The joyful and free days of summer vacation are coming to a finale — sleeping late, no schedule and eating anything goes will be behind us as school kicks into gear for the year. The transition isn’t always an easy one for both parents and kids.
Certified Health Coach and Certified Integrative Nutritionist, Donna Parker is ready to help families adjust and restructure to make the school year a successful one.
She says diving into the new school year with a healthy lifestyle and A+ attitude sets forth a productive and organized foundation for success and happier moms, dads and kids. Parker recommends implementing BTS schedules for the whole family at least a week before the first day of school:
- Re-adjust to a regular sleep schedule. Start waking up and getting to bed a little earlier each day.
- Re-establish regular meal times. Dinner time is ideal between 5pm-7pm.
- Get unplugged. Help kids to turn-off electronics (e.g., TV, iPad, phone and computer) at least one hour before bed.
Parker believes in leading by example. Parents who tend to be organized and make healthy choices, usually have kids who follow suit.
- Pack healthy “grab-n-go” lunches and snacks the night before (getting kids involved in the decision-making process teaches them proper nutrition). Remember to keep kids hydrated by packing a bottle of non-fluoridated water (save the juice and soda for special treats while helping to reduce childhood obesity).
- Good hygiene is exemplary. Always wash hands with soap and warm water to avoid catching a cold or flu.
- Organize backpacks, clothes for the day and breakfast choices the night before the next school day. Encourage kids to participate.
Family talk is essential.
Parker encourages family communication. Whether it is one-on-one between parent and child or as a family, engaging and asking kids for their ideas on how to make family life easier during the school year can be fruitful. In general, this leads to building confidence for school-aged kids.
- Conquer first day jitters with breathing exercises together. Parent and child can do this together. Place one hand over your heart and another hand on your belly. Take slow, deep breaths using gentle pressure with the hands. This will calm the heart, the stomach and the mind.
- Parker suggests parents clear their schedules as much as they can during the first week of school. This will allow for flexibility and help to support new routines.
Great after school snacking.
Robeks Fresh Juices and Smoothies is offering the Açaí Bowl by blending açaí with fresh watermelon, topped with a variety of other delicious ingredients. ALOHA BOWL™, which combines the tropical taste of pure açaí and fresh watermelon. Packed with hearty granola and fruit toppings, such as fresh bananas, blueberries, and diced pineapple. This bowl of bliss is full of aromatic flavor, especially with its sprinkled coconut, and drizzled raw honey over the top. It’s a perfect balance of nutrition and paradise, just enough to make you feel refreshed and energized.
Just like the Japanese parents do, Sunny Blue makes fresh omusubi daily. These delicious and fresh rice balls, wrapped with or without nori, are filled with miso beef, tender chicken, albacore tuna and so many more choices.
Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf makes best bet fruity ice blendeds, which are caffeine free. Go for blood orange, pear berry or passionfruit NSA (no sugar added, please). The coffee tea house also serves freshly baked whole grain blueberry oat bagel, which satisfies both sweet and carb cravings.