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Decluttering Hacks to Clear Your Conscience for September!

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Back to School season can be so stressful! The very words are stinging my ears.

Back. To. School. Bleck!

The transition from Sun & Fun to Bus & Fuss can wreak major havoc on most any household.

If you're anything like the average family, old school projects and awards from the last day of school are lurking in the corners of the family coat room, never given an honorable funeral. Drawers are likely overflowing with clothes that no longer fit the kids (or your waistline), and the idea of putting together school lunches makes you want to die a slow and painful death!

This too shall pass...

August has arrived--which means you still have time for the best of both worlds. Cocktails & splashing by day, aaaaand, well, if you're good for it, I suggest you do it by night, too!

Yet. At some point soon you'll have to pay the piper, and get life in order. I suggest the dog days of August when air condition is essential, or on rainy days with nowhere to go-- OR simply bite the bullet a little each day and get things done.

A little each day goes a long way. I know-- even I want to punch myself in the throat!

Decluttering Hacks to Clear Your Conscience for September!

PROJECT YOURSELF: I promise you, if you haven't hung it up or hosted your child's personal art show, last year's projects can take their last glue-sniffed breath. Use a black trash bag for obvious reasons and get rid of it all. See something you love? Snap a pic! Post it on Instagram! Start a new Instagram page for the love of all art! Just get it out of your house.

SUPPLIES: You have tons of supplies laying around. Some may even be living in an unopened backpack from the end of June. Sort and discover. Trash the duds and stash the studs. Too much work? Donate the workable items and start anew.

SHOES: Everyone tries on ALL their shoes. (That includes you!) If they don't fit (fashion or feet), off they go. Donate, hand them down, sell them online. Make it fun: HAVE A FASHION SHOW!

YOU KNOW THE DRILL: SHIRTS. PANTS. PAJAMAS. UNDIES. COATS. Do one each night or all at once! Our neighborhood girls are similar ages and varying sizes. They created a seasonal clothing swap. Bring some, take some! Just be careful not to end up with too much of someone else's clutter.

SOCK IT TO ME: I cringe at (the thought of telling you) how much pleasure I find in matching socks. Turn on your favorite movie and go room to room. Keep an "extras" box nearby for the misfit matches. Store the funky-printed single socks for crafts and projects and toss the rest. In the future, keep a misfit box throughout the year. You'll be amazed how many socks find a mate when you weren't looking!

LISTS with a TWIST: The organizational Gods are calling! Keep a list of what your kids actually NEED for clothes. Remember- it'll be hot for a while so no over-shopping for the first few weeks of school. Write down the sizes and brands that fit best. (Or hop into this century and snap a pic of the tags.)

LUNCHES: Think ahead! Kids will eat more of what you pack if they have some say in what you pack (or what THEY PACK!--more to come on this) Have them brainstorm a list of everything they like to, or will be willing to, eat for lunch. 25 things for the (what they'd consider) HEALTHY column. 5 things for the FUN. Everything's a compromise.

PARTY! (TUPPERWARE that is) : BPA, ABC, Top, Bottom, 123. Fun and easy task for kids! Plasticware, lunch boxes, water bottles, reusable bags, etc. Anything that doesn't have a top AND bottom goes. Sauce stains, gone. Mold, gone. Melted, gone! Get my drift? Consider which items worked best last year--and get more of those.

A BUNCH MORE LUNCH: At almost any age, kids should have some kind of part in packing their lunch. I get it! Sometimes life doesn't work that way. If you can swing it, great! If not, at the very least, get lunch ideas from the kids so they're more likely to eat a few bites. Depending on your child's age, create a height appropriate cabinet or drawer with lunch prep food and tools. You'll be surprised at what they can do!

PAPER-WERKIN' IT: Form after form after form! Recruit your spouse, enlist older children to revive their best penmanship, or pop the cork and have at it! PRO TIP: If you have the same form for multiple children, fill the generic information out once, photo copy, and then add the individual content for each. Ding-- GENIUS!

PENCIL ME IN: September comes in like a diesel train. Sync a digital family calendar, plaster a paper list to the fridge, whatever works best for you. Find at least one way to centralize a calendar for all to see. You'll thank me later!

Now go, forget your weary idea that summer is on its last leg. You have nearly all month to soak up the sun and the fun-- and line your ducks up like soldiers in the sand. A little each day... You've got this!

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