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Win a Camera, Backpack or Waffle Marker for Rudi’s Organic Bakery’s National Take Your Parents to Lunch Day

CONTEST CLOSED. CONGRATULATIONS TO HOLLY B.!

Rudi’s Organic Bakery  is excited to celebrate National Take Your Parents to Lunch Day on Oct. 16, to help support healthy, active kids. Parents will be able to eat school-provided lunch with their children to learn more about the kinds of food their school is providing.

In conjunction with National Take your Parents to Lunch Day, Rudi’s will be honoring kids by hosting a fun back-to-school Say Cheese Photo Contest  now through Sept. 15. Parents will be able to submit photos of their children eating a yummy sandwich with an opportunity to win the grand prize of being featured in a Rudi’s ad and a $500 Whole Foods gift card! In addition, fans can enter for weekly prizes like iPad Minis, Amazon gift cards, and North Face backpacks on Say Cheese Microsite and can download a $1 off coupon for Rudi’s Gluten-Free products.

ADDITIONAL CONTEST

It gets better! Mile High Mamas is doing a contest of our own in conjunction with Rudi’s contest. We are offering you a back-to-school item of your choice: a Canon Powershot Camera, North Face Backpack, or a Waring Belgian Waffle Maker, valued at $75. Be sure to go here to enter. Contest deadline is Sept. 15, 2013.

Three reasons school supply shopping destroys lives

My lack of planning should be a top emergency for the nation’s school supply retailers. With six school-aged kids and their jam-packed lists, I dread this time of year more than any other. I’d rather do 100% of my holiday shopping at a convenience store on Christmas Eve than shop for school supplies. Therefore, I avoid it and don’t make eye contact with school supply departments until the last minute.

It doesn’t help that I must buy 38 glue sticks and nearly 500 pencils, 18 boxes of facial tissue, and enough markers to cover my toddler’s arms in his self-styled, homemade tattoos until he’s an octogenarian. I recently shopped and didn’t come close to completing the lists.

There are three reasons school supply shopping is an almost universally awful experience. If you are one of those parents who adores standing in a crowded aisle at a big-box retailer comparing the prices between one pack of 12 glue sticks and 6 packs of 2 glue sticks, this isn’t the post for you.

1. Teachers create lists of hard-to-find, baffling things

Why I’m going back to bed on the first day of school

Today marks the first day of fourth grade for my daughter. To make it special, we always buy a cute outfit and I make a delicious breakfast of their choosing. Well, kind of. As executive chef, I have the power to kibosh anything that doesn’t meet my criteria.

“I want doughnuts,” she declared.

“I’m not going to the store at dawn to buy you fresh doughnuts,” I countered. “Pick anything I can make at home.”

I listed off sweet breads, cinnamon rolls, waffles, egg souffle and pancakes before she ultimately decided upon crepes with fresh strawberries and whipped cream.

Note to my daughter’s anti-junk-food school: We made her a protein shake chock full of fresh fruit and vitamins, which should delay her sugar crash by at least a couple of hours. #You’reWelcome

What You Need to Know to Overcome the Back-to-school Blues

It’s just like “vacation hangover” for adults. I don’t know any adults that love being back at work after a nice, long and relaxing vacation. So, it’s not surprising that after three months of summer vacation, getting back into the school year routine can be difficult for both kids and adults!

Two major challenges stand in the way of a smooth back-to-school transition. The first challenge is developing and getting comfortable in the new school year routine as a family.  Creating a smooth transition will help every family start the school year off right. The second challenge is not losing that positive, fun, relaxed and happy attitude that accompanies summer! It’s easy to fall victim to the harder parts of going back to school: waking up early, homework and busier schedules. Try making the transition as fun as possible and keep that happy summer spirit alive and beat the back to school blues!

Challenge #1: Easing Transition

Lunch boxes 101: Back-to-school checklist makes lunch fun again (with recipes)

Selecting lunch gear used to be simple. Stuff your lunch into a paper bag or pick the box decorated with whichever movie, television or toy character your kid was most smitten with. Done.

Things are a bit more complicated today. Lunch-box styles vary from soft-sided cooler bags to Japanese-inspired bento boxes, even Indian tiffin canisters. They can have built-in ice packs. They can be microwaved. They can be made from recycled bisphenol-A-free, lead-free, phthalate-free, PVC-free plastic. They can be forged from 18-gauge stainless steel. Some adult versions even come with their own cheese boards and wine glasses.

So how do you choose? Much depends on the types of foods you pack and how you pack them, as well as when and where you eat them. But there are some general tips that can help you sort it all out regardless.

The gear

Back to School: Forward thinking in backpacks

Whether your child is on the hunt for a backpack with a favorite cartoon character or in a preferred color, it’s important to help him choose one that is the right size and shape for his body and what he needs to carry.

Depending on his activity schedule, your child could be lugging that bag around from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. five days a week, said Pam Jones, a senior designer at L.L. Bean. And he might be carrying sports equipment, snacks and a laptop, in addition to notebooks, pencils and paper.

What’s New?

Back-to-school shopping: Here’s what to buy now and what can wait

We’re just easing into August, but back-to-school shopping season is in full gear. So take this pop quiz to see if you are in the know.

Do you:

a. Stock up on summer clearance-sale staples;

b. Equip your kids with the latest sneakers;

c. Spend more this year over last; or

d. All of the above?

If you went with “d,” head to the front of the class: You get a gold star.

Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst for consumer market research firm NPD Group, says now that the Millennial generation is in the parent zone, moms and dads are becoming more and more comfortable making online purchases. But, it’s the kids, too, who are more engaged in the shopping process this year — and parents are letting them have a greater influence on what goes in the cart.

Also, Cohen says, although back-to-school shopping is starting later this year, spending is up a bit, especially online.

How Colorado moms save on back-to-school clothes

There’s nothing simple about back-to-school shopping; between the materials fees and clothing demands, budgets can be pushed to the limit. Denver-area moms have these tips.

Virtual yard-sale groups. Johnstown mom Christine Miles purchases a couple of new outfits for her kids at the beginning of the school year but generally tries to shop year-round at garage sales and thrift stores.

“I have recently joined some virtual yard-sale groups on Facebook, and I love them! It’s faster than going to a bunch of different sales and by joining or starting a group in your area, it’s really easy to buy and sell. I quickly sold my car because I responded to someone saying they were looking for one.”

Clothing allowance. Now that Lisa Cutter’s kids are 12 and 13, she gives them

Click here to Read On

Also, be sure to read about Amber’s funny fashion show debut on 9News last year (and yes, vomit was involved).

 

Deals of the week: It’s summer clearance time

End-of-season fashion can be tricky. On the one hand, you’re ready to move on to fall trends. On the other, you’re not ready for the temps to nose-dive. Here’s one thing that’s easy: shopping the late-summer sales. Whether you’re looking for bargains for the kids, a half-off pair of designer jeans or fitness wear that will work year-round, with these deals of the week, there’s probably a sale for you. Those fall boots? They can wait a while longer.

Gap Outlet discount: For one week, starting July 31, grab an extra 40 percent off all kids items at Gap Outlet — including those on clearance. Plus, print this coupon for an additional 15 percent off your purchase of $75 or more, through Aug. 11. Back to school shopping, anyone?

Back to School: Adjusting to an earlier bedtime at summer’s end

Parents, you can already picture those first mornings of the school year: the challenge of dragging cranky kids out of their beds at dawn after two months of mellow summer mornings.

Each year, many of us swear we’ll do it differently. We will listen to the experts. We will adjust our children’s bedtimes back to a school-year schedule as soon as August arrives. We will work with biology, not against it, by dimming the lights and drawing the curtains in the evenings. We will remember the power of a good bedtime routine.

It does sound wonderful.

But each year, many families embrace the spontaneity of summer and the long, light evenings, ditching routines and enjoying late nights with the kids. Or maybe we really do try o get them to bed early, but Little League baseball games run late and vacations to other time zones make it impossible.

Then we try to get our kids up early for the first day of school and their bodies naturally rebel.