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  • Writer's pictureShannon McKinney

Back to School Time! Are you ready?

The countdown has begun… Back to School! Are you ready? Getting ready? Dreading it? Excited about it? Here are a few tips to hopefully get you a little more prepared, let’s get into it.

Create a checklist: Make a list of all the tasks and items you need to take care of before school starts. This can include buying school supplies, clothing, and updating medical and emergency contact information. I know that I can’t be alone in wanting to stretch out summer fun and freedom so here’s what we do: make lists with all that needs to be done and chunk it out over the course of a week or two followed by ice cream or something fun. Trader Joe’s is literally a treat for my daughter, she LOVES the place so she gets a treat and I pick up groceries, a win-win!

Edit: Before the school year begins, take some time to edit (or help your child edit) their clothing; donate or pass down clothes that no longer fit and make a list of items that need replacing. Taking this step can lead to less stress while shopping and less monetary waste.

Set up clear drop zones: If you have a mudroom, or similar hallway or kitchen area, designate a space for each child to “drop” backpacks, sports bags, and lunchboxes (after their daily work and lunches are unpacked). If you can get your kids in the habit of setting up and maintaining their belongings, it will help for a smoother morning. See more in my Setting Your Teen Up for Success for tweens and teenagers. Getting these habits to stick takes time, patience, and more time but with practice comes success.

Plan your meals: Prepare a weekly meal plan to make mornings less hectic. Consider packing lunches and snacks in advance to save time and last-minute rushing. See my meal planning and grocery tips here for more information.

Establish routines: This is a big one: re-establishing waking and bedtime routines the week (or sooner for younger kids) before school starts. I truly believe that this can alleviate morning struggles and afternoon exhaustion; the first week of school can be exciting but also overwhelming and proper rest and routines can make a really big difference in mood and energy levels (for moms, too!).

I tell the teens in my organizing classes that setting and maintaining habits takes discipline and discipline is like a muscle, the more you practice, the easier is to maintain. Keep at it and keep it positive, you’ve got this! Wishing you the best 2023 back to school yet!

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