Back To School Prep For Natural Mamas
Here are the ways we prep for back to school to help ensure my kids get a healthy start to their year!
Start Going to Bed Earlier
Lack of sleep is quickly becoming a health crisis not just among adults, but children as well! The busier our lives get the less sleep we often get. Many doctors and researchers believe that problems like obesity, ADD, ADHD, irritability, anxiety, depression, mood swings, digestion problems, and more are largely due to lack of sleep! Screen time before bed also hurts the quality of sleep.
Now that my kids are older elementary school age (first through fourth grades), they are going to bed a lot later and sleeping in later in the summertime than they used to as toddlers and preschoolers so we have to make sure to transition them to earlier bedtimes before school starts.
They often don’t wake until 10 a.m., which is a huge improvement over the toddler schedule they had of stirring me at 6:30 a.m.! To get ready for school, we gradually put them to bed earlier, by about 20-30 minutes a night. No screens are allowed in their rooms as well. My kids have to be on the bus by 6:50 a.m. (I know, early right?!), so we try and have them in bed and asleep by 7:30 to 8:00 p.m. However this is very hard to do when my boys have soccer or baseball games, so on those nights they go to bed later and they are so tired the next day!
Use Essential Oils for Sleep
My two favorites for helping my kids to go to sleep are SleepyIze and the Tranquil Roll On. I roll it on their spines and give them a soothing back scratch, and will sometimes sing or say some affirmations over them. I also put it on the bottoms of their feet. The only thing to be worried about is that you might fall asleep, too!
If you haven’t already created a bedtime routine for your kids, now is a great time to start! A routine is so important to help both children and adults alike to wind down and prepare for sleep. Routines also help children know what to expect and ease any anxiety or fear they may have. Of course, it doesn’t work perfectly all of the time and there are nights when my kids argue with us about the routine, but in general, it really helps bedtime go smoothly in our family! Here’s our household bedtime routine:
- Baths or showers
- Go to rooms, read bedtime stories
- Turn on diffuser, roll essential oils on (see below)
- Tuck in, sing songs, scratch backs
- Lights out
I like to make sure I am stocked and ready to go with essential oils and supplements that help to keep my kids’ immune systems strong. Here’s what I always keep on hand:
Thieves Essential Oil Blend & Roll-On
This is a blend of cinnamon, clove, eucalyptus, rosemary, and lemon that really support a strong immune system. I put this in their diffusers while they sleep so they breathe in this liquid gold at night. I also make a roll-on out of it and put it on their spines and the bottoms of their feet. Young Living also makes this a roll-on so you don’t have to make it yourself! Get it here.
Roll On Recipe – 1 10 ml roll on bottle, 10 drops Thieves Essential Oil, 1 tbsp. Fractionated Coconut Oil
SniffleEase is my favorite oil blend to use when my kids come down with sniffles and coughs – it’s prediluted so it makes my life much easier! I put a few drops on their chests and spines and rub in, morning and night, until they improve. I love the smell of this one – it makes me want to cuddle them just a little more. Grab a bottle of SniffleEase here.
Probiotics and Digestive Enzymes
I’m a big believer in these two supplements as I’ve seen how they help my kids’ immune systems stay strong by keeping their guts in tip-top shape! I have a lot more information about what these supplements do in the body in this article here, but for now, here are the ones I buy:
Stock the Pantry
Start planning what foods you’d like to have in your kids’ lunches and in their after-school snacks so you’re not scrambling at the last minute.
I like to keep snacks healthy and simple, things as fruits and veggies (add a dip to make it more fun for the kids to eat), cheese, turkey, crackers, and plain or homemade yogurt. See this post for all of my snack ideas for kids!
I also keep lunches simple and as healthy as I can make them while my kids will still eat them!
- Sandwich – natural peanut butter and jam or turkey and cheese sandwich (on bread that doesn’t have high fructose corn syrup in it or gluten free bread)
- Handful of baby carrots
- Tortilla chips or some other more natural chip or cracker
- A squeeze pouch of organic applesauce (no sugar added)
I do a check of all my kids’ clothes to make sure they have enough so that I only have to wash their clothes once a week! This makes it so much easier for me to stay on top of everything.
I also check to see if any of their clothes need replacing, like socks or pants with holes, and shirts with stains. Then go to Kohls.com and order them what they need, which saves me a LOT of time and hassle. And I always wait till their Back to School 30% off coupon comes, and then buy. There is nothing better than doing it in my jammies late at night and get everything for pretty cheap!