Ultimate Back-to-School Guide for Large Families

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The Ultimate Back-to-School-Guide for Large Families. 
The Ultimate Back-to-School Guide for large families.

Back-to-School is something I am desperately trying not to think about. It is hot and sunny every day here. We have enjoyed days at the lake and visits to the beach. We are going to the library 2 or 3 times a week. Life is relaxed…or as relaxed as it gets in a large family who is also prepping for a wedding. But you know what I mean.

I love not having to wake my kids up at 6:30 am. I love not having to supervise lunch packing and signing the endless papers from the school.

My kids don’t go back until after Labor Day, but already the stores are filled with back-to-school sales and I, therefore, have to be prepared to take advantage of these sales. So here is my back-to-school guide, my to-do list if you will, to accomplish before the end of summer.

Ultimate Back-to-School Guide for Large Families

The Ultimate Back-to-School Guide for large families.

Take care of those appointments.

Summer is the time to take care of all those appointments (dentist, check-ups, and vision) so your kids don’t have to miss school for these later on.


I have a confession to make…I told Chuck I would get the kids into the dentist this summer and I haven’t done it yet. Here’s to accountability. Ask me in a month if I’ve made the appointments. Thanks.

Well-Child Visits/Physicals

Get your kids physicals if they plan to play sports in the upcoming year. I already had to do this for summer camp and Boy Scout camp, so I can check that one off the list.

Vision Check

Don’t forget vision appointments. I recommend this even if your kids don’t wear glasses. I didn’t know I needed glasses until I was 12 and tried on a friend’s pair at school. All of a sudden everything was brighter, more vivid, and best of all, 3D. Who knew the world was three dimensional?

Did you know JCPenney Optical has $39.99 back-to-school glasses for kids? The sale includes impact-resistant lenses, and eyewear protection plan.

JCPenney Optical has name brands to choose from (such as Puma, DKNY, OP, Converse, and more). You can also enter their fun Back to School Photo Contest and win fun prizes!

The Ultimate Back-to-School Guide for large families.

Shop smart for back-to-school supplies.

Last year I wrote a detailed post about how to save money on back-to-school supplies. We all know how long and specific those school supply lists are. Our school also requires certain brands of things like baby wipes and disinfectant wipes which can make it hard to get the best deal. Following the tips in my post is guaranteed to save you time and money.

If you homeschool you will want to check out my post on How to Plan and Organize Your Homeschool Year.

The Ultimate Back-to-School Guide for large families.

Shop smart for back-to-school clothing.

I wrote here about how to save money on clothing for kids. Be sure and check out the post for my best money-saving tips for kids’ clothes.

Confession: we don’t do back-to-school shopping. We buy the kids what they need when they need it throughout the year. This helps split up the cost of clothing for our large family which is easier on our bank account.

Plan lunches and set up a lunch station.

I haven’t done this yet but will be doing it this year. Avi, Jubilee and I just did a major pantry cleaning yesterday and cleared up enough space to do this efficiently. I am forcing myself to hold off on any projects until after Tilly’s wedding, however. So for now, I am going to share with you some of the best lunch stations I’ve found around the web.

Uncommon Designs has a great post on setting up a lunch station.

Get Simplifized has a great post. They use the very same Lunch Blox that we have been using for the past four years.

Design Improvised also has a fun lunch station set-up.

Set up a school command center.

This is another area where I have failed but plan to do better this year. In our entryway, each child has a hook to hang their backpack on. This works brilliantly. The part I need to improve is having a place for the kids to put the 17 million papers they bring home each day.

Just a Girl and Her Blog has a great example of how to set up a school paper command center as well as how to file away the papers you want to keep.

Ana White has a really cool system that I’d like to set up in our house.

Did I miss anything?

What are your best tips for getting ready for the new school year? Please share in the comments and if you have a link, be sure and share that too!


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


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