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More #Backtoschool organizing tips + tricks. Here’s a quick one to start off the week.

What to do with all the papers, notices and calendars you need to refer throughout the school year? Create a family “command centre” where you organize it all in one place. There are lots of ways to do this but I keep my simple and easy.

I use the inside of a kitchen cabinet and washi tape all the important and current notices. This includes: school calendar, schedule of the pedago days, important phone numbers and weekly events. I also add some of their artwork and other special drawings.

calendar

Important: I do not file papers here or use this space for paperwork to fill out. (systems to be discussed in posts later this week)

This is just for ongoing and reference items. And to have one place where everyone knows things are. My kids can go look at their upcoming pedago days, my husband knows the phone number of their schools (and more!) and I know which days they have field trips or need specific items.

Where do you put all these types of papers? What’s most useful to you?

Lovely sweet bird drawing by Renelde Napoli. Star garland via Flow Magazin #backtoschool #organizing #paperwork #schoolstuff #schedules #helpmypaper

One more post about #backtoschool lunches and next week will focus on #backtoschool organizing strategies. Today’s question: what are your favorite accessories for lunch boxes?
Here are mine:
#1: SISTEMA plastics are my favorite tupperware for storing everything + anything in lunch boxes. Stackable, durable and BPA free, I especially like their colorful latches that snap easily. These are my go-to after trying out lots of brands and they come in a range of sizes and shapes. Made in New Zealand, but available at HomeSense in Canada (and Amazon.ca).

sistema
#2: Hydro Flask for thermoses. Again, we’ve gone through a lot of different brands (Thermos, Fuel, Aladdin) and I’m convinced the Hydro Flask is the best of them all. Super well-made, terrific insulation, great colors + design and they definitely keep food colder.hotter.longer.happier (their words!). The company also gives back 5% of their profitsYes, pricier than other thermoses but they have lasted longer for us and the warranty is solid. Order online at Hydro Flask or check out the stock at MEC.


#3: Water bottles. Don’t even get me started on how many water bottles we (ahem…they!) lose every year. For some reason, the thermos comes home and the water bottles don’t always make it. So I look for BPA-free ones on sale. Yes, hello Dollarama.
#4: Cloth napkins and cutlery. The school encourages Zéro Déchet which is terrific and one very easy way to contribute to this is to use cloth napkins and real cutlery in their lunches. I use older napkins and cutlery I find at yard sales. However, I do love these napkins from K-Style Design via Etsy.
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I know I didn’t cover actual lunch boxes here (Cloth vs. plastic vs. bento vs. old-fashioned paper bags) but eager to hear what are your favorite products and containers for your kids’ lunch boxes!
#backtoschool #lunches #lunchboxes #tupperware #thermos #sistema #hydroflask #organizing #solvemyspace

#Backtoschool means having the creativity to think of WHAT to put in school lunches. Not my strong point. Sometimes I can’t think beyond the leftovers, bagel sandwiches and pasta triangle. Photos not mine (I would love these lunches for myself!) but from a very creative friend.

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So here’s what I do to try to beat the lunchbox blues:

#1: Ask the kids! Not just what they want to eat (and having them come along to grocery shop can be useful…sometimes!) but also what their friends bring for lunches to get ideas. Sometimes I wish I could wear an invisibility cloak and spy on everyone’s lunches at school for inspiration.

#2: Put everyone to work! Similar to having them choose their snacks, kids can also help make their main meal. I know some parents who do this after dinner each night (during the washing dishes and cleaning up, they can supervise their kids making lunches).

#3: Meal planning! This one does help a lot. If we make the time on the weekend to figure out our schedule for the week (and do the shopping in advance), it makes a big difference for our dinners AND lunches. That way, I know I when we’ll do a hot meal (leftovers) and when we’ll go for sandwiches or salads or other combinations.

And when all else fails, I google: “what to put in school lunches when you don’t feel like putting anything in them”

What about you!? #backtoschool #school #lunches #ideas #cooking Photos by Vivian Doan Photography #thanksviv

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  • Sara Ottoboni - I love point n.2…..Put everyone to work! I completely agree. As
    wife or mom, we have tendency to choose their snacks, kids and husband can also help make their main meal. right? Thank you for remembering this point.ReplyCancel

#Backtoschool means establishing a good sleep routine. And yikes, I find this very challenging after a summer of later nights and mornings. The kids are either really wired or extra tired during September and getting out of bed in the morning can be a challenge.

Here’s a useful bedtime chart via Good Housekeeping about recommended sleeping times for different ages.

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A few tips:
#1 Pre-bed routine: Start 30-45 minutes in advance of the time your child needs to be in bed.

#2: Screens: Since computers and TV suppress melatonin, no use at least one hour before bed. Reading increases melatonin so a bedtime story or reading alone is ideal.

#3: On the weekends: Bedtime and wake-up is best when kept within 1 hour of the weekday routine so your child doesn’t shift her sleep phase.

Good luck with the bedtime battles! What works best for you to establish a good sleeping routine with your child?#backtoschool #bedtime #glassofwater #onemorestory #but #im #NOT #tired #zzzzzzzzzz

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