Episode 013: Back to School Tips - Part 2
This week Diana shares more back-to-school tips for busy moms to ease some stress during the school year. By taking a little extra time to get organized, you can help reduce the daily stress during the week. And be sure to enter the giveaway that’s mentioned in the episode. Click here to enter.
In this second part of a special three-part series, Diana shares more tips that you can implement before school starts or anytime throughout the school year.
We’ll also discuss:
- How to make snack time easier
- Helping kids with their emotions after school and after their first week of school
- And ways to help you remember things throughout the school year
What can you expect from this podcast and future episodes?
- 15-20 minute episodes to help you tackle your to-do list
- How to declutter in an effective and efficient way
- Guest interviews
- Deep dives on specific topics
Episode 013: Back to School Tips - Part 2
[00:00:00] Diana Rene
Today, we are going into part two of the back to school tips for busy moms. And I'm excited to get into these because these are all things that have really helped me and the women I've worked with in the past. Just set ourselves up for a smoother start to the school year. And again, if you're listening to this in school already started like a week ago or four months ago. It's okay. Um, you can implement these anytime. It doesn't matter. It's gonna help you whenever you hear them. But just before we get into the tips for today, I wanted to give you a reminder that if you're listening to this, um, during the week that it came out, then we have a giveaway going on for the three weeks that we have this three-part series, um, and you can find the link in the show notes, but it will give you all the information it's super, super simple to enter. And, um, we are gonna do a random drawing for a $200 giveaway. So be sure to check that out if you're wanting to enter the giveaway.
You're listening to The Decluttered Mom Podcast. A podcast built specifically for busy moms by a busy mom. I'm your host, Diana Renee, and in 2017, I had my second daughter, and it felt like I was literally drowning in my home. Okay, not literally. But I felt like I couldn't breathe with all of the stuff surrounding me. Over the next ten months, I got rid of approximately 70% of our household belongings, and I have never looked back. I kind of feel like I hacked the mom system, and I'm here to share all the tips, tricks, and encouragement. Let's listen to today's show.
Okay, so let's just jump into the tips. Okay. Because I think I have five or six that I'm gonna cover today. And then again, we'll have one more part of this three-part series next week.
So this first tip is to sit down and write out a master snack list. Um, if you're anything like me, I throughout the year, not just the school year, the summer too, sometimes I just get into these like, snack funks. Like I cannot, it's like, I feel like I can't think of any snacks that I can prepare for my kids or throw into their backpack that isn't something that they've had like a thousand times already that week. And so what I did a couple of years ago is I created a master snack list. And essentially, this is a list that I can always pull up on my phone and instantly like have a bunch of new ideas. I'm always adding to it. So it's not like this one list has kept me like, totally like covered for the past couple of years.
Cuz I'm constantly adding. As soon as I hear about something else, I just grab my phone, and I add it on there. But I wanted to give you just an idea because I know that if you're like me, you're like, okay, great. I can do that, but I want ideas. So before I go into these, what I want you to do is I just want you to sit down and think about all of the possible snacks that you think you could give to your kids. That you'd like to give to your kids and then ask your kids to do the same thing, if they can write, then have them do the same thing. And if they can't write, then have them sit down with you and tell you all the snacks, because that you might be surprised they might think of something that you're like, oh yeah, I totally forgot about that.
Uh, so that can just kind of help you come up with a list, but I'm gonna give you, I'm not gonna like spend the whole episode doing this, but I wanna give you just some ideas, this isn't my whole list, but this is just some ideas to kind of like get the brain moving. Right? So cheese sticks, apple sauce, a mama chia pouch, bell peppers, sweet peppers, pretzels, hummus, fruit leather, dried fruit, freeze star freeze dried fruit, um, yogurt with sprinkles, Gogurt, veggie muffins, cherries, clementines, apples, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, snap peas, edamame, hard-boiled egg, bean dip, um, uh, with tortilla chips, olives, Kiwi, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, beef jerky, bananas. Um, we can't do nuts in our house because of an allergy, but almonds and cashews and peanuts and all of those, which I wish we could, I miss them.
But hopefully, that gives you just a start. Even if you can just sit down and write down all of those things as you listen to me. Maybe that will get your brain moving and make you like it'll spark something for you to keep going. So create this snack list, keep it in your phone, keep it on your pantry wall, like I don't really care where you keep it, but keep it somewhere that you can easily add to it, and you can always reference it, um, whenever you are needing new.
The second tip is to leave the weekend after the first week of school totally blank. Like, do not schedule anything. And I know it can be really tempting because you're kind of already in the mood of like planning things out and you wanna do something fun, and you wanna, like, I don't know. I just hear so often, like all these things that you wanna plan and do and go and, like kids, especially younger kids, they are spent. So if you can just totally call off everything on your schedule, have it be totally blank as much as possible. Obviously, if you have to work or you have to do something, then, of course, but if you just can be home and not have anything planned, do that. Let them hang out, let them sleep in. Let them just like be. Okay. That is like my advice that I have learned. And I learned that, uh, when my oldest was going into kindergarten, and a mom of older kids gave me that advice. And so I really appreciated it. And I passed that on to you now.
Another thing I like to do is to just make sure I have some type of one-on-one time with each kid that weekend. So it doesn't have to be like a big extravagant thing. Really. I just take each one of them on a walk, or with me, um, to the store or something like that, where they feel like they can kind of freely talk, and they can kind of tell me how the first week was going and really like check-in without other people around. And so that they can really share what's on their heart or what they loved or what they hated or what they're nervous about or anything like that. I think it's just a really good time to have like that check-in with that one-on-one with each kid.
The next tip is to grab your school calendars now and add everything to your planner. Like for the rest of the year, put everything in there, that's on the calendar all the days that they have off, you know, the days that they have off for parent-teacher conferences or they have half days, or there's teacher in-service days or fall break, like all of those things put 'em into your planner or your calendar, whatever you use now, that way you just don't forget these things as you're planning out the rest of your year. Bonus, if your school gives any type of heads up with any type of calendar with spirit days or things like that, put it in your planner now because nothing feels worse than your kid coming into the car after school and being like, mom, you didn't tell me that it was so and so day.
And it's just, there's so much to keep track with as a mom of school-aged kids, and so just if you have that information available to you, I don't, I wish I did, but if you do, then put that in your planner now, so you can just know that it's there and you're not gonna forget it. Speaking of forgetting things, another tip is to use your Alexa or your alarm on your phone to set alarm reminders for yourself for anything that you need it to. So some examples that might be helpful for you are an Alexa reminder in the morning for, you know, you have to leave in 20 minutes. So it kind of gives everybody like a heads up. If anyone's kind of lagging behind with getting ready, they know, oh, okay,
I have 20 minutes left or for you yourself, you know, okay, I have 20 minutes left, and this is what I have to still do to get us on the road and to school on time. I know some moms will take this to like an even higher level, and they will have Alexa remind their kids of like everything they need to do.
It's like their alarm to wake up and then their alarm to brush their teeth and then their alarm to get dressed and their alarm to brush their hair. And if that works in your home, great, that doesn't work in my home because it just doesn't, it's just too much. So for us, it's just that 20-minute reminder that we need to make sure we're wrapping things up and getting everything ready to go.
And then the other alarm that's really important for me is an alarm on my phone, reminding me for school pickup. And maybe that makes me sound like a terrible mom. I don't know. But I cannot tell you how many times I have had that alarm go off on my phone, and I've been like really focused on something for work, or I've just been, you know, life, life happens, right? That alarm goes off, and I'm like, oh, I have to go, I have to go now. I have to stop whatever I'm doing, and I have to go pick up my kids, and I don't wanna be the one who forgets. And so, um, we're human, right? Like you can be the best mom in the entire world, and you can still get like busy and lost in your mind, and you can forget to go pick up your kids. And so set the alarm to pick up your kids so that you don't miss it.
The last tip for today, we're keeping this extra short today because, as we all know, you're busy, and I want to make sure that we are not overloading you with tips.
I wanna make sure that you can take these and you can implement them. So that's why we're kind of breaking them into this whole three-part series. The last tip is just to bring a snack and water to school pick up because they will be hangry. And especially as they are getting used to being back into school, and they're, you know, they've been home all summer, and they've probably been eating snacks all day long and grazing. And so at school, they're on like a strict schedule when it comes to food. And so, by the time they get into the car, they are hungry. So just have something ready for them. I like to bring some type of like protein, uh, and then a water bottle. So I always like to bring, I just bring like a lunch bag with a, um, what's it called an ice pack. And that way I can bring like a yogurt or not like a yogurt, you need a spoon with, but like a yogurt pouch or something, or a cheese stick or something like that. Again, my kids are five and eight, so you probably don't wanna hand a toddler like a yogurt pouch cuz I can't imagine trying to get the yogurt smell outta your car. But, think about the age of your kid. Are they likely to, you know, make a mess? I prefer crumb-free snacks in our car. And so we try to avoid like goldfish and stuff like that. I try to bring things that if they did drop, it's not going to just go all over and then be stepped on and be a huge mess.
And just a side note to this tip is to not take their hangriness personally. Like, I think it's hard for me, um, when I pick up my kids and they are in that hangry mood and like, I'm excited to see them, and I miss them and like I'm ex I wanna hear all about their day and I wanna know like how it went and all this new stuff.
And they're like, just they're hangry, right? Like they don't really wanna talk to me. They just are upset and kind of frustrated, and they just want to eat. And so try not to take it personally, especially, um, if this is the first time your kids are going to school and I know my kids are still young, so I'm gonna have all the lessons down the road with older kids too.
But that's just kind of my advice if your kids are just starting school for the first. All right. You guys, be sure to enter the giveaway if you're interested in that. And also, if you're on Instagram and you want to share a story with what tip from today's episode you're going to implement first, be sure to tag me because I love seeing anything about the podcast and how you guys are implementing it into your daily life.
Thank you for hanging out with me today, and be sure to come back next week for part three of the series.
Thanks for hanging out and listening to The Decluttered Mom Podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, it would mean the world if you could write a review or share this episode with a friend or your Instagram stories, and if you're on Instagram, be sure to follow me at the dot decluttered dot mom and send me a DM to say hi.
I'd love to hear what you thought about today's episode. I hope you'll come back next week and hang out with us again.