if they can’t read, you can use pictures to create a little roster that they see when they wake up.

If you have children of different ages, you might need a different roster for each of them, and if you have a baby that requires your attention first thing in the morning, you’ll be doing yourself a huge favour to have the older kids organised with their own routine.

Get them excited about the process by asking them to draw a morning routine poster and stick it to their wardrobe door. Make it fun. Implement rewards if you have to.

One of the things we used to do was to have a chart to draw smiley faces on. Each morning that they fulfilled their routine tasks cheerfully, they drew a smiley face on their chart. At the end of a week of smiley faces, we enjoyed a special treat like a walk to the park or a storybook marathon on a picnic rug in the backyard. The reason I implemented a rewards system for this was to show my children that when we get our tasks done quickly, we have more time for the fun stuff.

So now, over to you! Tell me about your morning routine! Or if you don’t have one yet, tell me which tip you’re going to implement first!

Eva van StrijpEva Van Strijp is a mother of five, business owner and creator of Simple Life, Peaceful Home – the 8 week strategy guiding busy mothers through the process of creating and maintaining a simple, peaceful family home.

When Eva isn’t hanging out with her family or running a business, she’s eating chocolate, listening to podcasts or tending her veggie patch.

You can follow Eva’s journey through her Facebook page and Blog.

Oct 302012

On the weekend I started organising all the newborn clothes, beanies and blankets in the nursery, I like being prepared! Of course I still have some pieces from the other children but I have also picked up some new goodies, simply because I can’t resist myself. One of my favourite things to buy for babies is a gorgeous wrap, I just love a swaddled baby and I think you can never have enough wraps.

You probably know Australian label gr8x from its nappy bag range, but I know many of you haven’t discovered the gr8x wrap collection yet. Gr8x wraps are available in a lovely selection of boys, girls and unisex colours and prints, I doubt you’ll be able to stop at just one. You don’t have to because the wraps are sold in packs of 2 and at just $34.95 they are well priced (great gift idea too!). If I knew I was having a girl I would definitely add this Dizzy Circles Pink design to my hospital bag, very cute.

Each wrap is finished with a matching ribbed trim and rounded corners for a neat and classy look (no ‘pointy’ fabric corners near your baby’s face). The medium weight makes them warm enough for winter and cool enough for summer. You’ll find that you will use your wraps for much more than the bedtime routine, like as an easy cover up for in the pram or car, a quick clean play area for on the floor or even a breastfeeding cover.

Now if you are a swaddler you will be well aware that it is not only the print or the material that makes a perfect wrap, size is very important. There is nothing as annoying as buying a packet of gorgeous wraps only to find you can’t even get them around your newborn once. The gr8x Double Stretch Swaddling Wraps are designed to be super stretchy, the cotton fabric measures 84cm x 90cm yet it stretches to a generous 145cm which is a very good size!

In addition to the Hip little one giveaway below gr8x is also giving you the chance to win gr8x Wrap Prize Packs on the gr8x Facebook Page. Go grab your favourite picture of your wrapped up baby and you might just win!

To find out more about gr8x, to locate a stockist near you or to order online visit www.gr8x.net.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 gr8x Wrap Prize Packs (RRP $69.90 each, 4 wraps per prize pack) simply visit www.gr8x.net and answer the following question: Which gr8x Wrap do you like most?

Submit your answer by leaving a comment below, your email address will not be published.

If you really want to win you can earn up to ten additional entries, please leave separate comments for each entry:

Competition ends November 30, 2012. Sorry, Australian entries only. By entering you agree to our Terms & Conditions.