Get Through The Before Dinner Hour Without Losing Your Cool

The before dinner hour is a very difficult time to get through when you are a parent.  Many parents would say it is the most difficult time of the whole day.  There is good reason for this.  If your children are in school, then they have just arrived home and want your attention.  They are hungry and they have used up all of their good behaviour being still in school and may be a bit rambunctious.  Smaller children want Mom’s attention while she is cooking and supervising homework.  All of this add up to a formula for disaster.

Thankfully, there are things you can do to get through the before dinner hour without losing your cool.  The first step is to fight off the crankiness that comes from cranky children.  Allow your children to have a snack during the time you are preparing dinner.  Of course, you want it to be a small snack and healthy but this will help to insure that the children are less cranky.  Fresh fruit, vegetables, yogurt or pretzels are good choices.

While your older ones are doing their homework, provide little workbooks or coloring books for your little ones to use.  They can fill like their older siblings and work alongside them.

Have special toys or a special activity that the kids can only use while you are in that before dinner hour.  This might be a special video game or extra television time.  Maybe it is an arts and crafts kit they can only use at this special time of day.

Doing as much prep work as you can early in the day is helpful, as well.  Lay out the pots and pans you know that you will need to prepare the meal.  Can you start something in the crock pot or peel your potatoes and put them in the fridge for later?  It helps to get some of the preliminary prep work out of the way.

With a little bit of planning, you can get through the before dinner hour with less tears and less stress.


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