As a mum of two primary-aged kids, and one just about to start high school (please don’t mention it, I’m still not okay), I’ve run the gauntlet that is back-to-school for 8 years now.
Where I was once a fresh mother of but one school-aged child who knew nothing about the time, money and effort that back-to-school requires, I am now something of a battle-hardened veteran who can get three kids sorted without anyone crying.
Here are my best tips for not just surviving, but completely nailing the back-to-school prep, from a mum who is treading that pass right alongside you.
Timing is everything for school supplies
Depending on your summer holiday plans, it can be very tempting to leave the preparations in this department (and... all departments) to the very last minute. And I totally get it. If I’m being honest, I can’t even look at a lunchbox until mid-January without feeling nauseous.
But ignoring the school supply-shaped elephant in the room is a recipe for stress, and nobody needs more of that in their lives. I usually aim for mid-January. I choose a morning where we don’t have anything on, make myself a strong coffee and sit down with the school lists and my laptop. For school supplies, I shop online because I'm not about elbowing others out the way for the last packet of highlighters, and instead do a big Officeworks order of everything with a price match guarantee.
They have a service where I can even upload my lists and they will (not even kidding) match the list to the products I need, using retail wizardry. It is that easy I could weep with gratitude. With an easy Click and collect, all stationery supplies will arrive home to be sorted by your offspring in time for their first day back with minimal effort required.