September marks the end of vacation for most and a return to routine. Many people take advantage of this time of year to "start over on the right foot". Putting the kids to bed earlier, cooking more, taking time for themselves, etc. This can be comforting for some, while for others it can be a source of stress and headaches.
Follow these steps to make this time of the year easier on everyone:
1. Re-establish routine: Evening routine is as important for adults as it is for children. It allows the brain to find itself in " the moment " by repeating the sequence of evening activities. Write down the steps that make up the routine and post them on the fridge.
2. Resume good habits: Get moving outside after dinner, limit screen time, resume reading... in short, reintroduce your good habits into your family routine.
3. Notebook-memory board: Last minute things to think about can easily fall by the wayside. Place a notebook or magnetic board at the entrance. That way, you can see what absolutely must not be forgotten before you leave... or leave little love notes!
4. Home-cooked frozen meals: There's nothing like the unexpected rush of weeknights to put your healthy dinner recipe plans on hold. But don't let that stop you. When you cook on Sunday, double your recipe and freeze the extra.
5. Keep you pantry stocked and ready : Make sure you have the following foods in your pantry so that, like the previous point, you can survive the unexpected.
- Sauce cans for a quick pasta dish
- Hard boiled eggs for sandwiches or salads
- Canned tuna or salmon for salad or pasta dish
- Hummus and tortillas
- Frozen pizza and salad
6. Meal budget envelope: Didn't have time to make lunches the night before? Provide an envelope with the exact amount of money for cafeteria meals.
7. Stimulating homework or work area: No need to over-complicate things. A desk with enough space to work, a computer within reach if needed, a board for notes to keep in mind or for words of encouragement, a folder identified for each person to collect papers, documents to keep, etc.
8. Sunday "prep": The ideal day to prepare your week. Cutting up raw vegetables, cooking soup, healthy meals and snacks, finalizing the laundry for the week ahead.
9. Prepare clothes the day before: It will make getting ready easier if clothes are already prepared the day before. Depending on the age and interest of your children, they can of course prepare everything themselves!
10. Celebrate the beginning of the school year: Make it a positive time of year for everyone by organizing a family activity: dinner at the restaurant, a family outing to the spa, a movie night at home... in short, celebrate the end of the vacation and the return to routine!