Last week, I sent Cade to the bus in tears. The previous five minutes had been filled with panic (lost mittens), frustration (unfinished homework), and lecturing (he still hadn’t remembered to bring his thermos home).

You’d think I could do the morning routine blindfolded by now. (Maybe if I were, the aforementioned emotions wouldn’t be quite so routine!)

I’ve tried to analyze what goes wrong, and here’s what I’ve got: Part of the problem is Bible time. I’m usually completely frustrated before we even get started because I can’t get them to sit down, be quiet, stop poking each other, etc. And then, we start late, end late, and have to rush to get packed up.

The other part of the problem is waking a certain person up. He’s grumpy and extremely slow moving at first. He tends to clog the routine and make his room mate irritable and frustrated, too.

So, I tried something new. I flip-flopped our order. In stead of begging/coaxing/demanding my boys out of bed at 7:00, I walked in and said, “Morning, guys. Just stay put, and I’m going to read some verses to get you going.” Then, I flipped on the lamp, asked for eye contact, and began their morning with some encouragement from Matthew 6.

At 7:40 (our usual Bible time), when they were rolling around on the floor with the dog (their usual activity at that time), I didn’t have to beg/coax/demand them to sit still. I just let them roll! We even said cheerful goodbyes in the driveway at 8:03! It was glorious.

We’re only on day 2 of the revised schedule, but I’m thinking we’ve got something here! But don’t get me wrong. We’re not home free yet. We can use all the help we can get. Do you have any ideas that have eliminated the begging/coaxing/demanding from your mornings?

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