Best of Back to School

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With the school year coming up fast, we’ve been trying some new products that will fold into our repertoire come later this month. Having sifted through lots of items, here are the items make the cut.

blended family back to schooTastiest Lunchbox Snack: Harvest Snaps

It’s tempting to deliver the same snacks to the kids year after year, after all, we already know what they like. But this summer I ventured out to find some interesting and healthy new options, which I introduced throughout the summer months to gauge their reactions. Last month I discovered Harvest Snaps, which come in several appealing flavors, all of which the kids love (except for Wasabi Ranch: too spicy for them, just right for me). Caesar was the hands-down fave after the kids tried all six varieties.

smoobieMost Effective Grooming Tool: Smoobie Brush

Halle’s knots (or “tatties” as she calls them) have at times made her long hair frustrating for both she and I. But I’ve never been tempted to cut it: those flowing red tresses and to gorgeous to clip. Thankfully we found the Smoobie brush, which painlessly detangles her hair. Now that Halle is almost 5, she’s getting in the habit of brushing her own hair, which she especially likes to do with the Smoobie because (a) it’s pink and (b) it comes with sparkle sticks to put on the handle and © did I mention it’s pink? I also condition Halle’s hair with coconut oil from time to time, a surefire method for eliminating massive nest-like tangles.

blended family back to schoolCoolest Creative Toy: Wikki Stix

The school day is so structured and organized that we like to keep the evening open for free play. Our art chest is full of various supplies of all kinds, the newest of which is Wikki Stix, made of hand-knitting yarn enhanced with a microcrystalline food-grade, non-toxic wax, the kind used in bubble gum and lipstick. Each stick can be bent into any configuration and applied to any surface as a base (and coming off without leaving a mess), so our kids can make funky creations right on the table without much clean-up.