This post is sponsored by Allstate. All opinions are my own.
Can you believe that it’s already time for school to start? Where did the summer go? I’m in this strange spot between not wanting summer to end and being desperate for school (and a routine) to start. Anyone else? So let’s talk about back to school and some ways to make things easier on us mamas! Today I’m partnering with Allstate to share some of my favorite (and easy!) back to school hacks that I think every mom needs in her life!
Inventory School Supplies and cross reference it with the school list. This seems obvious, but mom brain is a real thing. It’s so easy to forget about items you already have (or have already purchased when you saw them on sale!) Making a list prevents me from accidentally buying another pair of kid scissors when we have approximately seven or so at home. Once I know what we really need, I make a list and take just one kid with me shopping. I love this little tradition and plan to implement it with all of my kids. It’s just a special mommy date that helps them get excited to go back to school. I let Hudson pick out all of his supplies and once we get home we label them together and pack up his backpack so he’s all set to go!
Keep Lunches Cold with a Frozen Juice Box or Applesauce Pouch. I love this simple hack! Instead of packing an ice pack in Hudson’s lunch, I love to freeze his applesauce pouch and use that to keep the rest of his food cool. Once lunchtime rolls around it has defrosted and is ready to eat! The same can be done with a juice box. And if you are looking for some more lunchbox hacks be sure to check out this post by Allstate too!
Make a Snack Station: Create a snack station in your fridge and pantry and let your older kids make their own lunches by pulling one or two items and placing them in their lunchbox. I purchase snacks in bulk and then divide them up in to small snack sized bags. This saves us so much money versus buying pre-packaged snacks. In our fridge I keep snacks that Hudson can grab easily like string cheese, already cut up fruit and veggies, and yogurt cups. This works great to help create a little independence in younger children AND doubles as an after school snack station too!
Create a Hair Caddy: I filled this simple caddy with all of our haircare essentials which saves me so much time in the morning! Now I don’t have to run from bathroom to bathroom looking for the kid’s hairbrush and hair elastics. I keep all of their sprays and gels in one spot so I can quickly fix everyone’s hair on a school day. I keep this caddy in the bathroom right off of our mudroom, which is right by our back door. This has saved us LOADS of time in the morning! I also stick the kid’s sunscreen in the caddy since I always lather them up (year round) before they head out the door.
Design a Simple Routine for After School: I figured this one out towards the end of the school year last year and it was a game changer! After school time can be hectic, but an easy routine makes things a little less chaotic. Hudson’s after school routine looks like this:
Put shoes away
Hang up backpack and coat
Empty out take home folder
Empty lunch box
Grab a snack
Start homework (if you have it)
Once the routine is established, Hudson knows exactly what to do when he gets home from school each day and is motivated to take care of everything so that he gets a snack! I know that when I eventually have all three kids in school this simple routine will make things run much more smoothly.
Designate a Spot for Paperwork: I found it easiest to tackle paperwork that Hudson brings home from school right away. He hands me his folder and I make separate piles for papers I need to sign, papers I want to keep, and papers that will eventually recycle when my kids aren’t looking. If we don’t do this right away I either forget or the papers get lost!
Create Storage Files for Papers You Want to Keep. Hudson and Sadie both bring home SO MANY papers. And I just simply can’t keep them all. If something is really special, has their handprint on it, has a story they wrote, or is just too cute, I keep it. Each kid has their own file box of papers for the year. Once the school year is over, I go through it and toss anything that we really don’t need to keep. The rest gets put in their larger storage box for easy access.
Record the Memories as They Happen! I picked up these cute school memory books to record little things like their signature, their self-portrait and what they love about school. We complete each school year around January/February and I love how all of this info (that’s easy to forget over time) is stored in one spot.
Allstate has been my go-to for safety information, especially when it comes to the busy back to school season! They have extremely helpful information and resources to help families navigate this crazy time. Something that is always on my mind during the school year is transportation to and from school. Hudson takes the bus, and LOVES it, but before your child starts back at school it’s important to review safety information with them such as how to obey a cross guard, where to wait for the school bus, and how to get out of the carline safely. I found some amazing tips for talking about school safety with your kids from Allstate’s blog, here. This is such vital info to review no matter how old your child is!
This post was written as part of the Allstate Influencer Program and sponsored by Allstate. All opinions are mine. As the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer, Allstate is dedicated not only to protecting what matters most–but to guiding people to live the Good Life, every day.