Back to School Must Haves
The end of summer is slowly but surely rearing its ugly head. Just the thought of it makes me want to cry. The only positive that I see is the back to school shopping. I’ll be going back to work in the Fort Worth Independent School District and Annabelle will be going back to daycare full time in a brand new classroom (she’s moving onwards and upwards to the toddler room). In an attempt to brighten my mood it’s time to shop. Here are a few of my favorite things.
I pack Annabelle’s snacks and lunch in separate lunchboxes because there just isn’t enough space in one lunchbox for a whole day worth of stuff. Or maybe that’s because I like to put things into a ton of different containers. I’ve been using Green Sprouts food containers for lunch and I’ve loved them but they have to lay flat otherwise everything spills into each other. I will keep using them at home to store Annabelle’s leftovers though especially since she can eat right out of them as a plate the next day. I am quite obsessed with their snack cups though and will keep using them.
If you need a new lunchbox container consider using one of these
These stainless steel lunchbots come in different sizes and with one to four divided sections. Since they are stainless steel they are BPA free and are also 100% recyclable. The divider in the bento boxes comes all the way to the top so there shouldn’t be any spillage if you have to keep it on its side. They also have spill proof containers so you don’t have to worry about yogurt leaking and insulated containers to keep hot meals hot.
Planet Box is great for older kids (or grown ups) that need more space for a bigger lunch. They are also stainless steel and completely dishwasher safe. You can buy a carry bag along with it with a special ice pack to keep food cold for up to 8 hours and it also has a special spot for a bottle of water.
Another stainless steel option, the Eco Lunch Box has a great option for older kids, it’s a 3 in 1 that stacks vertically so it’s a huge space saver. They’re not 100% leak proof for liquids but are great for a sandwhich and sides or dinner leftovers. I happen to be partial to the stack-able lunch-kit because it’s what I started with when I switched to stainless steel because it’s small enough to throw into a purse (or backpack). If you don’t want to throw it in your purse you can buy one of their handmade lunchbags which are very pretty and a great option if you can store your lunch in a fridge.
I’ve been using a Pack-It lunchbox for Annabelle’s snacks and liquids, and I love it (It actually used to be mine but Annabelle started using it as an extra lunchbox once she started eating solid food) and I needed an extra one for her). It has built in ice packs so I just stick the whole thing in the freezer when we get home and it stays nice and cool all day.
Water/ Juice bottle
Annabelle used to use a Nuby Super Straw Cups, we didn’t really do sippy cups and we tried (and still occasionally use) the stainless steel safe sippy straw cup but it leaks more than I’d like, it’s great to use sitting down for a meal but not really for on the go. When she starts in the toddler room in the very, very near future they don’t allow sippy cups (or straw cups), just regular cups, so we’ll be using a Klean Kanteen to send her water and raw milk.
As I’m sure you know if you have kids, if you want to make sure you get the right things back at the end of the day you need to label your little heart out. At our old daycare we used to get things back that didn’t belong to us quite a bit, Annabelles nap time binky was even labeled and she’d sometimes come home with an unmarked one. So now I have labels on everything. We use Name Bubbles and I love them! They’re dishwasher safe, can go through the washer and dryer without a problem and are still easy to peel off if you want to. They have tons of cute designs, even foot shaped ones to go inside shoes. The daycare pack comes with pretty much everything you need, which reminds me I should probably order another set.
There are tons of blankets and pillows to use for nap time. There are sets that come with their own mat, or sets with a sheet to cover your mat, or sets with just a blanket and a pillow. I highly, highly, highly recommend having some sort of sheet to cover the mat since kids usually dont get the same mat day after day and they might drool, cough or who knows what else on the mat. Trust me, I teach PK, I know what goes on on those mats. I like to have my little set together and we use this Aquatopia set, except I she uses a crib sheet to cover her mat so she has a little piece of something familiar with her. Obviously her blankie and pillow are familiar to her now but I thought having a crib sheet that she uses on her crib at home would be nice for her to have when she first made the transition from napping in a pack n play to napping on a mat.
I think I’ve covered the essentials. What are some of your go-to back to school or daycare products? What could you or your child not live without?