By Amanda Cox
Hooray! School is back next week, and you can get back to Routine! I love routine. It helps me to remember what it is I need to yell at the kids at various points throughout the morning.
School holidays throw it all out of whack for me. Anyhoo, we’re back to ‘normal’ and in order to ensure your Back To School Mornings are as smooth and stress free as possible, I’ve created the following checklist for you:
• Breakfast; you must, indeed, ensure you have exactly the right breakfast (cereals, toast or otherwise) for your offspring, lest they face the horror of being deprived of their usual, before school breakfast and put on a tantrum for you;
• School Lunch Food; the same applies here. Check you have enough bread and whatever other stuff you, or the kids, usually include in their school lunches. Early morning bread runs this early in the school term are no fun;
• The School Bag; although you’ve probably asked for this some 47 times already, ensure a thorough school back check and cleanout is performed; this will uncover myriad items such as mooshed bananas and an urgent school excursion notice, due back three weeks ago;
• Uniforms/Clothing ; as the weather cools considerably, the kids will be donning their winter uniforms. Give yourself plenty of time to check the arm and leg length of winter clothing, so you can let down any pants leg or skirt/dress hems, or go out and purchase any items before school starts back and you don’t look all bad parent because your kid is in too short shorts and jumper that barely covers their naval. Do the same for school shoes and sports shoes;
• Essential Items; these would be items such as school bags, lunch boxes, library and reader books, library and reader bags, sports uniforms, musical instruments and the like. Hunt them down and group them so they’re easy to find when the time comes.
• Seasonal Items ; coming into winter, the kids are going to need wintery things like woollen hats, scarves and gloves. This means the crawl around under beds and in wardrobes in order to locate said items. Once found, find a ‘safe’ spot that they are to be returned to each day after school so they will never, ever get lost again!
Once you’ve located and checked items for approval for use for another term, it’s time to get organised. Put everything in an easily accessible spot, or get the kids to do it if you can trust them.
Psych yourself up for making school lunches, or if you’re the kind of person who does them the night before, go for it.
Then make sure you all get some decent rest in the leadup, and an early night the night before.
Also, make sure you’ve put the champagne on ice, for a bit of alone time later in the day, and you’ve dusted off your dancing shoes, so you can do one of those little excited jigs, leaping into the air and clicking your heals together as you farewell the little cherubs.
Oh, yeah, and make sure they’re dressed appropriately for the weather pat them down for the items they don’t need before you push them out of the car as you drive past school.
Amanda Cox is an author, speaker, entrepreneur, wife and Mum to 3 boys. Aside from writing and creating useful parenting tips and advice, she keeps a humorous, relatable account of parenting and life at www.diaryofamadcow.com.au