Parenting Blog

The Back To School Checklist

Not to be all ‘doomsday clock’ on ya, but…we’re





Sure, it’s super hip these days for parents to share memes that eagerly count down to the beginning of the school year and we all make quips saying that we can’t wait for school buses to take our kids away and for their teachers to deal with them all day so that they are out of our hair. But…

Deep down though, we know this is bollocks.

Absolute bollocks.

Deep down we know that childhood is fleeting and even if our children are whiny sometimes and a bit of a pain in the a** here and there, in a few blinks they will be gone; all grown up and making their lives happen on their own far away from the safety of home and the warmth of our snuggles.

This back to school season, let’s make sure we check some more boxes, have more experiences and spend more time together with our kids while they still are kids. Here’s my own back to school checklist of things to accomplish before the bell rings on the first day of school.

*And for the love of god, cool it with the memes.

Back to school checklist

1) Spend an entire morning in the cool of the a/c but not in front of a screen. Instead, snuggle up together and binge the entire Eleanor Amplified podcast series (plus the 2 new prequel episodes!) AND all of the hilarious WOW in the World podcast episodes!

2) Go to your local library together and stay there until you each have read an entire book cover to cover. And then, if you and/or they absolutely loved the book and will want to read it again and again at home: find a local independent bookstore and buy it. Because you have to support independent small business in order to have a thriving local community!

3) Pick up a bulk pack of your kid’s favorite snacks every time you go grocery shopping, this will spread out the cost of back to school season over multiple weeks so it feels like less of a drain on the family budget in the days leading up to the first day of school.

4) Unwind with America’s original pastime at a minor league baseball game. Have a hot dog, get sticky with blue and pink cotton candy, arrive early with a fresh baseball in hand to try to score a player’s autograph during batting practice, bring a glove and hope a foul ball comes your way. Minor league games are affordable, old fashion summertime family fun. Squeeze in one more game (bonus points for a day game!) before school starts anew.

5) Shop early and save your receipts so that even if the supplies you buy aren’t on sale yet, you will get in, get ‘em, and get out before the last minute back to school shopping crowds descend upon that section of your store. Later, after everything has been picked over, simply waltz in, head straight for customer service, and get your retroactive savings. Genius. Oh! And while you’re being all responsible and smart saving receipts, make sure you save them especially for Clorox and Glad products, then upload them to!

6) Head out to the local farm (or locally owned parlor) that makes their own ice cream one last time before they switch off their elongated summer hours. Let your kids order a triple scoop WITH sprinkles, because this is it, man, the last ice cream cone before another long, grueling year of homework, science projects, extra-curricular activities and early morning band practices. Make it an epic one to remember!

7) Finally, save money on back to school supplies while helping a classroom in need via, through Clorox’s receipt validation program. Here’s the scoop on that program and how it works!

  • This year, Clorox continues its partnership with, the leading platform for giving to public schools. Last year, they funded nearly 800 projects and reached more than 57,300 students.
  • Clorox donated $150,000 for a Match Offer on, which means the brand matches contributions to qualifying projects dollar-for-dollar.
  • Families across the country can get involved too, just by shopping for school supplies. For every $5 worth of qualifying Clorox® and Glad® products purchased*, you save $1 and the Clorox Company will donate $1 to classrooms in need through Go to to get started! *Up to $5, delivered via PayPal credit.
  • Clorox wants to help make it possible for every student and teacher in need to have a clean, healthy classroom environment this year. Visit for more information.

As a dad two a pair of charming daughters, I know full well that it takes a Herculean effort to resist your adorable kid’s new lunch box/backpack/pencil case/reusable water bottle sad-lip-puppy-dog-eyes pleading but it takes next to no effort at all to help their teachers and classrooms stay clean and stocked full of supplies this school year.

Clorox’s partnership with was my entry point into this wonderful relationship last spring and while I’m literally addicted to using the Clorox C2 pen to remove stains from ALL of my youngest daughter’s clothes, it is this very partnership that continues to be my favorite thing about working with Clorox.

OWTK is a brand ambassador for Clorox and has been compensated for this post, but let’s be honest, most of that money this month has been sunk into Clorox® wipes, various Glad® products, pencils and dry erase markers.

So. Many. Dry Erase Markers.

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