Two months into preschool: what is working, and what isn’t

What blush do I wear with red lipstick?

We are a little over two months into preschool for both boys and it is going SO well for both of them. Drop off is very smooth, as long as someone isn’t crying in Luke’s class–that always triggers him to cry as well, and they come home happy and tired.

Both of their teachers have perfect personalities for my boys. David’s teacher is warm, has a quiet voice, but is very clearly in charge and has structure to their day. Luke’s teacher is a bit more expressive and is equally warm and kind. I’m so glad they have these teachers this year.

For the first time, both boys are eating lunch at school this year. It extends their school day by 1 hour, and most of the other kids in their classes do the same thing.

I bought these lunch boxes online when I saw they are on sale, but unfortunately they are already getting difficult to close! I may need to invest in another kind that’ll last longer. I’m not afraid to pay up for a high quality, easy to clean lunchbox since we’ll use it for several years (at least that would be the goal!). Emily Ley recommended these on her instastories a few weeks ago, so maybe these are up next in the queue.

The boys also have to take a snack with them every day to have mid-morning. I was writing their names on ziplock bags until I realized it was a better idea to invest in a washable, reusable kind. I found these on amazon and ordered them immediately. Grove Collaborative also makes reusable bags too!

The last thing I want to mention that has made getting out the door quickly SO EASY for us is storing the kids’ socks downstairs. I actually heard this idea on YHLHAP podcastย when they were sharing a few unusual things about their home in a lighthearted segment, and they shared that they keep their kids socks downstairs instead of in their bedroom. They never wear shoes inside, and neither do we, and the kids generally prefer to stay barefoot until the moment we head out the door. So keeping the socks WITH the shoes has made getting them ready to head outside so simple.

I’m curious how many of you also do this? We literally just pile a huge mound of socks that can fit both boys into a basket where the shoes are stored, so no more running upstairs to get a pair of socks.

So those were just a few things that are working, and some changes that probably will happen soon (i.e. the lunch boxes) now that we are deep into this first half of preschool. If you have preschoolers, I’d love it if you could share what is working for you regarding the kids being in school!



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Ali says · 10.19.17

Love your blog! Can’t say enough good things about these lunch boxes! Bought them for both my boys ages 6 &3 and worth every penny. Extremely great quality!

Tammy says · 10.19.17

I agree with thee bentgo lunch boxes! I have used them for almost 8 months now for daycare for my 22 month old. I started with one and bought two more because they were so awesome!

Erin Griffiths says · 10.19.17

You’re little guys are the cutest.
I highly, highly recommend PlanetBox lunch boxes. I bought one for my son when he went to kindergarten. He’s now in 5th grade (slow down time!) and it still looks almost brand new! That’s after almost daily use, including the summer, and many, many trips through the dishwasher. Totally worth the high price tag. And the only thing he ends up throwing away is his milk box.
He has the Rover, and it was a little heavy for him at first, so maybe the smaller one will be better for your boys right now. Then when they get bigger they could use it for snacks.
The one thing we have replaced is the carry bag. After trying all sorts of options, I ended up getting a neoprene 13″ laptop bag from Amazon for $15 and it works perfectly.
Anyway, had to share since it’s a product I rave about constantly.

Payal says · 10.19.17

What a great idea to leave the socks downstairs! I’m going to have to find a place for socks because this would help so much!
We use Bentgo Lunch boxes for my kids lunches (ages 3-6) and Itzy-Ritzy reusable bags for snacks!

Cassandra Russell says · 10.19.17

I like to get everything EVERYTHING ready the night before to take my daughter. I lay out her clothes, get snacks and the like ready, even lay out what I’m making for breakfast (well, obviously nothing that needs refrigerated). While it makes the evening routine take a little longer, it makes mornings incredibly less hectic.

Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog says · 10.19.17

Glad to know that preschool is working well for the kids! ๐Ÿ™‚

Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

Tracie says · 10.19.17

The socks by the door is a game changer! I started doing it last winter and thought I was just being lazy ๐Ÿ˜‰ I hated forgetting sock s and having to go back upstairs to get them! Now my boys ( 4 and 2) can pick them out themselves and I don’t have to deal with the constant up and down the stairs!

Beth says · 10.19.17

Yum Boxes on Amazon!

Dana says · 10.24.17

Yes! We use a Yumbox, too. My son loves the sections and pictures and I love that I can put it in the dishwasher. Ha! Code TRY20 will save 20% right now.

Alisa says · 10.19.17

Okay the sock thing… GENIUS.

ashlye says · 10.19.17

My kids are older (9/11) but I love the SISTEMA plastic lunchboxes. You can find them on Amazon, at Target, or the Container Store. I use the 3 compartment box (1 large main compartment, 2 smaller compartments that have removable lids and snap style latches). They have a rubber seal, never leak, are dishwasher safe, and are super durable. I use the square boxes for school snack (they hold a fruit squeeze pouch, granola bar or a handful of goldfish beautifully). The Sistema water bottles are great too, but I’ve found it best to put a square of saran wrap over the opening before screwing on the lid. One thing our preschool teachers told me is, “Moms ALWAYS pack too much food!” It couldn’t hurt to ask the boy’s teacher if the amounts you send are just right or too much. ๐Ÿค—๐Ÿ“š๐Ÿ–๐Ÿช๐ŸŽโญ๏ธ๐ŸŽ’๐Ÿ‘ฆ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘ฆ๐Ÿผ

Jennifer C says · 10.20.17

I have used these for the past 4 years (my son is 6) and began using them when he attended a day out program. They have lasted well and never leak! I love them and they’re way more affordable than others. I like that I can pack juicy fruits (pineapples, oranges, strawberries) and the juice never leaks to the sandwich or crackers, etc. We bought more and use them on picnics for our whole family now.

Candice says · 10.19.17

The Bentgo boxes are AWESOME!

Kerrie says · 10.19.17

I bought this box for my son when he was in preschool. He used for a year until he started first grade and decided that he liked buying the school lunch better. My daughter who is in daycare now uses it everyday. 2 years later it is still 100% leak proof. When you close the lid, the food stays in its compartment – even yogurt. I wash the insert in the dishwasher every night and just rinse the actual box – this is what is recommended. It has held up wonderfully! And although the compartments seemed small, they really are the perfect size for younger kids. And it has helped me pack a wider variety of food than I normally would. It is hard to pack fruit snacks in the veggie compartment without at least double thinking the choices I am making for her meal. Can’t say enough praises.

Jamie says · 10.19.17

I bought my girls Yumbox’s and love them. You can put dry or liquid foods in them. They seal tightly with no spills.

Leiah says · 10.19.17

I no longer have kids living at home but when I did, I had a sock bucket. Life is too short for matching socks! My daughter had the same white socks for school and when she needed a pair, she would just grab two from the bucket and she was ready to go. I now do the same thing for my husband’s work socks. I buy the same kind and just throw them into his drawer. It also seems to keep the same pair being worn over and over and developing thin spots, holes even. Of course, dress socks are a different story but when a friend told me about this I had to ask how I hadn’t thought of it years ago!

Jenna says · 10.19.17

Yes, my husband has two kinds of socks – white athletic socks, and black dress socks – all the same brand/kind. He has a sock drawer where they all reside un-matched and it is glorious.

Angela says · 10.19.17

My daughter just started preschool. The first day she was bitten twice and by the second day she had gotten a fever. Not an easy transition! Luckily she loves going and playing with the other kids.

I have socks all over the house since my daughter leaves hers everywhere which does make getting ready to leave much faster, lol.

Blush & Pearls by Angela

Renn says · 10.19.17

The bentgo kids has worked great for us for a lunchbox

Jenna says · 10.19.17

All the AMEN to storing the socks with the shoes. We recently dedicated a drawer space in the mud room to our girl’s socks and OMG what a genius discovery!

Abby says · 10.19.17

We have learned to get dressed as soon as we get up. For whatever reason, going BACK upstairs causes meltdowns ๐Ÿ™„ We also love our monogrammed lunchbox from pottery barn

Brady W. says · 10.20.17

I second this! That’s the first thing I have my kids do before we even eat breakfast. If they’re dressed before doing ANYTHING else, there is SO much less waiting on socks or shoes to be found or forgetting to change undies or whatever drama kids always manage to make in the mornings ๐Ÿ™‚ I also put together about 10 outfits at a time and put them in a drawer so that my kids can just pull out an outfit instead of having to try to find something that matches. And that still makes them feel like they’re in control of choosing what they want to wear!

Noelle says · 10.19.17

Lunchbots are the best! We have the all stainless steel (no colors), so they do great in the dishwasher. We have had ours for 2-3 years and they are as good as new!

Alicia says · 10.19.17

You need planet boxes. They are awesome, easy to clean, and last forever.

Kristen says · 10.19.17

Hi! I highly recommend looking into Yumbox! We have had ours for over a year and they still are doing great. Perfect size for kids and the snack size is awesome too!

Allie says · 10.19.17

Check out the Yumbox… we use them constantly… school lunches, day trips to the park, snacks on the boat… obsessed.

Rejeana says · 10.19.17

Loved this little update! We are loving our teacher too – doesn’t that make all the difference?!? Our favorite time-saving trick is a common one: lay out the next day’s outfit the night before! ๐Ÿ™‚

Morgan says · 10.19.17

We have the Yumbox and also these and will alternate between the two depending on what we plan to pack for lunch. I far prefer the Easy Lunch boxes. I like the size of the compartments, they’re easy to clean, and they nest for easy storage. I find the Yumbox to be a bit clunky.

Liesel says · 10.19.17

We do the socks that way too! It makes mornings a bit easier. As for lunch boxes we use yumboxes- here is the amazon link

They are amazing, leak proof, dishwasher safe and long lasting. We have had them for 4 years and they still work perfectly. I highly recommend them.

Valerie says · 10.19.17

I have an 18 month old and I find it’s easier to have socks & shoes downstairs to make for a quick transition out the door to daycare! We have a little diaper basket, with wipes and other necessities downstairs as well so we don’t have to constantly run up and down the steps.

Kait says · 10.19.17

I noticed you linked more containers for your boys lunch boxes, but if you are looking for a bag, I have this one for my son
It is canvas but washes so great in the washing machine!
For lunch containers, priority for me is inexpensive because no matter the brand,they aren’t going to last forever, and I like to have a backup in case I’m running late and don’t get around to unloading the dishwasher. I would find something your boys can open easily

Kayla says · 10.19.17

I had a L.L. Bean lunch box and school bag my entire childhood. I’m pretty sure the lunch bag is still hanging around in my mom’s pantry.

Kim says · 10.19.17

That photo is precious and I love the idea of investing in a good quality lunch box! I don’t have kids but use one everyday for the office for myself!


Adriana says · 10.19.17

Another high recommendation for the yumboxes. Iโ€™ve been a nanny for over 10 years and have used most of the ones mentioned and these by far my favorite for this age group. Every section seals so no spills no matter which way their lunchbox gets turned in their bags. Good for my twins who often want more than one non solid item like Yogurt and applesauce. Easy to clean and easy for them to open.

Nicole says · 10.19.17

You need to check out Yumbox, they even have a snack size! They’re worth every penny. My kids’ yumboxes are still going strong after 2 years!!

Lisa says · 10.19.17

On good days when we get out the door on time with my two year old and seven year old, it’s when I really prep the night before. I try to make lunches, set out their clothes, and have their bags packed in the evening as this saves so much time in the morning. While we store their socks upstairs, I do put a pair of my two year olds socks on the second bottom step because that is where he likes to have his shoes put on. ๐Ÿ™‚

Emilee Johnson says · 10.19.17

I heard the sock basket recommendation from YHL too! Very tempted to try it!

Abi says · 10.19.17

Love the sock idea! And honestly, I should just probably put all of Brecken’s clothes downstairs because he never ever wants to wear any! Bah, that boy loves to be neeked.

gillian says · 10.19.17

We have an ottoman in our living room that had some spare space, and I started storing each kiddo’s socks (and my own) in little baskets inside of it. This has changed our life, as my kiddos never wear socks at home and we don’t have to trudge upstairs to grab a pair as we are trying to leave. So glad to know other people are doing it too!

Katie @ Live Half Full says · 10.19.17

I prep everything, and I mean everything the day before!!! It really helps. Also, for me morning workouts are so key. It’s so much easier to throw on workout clothes for dropoff and then go after. Game changer!

Danielle Salmon says · 10.19.17 Reply
Amy Hays says · 10.19.17

I have four boys and I have a sock basket in our laundry room. Every time I pull socks out of the dryer, I put them immediately in this basket. Sometimes I get around to folding some and placing their folded socks in their own crates of clothes that is in the closet. But when I donโ€™t, they can easily find and match their own socks.

Lisa C says · 10.19.17

We keep socks downstairs, too! I have a dresser in our entryway that has a drawer for boys’ socks and one for girls’ socks (we have 2 boys and 3 girls). None of them are paired up, they’re just thrown in the drawer and the kids rummage through until they find a match. It has saved a lot of headaches over the years!

Maggie says · 10.19.17

Love the sock idea! We leave socks in a bin right near where we head out the door, and my boys are 12 and 14! Makes it so much easier : )

J Razz says · 10.19.17

I have a over the door shoe organizer with clear pockets that hangs behind the laundry room door- perfect for socks. I also have a tall shoe cubby in the garage where most daily shoes are kept. Works for five kids and no shoes in the house!

Claire says · 10.19.17

We have a Bentgo box that we place inside a PBK lunchbox. I love the compartments and it also helps portion control. I bought a PBK thermos for lunches and it did not last 2 months!

Linda says · 10.19.17

Hi Kate,

Do yourself a favor and get the โ€œBentogo kidsโ€ lunch boxes. You wonโ€™t regret it I asure you. We have been using the green one for my daughter for several months now and it is fantastic! She likes it and fits just enough food for a preschooler.
They have it on amazon, of course!
All the best!!

Kate says · 10.20.17

I’m obsessed with our Yum Box. What’s really nice is that it seas the container on the top so nothing can roll around, so sending yogurt isn’t an issue!

Katie says · 10.20.17

We have these ukonserve divided containers and they are great! The divider is removable. Container store also sells them if you want to check them out in person.

Virginia says · 10.20.17

Yes! Iโ€™ve kept my kids socks downstairs for years! One of my girls even has hers stashed away in an end table drawer next to the couch!!

Lydia says · 10.20.17

Do yourself a favor and Invest in these lunch boxes-

They’re expensive, but hold up beautifully!

Melissa says · 10.20.17

My 3 year old daughter has also just started preschool this year. She is using yumbox lunchboxes. We love them! They are easy to clean, and she loves all the compartments. I bought them on amazon. They say they are leakproof, but I haven’t put anything too runny inside to test it.
Also, I lay out her clothes the night before to makes things easier. And I go ahead and put her backpack and nap mat in the car the night before.

Stacey says · 10.20.17

I’ve used these lunch boxes for my son for a couple of years and I love them!

Amy says · 10.20.17

I need to do that sock thing for myself! I hate when I’m all ready for work and have to run back upstairs for dang socks!

Rhonda says · 10.20.17

Kate, check out the Yumbox! I have used these for my daughter for the past 5 years, she is now in grade 4 and still using. It’s easy for little hands to open, no tough lids, and only 2 pieces to wash! They have a regular size and a snack size. I recommended to so many of my friends too!

Carly says · 10.20.17

Bento boxes are fun and my kids like them too, but I found my boys had a hard time getting them open without spilling the contents, much to their teacher’s dismay. This year we got them these lunch bags, also from Pottery Barn. I like that they’re a solid thick foam inside instead of just that silvery fabric-type lining that always rips. Makes them easier to clean too and they’re holding up really well!

We have the “Cars” and “Star Wars” ones for our Grade 1 and Grade 6 boy respectively.

A friend also did the socks at the door thing. I’m Canadian and no one here wears shoes indoors anyway, but I always thought that was a genius idea.

Glad to hear your boys are rocking preschool!

Victoria M. says · 10.21.17

I’ve heard great things about the PlanetBox lunch boxes.

Amie says · 10.21.17

We use the yumbox and it is awesome. We have two different ones for my girls. They do not leak!

Aly says · 10.22.17

I got a Yumbox for my preschooler at the beginning of the year. I really like it. It seems really durable and I like that it’s easy to close for the kiddo so I don’t get a bunch of crumbs or fruit residue in the bottom of the lunch bag because he can’t close our Ikea “tupperware” containers.

Also, GENIOUS idea about the socks downstairs!

Angela says · 10.23.17

I get everything ready the night before. Pack bags, make lunches, and put my son’s clothes in my bedroom. As soon as he is up we get him dressed in our room and let him watch a cartoon. When I’m dressed we go to the kitchen to eat, then brush teeth, comb hair and out the door. If I didn’t have everything packed the night before we would never make it anywhere. In fact I always pack the night before for everything , including soccer games, birthday parties, family gatherings, etc.

Cute photo of your boys!

Courtney says · 10.23.17

Some thing that saves us time in the mornings is lay all there clothes out shoes and socks included and bookbags and coats and hats together so it just going from bathroom clothes and door. Mine eat at school so no breakfast. And it’s the same routine every day

Katie says · 10.27.17

I use this lunch bag with a Yum box and it works great. We are 2 months into preschool as well (my son is 3). Seems to be going well except for nap time… he won’t nap at preschool. So he is tired in the evenings. However, he loves the kids, teachers, and activities and we do too. It’s amazing to see how much they learn and absorb in such a short time. Enjoy!

Michelle says · 10.30.17

I loved the socks idea too, my two boys are quite a bit older but shoes and socks are discarded soon after they arrive home and there’s usually a mad scramble to get them on as we race out to school. We use the Sistema lunch boxes mentioned by some of your readers, I’d recommend them because they’ve survived being dropped many times and can be put in the dishwasher. Name labels on everything would be my tip!