To help mitigate some of the inevitable Back-to-School stress, a few weeks ago, I attended an event, sponsored by Procter & Gamble and hosted by Audrey McClellan of Mom Generations, that focused on Back-to-School tips for moms. Held in a beautiful nail spa in Boston, the moms in attendance shared strategies for coping during this busy time and found some time to relax together. I also got a lovely pedicure—such a treat!
Audrey’s advice for Back-to-School time included finding moments for yourself to help manage your stress—and this mom of five should know about stress management! Other moms talked about balancing Back-to-School budgets and responding to the needs of children in different in grades.
As a person who likes to plan and be super organized, I have found stress in the surprises of the transition to kindergarten. For example, one of the things that threw me is that families are expected to donate supplies to the classrooms of their children (though posts in my Twitter feed indicate it’s pretty common). It’s kind of like being pregnant: no one tells you all of the details on pregnancy until you are and then you just figure it out. Adjusting to a new school with new expectations and systems is a little bit similar. I don’t mind helping our school in this way; it just was yet another one of those things about elementary school that I didn’t know about, which makes me think that there’s a whole lot else I’m missing and that makes the Back-to-School process all the more stressful.
I also took away from the P&G event the idea that it doesn’t matter if you child is starting elementary school for the first time, or heading off to high school, Back-to-School time brings a lot of decisions and planning. (And excitement and tears, but that’s usually for the parents.) From backpacks to class schedules, parents and their children must navigate all of these small and big details. Establishing a good organization and communication system within the family at the very beginning can make a big difference in having a successful school year. To that end, I’m clearing space in our laundry room/mud room for a “school command central.” This is where backpacks, homework, and school reminders will go. (Here’s a great post with other organization tips.)
I also packed our school supply list this weekend. The kids and I went on a scavenger hunt, inspired by Christine of Boston Mamas, and found all but two items on our list (glue sticks and Ziploc bags, interestingly). It was much easier than I thought it would be. We’re off to the store this weekend to get these final classroom must-haves and to make sure we’re stocked up for healthy lunches and snacks.
I’ve pretty much convinced that I’ve forgotten some important detail—like Back-to-School clothes shopping—which I neglected to do, a realization that hit me only as I wrote this post. To help out the oops-was-I-supposed-to-do-that-parent (like me, apparently), P&G put together a Back-to-School checklist. They also have a Back-to-School page with other resources for families.
Another resource P&G has made available is our giveaway!
The folks at P&G are offering a $50 promo code to the P&G e-store, where you can find all those last minute school items and more. From batteries to Tide stain remover to beauty products, the store has many items that will likely help you get ready for Back-to-School. Enter below!
Thank you to P&G for the lovely event, and good luck, dear readers, with the new school year!
Disclaimer: All opinions in this post are mine. I did receive a pedicure (and now have purple toe nails!), a P&G gift bag, a gift card, and an invitation to host this giveaway.