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Back To School Hacks

Adrian Trott

Beat the Crowds, Get Back to School Ready NOW!

With the blink of an eye, August is here! We are still all in summer bliss, but in a few short weeks, all the stores will be jammed pack with parents and kids trying to get everything from new pants to pencil cases!

Beat the crowds and get back to school ready now with these four smart tips to make your back to school prep a little easier!

Boys muddy pants

Audit Your Inventory

Have your kids outgrown their clothes? Are the knees worn through on every pair of pants? Is it time to freshen up their wardrobe? What school supplies do they need? What can they reuse?

Once you complete the audit of what is needed, make your detailed list. Group it by stores, so you don’t waste time going back and forth getting what you need. Take this opportunity to get the kids involved in this process too!

Delivery at home

Shopping Online

Can you shop for these things online? With Amazon and other online retailers, our lives have been made so much easier. Stores like Walmart, Real Canadian Super Store and even Costco have online shopping options now (and some deliver too!). Most of these stores require you to buy a minimum order amount, which isn’t difficult to achieve, you can even combine your grocery into some of these online orders if needed. At Superstore, you can price match for online purchases so you can still get the best price.  Also, most stores put out their back to school items by July (if not earlier), so there is no need to wait until a few days before school to get all your supplies. If you see a good sale on things that the kids will use for many years (Like school supplies), stock up now and have them always ready at home!

Family eating dinner

Meal Preparation During Back to School

Even though you can’t make the kids’ lunches now, you can make some freezer meals for those days that get away from you to ensure family dinners are ready and at hand. You also have handy helpers at home that can help prep your meals!  Imagine how easy and stress-free it will be to grab a homemade dinner from the freezer on one of those crazy school days!

4) Get bedtime back on track! Often during summer holidays, bedtimes don’t seem to exist. And, when school rolls back around, it’s hard to get the kids back into their routine. Start now and get a routine going so when the alarm clocks ring on the first day of school, the kids will have an easier time getting out to bed.  Make it a routine for the whole family.  This way, the kids won’t think of it is a punishment!

Easy Meals for Back to School

August is almost done and that means school is just around the corner. Sometimes it can be daunting to get the family back on a routine and often times, we resort to unhealthy food choices! To avoid this, we’ve reached out to Joyce of Cooking for a few tips and some easy meal ideas so you will not fall into the rut of unhealthy eating! Here we go…

Tips:

  1. Talk to your family and see what kind of meals they want to have. Knowing what they want to eat will make mealtimes less stressful!
  2. Plan a grocery shopping list and stick with it! Try to grocery shop for the entire week so you do not keep going back. With a list on hand, you are unlikely to forget any items.
  3. Make extra food and freeze it for those emergency situations! It is always nice to have a frozen homemade meal ready to be warmed up.
  4. Get the family involved in shopping, prepping and cooking of the meals! The more involved the kids are, the more fun meal times become! Enjoy the whole process!

Here are a few quick school meals perfect for lunch and dinner:

English Muffin Pizzas

–        English muffins
–        Shredded cheese of your liking
–        Pizza toppings you like (Pepperoni, mushroom, peppers, sausage, etc)
–        Tomato sauce

1.     Preheat oven to 400 F

2.     Cut the English muffins in half

3.     Spread both halves with tomato sauce

4.     Add cheese and toppings

5.     Bake for 5 minutes or until the cheese is all melted

We love this recipe since it gets the kids involved in building their pizzas and makes it a fun and delicious meal!  And who doesn’t love a quick pizza?

Taco Tuesdays!

–        Soft and/or hard taco shells (whatever your family likes)
–        1 lb Ground beef
–        1 package Taco seasoning
–        Shredded cheese of your liking
–        Avocado
–        Lettuce
–        Salsa

1.     Cook ground beef with taco seasoning until fully cooked.

2.     Set up your dinner table with bowls of each topping

3.     Add whatever taco toppings you like into your taco shell and enjoy!

Again, we love recipes that get the whole family involved. This is a great recipe if you have family members that have different dietary needs and you can easily modify certain toppings if you do not eat them.

Easy Chinese Stir Fry

  • noodles/rice:
  • 1lb Thinly sliced beef
  • Broccoli chopped (1 head)
  • 1 tbsp oil of your choice
  • 1 cup carrots/peas frozen mix
  • 2 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 1 small piece of ginger peeled and grated
  • ½ cup light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • Packaged noodles (from the refrigerated section) or cooked rice

1.     Whether you are using the noodles or rice, cook according to package instructions

2.     In a pan, heat oil, add garlic and ginger (med heat)

3.     Add beef and half the soy sauce and stir-fry until half cooked

4.     Add broccoli, peas and carrots – stir fry for about 3 minutes

5.     Add cooked rice or noodles

6.     Add remaining soy sauce and sesame oil and toss to coat thoroughly

Instead of calling your local Chinese restaurant for greasy salty takeout, make this simple dish at home. You can change it up by putting different protein (tofu, chicken, salmon) and different veggies to keep it different! Stir-frying is super fast and you can create a healthy, flavorful meal in minutes!

We hope you give these tips and recipes a try for back to school to make the transition a little easier and less stressful! Let us know what works for your family!

There you have it, some useful tips to make life a little easier when September rolls around. Going back to school should be a positive experience for the whole family! Tell us how you prepare for your family going back to a routine when school rolls around.   From everyone at the KT team, we wish you a fantastic rest of the summer and smooth transition into the new school year.

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