5 Smart Ingredients for a Successful School Year

Mighty Mommy has five savory ingredients you can mix into summer’s end to ensure your family has a positive and successful school year—one that’s sure to earn you an A+ and lots of extra credit!

Cheryl Butler
7-minute read
Episode #342


Ingredient #3: Organizing and Caring For Yourself

A recent survey taken at my school’s PTO meeting found that four out of five moms see back-to-school as a chance for a fresh start—not just for their kids but for themselves as well. (I can certainly relate!)

While guiding the kids into a new school year, don’t forget to take care of yourself first. If you don’t, you’ll be barking orders to get the kids ready for school and out the door, and you won’t be able to keep it all together on your end. One saving grace is to get into the habit of getting yourself up 30 minutes before your kids rise and shine. (Worth every extra second of missed sleep, I assure you!)  Whether you spend this extra time enjoying a cup of your favorite coffee or tea and just listening to the glorious sound of white space or you use this time to write a daily “to-do list” or read a few chapters from your favorite book, once you have dropped some delicious ingredients into your own daily recipe, you can then focus on helping your kids fuel themselves.  See Also:  5 Ways Selfish Parenting Can Benefit Your Family

Ingredient #4: Plan on Having Lots of Family Fun

In my 22 years of motherhood, if there is one thing I know for sure it’s this: life will constantly throw you ingredients you never expected to be a part of your family’s precious recipe called life—so when that happens you have to be equipped with a wonderful retrieving spoon (to grab that “ick” and remove it as quickly as possible from your final dish)!  This is truly just as easily said as done because although we may not have the power to request the individual ingredients that get thrown into our recipe, we do have the final say in how we disperse those ingredients. So if you see that there is something in your family’s path that is not sweet and tasty, remove it or replace it with something that makes you all feel special and wonderful.  How?  Create sacred time to be together and remove unwanted items from your path.

In our family, a great calendar is worth it’s weight in gold.  Calendars are super important in staying organized and keeping your family on track, but what good is it if you are overscheduled?  Either make a habit of keeping lots of white space on your calendar, or if that's painstaking for you, then “schedule” family fun time every month, all year long!

I personally love an August to August Calendar. It’s ideal for students, teachers, and parents. It begins in August, just in time to get schedules in order for the new school year. The 13-month, spiral-bound calendar also includes page markers, an address book, an expense record, and note pages. On these pages, I schedule ice cream parties, burger nights at our favorite restaurants on a random Tuesday of the month, and times to just hang out together and watch a movie and eat popcorn!

Ingredient #5: Get Everything Ready the Night Before

This is one of those routines that will pay off for the entire family. Taking a few minutes the night before school to organize backpacks, homework, lunches, gym clothes, musical instruments, and field trip slips can add years to your life! This small investment can prevent that stressful chaos of wondering if Tommy’s left sneaker is actually buried in his closet or hidden in the toy box. Get your kids involved in the night-before organizing so they too can breathe easier when the morning rush hits.  See Also: 6 Steps for a Successful Bedtime Routine

Back-to-school is a magical time of the year. Not only are the possibilities endless for a year of growth and discovery, but the unexpected ingredients your family can add all year long can make this the best school year ever.

How do you get your family excited for the new school year? Let me know in the comments or post it on the Mighty Mommy Facebook page. You can also connect with me on Twitter @MightyMommy or e-mail me at mommy@quickanddirtytips.com.

Check back next week for more Mighty Mommy tips. Also, visit my family-friendly boards at Pinterest.com/MightyMommyQDT.

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About the Author

Cheryl Butler

Cheryl L. Butler is the mother of eight children. Her experiences with infertility, adoption, seven pregnancies, and raising children with developmental delays have helped her become a resource on the joys and challenges of parenting. Call the Mighty Mommy listener line at 401-284-7575 to ask a parenting question. Your call could be featured on the show!