August is a great time to do a little organizing with the kids before they head back to school. Sure, they are all excited about the new outfits and shiny supplies but before these items come home, why not make some room for them. Here's a few things you can do before you go shopping:
SORT THROUGH THE CLOSETS & DRAWERS
Clean out the kids closets and dressers. Get rid of any stained and ripped clothes and anything that is too small. Don't forget to weed out the shoes too!
SHOP FROM HOME FIRST
Go around the house and gather all your potential school supplies. Did all the scissors disappear over the summer or did you uncover five packages of wide rule paper that never got used last year? Compare what you have on hand to everyone's classroom supply list. Make a master list of supplies needed.
Don't forget to inventory your printer supplies. No one likes to find out late at night that they ran out of printer paper and/or ink cartridges. A good tip is to put your printer cartridge type/number into your phone either on a note or as a contact so that you always have it on hand. If you use Evernote, that is a great place to keep your lists.
OUT WITH THE OLD, IN WITH THE NEW
Don't forget to inspect the lunch boxes, containers, and bottles from last school year. Are they clean without any rips? Are you missing lids? Has something moldy grown in the bottom of a bottle? If you are buying all new this year, make sure to repurpose, donate, or throw out the old items from last year. If you are keeping stuff, remember that your cupboards have not suddenly grown in size and you will need to move items around.
Stick to your shopping list. Even though you found folders for one cent each does not mean you should pick up 50 if you only need 5. If you can't pass up a sale, donate your extra supplies to kids who can't afford supplies.
Besides looking at just school supplies and clothes, evaluate your home for other items your kids will use in the upcoming calendar year. Do they have a proper area to do homework that is well lit? If not, you may be adding a desk lamp to your list. Do you have a place set up to capture the school papers that will be coming into the home? Is there a common place to store homework or backpacks? If not, look into purchasing document trays, magazine holders, or wall pockets for each family member so they have a place to put their important papers.
If you accomplish the tasks above, you'll coast into the new school year with less stress and more peace knowing you're heading into this new school year ahead.