The Ultimate Back-to-School Survival Guide for Parents

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Yes, that’s right, it’s.... back to school. Yippee! Not having fun yet? Let’s see if we can change that, together. Read on!

Like the holidays, we all know how stressful -- but also joyful -- the start of the school year can be (especially this year). No more scheduling activities to keep your kid busy over the summer? Sweet! Getting your stuff together to make sure your kid has a strong start? Womp womp. It’s a lot to deal with. (When, exactly, is wine o’clock again?)

For all you busy parents out there, we’ve pulled together 5 pieces of advice for feeding, clothing, and otherwise setting your kids up for success in the fall. May you and your kids conquer the classroom!

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Prep It or Regret It

A Monday morning is no time to snooze… or scramble through your closet. Finding just the right outfit to survive the sweltering September weather and meet your kid’s new teachers is no joke!

The solution? Laying out your outfit the night before. This makes sure that you have something ready to go when you’re shuffling around the house in the pre-coffee hours. It also avoids any ironing emergencies and subsequent before-the-bus hassle.

Just don’t let your small child pick out your “flatman” for the next day, like Kristen Bell did, or social media might get the wrong idea.

DIY: Delegate It Yourself

As a parent, you know your job is to raise your kids to become kind, responsible, and thoughtful adults. But it can be so hard to let go! Sometimes, you get so used to managing your family’s day-to-day that you forget that they need to learn independence in order to become responsible.

So let us say it for you: If your child is old enough to go to school, they’re old enough to do things for themselves. Think of stepping back a bit as self-care – and smart parenting, to boot!

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But listen: you don’t need to prep for the whole week of meals. No one has time for that. (Unless you have an Instant Pot, or a meal kit subscription like Culinarie Kit. And if you do, why are you reading this? You’ve clearly got it together.)

Prep breakfast for the week and your family will be good to go with a well-rounded, healthy start to each day. We recommend something like overnight oats, which sounds food-blogger fancy but is basically just cold oatmeal. Here’s how to do it:

  • ⅓ to ½ cup rolled oats
  • ⅓ to ½ cup milk of your choice (whatever works as long as you use an equal ratio of oats to milk)
  • Nut or seed butter of your choice
  • Some kind of fruit (either small berries, raisins, or cut-up chunks of larger fruit)
  • 1 tablespoon of chia seeds (if you have them)
  • Pinch of sweetener of your choice (honey, maple syrup, sugar, etc.)

And that’s it! Mix these in a mug or small jar, then stash in the fridge to thicken up. You’re done in five minutes, tops. Make a bunch of them and you’ve got breakfast for the kids -- and yourself -- Monday through Friday.

In the morning, all you need to do is take it out of the fridge! And if you’ve got a huge day ahead and are feeling it, you can throw a glob of Greek yogurt on there for added protein come breakfast time.