School is still 3 weeks away for us (I know!), but I'm already in prep mode. The whole month of September is looming as very stressful: we'll be adjusting to new routines with early swim practice (5:00am), my son moving to a new school, and my new work schedule (I'm working more hours). Add in the usual weekend activities, family fun and sports, and it makes sense to plan ahead to make things easier. That's how I tackle back to school like a boss.
Stock up the Pantry
To stick with our goal of eating at home and eating healthy meals together, I usually plan a month's worth of easy meals and make sure I stock the pantry full of our usual ingredients–pasta, beans, canned tomatoes, green chiles, and all the components of our favorite meals.
Stock up the Freezer
Last year, I went even further and took some time at the end of August to cook up a bunch of freezer meals and stock the freezer to make sure we're eating well through a busy September. I'm planning to do that again next week. It's definitely worth devoting the time now to save time (and money) later. Then, it's just a matter of popping a casserole in the oven or loading the crockpot in the morning, and we have a nice dinner on a busy evening.
Stock Up on School Supplies
With the great sales happening now, it's a great time to stock up on school supplies to use around the house for art projects or for the home office. All of these items will cost more later! My girls brought home their school supply lists back in June, so we've covered those. My son, who's starting middle school (!), apparently will get his the first week of school, a different one for each teacher/class. What the what?! Don't they know some of us are
Stock up on Toiletries & Paper Products
I don't want to make extra trips to the store, let alone during a particularly busy time of the year. Take toiletries, for example, no one wants to run out of toothpaste or shampoo, so I make sure I pick up a few on sale in the weeks before school starts. Same goes for paper products–running out of TP is the worst! Now's a great time to stock up on Scott Bath Tissue, Kleenex, and Viva and Scott Paper Towels to get you through the busy fall season.
And as a bonus–you'll get bonus Box Tops for Education on specially-marked packages at Walmart. Keep an eye out for these:
- Kleenex 3-pack bundle
- Scott Extra Soft Bath Tissue 30 Double Roll
- Scott Towels 6 Mega Roll
- Viva Paper Towels 8 Big Roll & Viva Vantage Paper Towels 6 Big Roll
That's a big deal for me, since I'm always on the lookout for bonus Box Tops. I cut them out and save them in my Box Tops Collector that's stuck to the fridge. So while you're out stocking up, be sure and pick up a few packages so you can earn for your school. They really do add up! Our school earned over $4,200 last year, so every bonus helps.