Stress Free Mornings for Working Moms – Tips and a Book Giveaway!

Editor’s Note: Every family is different. Some moms (or dads) stay home with the kids, others work entirely from home, still others work outside the home. Today’s guest post is written by a working mom, author of the book Mommy Brings Home the Bacon. It can help your child understand that he or she is every bit as loved as the friends they have who don’t have working mothers.

(See below to find out how you can WIN this book!)

I’m no expert on parenting (like my new hero Betsy Brown Braun) but I am a working mother who has figured out a way to get my kids out the door on time each morning. My kids are nearly 3 and 6 years old today. Other than a difficult transition from Preschool to Kindergarten that my older son is currently experiencing, my children have always loved our morning routine and raced toward school and other activities with big smiles. Before starting school, they were waving and blowing kisses as I departed for work. And when they started questioning and getting emotional about why I had to go to work or why we couldn’t be together, we spent time reading my book Mommy Brings Home the Bacon, and discussed it head on.

Our stress-free mornings can be attributed to routines that have been in place since my kids were at a very young age:

  1. My boys go to sleep at the same time every night and wake up around the same time each morning. They know exactly how much time they have to do everything they need to before school, so that by the time we walk out the door everyone is ready.
  2. My boys always dress themselves, brush their teeth, carry their own backpacks and now make their beds (the 3 year old does this surprisingly well!). They know they must complete these tasks before we leave.
  3. I exercise at home twice a week, as my kids hang around, join in and make it fun. It’s a great way to exercise and not lose time with the kids, and also teach them that exercise and hard work are important at all ages.
  4. We spend at least 20-30 minutes of quality time together in the morning. Whether making and eating breakfast together, doing some artwork or just listening to music as we make our lunches, during this time my husband and I just focus on the kids.
  5. My kids have always picked a flower for me on the way out the door – they love seeing me drive off with the flower they picked in my hair. When they visit me at the office they see a vase with all their flowers in it from the week – a perfect way to show them how special they are to me. We do the same with pictures they sometimes make in the morning.
  6. Before I leave my children in the morning, I always tell my kids exactly what their schedule is each day so they know what to expect and when we will all be coming back together again.

The tone of the morning departure from my kids makes or breaks my attitude for the day, so waking up a little earlier than I’d like, in order to make sure we squeeze all this in, is priceless 🙂

Nikki Mark, author

Balancing her roles as Executive Vice President of Operations for a 3000-employee hospitality company and raising two children, Nikki Mark is intimately familiar with the challenges and rewards of being a working mom. Passionate about reading books to her children, Nikki was driven to pen Mommy Brings Home the Bacon for her young boys after quickly realizing how few stories covered the subject of working mothers. Follow Mommy Brings Home The Bacon on Facebook. Purchase Mommy Brings Home The Bacon HERE.

The Book Giveaway!

Wanna Win Nikki’s book? Here’s how to enter:

To win a PERSONALLY AUTOGRAPHED copy of  Mommy Brings Home the Bacon, just leave a comment below telling us your favorite tip for stress-free mornings in your house.  BONUS ENTRY – share a link to this post on your blog or Facebook wall, and in a separate comment, show us where you posted the link.

Contest ends 3/15 at midnight PST.   One winner will be chosen by random.org and notified by email to the email address provided in the winning comments. Winner must respond within 48 hours of the notification email, or another winner will be chosen. This contest is open to residents of the US and Canada only.