Surviving the Crazy Mornings

This post is sponsored by my friends at The Quaker Oats Company.

It’s hard to believe that summer is ending, and we’re headed back in to the school year hustle. Liv is starting KINDERGARTEN (hold me), and long gone are the slow mornings of hanging out in our jammies until 11am before wandering to the pool or park. We definitely lived up summer to its fullest, and I’m trying to mentally prepare myself for the busy mornings ahead. The three of us will have to be dressed and ready for drop-off, with supplies in hand, at a pretty early time.

breakfast with Liv

I was trying to think of some of the things that made life a little easier and less hectic, and I thought I’d share them on the blog today! Here are some of the strategies that help me to make the busy mornings more seamless, when I’m making breakfasts, getting lunches ready, and trying to get the three of us out the door. 

breakfast with P

1) Have clothes set out and ready to go the night before. This makes a huge difference when it comes to leaving on time. Before I’d actually have our clothes ready to go, I would mentally *know* what everyone was going to wear. This would usually work, except that I’d be unable to track down the planned pieces and everything would fall by the wayside. Now, when we have somewhere to be in the am, all of our clothes are set on the arm chair ready to go.

2) Pack lunches and/or snacks in advance. If Liv is off to school, I take some time the night before to pack her lunch. For P, I’ll pack up some snacks if we’re headed to the gym or if we’ll be out and about running errands.

3) Make breakfast ahead of time. For the girls, I’ve been making their favorite banana-oat-egg pancakes in large batches and freezing them. This way, all I have to do is heat them in the am, slice up some fruit, and drizzle the ‘cakes with syrup.

banana oat egg pancakes

pancakes and fruit

Liv and pancakes

For myself, I usually don’t get the chance to eat breakfast until much later. This will be either after drop-off, or after we go to the gym, because I’ll get dressed while the girls are eating. Sometimes it’s ok, but sometimes I get HANGRY. This is why I’m so thankful for things I can make quickly on the night before to enjoy.

I’ve been loving these new Quaker Overnight Oats!

Quaker overnight oats

All you do is add milk, stir it up, and set in the fridge overnight. In the am, the oats are softened and perfect. Each blend is a combination of whole-grain oats (+ other grains), fruit, quinoa, flaxseed and nuts. There are no artificial flavors and no added colors, and are a good source of fiber (10 grams of fat or less per container).

Quaker Overnight Oats

I made a cup the other night, and it was so nice to enjoy breakfast together in the morning instead of rushing around trying to grab things and get myself ready. 

Quaker Overnight Oats closeup

I’ve tried a couple of the new flavors, but so far, my favorite is the Toasted Coconut & Almond Crunch. The coconut flavor was mild and I loved the crunchy almond bites.

Enjoying Quaker Overnight Oats

Even though it’s so easy to get caught up in the business of the morning routine, I’m definitely making a focused effort of enjoying it with the girls.

It’s a great way to spend some time together before Liv is off to school, and I’m off to the gym to teach or train.

Have you tried Quaker’s new Overnight Oats yet? What’s something you do to make the mornings a little less crazy?



Photos: Lindsay Colson

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  1. Bethany on August 7, 2017 at 7:13 am

    I haven’t tried these. I do keep a few items like these for those mornings though. Getting up early is super key for me. Like 4:30 early. It just makes the morning so much less stressful.

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:37 pm

      i bow down to you. i used to wake up that early (pre-kids) and now.. i can’t do it

  2. Brynn on August 7, 2017 at 7:17 am

    Prepping the night before is a lifesaver when trying to get out the door in the morning. I spend enough time trying to pull myself together along with my toddler. I love ONO and want to find some of the Quaker version for my trip this weekend!

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:37 pm

      yes, i think you’d love it! and so true. if i don’t prep the night before, it’s a disaster

  3. Carrie on August 7, 2017 at 8:47 am

    Im so glad Quaker jumped on the overnight oats train. Its about time! I havent had oats for breakfast in a while, but more so for lunches!

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:33 pm

      yes, they’re so good for lunches!

  4. Julia on August 7, 2017 at 9:49 am

    Wow. They prepped overnight oats for us. Interesting. As a mom who has not had breakfast yet but everyone else did, this sounds great. Loved your girls breakfast, it’s the same my kiddos just had.

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:27 pm

      YES! so cute our kiddos are breakfast twins 🙂

  5. Emily @ Pizza & Pull-ups on August 7, 2017 at 10:39 am

    I just tried one of the Quaker overnight oats last week, they are pretty tasty!

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:26 pm

      they’re so good and such an easy breakfast!

  6. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on August 7, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Prepping food in advance and/or freezing food always makes life so much easier on busy mornings. I get asked all the time if people can freeze my protein pancakes and I’m like of course. Doesn’t everyone know that? LOL

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:26 pm

      haha it’s the best way to do it!

  7. Megan on August 7, 2017 at 12:57 pm

    How do you freeze the pancakes? I usually only make them on weekends because we are on a time line most week days, but my almost two year old LOVES them! Thanks!

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:26 pm

      i just let them cool completely, then put them in a ziplock bag and into the freezer!

      • Megan on August 7, 2017 at 2:04 pm

        Do you put them in individual bags? Or just stack them up and freeze them in one bag? Sorry for all the questions:/

        • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:42 pm

          all in one bag! they don’t really stick together

  8. Sarah on August 7, 2017 at 1:24 pm

    Your hair! It looks amazing!! Do you curl it or does it just have that natural wave?

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:25 pm

      it has a natural wave and then i curl the weird pieces 🙂

  9. Allison on August 7, 2017 at 1:47 pm

    The second ingredient in these is sugar – seems like making overnight oats is pretty trivial to do the night before and you can control the sugar and the ingredients in general. I say this as a mom whose daughter left for school last year at 7:15 and my son had to be out the door at 7:30.

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 1:53 pm

      yes, you can definitely make your own. these are awesome in a pinch! especially on nights when i’ve been catching up on chores and work stuff, and realize it’s almost midnight. at that point, the thought of measuring anything sounds terrible haha. this way i can pour milk, put it in the fridge, and go to sleep 🙂
      what time did you wake up in the am? we have to be out the door at 7:30 and right now we all wake up at like 8. it should be interesting…

  10. Allison on August 7, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    I get up no later than 6. I once opened my eyes and it was 6:20… I have never moved so fast! My daughter would get up at 6:55. Her clothes are already out, her backpack is packed and breakfast is ready. She is a sleeper.

  11. Liz on August 7, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    So funny, I literally just tried your banana oat and egg pancakes this morning and loved them! First healthy pancake recipe I’ve tried that actually came out! And my son ate them too, win!

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:42 pm

      that is so awesome! thank you for letting me know!

  12. Leah on August 7, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    She is going to rock kindergarten! I was a mess when my oldest when to kinder. When the second and last child went, I was jumping for joy. Ha ha! You will get in a groove quickly. I prefer to make lunches ahead of time. I do quick smoothies in the morning for myself. I can whip up eggs, sausage or have homemade pancakes in the freezer ready to go for the kids.

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:42 pm

      that’s brilliant. i’m seriously so sad about her starting kinder. i just know she’ll be in school forever now and it makes me cry haha

  13. Maura McCurdy on August 7, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Can you share your go-to Banana-Oat-Pancake recipe?


  14. Tia Perciballi on August 7, 2017 at 3:52 pm

    Ahh I can barely get myself out of bed by 8am, I don’t know what we’re going to do when we have kids! I’m just not a morning person. I feel like I read somewhere that whether you’re a morning person or night owl was hormonal and there was a way to switch it?

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:40 pm

      if you find a way, please let me know! i just can’t human in the mornings.

  15. Brittany Taylor @ The Gourmet Financier on August 7, 2017 at 5:12 pm

    I am not a morning person at all! I get EVERYTHING done the night before: clothes picked out, bkfst/lunches made, bags packed, etc. I am a mess in the morning if not, I just can’t get going (and I work everyday so it’s not like I’m used to sleeping in).
    I just added some of these to my grocery order for next week. So easy!

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:40 pm

      i have to do the same thing. in san diego, they’d get the kids from the car for you so i’d go in my pajamas more than i’d like to admit haha
      i hope you love them!

  16. anne on August 7, 2017 at 6:40 pm

    Mornings are definitely hard. I’ve seen those lately at the grocery store, maybe I’ll give them a try. I didn’t like the ones I made from scratch, but that looks tasty 🙂 also, can I ask about your dining set? I love the color on the table, and the style of the chairs.

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:39 pm

      yeah, they’re awesome for a fast breakfast 🙂

      • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:39 pm

        the set is from world market!

  17. Sara on August 7, 2017 at 7:50 pm

    I haven’t tried these yet but I just might grab a couple to keep on hand…Packing lunches for school the night before is KEY for us. I wish I could lay out my son’s clothes but he insists on picking out his outfit. You should see some of his looks 😉

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2017 at 9:38 pm

      haha i love that 🙂

  18. Magda on August 8, 2017 at 5:39 am

    I think these are maybe a good option for a trip, when you need something portable to just add water/milk and eat in the morning. At home I eat overnight oats pretty much every weekday, but it takes like 20 seconds to add oats, nuts etc into a cup, pour some milk and put it in the fridge. No need for a pre-packaged product imho. Also, it’s hard to find a ready to eat oatmeal without added sugar and/or other weird stuff where I live.

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