Prep Your Home for Back to School
It’s that time of year again! Back to school means everyone in the family gets back on a regular routine. Before you hit the ground running, do a little planning to help make the transition seamless, and the mornings significantly less stressful.
- Organize paperwork—Before the papers start piling up on the kitchen table, create a folder stations for each child to keep you organized. Have each child put their “important parent papers” in their folder so you can look at it at the end of the day and put it back in their bookbag. This will teach the kids some responsibility and encourage them to keep organized. It makes it easier on you so you don’t have to search the house trying to find report cards and doctor notes. It will all be in one place.
- Calendars—Whether you like the old-school paper calendars, or if you’re more high tech, having a written out schedule makes everyone’s life easier. You and your partner can coordinate via calendar to make sure that no one misses a baseball game or a PTA meeting. Try color coding everyone’s name to make it easy to see the whole month “at-a-glance.”
- Meal prep—The last thing you want to do as you’re rushing the family out the door is worry about hurriedly packing lunches. The weekend before school, make a simple lunch menu for each day and stock the fridge with easy grab-and-go lunch pouches. If the kids are big enough, then give them the added responsibility of packing their lunch. You can make it functional for you by designating a specific counter to be the lunch assembly station so that the entire kitchen isn’t a disaster. Make a kid-friendly cabinet that they can access in the morning with all the supplies they will need, so you don’t have to worry about them grabbing a dangerous knife.
- 5 Min warnings—Mornings have the tendency to be a stressful blur, but you can’t miss the bus! Set an extra alarm to go off 5 minutes before you need to leave the house so you can corral everyone out the door on time.
- Car organizer—This will end up being your lifesaver. Attach an organizer with several pockets to the back of the car seat for all of those last minute items. You can stock it up with anything from tissues, to extra pencils, stain removal pens, and more. Throw some granola or breakfast bars in there for an emergency breakfast, and always keep it stocked with plenty of pens for last minute signatures in the car. Somehow, kids always remember what needs to be signed moments before they leave the car.
- Post the daily routine—From morning to night, write out the basic daily routine and post it in each child’s room. Mark out how the bathroom will be split so everyone has plenty of mirror time in the mornings. Before bed, have the kids pick out their clothes for the next day to avoid multiple wardrobe changes. Don’t forget to check the weather before you do!
A peaceful morning sets you up for a great day, and a restful night sleep gives you a good morning. Set the whole family up for success with a little extra planning to the day. You have enough to worry about, so don’t add mornings to your list of stressors. With a few simple organization tricks, you can rest easy knowing that everyone is taken care of.