food

Your guide to surviving the morning chaos.

The morning, you see, is a crucial time that sets up the tone for the day, week, and sometimes year. Get the most important task right (lunch for the kids) and you are flying. Here we go. You can do this.

1. Kettle on first, then everything else.

There is no talking, no changing of clothing items (apart from shuffling into one’s slippers) and certainly no thinking until this sound. The gradual build, gentle rumble and eventual whistle signaling the First Cup of Tea or Coffee. Drink, slowly. Only then can eyes be fully opened, brains crank into (a low) gear, and activity can take on some sort of structure and semblance of sense.

"There is no talking, no changing of clothing items (apart from shuffling into one’s slippers)..." Image via iStock.

2. Clear the bench top.

Whatever is covering the bench space, move it or lose it. Car keys, unpaid bills and dinner debris can all be casually swept into a furthermost corner for dealing with later. This is now a workspace. Breakfast bar be damned. We’re running a business here, a production line.

3. Keep financial or otherwise logistical discussion to a minimum.

No talk of bills, bank accounts or what is happening after school this day/week/month is advisable between adults and/or children. No one has their game face on, no one knows what day it is and no one has their hair brushed or teeth cleaned yet. Let’s keep talk to a minimum here people.

Remember, no one has brushed their teeth yet. Image via iStock.
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4. Sign all the forms.

Request all the forms. Sign them. Pass them back.

5. Tag team.

Using sophisticated yet understated eye signals, tag team with your husband/partner to achieve tasks, including, in no particular order: attending to whinges/settling disputes/finding lost socks/insisting on jumpers being worn/serving acceptable breakfasts/clearing more bench space. Great work team. Say it with your eyes, your eyes.

"Using sophisticated yet understated eye signals, tag team with your husband/partner to achieve tasks..." Image via iStock.

6. Rely on easy decisions, made earlier in the week.

Thank yourself for choosing simple, easy sandwich items to complete your major task this morning, the Making of the School Lunch. You chose well, Don Classic English Style and Premium English ham. These products are perfect for sandwiches and rolls. They make for a healthy, quick and delicious school lunch box. Butter up your bread. Take a couple of slices. Add something fresh and green, but not too much. (Remember the mouldy sandwiches in the cupboard.) Complete the sandwich, cut it, wrap it up. You’re done.

7. Let the children choose the snack.

Let the child choose one snack from pre-approved options in the cupboard. This engenders a sense of control and power and lessens the impact of the jumper conversation. “You got to chose your snack today!” Then add the healthy snack, the water bottle, and your little trooper is ready for action. Subtle high fives all around.

8. Do not look into the bottom of the school bag. Ever.

Don’t do it. Just… don’t. It’s not worth it. Morning You is too vulnerable right now.

9. Release the hounds.

Feed all the pets and release them to the outdoors. Nominate the designated driver. Send the child off with a kiss, knowing they will actually eat their lunch. This: is winning at life.

How do you survive the daily grind?

While we've got you, imagine for a moment having the time to create these fancy-pants Pinterest lunch boxes: