The school year always passes at such a frenetic pace, I treasure the winter break with my family when school, work, and extracurricular obligations are minimized. Those days are often filled with gingerbread houses, looking at Christmas lights, and so much joy!
Now lo and behold, in nearly the blink of an eye, we are one weekend away from going back to school. I guess it’s true what they say…time flies when you’re having fun.
So as the first day of the spring semester of school approaches, it’s a great time to do a mid-year food allergy/asthma evaluation.
If you’re not sure where to start, here are a few suggestions:
CHECK EXPIRATION DATES The start of a new year is a great time to check the expiration dates…on everything. This means prescription and over the counter medications that are at home, school, daycare, grandparents’ house, etc.
REFILL EXPIRED MEDICATIONS Now that you’ve checked in to see which of your family’s current medications are expired or close to being out of date, it’s time to have them refilled. Be advised that sometimes it takes a call or visit to your doctor in order to obtain a refill and this process could take several days depending on if you need to see the doctor before a prescription can be renewed.
REFILL THE ALLERGY-SAFE GOODY BOX I always kept a a clear tupperware of safe treats for my son in his teacher’s classroom for impromptu preschool or elementary school celebrations. If you have a similar goody box or bag that is stored at school or elsewhere, be sure to check the expiration dates on the products inside and send in new safe treats if need be.
RESTOCK THE LUNCH STATION My kids both pack their lunches for school, but they can’t do what they need to do unless I have all the food stocked and ready to go. As you make the next grocery list, think back to what your kids regularly packed in their school lunches, add it to the list, and make sure your pantry and fridge are stocked with the necessities and some safe treats too.
TOUCH BASE WITH THE SCHOOL Take a few minutes to send a short and to the point email to your child’s school nurse and teachers to thank them for what they do to keep your child safe each day and ask if there is anything you can do to support them.
REEVALUATE EXTRA CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES Is your son or daughter changing sports this semester? Set an appointment to meet with your child’s new coach or instructor and be sure to have an updated emergency action plan ready to go for your meeting. If appropriate, it might be helpful to include your child in this meeting so that he or she can participate in this discussion and understand their role as well as the instructor’s.
SHOW THE LOVE Sometimes it is so easy for us to get wrapped up in all the paperwork and details of keeping a child safe at school, that it can be easy to miss the most important part…love. No matter their age, give your child a big bear hug and let them know how much you love them.
Personally, I like to complete my checklist early, so I can savor the last few days of winter break and maybe spend a few more days in denial that homework, tests, sports, and clubs are about to get real!
And just maybe I’ll starting counting down the days until spring break…