I've tried many strategies to combat the morning stress. Charts, preparing more the night before, NOT yelling (not reminding or hounding anyone until it's time to get in the car--letting Natural Consequences occur), etc. And yet most days I have to nag and remind and then, eventually, yell a bit. I mostly know that this is how it is probably going to be until the boys are much older. I'm going to have to prod them in some way or another to get out the door on time. If I wasn't such an unreasonable stickler for things like clean clothes or brushed teeth we wouldn't have this problem.
My new strategy, very recently formulated, is entitled "Fake It Till You Make It (and you might not ever actually make it.)" (Of course it has a parenthetical caveat there because I am the world champion user of parentheses.) My plan is to deliver every nagging reminder in a sweety-sweet or jokey sort of voice. (I have tried this before with limited success: one time my voice got so high and so sweet it turned into some sort of hysterical tweeting sound, causing the boys to freeze, mid-quarrel, and stare at me. Which was a victory of sorts.) The plan is loosely based on a friend who is able to keep a calm tone of voice in nearly any situation with her kids. I admire this very much.
So tomorrow Fake It Till Make It will commence. Here's hoping we make it out the door on time, shoes on feet, smiles on faces, and familial relationships intact. We shall see.