Sunday, 17 February 2013

The Big Breaktask in conjunction with Warburtons

Mornings, you either love them or hate them!  Overall, I would say that my mornings are pretty OK.... but is that due to the planning that takes place the night before?  Or would everything fall nicely in to place regardless of the planning that takes place!
Did you know that Mums have to juggle twice as many tasks as business owners, directors and decision makers during the breakfast rush, according to new research by Warburtons. Between 7.17am and 8.30am each weekday morning, busy mums face a constant series of domestic tasks and chores – these often include tactical strategies, coercion and juggling children, partners and dogs (in my case, anyway!).

Warburtons are compiling a collection of useful tips, ideas and recipes in a handy book to make the weekday breakfast routine as smooth and enjoyable as possible, as well as providing inspiration for the more relaxed weekend breakfast.

Considering we (me and hubby) run a bed and breakfast serving breakfast to our guests from 8.30am to 9.30am and have to get the children (aged 5 and 8) to school at 9am – sometimes I think we deserve a medalfor what we manage to achieve!  But, at the end of the day, it’s our choice to be self-employed and we love it!

So how do we manage? This is often a question asked of us by our guests and so the answer is ready to give.... BE ORGANISED!

Our local primary school runs a breakfast club where the children can go to school at 8.15am and have a healthy breakfast (cereal, toast and fruit juice) followed by an outdoor activity – weather permitting, of course!  So, during the summer school term when we often have more guests than at this time of year, the breakfast club is truly a god send!  I get the children dressed and ready for school, whilst hubby does the prep for the breakfast service.  I take the children to school - only 5 minutes walk away – and then back in time for the guests to arrive in the dining room and eat.

At quieter times of the year, we take the children to school for the normal time of 9am – but we still prepare in advance what we can.  Organising the uniforms, PE kits, dinner money, fruit, etc... the night before is a must, as well as making sure we have both the left and right shoe of a matching pair of school shoes!

I must confess that once I nearly (only nearly!) took my son to school with odd shoes on!   Luckily, we noticed when we were at the endof my garden path! 

And then the questions of what to eat in a morning?  My daughter is perfectly happy with a drink of milk and a bowl of cereal or toast, but my son, given the choice, would love scrambled eggs, bacon and tomatoes for his breakfast with a glass of apple juice on the side!  During the week, this just does not happen(!) so he is happy with cereal and toast.  But at the weekends he can have his cooked breakfast, no problem!

The only thing we leave until the morning is the sandwiches part of the packed lunch for my daughter.  We put everything else in her box in the fridge – but I can’t stand soggy sandwiches and so always make them fresh in the morning!  It only takes 5 minutes and what can go wrong with a ham sandwich!

I also like to get up about 30 minutes before everyone else.... just to get myself ready and check my emails in peace!

So, to sum up, here are my top tips for juggling the family Breakfast Rush Hour:

  • Plan ahead - do what you can the night before.
  • Make sure all parts of the school uniform (including shoes) are ready to put on.
  • Don't give your children too much choice with breakfast items.
  • Wash up later on - just put all the dishes in the sink/dishwasher and deal with them when you return from the school drop-off.
  • And most importantly, don't get stressed!  Children are very sensitive to your mood and to try and ensure a great start to the day, keep a smile on your face and breathe! 

So, if any of you Mum’s and Dad’s out there have any top tips, advice and recipes for juggling the family Breakfast Rush Hour, you can submit them through the Warburtons Facebook page here.