School started in our county last week. It’s a busy season. Our routines get turned upside down. The kids have all the feels! Ahh! To help myself (and my kids) ease into this transition, I think about ways to simplify back to school season. Here’s what I did this year. If you scroll down, you’ll see how to get a free monthly meal plan with a shopping list and recipes.
Simplify Back to School Season
Since my oldest son is 25, I’ve technically had 19 back to school seasons, many of which I’ve written about here. But now, after many years of homeschooling, all of my still-at-home kids are in public school (or college). So our routine is totally different, but the principles of simplifying back to school season are the same!
I hate it when I buy something for the kids and they find a duplicate soon after, simply because their closets or dressers were in a mess.
So, before going back to school shopping, (or honestly any clothes shopping) I have my kiddos declutter their clothing first. They remove things that don’t fit, are off-season or they don’t like anymore. When they were too young, I did this task for them, but now they’re all capable of doing it on their own. Bless it!
We took a load of stuff to my favorite consignment shop. I love always having a credit to spend when I go there to buy clothes.
I also did a general declutter of the house. School brings with it lots of new papers, books and detritus (and fall means more clothing, coats and shoes), so it’s a good time to clean out cabinets and bookshelves to make room.
I’m having a yard sale soon, which gave me even more impetus to declutter. It’s one of my least favorite things to do, but a friend is joining me. That will ease the pain considerably!
Created a Monthly Meal Plan
I created a 30 day meal plan with some of my family’s favorite, simple dinners. All of the ingredients can be found at Aldi (my favorite grocery store!). If you’d like a copy, enter your name and email below for an immediate download.
I love not having to stress about “what’s for dinner?” the entire first month after school starts! Many of the recipes have overlap, meaning you cook something once and use it as the basis for the next meal. So this is a frugal and time-saving meal plan also. 😉
Ordered School Supplies
This year I ordered the box of school supplies pre-selected by my kids’ teachers. While I probably could have gotten all the goods a bit cheaper finding them myself, I would also have had to schlep them to the store and find every tiny little thing on the lists, which would have taken hours. Besides, a percentage of each order goes back to support the school. This is simple and brilliant.
Next year when I order these, I’ll have them sent directly to the homeroom teacher like some of the other parents did. Smart!
Made a New Routine
The new school year means a new routine. Also, I quit my part-time job (again, BLESS IT!), so my daily routine looks quite different. I wrote up a new routine in my Bullet Journal to serve as a loose structure for my day. After a while it will become second nature, but I like having it there to reference in the meantime.
New Chore Chart
I admit it. I let my younger kids slack this summer! It was all about fun and rest. But once the school year begins, I knew I’d need a new chore routine. So I made a simple one. Each day every kid has an easy, quick task they can do once they get home, and some more time-intensive chores to do on Saturdays.
How do you simplify back to school season?