Before I get to the morning activity, let me tell you a couple of things we do the night before to prepare for the morning.
All homework is completed and back in their backpack. Backpacks are always on the bench at the back door, as well as, their jackets and shoes.
Both girls make their own lunch the night before and put their lunch boxes in the refrigerator.
They also pick out their outfit for the next day. Everything is set out---pants, shirt, socks, and underwear. They include any jewelry they might want to add to their ensemble. And, they decide what shoes they will wear with their outfit and put those by the bench at the back door.
My alarm goes off and I get right up (no hitting the snooze button for me). I wake up Lily after brushing my teeth and head downstairs to pull out the girls' lunches to add an ice pack to their lunch box.
Then I get their breakfast ready. Breakfast can be anything from cereal to sausage biscuits to waffles.
Shelly sets her alarm and comes down after she gets dressed (about 10 minutes after I get up). I put out the girls' allergy pill and their vitamins. Shelly has her breakfast while I feed the cat. Then she (Shelly not the cat) heads back upstairs to brush her teeth and do her hair.
I start the car to warm it up for us. Lily comes down dressed for breakfast and then brushes her teeth and finishes her hair. At this point, everyone's ready to put on shoes and jackets and gather their backpacks. We head out to the car and go to their separate bus stops---Lily first and then back to Shelly's.
Our entire morning process takes 30 minutes and we are as quiet as church mice! That's because John is asleep and we want to stay calm and quiet for him. And, I also find that it keeps our morning calm and quiet for the girls. No loud voices or TVs going; just a low playing radio in the morning. Although not for everyone, our system really works well for us and I think the night time preparation is the key.