A new school year brings on all kinds of kid issues like late mornings, lost papers, newfound pimples, stinky sports bags and more. As my kids have gone from preschoolers to grade schoolers to middle school tweens and now to a full fledged hormonal teenager in high school, we have tried...and failed...at a lot of solutions to all kinds of situations. However we have also succeeded at a few that have made our lives easier, so today I share some of these tips with you in hopes that these tips will solve some of the crazy situations you may find yourselves in as the busy school year takes hold.
Back To School Situation: Stinky garage from your kids' sports bags.
Back To School Solutions: Since my son has played hockey for the last nine years, this has been a recurring problem, especially during the hot months when the sports seasons start. For my friends with swimming pools, they tell me that they simply drop the sports gear in the pool and then let the sun dry it out. They say that the combination of the chlorine and the sun removes the stench, which is good to know.
Since we don't have a pool, I have tried lots of different remedies and I finally found one that works. Air Wick has a unique product that I swear because it can be programmed to automatically spray air freshener when it detects unpleasant odors. The battery-powered timer automatically releases a subtle scent in 9, 18, or 36-minute intervals. The consistent release method provides a light, fresh fragrance to our garage without overpowering it. Ever since I set mine and placed it in the garage, the odor has disappeared. And believe me the bag still is stinky, but when stored in the garage, the Air Wick Freshmatic Odor Detect truly masks it, without me having to do a thing, except replace the filler can when it runs out. The starter kit comes with one automatic unit, one fragrance spray and three AA batteries and is sold at www.cleanitsupply.com. The starter kit sells for $10.97 at Walmart and the refill cans sell for $4.88 each or buy a package of two cans for $7.98 in scents like Fresh Waters, Lavender & Chamomile and more.
Back To School Situation: Pimple pops up on your teen's face and they come to you for help.
Back To School Solution: At this point, my teen and my tween have only had a few pimples pop up here and there, but when it does happen they immediately come to me for help. So we have experimented with a few products and the one that has worked so far for us is the Clearasil Ultra On-The-Go Rapid Action Wipes. Each wipe is formulated with maximum strength acne medication (2% salicylic acid) and works quickly to clear pores and remove dirt, sweat and makeup. They sell at drug stores for $4.49 for one pack that contains 30 wipes. For more information visit http://clearasil.us/skincare-products/clearasil-ultra/clearasil-ultra-go-rapid-action-wipes.
Back To School Situation: Foot odor from teens and tweens sweaty shoes when they play sports.
Back To School Solution: Toe Juice by DermaVine. A cool product that I first tried out for my dry heels and it works wonders on that ailment. So when my tween starting having issues with her feet caused by sweating in her shoes, I put a little of this green and good stuff on her feet and her skin improved along with that unpleasant foot odor. Once your kids hit the tween stage, they start to develop their own unique smell and it can be unpleasant, so when it comes to the feet, Toe Juice has really helped. The product also has an interesting history. In 1970, Royce Garner, a high school science teacher in Boise, Idaho, produced his first batch of Toe Juice to help his infant son's flaking, dry and cracked feet. Royce did some research, went to his lab, and came out with a revolutionary new product that healed his son's feet. Soon friends and family were telling him that his creation was curing other ailments, too. Hence Toe Juice was born and the ingredients include willow bark, lemon peel and other natural plant extracts that work well. For more information visit www.toejuice.com.
Back To School Situation: Crazy hectic schedules with appointments, practices and more that overlap and make your head spin!
Back To School Solution: Cozi.com! My entire family digs this FREE online calendar service that makes sharing our busy schedules a breeze. It has been a lifesaver. I simply logged onto www.cozi.com and signed up. Now when I enter my daughter's dance rehearsal or my own dentist appointment, the entire family receives that calendar in an instant on their smart phones. Yesterday, my teenage son entered all of his upcoming hockey practices, so my husband and I are updated in an instant with his schedule. I also love it because my kids can check their own Cozi phone calendar to see what days are open before they ask me about adding an event.
Cozi also has a shopping and to do list that enables my husband and I to have instant grocery lists in our phones when we are at the store. No more duplications and no more running out of needed items. I love this tool and can't say enough good stuff about it. It has helped our family to de-stress while we work as a team to tackle our busy lives.
Back To School Situation: Late hectic mornings.
Back To School Solution: Late morning kit.
I put together one of these last year and it saved the day on those mornings when we are running late. Make a box that contains breakfast bars for a last second meal on the go and a hair kit for the girls that enables them to fix their mane in the car. Our hair bag contains Goody Ouchless Elastics rubber bands, Goody headbands, a Goody Tanglefix hair brush and a small hair spray. The last thing we implemented was placing a shoe rack in the garage. Now everyone's shoes are kept in the garage on the rack and can be grabbed on our way out the door. No more lost shoes to make us late.
Back To School Situation: Stuff they need that isn't on the school supply list.
Back To School Solution: Since my oldest is headed towards the school years finish line, now that he is a 10th grader, and my youngest is now in middle school, I have compiled a list for you of a few extras to include in their backpack that at some point, they will probably need....
*A mini hand sanitizer Sometimes they may not bother to get up and use the community classroom sanitizer during a class party, so make sure that they have one handy for their filthy hands, as this will cut down on an illness coming home, too. Our pick is Hog Wash and the mini size of this product with the kid-friendly name is sold at Walgreens.
*Lip balm. With our dry weather my girl came home more than once complaining that her dry lips bothered her enough to distract her from paying attention. So go for a good lip balm like Australian Gold Herbal Therapy Lip Balm SPF 30 with sunscreen and Vitamin E and Aloe Vera.
*Sunscreen like Sun Bum SPF 50. It wasn't until I volunteered one day and experienced that it my girl's class turn to enter the lunch room last. As we stood waiting to get in, I noticed that our hot Arizona sun seemed especially relentless that day, so having sunscreen handy to apply as needed is important, here in the hot Arizona climate, especially since we start back in early August here.
*A hair tie for the girls. My daughter told me more than once that having a spare rubber band in her back pack saved her during PE class. We like the Goody Ouchless Elastics rubber bands that are sold in drug stores.
Back To School Situation: Multiple kids, multiple papers that first bury you and are then lost.
Back To School Solution: Individual in boxes for all. I found inexpensive and attractive bamboo boxes at IKEA, but you can use any type of box to be individual in boxes for your family members. My kids know that if they need a paper signed or saved, then it needs to go in my inbox. Since I also made them their own in boxes, we no longer waste time trying to find that homework project, sports schedule, script or whatever they need to find at that moment. That system has resulted in a lot less stress, less clutter and a happy mom that helps us to have a happy home.
What back to school situation solutions have you come up with during these hectic days? Share in the comments section because I love it when parents help each other out with ideas that work to make our manic lives a little more managed. Be sure to check out my blog at www.managedmoms.com for more parenting articles, recipes, pet stuff, beauty and more. I wish you a happy, healthy....and as stress free as you can get...kind of school year!