6. Prepare a nutritious breakfast: We all know that a good breakfast supports a successful day for both kids and adults, yet the things we often associate with breakfast are not especially nutritious: pancakes, waffles, sugary cereals. Stock your fridge and pantry with easy to prepare breakfasts — eggs, whole-grain cold and hot cereals, quality bread, low-fat yogurt, fresh fruit, nut butters – to make breakfast energizing, healthy and no fuss. Also, remember that breakfast does not equal sweet. Consider including savory options such as warmed up beans and brown rice or hummus with whole-grain pita on your breakfast menu.
Related: 10 Vegan Breakfast Ideas
7. Donate outgrown clothes: Kids grow and grow and grow, making some new school clothes obsolete before they’ve been thoroughly broken in. Do yourself a favor and immediately donate outgrown clothes to a thrift store or pass them on to someone who can use them instead of cluttering up your home with them. They will be a treasure to someone and you’ll enjoy not having overstuffed drawers and closets full of clothes no one in your home can wear.
8. Recycle paper: The volumes of paper that kids bring home from school astonishes me. Newsletters, fundraising material, spelling lists and tests, homework assignments, flyers, doodles. While some of this material — certain lessons and art projects — are keepers — a lot of it is not. You know it’s coming, so be prepared. Make it easy to dump unnecessary papers in a recycling bin or bag in your home, reducing both clutter and landfill trash.
Related: Recycling in Schools
9. Give yourself enough time in the morning: Being rushed is anxiety-inducing, stirs up anger and is, overall, a lousy feeling. If you have found your family consistently experiencing the morning rush, it probably means you or certain members need to get up earlier than is customary. Sometimes a simple extra fifteen minutes is all it takes to make getting to the bus stop, make sure everything’s in the backpack, and have time for good-bye kisses the new normal.
10. Bless your life: In all of the hustle and bustle of having school-aged children, it’s easy to develop the habit of complaining or operating out of a low-grade negativity. A definition of “to curse” is “to speak evil of.” Instead, bless yourself, your family, your life. These years are a passing season, and while it’s not all bliss, give your family the gift of being grateful for the good, the love, the health, the joy, the humor and the blessedness of the day.