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Week 37| Back to School: Routines/Schedules {and why they matter}

Yay! The first few days of school went off without a hitch in the Smith house!! Am I the only one who LOVED seeing everyone's back to school pics?! It might just be my favorite part of the entire week!! Or maybe it's the info sheets that some teachers still have parents fill out about their children even when they are in junior high & high school?? Really, it makes us pause for a moment and think about where they are at, what we want for them and what they may want for themselves. Another great opportunity for conversation we may not otherwise have.

Anyways, now it's time to settle back into normal routines. We LOVE routines & schedules at the Smith house. Forever and ever we've been all about schedules and routines... from the early days of naptime schedules to preschool days when the kiddies knew what days were "school days" & what days were "stay at home days." Then on to elementary school days when we realized our poor girl had Hypothyroidism that had gone undiagnosed for nearly a year & half and all that went along with that struggle. We realized at that point that routines & schedules REALLY made a difference in our world.

Personal Checklist

Mornings were ROUGH at our house for a few years... especially school mornings but they do not have to be. We had to resort to a pre-printed list that was laminated that Camryn could check off with an Expo marker as she completed tasks. She needed control so we let her have it with the expectation that everything had to be checked off the list before walking out the door. On occasion we would have to set a timer to transition from one task to the next. It gave her the sense that she was in charge of what was going on rather than us {although we were still totally in charge}. Does this sound all too familiar in your house? Let your people take charge of what to needs to be done. Let them know the routine that is expected and turn them loose. You may find that it makes the mornings go much smoother.

Needless to say that mornings have naturally become easier as they have grown & matured. Our days are generally the same Monday - Friday. I usually wake a half hour to hour before the kids and they get up at 6 or 6:15 am. Then it's following:

Morning Routine

We made the mistake of dropping off/picking up our kids from school ... so it's one trip to school in the morning, followed by a second trip for the initial pick up in the afternoon - then yet another trip for the child who is playing sports. It's never ending but I am certain that one day I am going to miss this.

Afternoons have their own routines:

  • Homework {don't forget that Homework Caddy/Station where all the tools can be found in one place to complete their assignments.}

  • Empty lunch box

  • Chores {Our kids chores vary day-to-day so we resort to texts or notes. However, you could have a pre-printed list of chores that need to be completed.}

  • Dinner {Meal planning is essential for making your week as a Mama a little bit easier - not sure where to start with that? Check out Meal Planning in 4 Simple Steps here}

Evenings consist of dinner together as a family, downtime {reading, tv, hanging out, etc.} and then off to bed. And again... our kids are in a routine of turning in their phones each evening {Camryn at 9 p.m. and Brennan at 10 p.m. They despise this rule... but it allows for a restful night's sleep which is essential for them.}

What does your family's day look like? Having a normal routine/schedule in place allows our kids to feel secure. When you feel secure it allows you to focus on important things in your life, for them: their school work, their sports, friendships and being good people.

Routines/schedules create a sense of calm for the entire family. There is no chaos about what needs to be done, what has been done... are you going to be on time... etc. With a routine/schedule you typically follow some sort of timeline which allows you to be punctual - it's a great way to start the day. {Sadly our kids now think that if they aren't at least 10-15 minutes early for everything, they're late... I guess that would be my fault.}


Struggling to get a routine/schedule in place? Let's chat - it's as important for the Mama as it is for the kiddies! 585.749.3493 or

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