10 Ways Keep Your Cool During #BacktoSchool

Here in our neck of the woods school will be starting in just over a week and we are trying to get all our ducks in a row for the big day.  But I'm also trying to keep things simple and easy and frugal.  It's easy to go over board with back to school stuff & get stressed out trying to make it to the first day of school.  But is it really necessary?  Here's a few tips I've put together to help you keep your cool before school.

September - back to work - back to school - back to BOOKS / V. Donaghue. Chicago : Illinois WPA Art Project, [1940]

10 Ways to Keep Your Cool During #BacktoSchool

  1. Budget - It's pretty easy to let things get out of hand with all those cute clothes and gear for your kiddos.  You can easily drop a lot of cash without a budget, so make a realistic number for each kid and stick to it.  Your bank and conscience will thank you!
  2. Lists and More Lists - the only sure way to stick to your budget is to have a list. If it's not on the list, then don't get it.  Plus, every grade seems to require different items so keeping organized will help your from pulling out your hair.
  3. Keep it Fun - do you need some new threads for the kids or supplies? Rather than making it a chore or dragging around your brood from store to store, make it a special treat.  If you kids are old enough, give them their lists and their money and let them pick out their gear. Why not make it a contest to see who can complete their list on budget?!
  4. Less Is More - do your kids need all the latest fashions and gear? This is definitely something you need to ask yourself -  do they want it or need it or do YOU want them to have it? Yes, you need to provide things for your kids, but do they still have clothes that still fit and gear that is still in good shape? Then why not keep using it? My daughter's backpack still has lots of life left in it so she'll be using it again this year.  And besides, its good for the environment and your wallet!
  5. Get Back in the Routine - yes, we have the last long weekend of the summer coming up, but you'll be much better prepared for the first day of school if you work on getting the kids back into their routines now. Slowly get them to bed earlier each night and up earlier each morning and you will all be much happier come next week.
  6. Be Happy - is it your little ones first year at school? Why not celebrate that huge milestone? Rather than feeling sad and lonely that your tiny tot is grown bigger, try and be happy and get them excited about this huge step! It will make that first day much easier on the both of you if you're jazzed for them to go. 
  7. Practice Makes Perfect - is school a new thing to you or your kiddos? Did you move and now your little ones are going to a new school? Make the adjustment much less stressful by practicing their school day routine.  If you're in walking distance, try walking to the school complete with backpacks and show your child where they will be going, what their school looks like and all the fun things to see on the way.  If they are taking the bus, why no make it part of your routine to walk to the bus stop to show them where they will get picked up and dropped off.
  8. Kids Like to Help - rather than stressing over the perfect lunch or the best first day of school outfit, why not let you kids do it? Having your children pack their own lunches or pick out their own clothes will make for less morning stress and plus they are way more likely to eat what they made and wear what they picked out. Score!
  9. Celebrate the Summer - sorry, but it's true...summer is almost over.  Rather than having your kids moping around because their holiday is almost over, why not throw a Goodbye Summer celebration? It doesn't have to be huge or expensive, just something fun & exciting that your kids LOVE! Maybe it's a water balloon fight, a backyard BBQ or campfire or a final beach day.  Let them send off their summer with a bang!
  10. Deep Breaths -as much as we all want things to go smoothly, inevitably something will happen that we can't control.  So take a few cleansing breaths, and let it go. You can get though it and so can your kids. Embrace the change and the challenges!

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