Back to school is a crazy time of year. Going from carefree summer schedules to the structure of school schedules can be tough on the whole family. But one thing we do love about this time of year is the motivation to get organized (and hopefully keep it that way). Here are 8 tips to help you get organized before school starts.
1. Shop smarter, not harder. Get your school supplies early. Don't find yourself running around at the last minute. Target has thousands of school supply lists right on their website, so you can shop online, have it shipped right to your door. Done, and done!
2. Get the right gear. Choose items that make your life easier. Little Green Pouches and bento-style lunch boxes like Easy Lunchboxes, allow let you prep a week's worth of lunches at one time.
3. Set up an easy to follow morning routine. A morning routine makes everyone's life easier because the entire family knows what to expect. Put the power in your kids' hands and give them the confidence to complete their morning routine on their own. We love using a clock with simple prompts so kids know when different tasks should be completed in order to get out the door on time. Or use visual prompts with fun magnets that show what tasks need to be done.
4. Practice, practice, practice. The week before school starts, begin practicing the morning routine. Get up at same time you will have to for school, and practice getting out the door on time. To make it easier on everyone, go somewhere fun like out to breakfast or to the park to celebrate a successful practice.
5. Meal prep. Did you know you can make PB&J sandwiches ahead of time and freeze them? Throw them in your kid's lunch box in the morning and it will be thawed by lunch. Same goes for smoothies - you can freeze them right in your Little Green Pouches. For busy nights, spend some time to stock your freezer with ready to cook meals like enchiladas, lasagna, and crock pot dump meals.
6. Take the pain out of getting dressed. Lay out a week's worth of outfits so they are ready to go. This idea from Krazy Koupon Lady is so cute.
7. Set up a homework station. Get your kids excited about doing homework by creating a special spot just for homework with all the supplies they will need (this will also help keep them from getting up 100 times because they need something).
8. A place for everything and everything in its place. Prevent the school morning scramble by having everything in its place so nothing gets forgotten. Forms, homework, backpacks, lunchboxes—have a designated spot for it all.
Homemade baby food doesn't have to be complicated or require a lot of time or fancy equipment. A couple regular pots and pans and a blender or food processor is all you really need. 10 minutes is really all you need to make healthy recipes for your little one. Invest a little bit of time each week, fill your Little Green Pouches, and you'll have a fridge and freezer stocked with yummy, healthy baby food ready to enjoy at home or on-the-go.
Happy cooking! Want more Real Food recipes? Check out our favorites.
Did you know almond milk is super easy to make? While there is nothing wrong with store-bought almond milk, we want to share how simple real food truly is. Plus, when you try homemade almond milk, you may never buy it from the store again—it is so yummy. You can use this recipe in any of our recipes that call for almond milk.
Homemade Almond Milk
Recipe adapted from TheKitchn
2 cups organic raw almonds
4 cups water
Vanilla, honey, agave syrup for flavoring and sweeteners
Makes about 4 cups almond milk.
The Environmental Working Group released an updated guide to pesticides in produce. This guide includes the best and worst produce when it comes to pesticides.
We use these lists to decide what to buy organic, and what we can buy conventional in order to save money. Without further ado, here is the list. You can download it here, too.
Looking to add some out of the box items to your baby registry? Or maybe you want to give a gift to your favorite mom-to-be that you know she will love but maybe didn't think of? These are our favorite unique baby shower gift ideas.
1. Frida Baby Bitty Bundle: You guys. Everything from FridaBaby has been a lifesaver. I recommend the Windi and NoseFrida to every mom I know. And give a pack of Windis to everyone for their shower. It is the only thing that truly worked in those early months when baby was extra gassy. This may not seem like an "exciting" gift, but I promise mom will thank you every time it saves her sanity and means she gets a little extra sleep. This kit is packaged cute and includes the NoseFrida, Windi, NailFrida and Fridet the MomWasher (a hospital bag must-have!).
2. First Foods Starter Kit: I started thinking about homemade baby food before my son was even born. I would have loved to be prepared with everything I needed to get started.
3. Honest Company Healing Balm: We use this for everything from chapped lips to diaper rash.
4. Oribel Portaplay: Most expectant moms register for things they will need in the first few months. But what about after baby is 6 months old? I always recommend that moms remember to register for a handful of products they will need later in baby's first year. We love this activity center because it truly grows with baby and can be used in many different ways.
5. Meal Delivery Subscription: This is a great gift that new parents will appreciate in the early weeks when they barely have time to shower, let alone decide what's for dinner and go to the grocery store. This is especially nice if you live far away from the parents and can't bring a meal over in person.
6. Cate and Levi Stuffed Animal: These stuffed animals are one of a kind, handcrafted from Premium Reclaimed Wool.
7. Luxurious Robe & PJ Set: Think about mom, not just baby. Mom will love having a cute, comfortable new "outfit" to wear after baby's arrival.
8. Cleaning Service or a Roomba: This would be a great group gift. Give mom the gift of a clean house by purchasing a gift certificate for a local cleaning service. She will appreciate having one less thing on her mind and having a clean house. Or, give her a Roomba - the gift that keeps on giving (and cleaning).
9. Photo Printing Gift Card: Make it easy when it's time to print some of those adorable baby photos.
10. Monkey Mat: So versatile. Perfect for the park, beach, airport, or even at home. Another one parents will appreciate down the road.
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