Handling Health and Hygiene
As the summer vacation winds down ensure that school aged children have the proper immunizations before school starts. Check the immunization card for each child or make a quick call to the doctor's office for an update. If you haven't already done so, schedule immunizations or annual checkups for doctor, dentist, optometrist or any other specialists. Ask for an appointment before Labour Day or book on school Professional Development Days so the kids won't miss school.
Before the kids head back to school, now is a good time to reinforce basic hygiene in terms of proper hand washing to prevent spreading germs. Emphasize that combs and hats shouldn't be shared in order to prevent lice infestation.
Have you purchased dishes, utensils, lunch bags, thermoses and water bottles to tote lunch to school? Demonstrate how to sanitize these dishes to prevent contamination by bacteria.
Finally, introduce new foods to the family menu that meet your requirements for approved lunch selections. Don't wait until school starts to discuss nutritional advice. Many schools or individual classrooms have been declared nut free due to severe allergies, so adjust the snacks listed on your grocery list accordingly.
Tackle it Now Day
Do you feel overwhelmed by obligations and priorities that never seem to end?
Are you bogged down by clutter and piles of paper?
Don't worry, everyone occasionally needs a push in the right direction.
Semi-annually, on the Sunday designated for the change to Daylight Savings Time, Havoc to Harmony will provide simple shortcuts to inspire you to tackle whatever action items that you've been procrastinating about.
Sign up for our email newsletter:
Tackle it Now Tip
Pack and Go
Now that winter is winding down, many families are planning a spring get away. The key to a relaxing get away is to pack effectively. A personal packing list simplifies the packing process.
- Buy sturdy, lightweight suitcases on wheels, ones that nest together for easy storage.
- Invest in luggage straps to securely strap smaller luggage onto bigger rolling pieces.
- Pack only what you can comfortably carry and lift by yourself.
- There is lots of walking through airports, so wear your most comfortable shoes (remember that you'll have to take them off to go through security).
- Dress in layers for comfort on the plane.
- Plastic compression bags are the best new invention for compact packing. Vacuum pack or roll wrinkle-proof items like underwear, bathing suits, bulky sweaters or socks. Coming home, use the bags to compress dirty laundry to make room to pack souvenirs.
- Pack a roomy, waterproof tote or backpack for necessary carry on items, ID, tickets and mini sized cosmetics. You can use it again as a beach bag or when sightseeing.
- Carry personal prescriptions with you at all times. Include motion sickness remedies available in pills, patch or a magnetic bracelet.
- Remember that you can only carry on a total of 100 ml. of liquids, stored in a see through zip lock baggie. Obtain current international luggage restrictions regarding carrying fluids at www.tc.gc.ca . Also check with your airline for their specific baggage weight regulations and charges since the rules frequently change.
- Have a friend or family member drive you to the airport so you can leave winter wear in the car until you return from the sun. No sense lugging the extra weight of bulky coats.
SAFETY & SECURITY
- Label identification tags using a work address and cell phone number in case luggage is misplaced. (For security reasons never use your home address.)
- On bus tours and cruises luggage is often left unsupervised, so invest in good quality locks.
- Will a safe be available in your room? This may determine whether you travel with real or costume jewellery.
- Don't take a bulky wallet, instead pare down to the essentials: license, health card, ATM and charge cards.
- Code your cell phone with an ICE number (In Case of Emergency contact)
- Pack a flashlight or nightlight to navigate in dark, unfamiliar places
- Check if your destination or cruise ship has a dress code in effect requiring dress jackets and ties for men. When sightseeing find out if there are clothing restrictions, i.e. shorts may not be appropriate in some locations and women may have to cover their heads to enter a church. Be prepared with a pashmina that can double as a scarf or evening shawl.
- Begin with the "Classic Packing Rule of Nine"
- 3 bottoms (skirts, slacks or shorts)
- 4 tops (shirt, blouse, T-shirt, shell or tank top)
- 2 jackets (one weatherproof windbreaker and a jacket, blazer or cardigan)
- Mix and match outfits starting with coordinating classic colours: black, navy, white, and then add bright contrasts. Accessorize to glamorize using belts, scarves, or shawls for a burst of colour. A dressy cardigan with a bit of glitter can dress up any outfit for evening.
- Plan double duty items - an oversize shirt can double as a bathing suit cover or a housecoat.
- Pack one pair of dressy, low heeled sandals
- Pack flip flops instead of slippers and tuck them into your backpack for comfortable sightseeing when your feet tire of walking shoes.
Professional Organizer Karen Sencich is owner of Havoc to Harmony. www.havoctoharmony.com