Moving from the impromptu of the summer and the lack of routine into back-to-school and routine can be a jolt to the system. It’s a lot to prep for, and despite feeling ready for the early mornings, breakfast, getting the lunches made, and kids out the door, the first few weeks of September can be exhausting for parents and kids.
How to get through it:
Plan meals. Write down successes of the summer and have a list at the ready for when your mind goes blank, and you have no idea what to make. Plan the first two weeks of school breakfast and lunch and put that on rotation.
Focus on protein and fat. In a world where packaged, refined, white, and processed food is the go-to, having enough protein and fat in your kids' meals is essential for success. That could look like a smoothie with almond or sun butter and protein powder. Or eggs of any kind. I’ll share my favourite overnight french toast recipe in the blog post on sproutright.com for a speedy breakfast that will last a few days, depending on how many you’re feeding.
Ditch the juice boxes. They’re costly, have more packaging than needed and a hit of no-fiber fruit juice that your kids will come crashing down from. Get a groovy water bottle, stick a label on it, and fill it with water and a splash of juice if that’s needed for taste.
Grab my book Sprout Right Family Food for many lunchbox ideas like filling a mini pita with hummus and carrots, brainy fish and pickles, a rockstar Quesadilla that won’t come home uneaten, and how to build out a lunchbox on a toothpick, as in mini skewers that are a blast to eat.
The first weeks are exhausting; no matter the age, it’s a big transition that takes extra planning and patience. The groove will come, and writing down ideas for meals and snacks as you see them, kid's favourites, and snack home runs will help you in the middle of November when you’re fresh out of ideas.
Get the kids to sleep as much as possible and manage expectations, remembering how tired everyone gets as this back-to-school thing happens!
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