Maybe it’s the morning rush to get out the door with homework folders signed, lunch boxes packed, and matching socks on their feet.
Maybe it’s after lunch when he used to take a nap but now plays through your usual kid-free time.
Maybe it’s getting everyone around the table to open their notebooks and laptops to start homeschool time.
Or maybe it’s when you finally get to sit down with everyone else after making dinner and you hear, “This is yucky!”
We all have a toughest time of day. That time we dread. We know it could be easier, smoother, or at least quieter, but we just can’t figure out how to fix it.
This month we’ll be sharing our best solutions for your toughest time of day—what works for us when nothing seems to be working right.
We’ll empathize with each other. We’ll laugh together. And we’ll learn from each other. It’s going to be an encouraging month!
We’d love to hear from you today! What’s your toughest time of day? Or, what is your favorite tough time of day solution?
Homework time is a struggle here!
Mom of 3 boys, implemented as soon as all 3 were old enough to fight over EVERYTHING. We now have established “days!” Child 1 gets Mon, 2 gets Tues, 3 Wed… etc. On “thier” day they make the decisions on anything you could possibly fight over. They pick the song on the radio, they get in the car first, get to pick dinner prayer, get to sit by Mommy, whatever it is that may take minutes of arguing everyday has just been easily decide because it it THEIR day! Sunday of course is the LORD’s day!
That’s a great idea!
That is a simple and doable solution!!! Love it!!
Wonderful idea! My boys are 9, 6 and 4. This might just save my sanity!!
Morning rush is the toughest here…
The end of day transition when we pick them up after work, go home, and transition to homework or other chores.
From 4-6pm, no matter what is happening. I thought it was my son’s “witching hour”, but it’s me. It’s all me.
Me too! except really it lasts until bedtime. When I’m already worn thin and the number of hurdles between me and a moment’s rest seem like a marathon….I haven’t found an effective way to ‘refresh’ in advance
That’s me too?! The witching hour is horrible. All starts with my attitude and how I approach it. Good luck! 😉
We call it the “witching hour”, between naps and dinner!
The evening: rushing home from work to pick up kids from after-school activities and/or get others off to evening activities and trying to find time for dinner in the middle of it all!! I was able to finally get myself into a routine of going into work earlier so I can get home earlier, and that has been a HUGE help – however, I know not everyone has the opportunity to change their work hours.
After Lunch during what used to be nap time. My boys are 5, 3 (almost 4), and 2. In the last couple weeks my 2 year old has started refusing naps, therefore my 3 year old has also quit napping. I knew the middle son would stop napping soon, but I thought I had another year or so for the younger one. We are trying to instate a quiet time in their rooms in the afternoons instead, but this is hard for the 2 year old to understand and he just cries to get out of his room. I really think he still needs a nap, but he is very strong willed and the fight isn’t worth it because we all end up frustrated and angry.
I hate dinner. One of my three is in a phase where he won’t eat anything. Urging him to even try a bite, is wearing. I have always loved to cook but by the end of the day I’m tired and constantly hearing that what I serve is gross, disgusting, etc. wears on me.
I’m at the other end of the spectrum, trying to teach my 11- and 14-year-old boys to get themselves up & moving for school. Ugh! The 11-year-old currently hates everything and everyone, especially first thing in the morning – every day I wake him to a chorus of “I hate school” and it’s truly demoralizing for me. 🙁 Neither one wants to eat, especially anything I suggest; neither one wants to get moving; neither one has any clothes they want to wear; etc.
Thank you for tackling some tips & suggestions, and for helping us all keep our senses of humor – this too shall pass! 🙂
The last half hour before we go to school has been awful. What’s more, I have found it hard to change the rhythm! The only things I’ve discovered that take SOME of the drama out are 1) giving my son choices on what to wear, eat breakfast here or at school, bring this thing or that thing etc., 2) letting him know that “my car leaves in 10 minutes; you can get dressed now or at school (and have a bag of clothes ready in case he calls my bluff).
That time after school from 4PM until 7PM when we need to get homework done. My 13 yr old son is defiant on doing anything you need/want him to do. While my 11 yr old daughter will do her homework without any prompting. But her emotions are all over the map?! So she cries at pretty much anything. Some days all the stars align where they both cooperate (without eye rolling or crying) and do their homework in a timely manner. I get dishes done, dinners made and everyone’s eating around the table and happy from the day. And then there are other days where no one is happy, everyone grumpy, homework is a struggle, dinner barely makes it on the plate and everyone’s fighting. I’ve found those days/times are when the devil is trying his best to ruin the good that you’re trying to do. Trying to suck the joy and happiness we can find even in the afternoon stress of homework and dinner time. So I try my best to play soothing music (classical guitar is my favorite :). Feed them a snack and try to keep my voice at a calm level when they need help … and it seems to work… most of the time 😉
Can I say all of the above…Ha! I think mornings are probably the toughest time of the day. Even with our routine in place, our ‘4 morning responsibilities’ they just don’t want to function. Weekends are not a problem.
I have two boys ages 8 and almost 6. They do fight over petty things but I can handle that. It’s bedtime that seriously stresses me out. Everyday I feel like the bad guy enforcing the bed time and them getting to bed. Each night it’s a struggle bc they find something that they need to get up and do once I have announced them to go to bed. It’s frustrating bc my husband is around doing whatever while I’m struggling to get them to settle down and stay in bed. I freak out bc I want them to get adequate amounts of sleep each night so they can be at their best, especially on school nights. I get so frustrated and stressed out that I most of the time end up yelling and I really hate yelling at my boys. I really really do. I only want the best for them and them to be well structured young men one day but it’s like I’m mostly doing it by myself bc their dad is too easy going most of the time. That in itself is overwhelming.
I find starting work (we homeschool) or getting back to it a struggle. Also all morning I get “What’s for lunch?” and often I don’t have it planned. I meal plan dinners and breakfasts are consistent, but I really hate constant food questions!
I’ve started prepping snacks at breakfast for them to grab throughout the day whenever they’d like. Things like veggies and fruit, crackers, peanut butter, etc. Then no matter how distracted I am or occupied with a particular chore or school lesson, they can grab a little filler, not make a mess of the kitchen, and be satisfied until the next meal. It has helped so much with the constant food questions!
I have three kids, the two oldest are boys, and I think that the hour and a half before bedtime seems to be the roughest. They start pushing back (not literally) on everything: picking up their rooms, taking a bath, getting dressed… If we end up with time to read before prayers, that usually changes the environment in a positive manner, but meltdowns may occur before we get to that point. We’ve tried starting the bed time routine earlier, but that doesn’t seem to work much with dinner and homework time taking that space.
In the morning. Very rarely does my 5 yo son wake up in a good mood. He is not a mornings no person….nor am I
Hardest time of day. Getting ready and out the door on days we need to. Fast means slow down to him. Ugg. The best times of the day are riding in the car and talking. Reading aloud to him during the day or at bedtime. Taking walks, and talking. Playing board games and doing things together. And just plain hearing his encouragement about how good a mom I am, even when I don’t feel like I am a good mom.
One idea we’ve had for the bedtime struggle is to send them to their rooms an hour before bedtime. There they play, draw, listen to music, and do all the things they want to do at bedtime without it delaying lights out. So the drinks, and the questions are all sorted through earlier. The littles feel like they are getting away with being up later, and I get a break from the constant noise and needs when I desperately need a few quiet moments myself. Everyone settles downs bit before lights out and bedtime goes more smoothly. I have from 1-12 year olds on this schedule. Mostly because the littles like to buddy up with a sibling. Also, they are allowed to play – just stay on their room!
Oh man. With a 6 year old boy, 4 year old boy, 2 year old girl and newborn girl, I’ve gotta say (like so many!), parenting from 4 – 8pm is NOT my jam. We’ve always talked about the witching hour with our babies, but it finally struck me today that it’s still the hardest time of the day for the “big” kids, too. When do we grow out of this??