Are your kids back to school? For our district, the school year starts next Wednesday. With a 14-year-old son about to start high school and my younger son in middle school, I’m thinking of ways to make life easier for the whole family as we ease into the new year.
The following are my tips for moms during back to school week:
Plan dinner ahead
During the first week of school, the last thing you will want to do is figure out what to make for dinner. Have a plan for what you will make each night, groceries in the fridge and even make a few meals ahead if you can! My blog post on 6 Kid-Friendly Recipes Your Whole Family Will Love may give you some ideas.
Have afterschool snacks ready to go
After a summer of eating when they wanted, they will likely be grumpy, tired and famished from being in school all day with limited meal times. Have a few afterschool snacks on hand, ready to go.
My kids love this shells and cheese dish to have as a snack. It’s comfort food!
Get school supplies before the first day of school
I often wait until after school starts to get supplies because the teachers usually don’t distribute what the students need until the first day. But have you ever been in an Office Depot or Staples during the first few days of school? Lines out the door! Get the basics like subject notebooks, organizers/planners, binders, folders, pens and pencils before school starts. Better yet, order on Amazon! My kids like to shop in person for their supplies … (we all did as kids too, right?) so we will head to the store tomorrow.
Keep your commitments light
As parents, we will be feeling overwhelmed too. If you’re like me, you want to jump back into things and schedule meetings, lunches and happy hours to reconnect with people. But for the first few weeks, try to keep your schedule free and flexible.
This year, instead of jumping back in, I will be scheduling only self-care appointments like workouts. I will spend the rest of my time getting caught up with my administrative tasks related to life and school. Documenting my goals clearly and planning my schedule of how I want to time block this school year’s hours to reach those goals will be my priority.
Set your alarm for 30 minutes earlier for the first few days of school
When we are anxious, so are our kids. The extra time we have in the morning to help our kids get ready and out the door will help us succeed in starting the day on a positive note. Any last minute forms the kids forgot to give us, or other hiccups will be easier to deal with when we aren’t in a rush.
Get to carpool early
I am in 3 different carpools with new kids this year, and I’m afraid I’m going to screw up! On my designated days, I will make sure to leave a few minutes early. And for pick up, I will arrive a few minutes early to prepare for the massive pick up crowds.
Cut the kids slack
This one is hard for me. When my kids let out their stress out on me, my feelings get hurt. I’m trying to work on this, but I do find myself getting angry when they speak to me with disrespect or act rude for no reason.
On week one, I will try harder to cut my kids slack when they are cranky. There are so many pressures and stresses at their young ages. I think I’ll make myself a mantra to say in my head when they are letting their frustrations out on me.
New school routine is not just for kids
What have you not had time for during summer? Take time to think about what is important to you and write down your goals. Then make a plan for how you will reach them! As I mentioned above, I plan to take the first week of school to focus on this. One thing I know I have derailed on is staying fit over summer. I will plan physical activity into my routine to improve my physical fitness as well as to keep me sane!
What do you think about these tips for moms during back to school week? Have a great start to the school year!