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The Organised Mummy

The Organised Mummy - Renee Bennett

Getting Out the Door in the Mornings
...Still Smiling!

12 July 2012 | The Organised Mummy

Stock Photo

We all know how it is. We rant, rave and lose the plot
making sure everyone has everything...

Yes, it is possible! There is a way to get into your car without blowing a gasket! We all know how it is. We rant, rave and lose the plot making sure everyone has everything - and once belted in, that we actually have everyone! We tell them all the way to school - that it can't go on like this - something has to change - someone has to get more organized - we all have to get up earlier - I can't do everything...and on and on. Then we pack them off with a quick kiss and finally we're alone. Then the guilt sets in! We make promises to ourselves that tomorrow morning will be different. But it isn't!

Let me introduce to you - the roster chart! You probably need no introduction. Your mum might have made you a job or behaviour chart when you were a child. Or at least you remember them from your school days. As humble and old-fashioned as they may seem, they have become the pride of my parenting life!

Imagine never again reminding this one to brush their teeth, that one to please pack their lunch and the other to turn off that TV and get dressed - NOW! The humble chart will change your life! That's a money back guarantee promise!

View large chart

My morning chart consists of a large red piece of cardboard. It's called our 'Get up and Go' chart...

My morning chart consists of a large red piece of cardboard. It's called our 'Get up and Go' chart. Check out the picture. It's over 4 years old and is still going! It's nothing fancy and it hardly took any time. Yet it works a treat! Running down one side I have my children's names. Across the top I put the different things they need to do to get ready in the mornings. You can tailor-make yours to suit your family. Each child made their own little 'marker'. I used double sided Velcro, but Blue Tac will do.

As each child completes each task, they move their marker along. When all jobs are done, they put their marker in the car down the bottom (yes, my terrible drawing - that IS a car!). Once they have reached the car, they are allowed to have free time to play until it's time to leave.

Before you scoff and think, that's just not me - give it a go! Anything's got to be better than the way you're doing things now, right? And believe me, children love it! They thrive on routine and organization. Once they realize they get free play or a little computer time as a reward, they'll be racing to get ready in the mornings!

Get your kids involved in helping to make the chart. Be as fancy or simple as you like. Make it yours. Own it together! Besides, what can be a better reward than being dropped to school by a smiling mum! It will make for a happy start to the day for all of you.


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The Organised Mummy - Renee Bennett

About The Organised Mummy - Renee Bennett

Renee is an experienced educator who specialises in literacy for young children. She grew up in a single parent home and is a regular speaker to community groups around Australia on this subject. She now has three children of her own.

Renee is author to the newly released picture book Imagine We Were. It's available at good bookstores or from the publisher Wombat Books.

You can read The Organised Mummy's full profile here

This blog contains only general information, correct at the date of publication. For advice regarding your own personal circumstances, always seek individual advice from a qualified professional. Read the full Disclaimer here

What does it mean to be a single mum?Of course, the


are the most important thing in a single mum's life. Kids are the focus and always have been. But along with the children, there are other matters that can confuse a single mum's life.


plays a big part of a single mother's life, mainly because this is where a large percentage of single mums get their finances from. Centrelink are the source from where the

single mother pension

, or as it is otherwise known, the single parent payment comes from. The single mother pension is a subsistence amount, but just the same, it is money to live on, and so it is important, no matter if it is called single parent payment, single mother pension or whatever Centrelink welfare classes it at the time

Often, single mums come out of a


or defacto relationship only to find that their troubles have just begun, and find that their first step leads them towards Family Law - it's time to engage a lawyer.
There are more than just Centrelink finance problems to worry about, as mentioned before, but also

child custody

issues. Child custody is something that hits right at the heart of

single mums

. If a single mother's ex husband or ex partner has been a domestic violence perpetrator, the mum may be greatly worried about child custody. They worry that their kids won't be safe with their spouse, who has already proven to be abusive because they caused

domestic violence

, which resulted in a divorce or separation.

Even so,

Family Court

will often still order a form of child custody named

Shared Parenting

. Shared Parenting is a form of child custody division of time or parental responsibility between the parents. Mother's often look for a good divorce lawyer to try to avoid share parenting with an abusive ex-spouse after divorce, however in many cases Shared Parenting is still the outcome after the divorce, no matter how good the divorce lawyers have been. They will often settle for visitation at a contact centre or access centre where fathers or mothers are supervised during child custody access.

Please remember the bigger font words,because we will use it often in our website.