Better Breakfast Month

There are so many holidays in the month of September. I do think it’s a good idea that they whomever makes these days made better breakfast to be in September. It’s a good idea because it correlates to kids going back to school!

food gourmet on top of brown table

Photo by Life Of Pix on Pexels.com

We no that in the United States unfortunately some kids struggle with meals. This really ought not be but it is a reality for some. Breakfast is super important. As an adult it’s hard for me to concentrate when I’m hangry. (Angry + hungry) how much more for our children? I know some folks really can’t eat breakfast. I am not one of those people. I would encourage the non breakfast eaters to at least eat fruit.

Eating better starts with choices. Having a variety of choices comes down to being prepared. Instead of sugary foods invest in whole grain options. I would suggest prepping it ahead of time. Time is the biggest issue with breakfast.  Not having enough because the stress in the morning and trying to be on time sometimes clashes. I get that!It’s easier to grab on the go.  The same breakfast sandwiches you can purchase at a fast food place can be made at home. Invest in fruit. Invest in cereals with less sugar and be creative. You can have fresh fruit in your oatmeal or cereal as an alternative.Make the time to prepare things at night meaning packing bags can help cut down on time.  If you have lunch and breakfast prepared you can be more in charge with what you place in your body.  Often times we shove food into our body and grab food from vending machines because of not being prepared.  If you have a family if you mirror the change you want to see it makes it easier for others around you to align.  Not all food that is grab worthy is bad.  You can grab yogurt and eat that with some granola and fruit and have that be better than a sugary donut a diet soda.

Even if you say come on “I can’t do that,” commit to a few days a week of making healthier choices. Once you see how much better you feel it may be an easier to make that change stick!  The benefits of eating a better breakfast:

  • Better Concentration
  • Aids in weight los
  • Helps in portion control for the day
  • Better productive day

Can you step your game durng breakfast?  Give it a try!

Advertisements

Back to School: Parent Edition

Are you excitedly awaiting for back to school? Your kids have eaten you out of house and home? A couple of them you’re not sure what to do? I get it! Rejoice! It’s back to school time! So I’ve written a blog for how you can your kids ready for back to school. It was filled with all great and helpful suggestions. I am quite proud of that piece, but now it’s time to shift gears for the parents. Yes the parents.

I told you how you can get the kids successful but it’s the parents turn! You are the one in charge of you and helping you get ready for back to school first helps the kids get aligned!

Plan Early

Listen I’ve had some years where I’ve gotten supplies last-minute. It happens for various reasons but plan and do as much as you can early enough to cut down on anxiety. I for one will bargain hunt for supplies. So for me aligning sales is important to me. It’s important to know that I’m saving money. Let’s keep it real, having 3 kids means that back to school expenses expensive. I’ve never understood my parent’s life until recent years. I as a child just thought parents just went to the store, paid and rolled. I had no clue until I had my own that there is work to be able to do it all!! Shout out to parents who are trying to do their best.

Make a list and come up with a plan to attack school uniforms, supplies, tuition and back packs. It’s imperative to figure out as early as possible your game plan of attack!

Look over previous report cards

Although it would seem that this is exclusively for your child to do, learning to see trends will assist you as the parent to outsource help. It’s not ashamed to not know something it’s a shame to not do all you can to identify ways to make your child as successful as they can be. This may mean helping to fine tune their skill sets. We noticed a few lacks in concentration and so we started taking it back with practice work to help our children get better in that area. There are several sites that offer free printouts. Also you should have been tuning in often times the previous teacher is a great place to start. We had the kids start their Summer assignments early. We also increased reading and I looked online for other books to add to the reading list.

Get the Kids on their early back to school 3 weeks or more

We used to wait until the week before school and then send them to bed early and wake them up like a test run. This year outside of a few movie nights we have kept them on the same schedule. We didn’t even implement our normal Summer schedules. They are in camp all day and it’s easier for them and in reality for us. So far with us doing that and making them keep after camp studying at least 2 days a week it’s been helpful. My son is zooming through his sight words and our daughter is arising to the occasion in her work. It sounds harsh but some kids can’t really break too much and for the parents the house can have that well deserved rest time!!

Reorganize

It’s important for you to either place a station or two aside for the kids ahead of time for paperwork. One of the worst things is getting a slew of papers and have no clear direction of where it is. Our kids school don’t play and will give you an eye roll if you request another copy. I used to get so mad if they gave me an attitude. I soon stepped back and realized the lesson is helping the kids understand that you don’t always get the chance to fix things. I also started making copies or scanning forms. This way I didn’t have to bother with things. We never let on to our kids that we had the back up. We would depending on what it was give a consequence like delayed electronic use for having us assist in obtaining or using the back up.

Attitude Check

We all know back to school is coming. There is zero no reason to be upset, frustrated and upset that money is going to have to be spent. Even if your child is public school there will be money to be spent. You can attend a free back to school event in your town if you need it. However adjusting your attitude will help your child to adjust as well. They are relying on you to show them the ropes. Having a good attitude in general is helpful! Trust me going from this:

Versus this:

You decide!! So may your wallet be blessed, your nerves settled as we all push onward and upward towards our children education. Also may your wine glasses be bountiful as the time draws near!!

Teach the Babies-You’re Not Everyone’s Cup of Tea

So this week the recurring theme has been forgiveness.  This is a tough lesson for many adults let alone my own son. This week for both of my older kids the trying to teach them to understand that its okay to have a disagreement with a person, work things out or decide to work things out but be cordial and not be friends.

My son who is 6 is having the hardest time which is to be expected.  I do not expect him to understand adult like themes and to me forgiveness will come to him as he grows and matures.  So the issue is allowing my kids to find out whom feels safe to them.  I even teach my kids even those closest to them can give bad vibes, you have the right to retreat.  I do not make them give hugs or be around ANYONE who makes them uncomfortable.  This means that if you come to my child and my child rejects you for whatever reason, there’s no make them give into your insecurity of showing you love they don’t feel is genuine to give. We stress to kids to be aware but then judge them for feeling ill feelings.  My husband and I don’t.  We try to help them work through these feelings.

Image result for safety with kids

For my daughter she has been going to the same school for years and most of the kids she has known since Kindergarten.  At this point she is well aware of certain people’s triggers, how they act, and what they do when the teachers and principals aren’t watching.  I am not one  of those parents that push my kids into certain friendships.  If there are mean girls in her school and she identifies that is who they are, I trust that I have raised her well to this point to know who they are and if she chooses not to embrace them outside of a school setting that is fine. We really can’t push the all the kids are angels routine.  I am all for her or my son working it out but its one thing to work it out and it’s another thing to have a blind eye to a problematic child and act as if that child isn’t an issue.

So this week my son has been having an issue with one child in particular.  He has tried being nice.  He has tried having meetings with the kid etc. However to no avail.  This kid is problematic.  My advice to my son was be cordial.  Work together when you have to in the classroom because in life you can’t always disengage with someone just because you don’t care for them.  However at recess is your time to play.  You shouldn’t have to spend your time in recess trying to push back negativity from one child.  Some days he gets the message other days he doesn’t.  The days he doesn’t its a hard conversation to have.

Yes we are all for kids getting along.  Yes we are well aware that at this age kids go back and forth and are learning how to socialize. The same rules that apply to me with other adults do NOT work for kids.  However let’s also keep it real and stop acting like some of these kids already come in the door with whatever they have at home and spew the most hate, the most vile words on other kids and in the name of letting kids be kids we give these kids many chances in hopes they will fare better.  They don’t always fair well.  So we can’t just act like it’s not the case.  As a parent I would love to tell my kids that the world is awesome all the time and that they won’t have issues with other kids or other people but that is not the case.

Image result for safety with kids

My conversation with my son is about helping him weed out those he thinks are bad news for him and show him how to make healthy relationships with those who want the same in return.  He needs to be cordial meaning just because there is friction, school work still needs to be done.  If his teacher assigns him to the student that he is having issues with then he needs to buckle down and get things done.

Parenting is hard and I am sure there will be someone who disagrees with my conversation but the beautiful thing about parenting is that it is an individual pathway per parent and its a collective pathways for the parents involved.  My only hope is that my kids get to the point where they don’t waste energy on those who don’t mean them well.  They learn to keep their peace with them and not get entangled with those kids who have ill intentions.  That’s my hope for adults too.  Stop giving your energy to the bad person in your life regardless of relationship.  If it doesn’t serve you, leaves you feeling less about yourself, etc then the point is moot, leave them alone and allow the right folks to come in your life. These are life lessons.  They should be taught early.  I want my kids to grow into confident human beings that know what they want, who they want, and to go where they are celebrated not where they are tolerated.  These lessons aren’t to wait to be learned.  These lessons are taught early on.

Ask Toi: Have You Ever dated outside of your race?

Yes I have and it was so super brief not many people knew.  I wasn’t trying to hide him either.  I have zero problems with dating outside of my race if the vibes are right. I have never been one to discriminate against it. All of my life I have made it clear I like cream in my coffee.  I just never tasted enough cream in my coffee to make any waves. I understand some people’s issues with it and that’s their issue. So it was in college after the breakup of my college sweetheart aka my current husband.  I did not go out seeking him either.  He was white.  He was in one of my core classes.  He had a lot of the qualities I liked, tall, funny, beautiful spirit and good-looking.  He had been giving me the sexy eyes for a minute and I denied him since I was in a relationship.  He saw me in class with a hoody on looking all kinds of depressed and tor up.  Yes tor up and sad.  He swooped in with the what’s the matter talk and our conversation shifted since I was back on the market.  We hung out, we studied but it never went any further because into our second official date, he stated he couldn’t date me because he was afraid of what his parents would think.  He asked me to date him privately and that wasn’t then nor has that ever been my thing. So I let him go.  I was upset but knew I had dodged a bullet.

I might have been able to go the distance in my mind with the college guy had he been open. But I have always been any one I dated cup of tea and I wasn’t about to turn down my melanin to suppress his dad’s preferences.  So there you have it.  Yes I dated outside of my race extremely briefly but I did it.

Camp is Over, Lessons were learned

Yay I do apologize for all of the parents who weren’t able to get your children into camp. This blog is not meant to stir up any ill feelings you had having to scramble for your little people.  I feel your pain in that would have led me into pure anxiety.  However I just want to do a dance that camp is over.  Trust and believe it’s not just that the start of school is literally around the corner, it has everything to do with what camp has meant for the Storr household.

My son was in another daycare and with that daycare they have a built-in camp.  He didn’t make it quite to his first full year.  The issue is simple, he was having issues adjusting. He was having issues with some of the kids and that’s all I will say to protect the innocent. However as a parent it was hard having to find alternatives for him.  I had to take him to counseling at some point which worked out since towards the end he was adjusting to life without his grandmother since her passing.  With all that was going on, I personally have to admit, I didn’t remove him in enough time.  Shocker I know. I battled taking him from the daycare because it was convenient for me to take him and his sibling to school and me to work.  The agony of having to start the process of locating another new school made my head hurt.  So I feel that my husband who took my lead and I just didn’t pull the trigger.  That is the one thing to date I regret.

Let me remind you that the very first daycare he was in since he was a baby discharged him and his siblings because they had contracted hand, foot and mouth virus which is a super common virus usually contracted in daycare go figure.  He never got over being in his mind thrown in the second daycare to be honest.  I don’t even ride past that old daycare anymore to avoid the why did she let us go questions.

In the turn of events, since not being enrolled in either daycare, my son has bounced back.  So in my mom heart, it has given me such a calm.  I went from getting calls daily because of my son’s responses to what was happening to none.  Not like a call but it wasn’t bad nope, to NONE.  Let me tell you how happy that has made me feel within itself.  He is back to enjoying going back to camp or as he calls it school since he starts kindergarten next week.  He smiles when you pick him up.  He is excited about all of the trips.  But it’s now coming to an end today.  It was great for him to have this positive experience before he starts school next week.

Let me say and make clear, I do not place blame at the previous daycare at all.  The first one I simply do not have anything positive to say on their behalf.  However the second one just wasn’t a good fit and if I be honest it wasn’t a good full fit for our family in the long run.  The reason is simple the second my son after a few months hadn’t adjusted I should have pulled him.  As a mom I should have set myself to the side on it and followed his cue.  It would have saved time and energy but we all live and learn.

Camp has done both he and his oldest sibling super well.  One its been a great peace not having to pay for field trips in addition to his tuition weekly.  Lawd, trying to keep straight who goes where and spending money for all is a lot in itself.  This camp provided all of that with the tuition and all the kids had the same things except if there was an allergy issue.  Do you know how much of a mom win that is?  A huge one.  So they won me over right from the start. Was it more money?  Absolutely.  But like my husband and I say you get what you pay for.  So we adjusted.  the kids had a blast.  Some of their trips I was kind of jelly over.  They really had a good time and not one provider did I have an issue with. That is a blessing.  Camps and daycare cost too much to deal with bad attitudes and bad vibes.  I tell people all the time, the ones who keep our children so we can work have hard jobs.  However this is something that you choose.  If you get to a point as a daycare worker or teacher and you heart isn’t in it, its time to renew your mind or find a new career.  This coming in and out snubbing parents, acting passive aggressive, or just altogether rude, will not cut in this field.  This goes for administrators too. You have to either love what you do, take a break, or keep it moving.  Nobody should have to come into your place of business and especially if they are paying for their kids to attend to deal with your nasty attitude either.

Here are a few things I want to highlight as we end camp and go into the school year:

  1. Know your money has power.  Although in daycare kids come and go, never forget that you are still paying for a service.  If you don’t like it, give notice and find somewhere else to go.  It’s simple.  You don’t have to argue.  Know your own money power and do what you have to do.
  2. Along with money power know the background and this is really for other camps and daycare.  A lot of camps have parents and families who run off of government assistance.  I am not knocking it, but never treat others better than or worst because of it.  Just because of a subsidy they have the same buying power.  Keep in mind that to the ones who pay cash can sometimes keep your daycare afloat if the government furloughs. Government has and will furlough again and if that happens it’s sometimes the cash paying clients are the ones that take the sting off behind the scenes.  How do I know this, my twin has been in the field since we were 18, we are now 36 I know a lot more than I let people believe.
  3. You can make a grievance with the daycare and if they don’t hear you, they are governed by laws that they have to uphold.  In Pa there is a star system and anything done that doesn’t align to that system that the daycare is on can be reported and you don’t have to simply take what they give you.  They can’t retaliate against you or withdraw your child.  Always check with the department of welfare or the state to see if the daycare has had any violations.  This is your duty as a parent and your right to do so.
  4. Find a daycare that has everything in writing especially for how they will handle instances of bullying or behavioral.  If you do not you will be battling air.  The reason is without these practices in writing daycare and camps can do as they please and you will only be able to complain or make static if they don’t abide by the laws.  Most daycares will abide by the law but not by a moral and human standard if they don’t feel as if things weren’t an issue.  Trust me.
  5. Never sign a non disclosure agreement if you leave.  Don’t sign it.  Get a copy if they ask you to and take it to an attorney.  I can’t even think why they would have one but trust and believe I keep an attorney on stand by and I will sign Donald Duck before I sign my name to some trash like that.  Daycares and camps run off a word of mouth for the most part.  Sorry not sorry.  We are talking about human lives. How the facility acts when things are less than stellar speaks about how they truly run.  I for one think others need to be cautious and asking those who was there if you have the ability to do so is key.
  6. If you are ever in a position where you don’t get along with administration even if its one or more of the persons in charge, made the decision if you are willing to stay with all things the same.  In other words, if the person (s) you do not get along can you deal with that for the sake of your child.  Sometimes you can and other times you can’t.  You should never feel like you are stuck.  IF you do, your child will pick up on that resentment.  If I am honest I know my kids have done so and looking at the situation I may or may not be sorry about that. I wrote about vibes and for me vibes matter.  I have had bad vibes with a person and how that person continues to act may suggest if I should correct the issue or let it go and move on.
  7. Do not allow your child to do something that you didn’t sign for.  For instance the Summer has been filled with drowning deaths.  One event comes to mine with the daycare from the South who was supposed to hike but then took the kids swimming and the child drowned and died.  This type of stuff infuriates me.  Do not send home a permission slip, get permission from the parent to do that activity and change without notifying and getting permission from the parent.  That was a free nugget for any daycare or camp.  This is a huge lawsuit waiting to happen. Even more there is a family that is experiencing life without the life of a child who could still be here had they followed the laws and rules.
  8. Do not be afraid to find another camp, daycare or school.  Listen as we go into the school year, my kids have the privilege to go to private school, with that we literally mean business when it comes to their education, and how much we spend and what we expect.  We do over and beyond on all fundraisers, attend all meetings, engage all year without a parent teacher conference, attend all parties, come to all functions, and pay our fees during the year as asked I literally will put up with ZERO foolishness from administration.  We mean zero.  No one has to chase us to be involved with our kids lives and with that in mind I demand that the school hold up their end of the bargain at all times.  There is no pat on the back for what we do and neither will it be for those who teach them.  So we all have to be held accountable.

I want to shout out the second and last daycare/camp for the time they have had with my children.  As we transition into the next phase of our children’s journey, there is no hard feelings whatsoever but its time to continue down the path of excellence.  The kids have been super happy and that makes us super happy as parents.  This blog was not a means to air out any grievances.  This blog is to empower parents to never forget your power when dealing with daycare, daycare providers, camps, or schools.  Just because for those who work, and having someone to keep our kids is a must, doesn’t mean you have to take junk just to get through.  You were in control the minute you signed the contract and you are in control until you discontinue the relationship.  I hope that this blog gets you engaged on what some providers will do, what you don’t have to tolerate, and why you need to be on the lookout for in the future.  If you are fortunate to have someone who you trust keep your kids, do not let your guard down just because they are family or friends either.  Be vigilant in what you need, what importantly your kids needs, and realize that business is business and the business of healthy, happy, and engaged kids is most important.  Lastly trust your gut, and listen to your child.  Do not do what I did and air on caution for yourself.  Trust yourself.  Goodbye to Summer Camp but come through 2017/2018 school year!!

Oooo Oooo Organized Life

So Fall is coming.  I am super excited.  Fall and Summer play step sisters with me on who is the favorites.  With that in mind, its time to end the last quarter of the year. Literally 2018 will be here before you know it. I know we don’t want to think about it but its true. So while some will focus on making new goals the goal in that is to complete the ones you have started.  Yes how can you make 2018 and just throw caution to the wind on 2017. Let’s end 2017 off right.

What I like about the fact that 2017 still has a few months left is that you have time to make some great strides.  Think about September is around the corner so that leaves 3 months to literally get your life. Didn’t work out?  You have 3 months to still lose some pounds.  Time to get it right and tight can still happen.  How?  Dedicate yourself.  That is half the battle.  In the Fall there is a thousand activities to aid in that. Remember you got to get something down pack before the Winter blues enter in.  Do it before the snow and cold will convince you that you can’t go outdoors.  Where to get your motivation? Instagram? Facebook? YES and no.  Your biggest motivation is in the mirror?  When you get up and hate the way your clothes fit no matter what your size, that is motivation saying hey fix this. Motivation is always around you its a matter of not drowning motivation’s cries as you reach for that second donut.  Trust me I get it, my husband brought donuts home last night.  I had one today and walked away before motivation could kick me in the behind.

One of the other ways of getting organized is preparing.  For all of the parents who are about to send their children off, get organized now.  Start labeling your school supplies and clothes.  Every year thousands of dollars are wasted because some other kid had your child’s stuff because it wasn’t adequately labeled.  I cut this mess in half by ordering labels from Dinkleboo and getting the offer through Groupon for 5.00. I will not be sitting around labelling things with a sharpie this year.  It’s time-consuming.  Now I can have the kids slap their own labels on their stuff and bag it up.  Yes for a mommy win. You can do the same in your adult life.  Can you prepare before hand?  Sure can.  Many people complain about not having time to cook, I call BS on it.  Yes I said BS.  We know what that means.  It’s called not enough preparation.  I am super busy with 3 kids all under the age of 10, I blog, I work full-time, I work out, I have a husband, and I have a social life.  Go figure.  So how do I manage? A plan, a crock pot, a planner and a changed mindset.

So armed with a little motivation I plan ahead and work my plan.  I make it into a game. Right now 9pm is the end game.  Which means on Sundays I do laundry, meal prep by making 3 meals with 3 different selections at one time, and get all of the running around of life done by 9pm. Why?  I personally treat myself every Sunday to a glass of wine and I “wine down” with my Sunday shows.  This is how I get through it.  I have the music on, I dance around but I get it done.  I look like a Tornado has hit my house but by 9pm, all bags are set on the couch to grab including gym bag, lunches are ready, breakfast plans are done, and dinners are already set.  This ensures that if I have a hectic Monday, I will at least have my life together on some spectrum.  I will at least cut down on a thousand items being forgotten and left. Oh and I start out with writing out what needs to be done by looking at my calendar ahead of time.  Too much work?  No, but having stress over the things I could have prevented is worth it.

Speaking of list, a planner will aid in this. I already ordered and designed my 2018 planner.  You can order one from  personal planner and they are on sale now.  Why? Back to school.  You can catch a sale now. This is the time to get your entire life together. College and back to schools make getting your home, and personal life right. The sales I have gotten for new running sneakers, athletic gear, home, apparel, etc is crazy right now. I believe that life doesn’t have to cost that much and I rarely pay full price for anything.  Get to these sales.  Get to the makeover of your personal life.  I truly believe in order to be a better wife and mother I have to be a better me.  As I get things in order for my own heart’s desires the happier and more settled on the inside I have become.

Get involved.  My biggest compliant if there is one is not having local friends to do things with.  I have literally gotten out of my shell by attending events on my own.  I have signed up for all kinds of events for the Fall already.  I have (4) 5Ks set, a blog conference, and just some socializing that my Fall and Winter are about to be too lit.  Yes lit.  I am excited as I look at the colors flowing on my planner of fun non mommy, non wife activities that are building me up. So what are you waiting for?  Are you planning on beating yourself up for the rest of the year?  Are you planning to be super sad come 2018 over the lack of planning that you did in 2017?  Get it right.  Get it tight.  Get your life and organize the hell out of it.

Make a list of things YOU need.  Make one for your home.  Make one for your job and any organizations you are involved in. Have you gotten your physical and all of your health appointments set or did you start?  If you say no to either question, you can start by getting your personal health together.  You should have seen your doctor, your eye doctor, dentist, and any other physician for any other underlying health issues you have? Have you been to the gym or met with a nutritionist?  Make it happen.  Have you set all of your kids appointments for the same?  Then you have some work to do.  If you are in a relationship do you need to outsource for help?  This could mean counseling.  This could mean scheduling some US time.  US time is actually great medicine.  My husband and I was finally able to get a little baecation and it did wonders.  We were able to refresh our love, get away and not have to share food with little people, and relax.  We set relationship goals for the rest of they year.  We spoke TO and not AT each other. This is going to be helpful before the school year kicks in.

What about your finances?  Do you have life insurance, health insurance, and an emergency savings?  These are goals that should be in place or things you are actively working towards.  Also no more go fund me accounts for funerals.  Get life insurance. It’s a shame we put more emphasis on what we have on our bodies and what we eat than for the future.  Also what about wills, powers of attorneys?  None of that? Then it’s time to get in touch of a great attorney.  If you live in PA and want one that can work remotely in helping you along, than email me toitimeblog@gmail.com for a great contact.  Trust me life is too temporal to be out here not handling your business.

You have options on where to start.  Start with your health, finances, personal growth, new job searching, anything but start now and finish the year strong.

Back to School 2017 Edition 

Now let me say that I think education is a beautiful thing. Hello I have my undergrad degree. So I would have had to like school lol. None the less these back to school commercials I know for a fact are setting parents anxiety levels and even more our teachers. 

Now I know some parents couldn’t get their kids into Summer camp so the awaited back to school commercials are a welcome. What I’m going to need you to do is start early next year and get the babies somewhere to go. I heard parents in the grocery store talking about they just dumped their kids off to their moms all Summer. I’m like how nice if momma is fun and can handle them. If not momma or big momma don’t want your kids either. I know we all got to work but lawd don’t do momma and big momma like that. 

So now it’s time to focus the coins and get our minds set on back to school. There are a few things you can do to help your school year be better than last year.

1. One month before start sending them babies big and small to bed like they were going to school. Try like 2 or 3 days a week. Then when the time gets closer make it everyday. This will take the dreaded back to school complaints because they will be used to taking their behinds to bed.

2. Take electronics out of their room.  I’m telling you if they don’t pay bills in your house they don’t need to surf a web nor text a soul at bedtime. All you are doing is stimulating their minds and they aren’t getting quality sleep. We kept our kids on the same school year schedule with their electronics. So no crying and dying going on. Plus they are going to bed charging these things trying to cause potential fires. Who got money for all of this? You don’t so don’t start these bad habits. 

3. If they haven’t read a book all Summer please get them a book. Have them present what they read to you. Most schools have a Summer reading list. It’s meant to keep their minds sharp. You aren’t helping them by ignoring the list. Get them reading. If they can whip and nae nae they can read. Guess what that will take? Energy on both you and them.  

4. Start early. Parents this is going to sound ignorant but I promise you it’s not meant to be. You know when school starts every year. Yet these kids go to school and got a long list of the ain’t gots. They ain’t got a pencil, ain’t got a piece of paper. Are you the parent? If you don’t teach them to be prepared how will they? Little Johnie going to be an adult that got the same list of the aint gots too. Put them coins away and get them ready. I swear I be ready to go ape on my kids’ school when they send that please have the right this and that during the school year. My answer to it is send this to the parents whose child isn’t complying. I know some parents don’t have it. I get it. But let me say I know some parents who push past that. The ones who complain they don’t have be the first one grabbing all the free backpacks up from the needy kids but have 100 Jordan sneaker but no pencil the first month of school. Do better plain and simple. I don’t have to mence my words for grown folks.

Along the lines of start early is to buy more of the supplies they are liable to be used the most during the school year. Always get more pencils, markers etc. Get them on sale. Start at the Dollar Store than outsource the rest. But do not wait until the last minute unless you had it last minute or just like the thrill of going to 3 stores the night before.

Also I’ve said it before but pack lunches, snacks, and bags the night before for them and you. You will appreciate it when you hit  that snooze button too many times. Kids are forgetful.

5. Get a calendar. Yes a planner is beautiful but also get one of those wipe away calendars too. It keeps the whole house right especially if your kids are beyond 1st grade. Visualization is a beautiful and stimulating thing. They can read. Place important dates and assignments on there. Also spend some time with the back to school papers they send home in the first weeks. Write things down or set alerts in your phone. I’ve been doing this since I was in grade school. Please ask any of my teachers I’ve never missed a paper or deadline. I apply the same with my kids too. The system of being prepared works. 

6. Breakfast. I am super grateful that many school districts are giving all kids meals. There are some who do not. Please make your child’s breakfast important. As an adult I will tune you out or be super angry if I haven’t eaten. How much more for a kid? Feed these babies. There are many discount stores that make it easier for parents to not have to choose food over bills. Time is hard but we have to invest in our kids. What they eat is important. I ain’t even gonna front like my kids haven’t had a pop tart a time or two but make better choices. I see kids eating chips and soda in the am and regardless of parenting styles none of these options are nutritious.  Keep good options in the house and see that they take it serious by you taking it serious too. 

7. Clothes. I used to think that uniforms were a dumb idea but in general they are a good idea because you don’t have the drama of figuring out clothes even if you pick at night. FYI, just like with lunches and bags packed, having clothes ironed and ready to go either the night before or for the week is another time saver.  If your child didn’t earn descent grades last year please invest the same thoughts into their cloth choices and sneakers. As much as I personally wouldn’t buy my kids expensive shoes, if you have a good child and you want to use your coin for them than so be it. Let them earn it. Why are you buying Johnie a pair of Jordans and he repeating the same grade from last year? Trust me his recycled teacher has seen it. Kids feet grow too fast to be making that type of investment. Don’t invest in super fly clothes for these non deserving kids. 

8. Bullying. This to me is an at home issue way before it comes to the school. As I have always been on my kids asking questions, being involved and present please do the same. Kids are afraid. Take a stand to be sure you aren’t sending bullies from your home. I will say I’m not tolerating one excuse from any administrator about “sensitive” kids. I’m not tolerating making one set of kids go through hoops meanwhile the aggressive child sit untouched. I rather be the biggest pain in the ass to my kid’s school before I sit back and loose my kids to a bully. We are not living in my time when kids could nit pick and just move on. Maybe kids should be stronger. I teach mine to be strong. I teach them to speak up but words hurt. I will not hesitate to do pop ups on schools. You know your child and if you know your child is a problem handle them at home. This past school year in Philly a 10 year old took his own life. A child decided that somebody’s unruly child was talking to them, hitting them too much and he had no one to help him and ended his life. Potential gone. His gift to the world unimagined. I personally will blow the whistle on any school, daycare, or teaching facility who dusts under the rug a bully and I truly mean it. 

The school year is coming super fast. August is literally a few weeks away and that is when the dash to get our kids ready will take flight. Please get their minds right while you get their clothing and shoes right. School is important so if you make it a priority so will your kids. I wish all the children a successful and stress less and protected school year.  My hope is that no child is taken by gun violence and that each child will be super successful!! I can’t wait to see all of the back to school pictures. Until then get them reading and enjoying their Summer.