Wednesday, 27 August 2014

6 Must-Haves For Back To School - The Parental Version

The first day of school is next week,  which I am both happy and a little nervous for at the same time.  Happy to get back into a routine and if I'm being really honest, I love my boys but this mama needs a break sometimes too and sending at least my oldest off to school is usually the only time I get half of one.  Nervous because I have not met his teachers yet...  yes, that was plural, there were two names on the sheet that he brought home, not one...  and after 2 months off, how easy is it really going to be to get back into the swing of things?

Everyone is always talking about what steps, tips or items are needed for making back to school an easy transition for our children, but what about us...  they are not the only ones who get stressed out at this time because they don't have enough of something or can't remember some of the basics that they've learned the year before.  So do we, except ours is doubled because it's not just our own that we are thinking of but theirs and how we can help them.  Which is why I have compiled a list of my must-haves 'parent back to school items' to help the school year run smoothly for me.


     1.  A Calendar - Whether it's my phone or my actual agenda book, I know that I am always going to need something to help me keep all of the inservice days, events and appointments for both, him and my youngest in order.

     2.  A Schedule - This does not mean the same as number 1, in fact this goes back to a routine mentioned at the beginning of this post.  About a week before, so tomorrow, we will be starting our bedtime (his not mine, I only wish) at 8 pm and waking up at 7 am, I am really hoping that this will give us enough time to eat, brush teeth, get dressed and be at the bus stop by 7:45 am.  Did I mention that my son is not a morning person?  Neither am I for that matter, but I am hoping that the 'practice' before hand will change that.

     3.  A Cheque Book - I know that my sons school is always asking for money, not that I mind because I totally don't...  I just know what it's like for the field trip form to be due and to not have any cash on hand.  Prepare yourself and make sure you have enough, if not make sure to order them, you never know when there may be a fundraiser or even a hot lunch that you want your child to be a part of.  I know my cheque book was a lifesaver on a few occasions last year.

     4.  Snacks - I don't know about you but my son is a bear after school, he comes home all grumpy and basically I can not talk to him until he's had something to eat (kinda like me in the morning before my coffee).  When I think after school snack, I think of one that has been around since the beginning of time, milk and cookies...  Not just any kind of cookies though, they've got to be Rich Product's Our Specialty Nut-Free Frosted Cookies.  Since I've tried these melt in your mouth sugar cookies I am hooked, for starters they are not to sweet, even the icing has just the perfect amount to cure my sweet tooth, not to give it an ache.  They are so pretty to look at that my almost 2 year old thinks it's a birthday cake, I know this because he sings "Happy Birthday" every time i give him one.


The best part of Rich Products is that they are committed to becoming the leading nut-free cookie povider, with their line of classic and frosted cookies.  It took them nearly 2 years to develop a line of 100% peanut and tree-nut free cookies to ensure high quality and a great tasting treat.  Each package is clearly labeled to add peace of mind to parents, teachers and anyone else who may be interested in there product.


Did you know that more than 50% of moms have received warnings or guidelines from their child's school regarding nut allergies.  Last year I became one of those statistics, a little boy in my sons class was/is allergic to peanuts so anything that we brought for snack time or a treat for the class had to be peanut-free.  I was amazed to see how many products are not clearly marked...  Each package from Rich Products is clearly labeled to add peace of mind to parents, teachers and anyone else who may be interested in there delicious cookies.

     5.  Learning Tools - Everyone can use a little bit of help in continuing the education that our children are getting at school, whether they are from flash cards, a desktop computer or even a robot.  Yes, I said a robot, one that is controlled by an app on your phone...  just like Sphero. I have to admit until I received one of these I really didn't even know very much about it, I still don't on account that my children will not let me try it out, all I get to do is sit back in the side lines and watch them have fun with it.  I have officially named them The Sphero Hogs.


I'll tell you what I do know though...  Sphero not only creates toys that are connected but by blending technology with robotics, the toys teach and inspire our little future inventors.  The company has created the SPRK - Schools, Parents, Robot, Kids Program which allows you to download free lessons to sharpen their skills in programming, math and science.  I know my boys are both still a little young to be thinking about programming or even any career in general but my oldest has expressed an interest in `video game making'.  I know, right?  Probably, every little boys dream but it's not a bad one.  If I can help him along by building a foundation with Sphero to reach his dream, I'm gonna start as young as I can.

     6.  Memory Keeper - One of the greatest things, I think that I got to do last year, was go with my son and his classmates on his first trip to the farm.  My phone was fully charged and ready to go but by the end of our visit, which in reality was only about 4 hours in total, my phone was completely dead and I didn't even talk on it or text once, it was just from all the pictures I took.  I don't know what I would do if I lost them and I know that this year will be full of more memories that I am going to want to be able to save and keep nearby.


Lyve along with the free app, is the only cross platform that will bring all of your photo memories together.   It collects, protects and rediscovers photos you didn't even know you had still stored on your different devices and puts them all in one place, making them easily accessible.  Can't remember which file you put those first day of kindergarten photos...  no problem because LyveHome automatically finds and organizes them for you, letting you relive those wonderful experiences all over again.

I'm sure throughout the years as I get more experienced my list may change, most likely adding not deleting anything but for this year, these are my 6 must-haves for back to school.  For more tips like this take a look at the PTPA Back To School Guide.

I'd love to hear from you...  do you have anything that you rely or depend on year after year?

GIVEAWAY TIME

Disclosure: I am part of the PTPA Back to School Brand Ambassador Program with Sphero, Lyve and Rich Products. I received compensation as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.”


32 comments:

  1. This may sound strange, but a full tank of gas! I have to drive my little guy to the bus stop and in the winter it is nice to have the heater running. And now this year every Tuesday and Thursday I also have to drive my youngest to preschool. The first week is always rough on all of us so I make sure to full my tank the weekend before so no one is late because of me stopping for gas :)

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    1. Although it may be a little strange, that is a GREAT tip and definitely not something I would have thought of on my own :) Thanks for sharing!

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    2. This is a great tip! I have to drive to the school twice a day. I'm not looking forward to winter. One more thing I'd add is an umbrella. Even if I'm only walking in from the parking lot I don't want my girls or me to get soaked.

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  2. I love that you've made a parent list. Those cookies look yummy!

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  3. Hey fellow Blogaholic!!! Great read! I def have to have snacks and cold drinks for when my bears get off the bus!

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    1. I know, right? All that learning really works up an appetite.

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  4. I agree with you so much on the schedule. The kids' schedule was pretty lax in the summer so we had to that straightened out. I have to have snacks on hand too. 3 of my kids are at different schools and then there are afterschool activies. That means a lot of time in the car.

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    1. Oh wow, I would hate that! Too much sitting for me :)

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  5. Awesome Tips! I appreciate them as this is my daughter is going into PreKand have nuts allergies

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    1. Than you should definitely get these cookies :) so good...

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  6. Yes, snacks! My kids are pretty lame and really only like goldfish and pretzels, but at least they found stuff they like, right?

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    1. That's right! My son used to be so picky the only thing he would eat was KD or Pizza Pops... Thanks to Nana!

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  7. Having a planner is a must have for me- not just for myself but so I can start adding in all of the half-days, days off, concerts, etc. for my kids.

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    1. Me too! We get all of the days at the end of the previous year, so I've already added mine.

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  8. Having a schedule is really important especially if you have little ones that are going to school for the first time.

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    1. I know it's stressful enough just to get them out the door, nevermind remembering everything.

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  9. Thanks for the helpful tips. My "must" for back to school is the school calendar I have on my fridge. I update it with other events happening around the household. The calendar I keep on my fridge serves as the main calendar for cross-referencing.

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  10. Great ideas - we homeschool so it's a little different, but I definitely need the schedule! I cant always completly stick to it, but just having it there to know what needs to get done is reassuring! Amd yes I need my coffee - multiple times a day! LOL

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    1. Even just to have it as a guide can be helpful!

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  11. Scheduling is a must! I also have a planner where I write EVERYTHING down!

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    1. If it's not written I WILL forget it!

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  12. cool ideas! and of course Happy back to school to you. that's a generous giveaway too. good luck to all participants!

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    1. I know, right? I'm so glad I could be a part of it. Happy Back To School to you as well.

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  13. I love those kind of cookies with the frosting on them - they are soooo good. Since I don't have any school-age children...I am focusing on those cookies.

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    1. LOL! My poor kids, I focused a little too much on the cookies and didn't leave them very many.

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  14. Great tips! I think I need to remember all of these!

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  15. Yep I pretty much need a calendar to keep everything straight. Amber N

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  16. A schedule is so important. I am not very organized and need to write out a schedule to make sure that everyone gets to school on time.

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  17. i have to keep a calender otherwise I have no idea what's going on where and with who.

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  18. Im finding I should def be keeping a calendar! Ordered her pizza and milk for the next few months but forgot to write it down on my calendar, so I know im gonna send a lunch on pizza day now!

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