Back to School Organization
With September fast approaching, a change of season and routines is on the way for many. If you’ve got school-aged children, you know what this time of year means: back-to-school shopping for new outfits, school supply lists, and backpacks and lunch bags that can’t find a home.
With all of the new things that back-to-school time brings, it can also bring clutter, disorganization, and stress unless you get ahead of it and make a plan. Below, we’ve collected our favourite tips and tricks to help you ease into this transition.
Not only does back to school mean new outfits, but with fall fast approaching, it also means that in-between time when you still want access to your favourite summer clothes but will also need to be reaching for a cozy sweater or scarf for the chilly fall mornings.
Go through your closets and drawers and take out your favourite items you wear often. If they are good transition pieces that can take you into fall, ensure they are accessible. Any other items (extra bathing suits, coverups, shorts, tank tops, dresses and flip-flops) should be stored away. Now is a great time to take stock of anything that may have been hanging in the back of your closet that you didn’t reach for this summer. If you haven’t worn a piece since last summer, place it in the donation pile. Anything else you wore over the summer that may not transition well into fall can be stored in totes. Underbed storage totes are a great solution for storing out-of-season clothing while using up otherwise unused space.
Help your children develop decluttering and organizing skills that they will use for the rest of their lives. Have them help you go through their clothes and donate any clothing they have grown out of or will have outgrown by next summer.
New School Supplies
Getting the school supply list can be an exciting part of back-to-school for many children. New binders, pencil cases, crayons, markers, and erasers can be fun to shop for. However, you may be buying duplicates of things you already have. Before you rush out to purchase everything new on the list, take stock of the supplies that you already have. You may find a pack of binder paper or a brand-new box of crayons or markers that were barely used. Collect all items together and knock them off your list before heading to the store. If you have excess items, consider donating them to your child’s teacher or school. Most teachers will pay out of pocket for extra supplies for any child who may not have what is needed.
Take this opportunity to teach them the “one in/one out” rule. This is an excellent way to stay ahead and avoid becoming overwhelmed by clutter. When anything new comes into the house, get into the habit of removing an item of the same category. So, if you buy a few new outfits, a
new bag, and a pair of shoes, go through your closets and find similar items that you no longer use as much, and donate them.
New Homes for New Belongings
Backpacks, lunch bags and gym shoes, oh my! Any parent who has school-aged children knows exactly what this means. At the start of each school year, it can be a struggle to adapt to new routines and to find new homes for all the belongings kids will come home with. Many items (such as backpacks and lunch kits) can get tossed onto dining room chairs, dumped in your entrance, or dumped into a closet. While this may not seem like a huge deal, when you’re trying to get everyone off to school in the morning, it can prove to be extremely stressful.
So, before school starts, work with your kids to find the best homes for these items. Do you need to install hooks in your closet for their backpacks? Can you designate a cupboard for lunch kits (once they’ve been emptied and the containers put in the dishwasher)? Having designated homes for these items creates good organizational habits. When a child comes in the door after school, they know exactly where to put their belongings and where to find them again the next morning.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this short collection of tips. If you still need a little guidance or would like help decluttering, organizing and finding homes for your items, we are here to help! Contact us for your free phone consultation, and let us bring harmony to your home!
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