4 Back to School Essentials that are Not on the School’s List
Blog - September 19, 2018

I received these products to facilitate this article.  However, all opinions are my own.  Some of these items might have affiliate links which  means if you click on something and purchase it, I will receive commission.

Back to school came slowly this year.  With a big cross country move from Florida to Arizona, it just seemed like it was never going to start.    Note to self:  Prepare for hot, indoor summers in Phoenix from now on.  Maybe I should install a pool inside my house before next summer? And an indoor bounce house?  Arizona heat is at a whole different level.  “Ahhhhh, but it’s a dry heat.  It’s different,” the Floridians say.  Basically it comes down to this;  either you can sweat profusely during the Florida summers or you can feel like your body is in an oven baking in Phoenix.  Which sounds more tolerable?

So, I carefully thought out what our necessities were for this school year;  all with keeping in mind the heat and that I have two boys under the age of 6.

We had to go shopping for school supplies for their classrooms.  Oh, how times have changed since I was in grade school.  I don’t think anyone cared what number our pencil was or what color our erasers were.  So, this year caught me off guard a bit.  I actually had to ask other parents to explain the supply list! And I found the supply list boring.

First of all, what the hec is a Ticonderoga pencil? And why is it so necessary?  Inquiring parent’s minds want to know.  I really don’t get it.  A pencil is a pencil, no?


But for homework, no one’s going to tell us what pencils we have to use! Our house is colorful.  We use fun OOLY pencils.  We use OOLY everything.

Both my kids love super heroes and action figures, so they loved these Comic Attack 6 Click Multi Color Pens!

My younger son wants everything his brother has but they also have to have individuality and let their personalities shine through.  OOLY helps them with that.  He loves his Monster Erasers and Monster Pencils. The erasers have interchangeable pieces, so you can mix and match.

When you have two children who love drawing, coloring and creating art, it’s a blessing and I use OOLY to facilitate that creativeness.  We’ve done so many creative things using OOLY, including rock painting.

My little once loves copying his brother but I am trying to allow my older one to feel more responsibilities. My older son finally got his own desk.  He feels like such a big boy now.  With the amount of homework he gets, it’s important for him to have his pencils and erasers at a desk.

But it is so much more fun with Ninja Erasers!


The younger one loves carrying backpacks and fills his one up with toys.  I love that the lunchbox is so accessible.


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The inside of a Unity Kid’s Backpack has multiple zippers, compartments and a side pocket to hold water bottles of many sizes. My kids love to attach their lunchboxes. The Unity AttachPacks™ are designed to hold by good ol’ fashioned hook and loop.

Every year it’s a different obsession; Batman, Captain America, or P.J. Masks.  But this my 6-year-old school’s policy does not coincide with pop culture. At the same time, we want to let him know that he is getting more mature going into 1st Grade and that Unity Backpacks would be a great way to go.  It was a hit.


Now we are ready to pack the lunch box.  The Three-in-One Classic ECOLUNCHBOX is so functional and perfectly fits in any of our lunch bags. We use all three every single day for lunch at school.  It is a three-piece nesting lunch box set. My boys hate their food touching, and this is the perfect way to do it, in a bento box style 3 piece set.   Check out three in one menu items here.

The Three in One is crafted from 100% high-quality, food-grade stainless steel. Because it does not contain plastic, the lunchbox is free of all estrogen-mimicking chemicals, such as bisphenol-A (BPA), phthalates, and bisphenol-S (BPS).  It’s leak-proof and dishwasher safe.

I can’t imagine packing a lunch box without using the Three-in-One Classic ECOLUNCHBOX.


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The boys also love their ECOtableware Trio.  It’s a great transition out of baby knives and forks.  They love their “big boy” silverware.


One thing that is a game changer when picking up the kids is managing time in between.  I pick up one son at noon and then pick up the second son at three o: clock.  This is really challenging.  I don’t want to just give my four-year-old a movie to watch while we wait in the car line.

I’d love him to take a nap.  But that happens NEVER. I want him to be able to use his creativity and do arts and crafts and eat in the car as he would at home.  That’s why we always have the ZoomKIT Navy Portable Table & Activity System.

We actually don’t like the kids eating in the car, but if they have to this is the best way to go.  The ZoomSNACK Bento Style Lunchbox is the way to go, easy to clean and has an attachable spork.

“ZoomKIT is ideal for car-seats and boosters or stand alone, air travel, daily commute, errands, doctor’s office or sports events. Even use as a water or play table for little ones! – Use alone or with any of the ZoomKIT inserts – ZoomSNACK, ZoomART etc. (sold separately).”

These back to school items have saved me this year! Really! What are your favorites?


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