It’s no secret: Mornings are hectic. From the moment I hear the dreaded “5 more minutes!” until the boys are finally out the door, it’s a mad rush against the clock. This means that sometimes, one of my kids will go to school with mismatched socks, and more often, breakfast will be rushed (or in my husband’s case, skipped altogether).
We’re working on changing that. Using simple techniques to encourage a more seamless morning routine, the boys and I have been able to get more out of our time together before school. Curious? I thought you might be! I’ve partnered with Minute Maid to provide you with some easy tips and tricks to start out smart!
1. Early to bed, early to rise. File this one under “Paging Captain Obvious”. Yet, however evident it may seem, the truth is that when children do not have enough hours to rest, they may feel tired or cranky, or even unable to think clearly. It also directly impacts their morning routine, as more time spent in bed means less time at the breakfast table. Starting the morning right actually begins with the bedtime routine the night before; a well-rested child sets the wheels in motion for a great day.
2. Plan breakfast before you go to bed. Okay, we’re back to the night before. I sense a theme here! Seriously, though, a little planning is all you need to make mornings flow smoothly.
Personally, I love this tip from Minute Maid that I found on the company’s website:
“Set up the plates, bowls, cereal boxes and instant oatmeal the night before – with a little help from the kids. Create a fun “breakfast buffet” area. Stock an area of the kitchen with a variety of cereals and breads, fruit and peanut butter and jelly. Kids can help themselves to breakfast by grabbing their favourite 100% Minute Maid orange juice variety, yogurt and milk out of the refrigerator and creating a quick meal at the buffet.”
3. Expedite the process. Breakfast doesn’t have to be time-consuming or conventional. Breakfast is when you eat, not what you eat. Just make sure the “what” is something nutritious that kids will like (and won’t fight you on, because we all love that, right?). Here are some quick, nutritious meals to start the day. You can pair each with a glass of Minute Maid 100% Orange or Apple Juice as an easy way to ensure your children get that extra serving of fruit to start them off on the right foot.
– A Granola bar or some trail-mix
– A home-made yogurt parfait in a to-go container. Just top some plain yogurt with some berries, nuts and a drizzle of honey!
– A toaster waffle with sliced fruit and maple syrup
4. Set a good example. The very best thing you can do to encourage healthy eating habits in your children is to model the behaviour yourself. Time – especially in the morning – is a priority, but so is setting the right example. Taking even 10 minutes out of your morning to eat as a family goes a long way to help reinforce healthy habits. We all know the importance of a good breakfast!
5. Have a Plan B. When all else fails, send the kids off to school with a portable breakfast they can eat on the go. I always have cereal bars, drinkable yogurt, mini muffins and Minute Maid Original 100% Orange Juice boxes on hand to offer my boys on days where our morning routine falls short. It’s not a perfect solution, but sometimes, quick nutrition for their growing minds and bodies is the best we can do. And that’s okay, too.
Do you have tips to help start out smart? Do tell!
To raise awareness of the importance of a nutritious breakfast, Minute Maid has partnered with Breakfast Club of Canada to help kids rise and shine for success at school. Minute Maid donates 100% Orange and Apple Juice to nearly 1,500 Breakfast Club School Programs across Canada and serves over 25 million free breakfasts annually.
Visit www.breakfastclubcanada.org for more information on Breakfast Club of Canada.
This post is sponsored by Minute Maid on behalf of Coca-Cola Canada. I have received special perks in the form of product and/or compensation for my involvement. The opinions on this blog, as always, are my own.