How can I get organized for the start of school?

You can’t believe summer went by so fast…  but yes, it is that time of year again.  Back-to-school madness has begun!  Whether it is your first time sending your little ones off or you’ve done it over and over again, all the preparation seems overwhelming.  We’ve compiled a Back-to-School Checklist to help make getting your kids on the bus a (relatively) stress-free experience.  Any tips or recommendations from those experienced Hong Kong Moms out there?

school-bus

Unknown-2Wardrobe Basics:  Tees, check; underwear, check; socks, check.

Old Navy:  Standard issue separates on the cheap

Zara:  Leggings, jeans, shirts — both plain and with a stylish edge

Land’s End: All the essentials in a wide range of sizes

Marks & Spencer:  British basics

Giordano:  Boxers, sweats, socks et al

H&M:  Underwear and basic tees and leggings

 

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New Balance for J.Crew

Unknown-2New Shoes:  A must for back-to-school.  Velcro or laces?

Geox:  High-tech trainers in funky styles

Stride Rite:  Multiple feet-friendly brands in cute cuts

Dr. Kong: Black leather uniform standards

Wing On:  Huge selection of shoes from sporty to sparkly

GigaSports: Athletic shop stocked with brands like Nike, New Balance, Asics and Adidas

Nike:  Large range of styles for all-purpose use and specific sports

J.Crew: Hipster versions of New Balance, Adidas and Vans

Kong Kee Sports Co.:  Sneakers, cleats, flip-flops of all types on Stanley Main Street in Stanley Market

 

The Herschel Supply Co. Brand backpack at Lane Crawford

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Backpacks:  Do your kids want a new one every year?

Pottery Barn Kids:  Various shapes and sizes in the ubiquitous rainbow, butterfly, and Star Wars patterns among others.

LL Bean:  Old-school classic with a few updated looks

Fjallraven:  Basic packs for the mini-hipster

Lane Crawford:  Offers limited but supercool styles

Labels from Stuck on You

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Labels (for everything!): We are not losing anything this year!

Stuck on You: Cute personalized stickers and supplies (** Hong Kong Moms get a discount on the Special Offers page **)

Blank Sheet:  Embroidered name patches, stickers and sew-on labels in both Chinese and English

HK IOU Labels:  A huge variety of inexpensive label and stickers in all shapes and sizes

GM Labels:  Many sweet, customizable styles of labels (you can even add a photo!)

UR Photo:  Low-priced Standard stickers and labels

** Ask at your local stationery store if they make labels! Or buy a box of blank label pages and print your own!

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Bentgo Kids bento box

Unknown-2Lunch Boxes + Water Bottles:  Can’t leave home without them!

Bumps to Babes: A cute selection geared towards the nursery set

Little Whale:  Many food storage solutions in adorable motifs

City Super:  The grocery store has almost everything for a well-accessorized kid’s lunch!

It’s for My Baby:  Online shop delivers Yumbox lunch boxes

Smiggle:  Water bottles and lunch boxes galore

OmieBox: Hot/cold bento boxes; order via Amazon.com

Bentgo:  Leakproof and easy-to-clean bento boxes; order via Amazon.com

Pottery Barn Kids:  Lunch bags water bottles to match the backpacks and pricey bento boxes

LL Bean:  Practical lunch boxes and accessories

 

Pens from Muji
Pens from Muji

 

 School supplies: Pens, pencils, notebooks…Unknown-2

Muji:  Stationary supplies in cool, minimalist styles

 Bookazine:  Books, markers, crayons, notebooks and many educational workbooks

Artland: This megacraft shop has large selection of stationary items

Smiggle: Everything in tween-friendly colors and styles

Local stationery shop:  These small boutiques are usually jam-packed with all the desk gear you need for school, office and home.

MomAgenda Desktop Planner
MomAgenda Desktop Planner

Unknown-2Activity Planners for Mom and Kids: Stay organized!

Chalkboard Decals and Dry Erase Wall Stickers:  Stick the weekly schedule up on the wall or fridge; order via Amazon.com

Parteez:  The party store has colorful chalkboard pens

Artland: The store has a large selection of white boards and dry erase pens and markers

MomAgenda:  Desktop planners, meal calendars, and everything a parent needs to keep everyone on task.

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Get geared up for extracurriculars

 

Don’t Forget to…

  •  Schedule a checkup with the doctor and update the health forms with the school nurse (if required)
  • Update your “emergency contact” list and post it in an obvious place
  • Get the kids’ hair cut
  • Sign-up for after-school activities and prepare specific necessary gear (leotards, instruments, equipment, cleats, etc)
  • Menu plan:  Gather meal ideas for the school year and put it up on the fridge so, you don’t forget!
  • Make “reminder” lists for the kids and put by the door
  • Get camera charged and ready for the “first day of school” picture!
  • Stock up on the coffee and wine — mom has her needs too!
  • Book a massage,  spin class, a yoga lesson or go for a hike.
  • Plan a ladies’ lunch and catch up with your friends.
  • Above all, celebrate!  Your kids are occupied for a few hours!

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