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How To Get Your Kitchen Back-To-School Ready

When I plan ahead, our weeks seem to go much better.  We find ourselves eating healthier foods and saving money because I’m not scrambling to squeeze a fast-food dinner in between work and activities.  As the school year approaches, I have some tried and true tips for you that we employed to keep things running smoothly for our family of six. Setting aside time on the same day every week to plan my menu and shopping list for the week and holding a family meeting to go over our calendar for the week helped us be more successful.  

The start of the school year is a great time to clean out the fridge, pantry, and cabinets, throwing out the unmatched lids and containers, old water bottles and mysterious mixed lids,  and starting fresh. In our house, the kitchen was the first place everyone came when returning home. Backpacks got dropped, lunchboxes were strewn all over the kitchen counters, and there was a race to the pantry for snacks.  Organizational containers and procedures came to the rescue to help set routines and gave everything a place.  

Brilliant Storage Solutions

Skip the prepackaged gummy fruit snacks and start the year off right by going for the healthier option! Grab some fresh grapes, carrots, cucumbers, and red and yellow peppers, and any of your kid’s favorite fruits and veggies, wash them, prep them, and store them in Rubbermaid Brilliance Storage Containers so they are easy to grab when making lunches.  If I had to wash the produce and prep it before school, it wouldn’t have happened!  Smaller containers are a great way to provide hummus or ranch dressing for dipping.

The Family Inbox

I always  placed a box similar to this Rubbermaid 6-pocket organizer in an designated spot in my kitchen and let everyone know this was the inbox for the adult who needs to sign or read documents from school.  No more searching through backpacks, folders, the car, or worse yet, their bedrooms for those important papers!  Stay firm on this procedure and you’ll find you’re setting your children up for self-responsibility.  

Easy Lunch Kit

These Rubbermaid LunchBlox Kids Lunch Kits helped us ditch the plastic sandwich bags and extra waste! I made it a part of our kid’s routines to empty these containers when they got home from school, and to toss them into the sink to be washed. I would place a storage container in the freezer that was just the right size for the Blue Ice to be refrozen and retrieved the next morning. Whatever happens, just don’t let the LunchBlox containers get mixed up with your everyday plastic storage items, or you’ll give up using them because the digging will take too long. Designate a basket in your pantry or cabinet that is just for storing lunch-packing items. Add leftover party napkins, fun straws, colored plastic silverware, hand wipes, and stickers to toss in the lunchbox, too!

Keep It Fresh

Meal prep a few dinners and sides on Sunday for the rest of the week, and store any fresh items like salad and any other produce in these Rubbermaid FreshWorks storage containers. They’re built to keep your produce fresh up to 80% longer than the store-bought packaging—and since they’re see through, you have instant visibility for what’s inside so you’re not digging to find what you’re looking for.

Make It Self-Serve

Make breakfast and snack time as self-serve as possible by putting cereal, breakfast bars, granola, and dried fruit in these containers and placing them on a shelf that is easy for kids to reach. They’re also perfect for storing things like dry pasta and rice.

Joe Scruggs wrote a song about the plight of the parent who gets no heads-up on things needed for school.  Enjoy this song with your kids as a back-to-school warning, and get back into the swing of things with ease! Happy organizing! 

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