Back in July, Holly at Pink Lady (find her here) and Patty at Good, Better, Best (find her here) did a Back To School Prep for their Monthly Musings. We were on vacation so I never answered these questions. However, today is our first day of school for the new year so I thought I'd answer them now.
1) How do you get organized for the school year?
This assumes I am organized! Hahahahaha :) I try to stay on top of the kids' shoes and clothes (see below) so that we don't have to buy a lot for back to school. And we started waking the kids up an hour earlier each day these past few days to get them back into a school schedule. Really, I've found there's not a whole lot to organize as the kids get older.
2) Favourite places to shop for back to school clothes?
Our basement!!! We have had many generous friends who hand down a lot of their kids' clothes and shoes so the basement is always my go to. Over the past week, I emptied out all the boxes, sorted them by size, and got the kids to try stuff on. Now we're down to five well-organized boxes and we got Sam all new (to him!) sweatpants and socks for the next year. Rachel got a ton of tops and pants and really, we're all set.
If we do have to buy any new clothes, my go to places are Carters and JoeFresh.
3) Do you meal plan? Favourite back to school meals? Share a recipe or two!
You can just read this post here for all my meal tips. I plan super easy meals everyone likes for the first week of school -- it's not the week to try out new recipes or make meals not everyone likes.
4) What are your kids' favourite things about going back to school?
I asked both kids this question and they gave me the same answer, "Getting to see my friends again." They've been so busy with swimming and tennis and travelling and camp that they haven't really seen their school friends much this summer. Their school friends don't all live nearby and there aren't really natural opportunities to get together with them.
5) Best place for school supplies?
We don't get our school supply lists until the first week of school. I try to pick up as much as I can at Wal-Mart (because it's close) and then Staples for whatever I can't find at Wal-Mart.
6) Any first day of school traditions?
The picture with the first day of school whiteboard. I didn't know how important this was until the kids made one for me on my first day of work.
First day of Grade 7 for Sam and Grade 5 for Rachel, September 2021
My first day of work sign, December 2019
7) Best lunchbox tip?
Since our kids get two twenty minute, nutrition breaks, we encourage them to bring small portions of two grains, two proteins, two fruits, and two vegetables each. This seems to work well for them.
8) Buy lunch? Bring lunch? Both?
The kids bring their lunch all the time as there isn't an option to purchase lunch. However, if the weekly pizza option comes back, we will definitely do that.
9) Does school start before or after Labour Day where you live?
It starts today and Labour Day was yesterday :) We only had our last day of school just over two months ago so it's nice we don't start before Labour Day.
10) Best money saving tips for back to school?
Reuse things. Rachel has had the same backpack since Junior Kindergarten and Sam is only on his second one in ten years. They still have most of the same lunch containers from JK too. We don't buy new ones unless they need them -- there's no need to replace everything every year.
Well, Sam is off to Grade 8 (yikes) and Rachel is off to Grade 6. You can check out Instagram (find me here) for their first day of school pictures later today. And I'm off for my first day of school too! I won't have a "first day of school" picture though :)
Here's to a brand new school year!!!