back to school finds

Monthly finds – back to school

jan monthly finds back to school

Happy New Year! I know there already has been some crazy stuff happening in 2021 so I hope you are happy, healthy and safe in your part of the world. For those of us in the southern hemisphere, end of January kicks off the new school year, so this month’s finds post has an emphasis on back to school, as well as few things for mum to set herself up for successful and enjoyable new year going forward

Courses and workshops

Learn to run – I have shared the fantastic learn to run program from Operation Move previously, but with the next intake starting on January 18 it is worth another shout out. My friend Zoey is the amazing talent behind this and other Operation Move running programs. I love the many stories that come out of Operation Move from women who go from not being able to run for more than five minutes to easily and enjoying running 5km!

Of course you don’t need the start of the new year to wait to start something new like running, but if running is something you have been wanting to start, I can highly recommend the Learn to run program to get you going.

Play, Learn & Grow – is a 6 week creative class is for little ones aged 2 years old through to preschool age, plus a parent/grandparent/carer based at the Surrey Hill Neighbourhood Centre. Through creative activities, the workshops encourage play-based learning, early literacy and social skills.

Classes are presented by the team at Squiggle Kids – Debbie Isaac (occupational therapist) and Lauren Gardiner (locally based children’s author). The workshop includes a materials pack to use and take home.

Classes will be held Fridays, 5 February (6 weeks) from 9.30am – 10.15am. $22.50 per session which includes materials to use and take home.

Virtually There Learning Kids Programs – Virtually There was born in 2020 motivated by a drive to support families doing it tough during the COVID19 global pandemic. With families in lockdown and forced to pivot rapidly to an online world, the need for community support to be virtually there within homes is clear.

Virtually There have a full summer program for kids including online cooking classes, creative classes, STEM classes and dance and yoga classes. They also run after school classes during school terms as well.

meal prep primer

Meal Prep Primer – this is one of my courses! If you want to make feeding the family easier and less stressful, then Meal Prep Primer is for you! Meal Prep Primer shows you how to plan effectively to spend time in the kitchen over the weekend and prep food that will make your week days easier:

  • Imagine being able to simply pick and pack from your pre-made items to make the kids’ lunch boxes.
  • Imagine being able to make a meal in minutes when you come in late after work or an after school activity using the food you prepped on the weekend.
  • Imagine eating a nutritious homemade lunch each day that you can simply reheat in a flash.

This can be a reality for you and it doesn’t have to take up all of your weekend. In the course I will teach you the process I have developed over these years. The course will:

  • save you time
  • save you money
  • save you stress through the week days
  • ensure your family eats well
  • allow you to enjoy meal time more with the family

Click here to sign up or find out more!


Biome have the best range of eco friendly kids lunch boxes you will find anywhere on the internet. I have this review of a number of their lunch box items that looks at the pros and cons of many of them – Eco friendly lunch box reviews.

But I am often asked what do I use for a lunch box for my kids. The photo above shows the lunch box set up we are currently using for our school kids. We use:

This works well for us as we can:

  • add whole pieces of fruit if needed
  • the kids can have cut up fruit and veg for brain food
  • items can be made the night before and stay fresh
  • items can be easily kept separate
  • kids know what is for lunch and what is for recess
  • they can take single items out as needed
  • it can keep food cold
  • items don’t get crushed
  • and it is waste free
eco friendly stationery supplies back to school

RZYOffice eco friendly stationery – are exclusive sellers of the ‘Onyx+Green’ brand in Australia, sourced directly from Canada via Etsy.

Onyx + Green is an Ecologically Friendly Stationery range manufactured using natural materials including bamboo, jute, organic cotton, cork, sugar cane by-products and wheat straw. Select products are made from recycled products such as newspapers, bicycle tires, water bottles, juice cartons, stone, ground coffee beans, and FSC paper. Their products are designed in Canada. Materials sourced responsibly and ethically across India and China.

Items photographed above are:

The Happiful Journal back to school anxiety

The Happiful Journal – the start of the school year can be a period of stress and anxiety for some kids and this gorgeous journal can help kids reflect on their emotions and focus on the positives. It is a 98 page spiral bound workbook and is a place for your child to connect with their emotions, cultivate gratitude and mindfulness and nurture their creative and curious mind.

eco friendly scrunchies and hair ties

KOOSHOO Hair Ties and scrunchies – if you have long hair yourself then you will know the difference good quality hair ties and scrunchies make if you have to have your hair tied up all day. These hair ties from KOOSHOO are not only super comfortable to wear but they are also biodegradable, made from organic cotton and hand dyed in a certified Fair Trade facility.

Cotton library bag – this super cute Dr Suess cotton is perfect if you have a new school starter who needs a library bag.

Eco friendly art smock – Marmalade Lion Art Smocks are made using a quality TPU waterproof fabric for the front and soft cotton sateen long sleeves. TPU is the eco-friendly alternative to PVC. Its highly durable thanks to its abrasion resistance and elasticity and it’s also bio-degradable.

Recommended posts

back to school tips

Here are a collection of posts from the blog on the back to school theme!

  • 11 steps for a calm back to school – a calm back to school doesn’t happen without some solid work behind the scenes. In this post I take you step by step through some simple plans and tips that we use to make sure our return to school mornings are not only calm but also a positive start to our day.
  • My new school shoes feel weird and other back to school sagas! – Back to school time and the new school new shoes that go with it, can cause issues for little ones. Here are some tips on how to handle some common back to school issues like school shoes feeling weird, scratchy t-shirts and I don’t like my class.
  • Managing the transition from summer holidays to back to school – for parents! – The end of the summer school holidays can be a challenging time for parents as well as kids. These are some strategies I use to help make this time of transition as smooth as possible for me, including managing my expectations.
  • 7 tips for new school mums – Along with the new school year for 2019, comes a batch of new school mums. I think that the first year of school for your first child, is just as big of a learning experience for mum as it is for the child! These are my tips for new school mums to help them get organised around school life.
  • Getting ready for year 7 – Some simple tips and ideas on how to approach getting your child ready for the transition from primary to school to secondary school.

Recommended podcasts / videos

  • Grit: The power of passion and perseverance – Leaving a high-flying job in consulting, Angela Lee Duckworth took a job teaching math to seventh graders in a New York public school. She quickly realised that IQ wasn’t the only thing separating the successful students from those who struggled. Here, she explains her theory of “grit” as a predictor of success.
  • How to escape education’s death valley – Sir Ken Robinson outlines 3 principles crucial for the human mind to flourish — and how current education culture works against them. In a funny, stirring talk he tells us how to get out of the educational “death valley” we now face, and how to nurture our youngest generations with a climate of possibility.

What have been your key finds this month?

Some of the links contain affiliate links, which means at no extra cost to you, making purchases through them helps support this site. Thank you!