It is about that time of year for families; back to school time. All of the stores are pulling out their school supplies and sales on socks.
Its a bittersweet time of year for many parents.
Summer Is Over
I love Summer. I love the laid back, easy going days. Enjoying the warm days and nights.
But I also miss the routines of the other 9 months. So when the stores start bringing out the school supplies, I am not going to lie, I start to get a little excited about back to school.
The anticipation of the fall days with apples, leaves, donuts, and pumpkins make me pretty happy. There are things that I love about every season, and I usually am not one to complain about the weather, but Fall might be my favorite time of the year.
Right now, we still have a couple more days of summer vacation, but I would be lying if I said my back to school routine wasn’t creeping into my brain and making me a little giddy with anticipation.
Here is my advice for back to school and how to control the chaos.
Routines work best for me. I do well with them, and they make me feel comfortable. Not that spontaneity doesn’t have its place, but for everyday life, routines are my way to go!
I thrive on routine. Here are a few tips on back to school routines that I use.
Prepping for the week is the best way I know to make sure the week goes as smooth as possible. I consider myself to be a reasonably ok morning person yet I still appreciate when most of my morning work is done ahead of time.
Here are some tips for Sunday Routines.
This is the day that I chose to prepare for the week ahead. It includes everything from baking to cooking egg dishes, chicken, and anything else for breakfasts and lunch to laundry.
My husband has a breakfast sandwich every morning and takes his lunch every day. He enjoys a nice salad or some meat and cheese with fruit.
He has no place to heat anything up, and sandwiches are out because we are trying to move away from bread and any of the simple carbs.
It needs to be easy and healthy. So if we are eating salads for lunch, they are all created on Sundays. All veggies are kept separate from the meat and cheese, and dressing is in a small container of its own.
I also like to cut up and package fruit, dish out containers of yogurt, applesauce, and snacks, so everything is “grab and go”!
All the laundry is done on Sunday. Washed, dried, and put away, so nobody is yelling, “I NEED SOCKS!!!” in the morning. (yet, it still happens…mostly to push my buttons. Plus, boys….you know what I am talking about!)
While most of my prep work is done on Sundays, there are still things that can be done each evening to make sure mornings are as close to self-driving as I can get.
At night, before I go to bed, I like to make sure all the dishes that I will need for the next day are put in the dishwasher and running before I head off to bed.
That concept alone, the dishwasher running, is vital to good night sleep. If I don’t run it and there are dishes in the sink, it is just one other thing that cycles through my thoughts and keeps me awake.
Now that I have a new coffee maker, I set that up the night before, so the timer ensures a great, hot pot of coffee for the morning. Honestly, I love the smell of coffee at 5:00 in the morning!
I also have a personal evening routine that is vital to the back to school routine. It ties it all together, people! I swear!!!
It starts at 8 pm. I make sure the dishes are all picked up and in the dishwasher, and I set up the coffee maker. Washing my face and brushing my teeth has become not only a part of my self-care routine but also a part of convincing myself it is time for sleep.
Then I take my nighttime vitamins and head to bed. Climbing into bed with a cup of sleepy tea and my book might be my favorite part of this routine. Is it unhealthy to look forward to going to bed all day long? Asking for a friend.
My morning routine is about to get a facelift from last year.
Last year, I would get up at 5:15 and make my husbands breakfast and throw his lunch in his lunch pail, kiss him goodbye and then hop on facebook, email, Instagram, etc. while drinking my coffee until 6:00 when I had to start my oldest son’s similar prep work.
This year, I vow to NOT get on the computer until AFTER all people have left and I have gone for a walk, have had breakfast, showered and a few chores done. Probably about 9:00. And then for only an hour until I start my workday.
I plan on doing some block scheduling and only planning out of the house days twice a week. Just as my high schooler has, I plan on having “A” days and “B” days. More on my block schedule later.
So after Husband has left, my oldest son’s food is prepped and out the door (he has gone by 7), my youngest gets up at 7:00 and takes care of his stuff.
This gives me time to do a morning tidy of the house, unload the dishwasher, have breakfast with him and throw him out the door (MOST lovingly and kindly) by 7:45.
At the same time he leaves, it is my goal to go for a walk. I hope to be home by 8:30 and in the shower, dressed, and ready to get to work by 9.
The goal is to make the transition from Summer to Back To School as easy and with the least amount of anxiety as possible.
Does back to school time make you stressed?
Do you plan and have routines to make your life easier?