This post is sponsored by Nissan Australia. (Nissan X-TRAIL Ti model shown).
I like to think of myself as a semi-organised person who likes to keep to a routine but also likes to be spontaneous every now and then. I work 40+ hours a week from home with one active child in school and another active toddler who goes to Kindergarten three days per week. We manage to squeeze A LOT into our Monday – Friday week! Sometimes I wonder if my kids are too active BUT they love all the extra sports and even want to do MORE?! I wish I had one tenth of their energy!
A lot of our regular readers will know we’ve been busy road testing the Nissan X-TRAIL over the past month and putting it to the ultimate Family Test! We spend SO much time travelling around town with the kids so it was important for us to not just test it on family picnics and road trips but also the regular day-to-day life of a busy work from home mum (like Jenni and I!). There are so many intelligent features that Nissan have included in their X-TRAIL, all of them adding extra safety whilst keeping families in mind, they’ve honestly thought of everything. My most favourite feature is the Around View Monitor, 4 cameras that give you a LIVE view from above! I reverse park at least 6 times per day and this makes it SO much easier and safer – especially around schools and in home driveways.
The amazing and unique Divide-N-Hide™ cargo system is GENIUS for families, seriously every car needs this! You can configure it 18 different ways and the washable luggage board makes it super easy to clean any mess too, it’s made day to day ‘Mum life’ so much easier!! No spilt groceries! The power assisted tailgate with motion sensor activation makes it possible for the kids to load and unload their school bags without a drama…there is even enough space in the back for my daughter to change clothes between sporting activities.
We’ve tried really hard to come up with ONE thing that would improve this car but have come up empty (besides maybe a clear soundproof barrier between two fighting kids???).
How to get out the door on time everyday…with kids!
I’ve never been much of a morning person (working late at night probably doesn’t help with that), once I had kids I found the mornings to always be hectic, especially on days where you have a lot of things to do! We’ve formed a tight routine now to make sure we are out the door and ready for our day on time. Here are a few tips that helped us stay on track.
- Invest in a good calendar, I prefer to have it hanging in our kitchen so I can quickly glance at it each night before the following day. Many of my friends use their tablets and phones but I find a paper version way easier to follow. My husband can also use it as well as the kids. Katrina from The Organised Housewife has some great prinatbles that would be perfect! You can find some of her range here. I love the Weekly Timetable!
- Prepare as much as possible the day before. Get the kids in the routine of helping too. My daughter places her uniform on her dresser each night before bed and I do the same for my toddler. Check the next day on your calendar to see if you need extra things like a swimming bag packed.
- Organise your breakfast and lunch options. My kids have three options offered for breakfast and two of these they can prepare themselves. We use this Free Printable Lunch Planner to help keep us on track. Download and print yours for free here.
- Give your children jobs that they are responsible for (age appropriate). My daughter could pack her backpack and prepare herself for school in her prep year and Master 3 helps me check his bag items on his Kindergarten days too. Keeping a routine and giving them responsibilities empowers them and helps them feel confident and calm. We have two FREE printables that can help, one for the lunch box and one for the morning routine. Download and print the Lunchbox one here and the School Routine one here.
We use this FREE School Check list to help the kids check off their items. It has a blank space for adding additional items for Library day, musical instruments, sporting equipment and so on. The visual aids help my son check his list off too. They love it!
- Set an alarm 10 minutes before you are due to leave. I inform the kids we will be leaving in 10 minutes and ask them to use the bathroom (because that’s used to be required in the first three minutes of our car trip!) and ensure they have their bags by the front door .
- I also never take phone calls in the morning (harsh I know!) there is no such thing as a quick conversation with me, I could talk and talk all day to my friends and family and therefore I let the answer machine take all calls and only return them before the ‘school run’ if they’re urgent. We also have screen free time in the morning otherwise my kids would be glued to the TV and non-responsive. They draw, read and do homework in the mornings as this is the time they are most focused.
- Lastly. Routine, routine, routine. It may take a few weeks to get on track but once you’ve got a good routine you will find mornings far less stressful and you won’t feel as rushed.
I suppose if those tips don’t help you could try what this Mum did!
My Tuesdays are by far the busiest and I have to be out the door with both kids at 6.45am for Miss 7’s early morning squad swimming training, back home to get dressed and eat breakfast before dropping her to school. It’s then Master 3’s turn for swimming lessons followed by gymnastics, I meet Jenni for our weekly meeting (usually over morning tea or lunch) then there’s usually a trip to get groceries and back to school for Miss 7. We pop home for a quick afternoon tea before heading back out for Jujitsu – like I said they are crazy active kids! I find I’m in the car driving from place to place from 6.45am – 5.30pm! That’s a lot of time in the car. I loved that I could fit all their sporting and school equipment easily in the Nissan X-TRAIL and that I never had to worry about the wet swimmers getting thrown in the back (because of the clever washable luggage board). I filmed a small segment below driving the Nissan X-TRAIL around town on a regular day.
It’s so important to have a car that can keep up with your busy family life. I always wondered why my Mum used to refer to her car as the ‘Mum Taxi’…I totally understand that now!
The Nissan X-TRAIL has proved to be family proof! I’ve actually enjoyed my role as ‘Mum Taxi’ whilst driving in it!
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