We’re going to get SUPER specific on one back to school tip and how to hack it, because it will make THAT MUCH of a difference in your daily life.
And yes…back to school time is almost here!! You’ve already seen the merchandise in stores, and before you know it the first day of school will be upon us.
Now, I’m going to talk about preparing your home, not just your backpacks.
So…what’s the NUMBER-ONE thing you’ll need come school time to keep your household from daily headaches??
A landing area.
If you haven’t stumbled upon this term yet, a “landing area” is the ESSENTIAL space in your home where stuff gets dumped. But maybe that’s not the nicest word…the point is that you drop things in your “landing area” without them getting lost and without them looking cluttered.
The kinds of things that save you time and energy by keeping them stored safely in your landing area include…
• Backpacks and school materials
• Jackets and other outdoor wear
• School projects or other items to take to class for special occasions
• Outdoor shoes
Having the kids ready to go in the mornings is no small feat…and so, setting up a landing area will save you time and headaches, not to mention keep those important evening activities (like homework) top-of-mind instead of in the back seat of the car!!
4 easy steps to set up your landing area
1: Designate the area
The landing area has to be at the door you and the kids typically come through. But it doesn’t have to take over the entire entryway!!
Start by designating a certain wall of the entryway or hall as the landing area, or even a few feet of a specific wall…
Next, you’ll want to ensure that the space is clearly marked. For example, if you set up a table or shelf, that will provide clear borders for the landing area…keeping all the space around that item “off-limits,” dumping permitted in the landing area only!! Keep everything as concentrated as you can to get the best use out of this space.
2: Determine what will go there
We already talked a little about this at the top of the article…your landing area will be your space to drop and store daily-use items that come and go with you from the home.
But the exact inventory of items will depend on your family and lifestyle.
Let’s say, for example, that your kids each have a killer study nook. Each of them has a desk in his or her bedroom, with big drawers or under-desk space that can accommodate backpacks. Maybe, then, some school supplies are best stored there for nightly homework.
But then, once homework is done and everyone’s getting ready for bed, storing backpacks (in particular) in your landing area will save time running BACK up to that study nook in the morning to grab that backpack when it’s forgotten!!
The landing area is all about saving time, so ask yourself: what could you do to have set right by the door when you’re running five minutes behind and rushing out the door in the morning?!
3: Set up and GET ORGANIZED
Once you have your space and know what you want to store there, it is ESSENTIAL to make sure you have the storage and organizational pieces in place to keep your landing area clean and functional.
For example, if you decide to have a “school supply stash” for the days when someone’s backpack comes home one glue stick lighter, put all those like-supplies in a basket or bag.
And how about shelving? If you have nooks or cabinets to tuck backpacks into, plus baskets or drawers to drop mail in…think about labeling each space. This will be especially helpful if the idea of a “landing area” is new to your family—and it can even offer a fun activity to create labels with the kids!
4: Implement it
Last but MOST IMPORTANTLY, the landing area has to be implemented. This means your spouse and kids really do have to be taught…even you might need some training to make the new habit a real routine.
Depending on what you expect to go into your landing area, new routines will only pay off once they’re engrained. So don’t get discouraged if training takes a couple weeks, because organizing your life in and out of the house with a well-designed landing area WILL make a difference this school year!! Try it, and you’ll see!
So, welcome back to school! It’s coming up FAST. Think about your landing area today to avoid clutter and get the whole family ready each morning in a flash come fall.
Do you have a landing area already? Have a picture to share? Likewise, if you have questions, please reach out to us on Facebook!!