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Back To School Planning For A Large Family

There’s just something about the back to school season that gets me every year. Even more so than the start of a new calendar year. I’m big on setting goals and starting fresh each school year. I always have lots of great ideas and plans for how to make life easier during the school year. Unfortunately the enthusiasm for reaching those goals usually peters out somewhere around the second week of school. Ha! But this year will be different. No, really it will be different. Shut up. 

But in all seriousness, it has to be different. We are embarking on a whole new life with regards to school this year. We have 2 kids in 2 different charter schools that are 30+ minutes away from our house. And then the 2 littles are in our local elementary school for this year. So it’s 3 different school schedules and more importantly, 3 different school calendars. None of their Spring Breaks line up. None of their teacher workdays line up. Basically the only days off that line up are federal holidays. My stress level is very high just thinking about it. So what all that means for our family is that the organization needs to be at level 10 this year. No exceptions. I made a to-do list and then promptly had a mini panic attack at what need to be accomplished in the next couple of weeks. So I’ve broken it down into main categories to help me focus.

1. Clothing. 

     Tyler- He has 99% of his uniform pieces- he needs a couple of long sleeve button downs and hoodies. He has new boxers, new socks, new shoes. 

     Maia- She needs her entire school uniform. She has new undies, bras, socks, and shoes.

     Mason & Zoey- They are DONE!

2. School Necessities.

     Tyler- I bought his book bag and igloo lunch bag already. He wants a Yeti water bottle. He won’t get a school supply list until the first day. 

     Maia- She has her book bag, lunch bag, and water bottle. We won’t get a school supply list until the first day.

     Mason- He has his book bag, lunch bag, and water bottle. I got his school supply list today and already have half of the supplies.

     Zoey- She has her book bag and lunch bag. She needs a water bottle. I don’t have a school supply list yet.

3. Organization.

     1. Front entry closet. AKA- the very depths of hell. This closet is a disaster. I opened it this morning and 3 basketballs, a hockey stick, a baseball bat, 2 skateboards, 3 helmets, and a set of football shoulder pads fell out on the floor. I need to take every single thing out and start over. I need to clean out the old shoes, get baskets for each kid to hold gloves, hats, etc, make an area to hang the library bag. Basically it just needs a total overhaul.

     2. Second pantry. I love my second pantry. A lot. But it’s going to have to do double duty this year. I need to create a space for a family command center in there. I know exactly what I want, now I just need to make it happen.

     3. Linen closet. I’ve started this project, now I need to finish it up. I’m making a laundry center in the linen closet for the 3 kids upstairs. Currently I have small laundry baskets in their bedroom closets but it’s not working. I can never tell when I have a full load to wash. So I’m centralizing the laundry into 2 baskets inside the linen closet- dark wash and light wash. Now to just get the kids on board.

     4. Kitchen cabinets & pantry. Because the kids take their lunches almost every day I am working on making it easy for them to pack their own lunches. The drawers in the pantry are getting an overhaul as are the shelves. I purchased some really great inserts for their lunch bags that I want to make space for in the pantry. The kitchen cabinets need a little mini purge too. 

     5. Garage. Specifically- the garage stairs. I cannot take the clutter anymore. I’ve already switched out a short shelving unit for the tall one in the second pantry. I’ve started organizing the shelves already but I need to finish. We needed space for the hot tub supplies, pet supplies, frequently used tools, outside shoes, etc. 

     6. Meal planning. I’ve been working hard on this. I bought a great new app to organize our favorite family dinners. I’m working on a new monthly menu meal plan and the coordinating weekly grocery lists to go with it. My goal is to already know exactly what we are eating every week and what groceries I need to order to make that meal plan happen. 

Basically it’s all about making my life easier this year. I’m not kidding at all when I tell you that the schedule is going to kill me. Tyler is playing football, Maia wants to play volleyball, Mason has his eye on flag football, and Zoey has her heart set on gymnastics. That’s just the Fall season. I’m going to be spending most of my life in the car so the house has to function like a well-oiled machine in order for me not to check myself into the nuthouse. 

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