Finally a Schedule Kylie and I Use!

boardChildren are little people! They need structure and direction just as adults do.

I believe my daughter Kylie is part of our team and needs to “play” her part and fulfill her jobs as part of our team. I have struggled with different ways to give positive reinforcement, responsibility charts, chore charts, etc. None of these ever worked because they weren’t our wording, the things we needed done or as specific as I needed. For example; if the card said clean your room, Kylie figured that meant the floor. It doesn’t say the desk, closet or bed!  Can’t argue with that!

I think I have finally come up with something that is going to work for us. We now have this amazing board we can write the times (in 30 minute intervals) and what task must be done. I fill in the things that have to be done at a specific time (bed time) and she gets to choose where all the other cards go, which means she gets to choose when she is completing the rest of her tasks giving her a sense of responsibility.

Folders and CalendarBoard Folders and HooksWe used to fight over her hanging the laundry and now, all I have to say is; “Have you completed everything on your board?”   Loving it!

I also got her a calendar for the month and wrote down everything that pertained to her. This way she knows when dance, gymnastics and Emily’s birthday party are and she is responsible to be ready for these outings.

I added two other things:

  1. A hook for her book bag ~ now it has a home and we always know where it is.
  2. A file pocket so that she can place her school folder in one and her planner in the other. This way I know where things are to sign her planner, check her homework and folder for papers to stay at home or to be completed and returned. I also can place anything there that needs to be brought back to school.

The best part about this schedule board is the quality time with Kylie. We talk about what needs to get done tomorrow, wipe off the current schedule and modify. Nothing like some quality time and getting things done.


Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays. What could be better than one day full of love, unconditional LOVE!


Last year, I started with my kids.

1. I set the table for them with V-day décor and some yummy sugary cereal that we only have on special occasions.

2. I used the special V-day cups that I purchased for milk that I tinted with red food coloring. This year I’m thinking the mixed berry Silk Almond Protein shake.

3. I didn’t give the kids chocolate but I did make them a mailbox with a love note, some pink play doh and V-day pencils.

4. Last but certainly not least is the love wall!  I found a place on the wall and places heart doilies for each child. My husband and I sat down and came up with 10 things we loved about each child.  It was super cool to see the look on their faces when we read them the hearts. Unconditional Love!

I have added in some of the projects we did with the younger children last year. Great ideas…


My daughter’s class got the cereal boxes and all her teachers got Melaleuca hand soap with tags I made!

Super fun!

Team Family: Coaching Staff vs. Players

Team FamilyIn a team there are the leaders (coaching staff) and the players. Refer to your family like a team, who makes up coaching staff and who are the players?  Just in case you are wondering… your children are the players and you are the coaching staff! 

The Players

The players need to know and understand what is expected of them, they need to be informed of some of the changes that may be happening (depending on their age) and they need to be responsible to carry out their job as a player.

The Coaching Staff

The coaching staff needs to make the decisions… what’s that? Yes, you the parent makes the decisions not the player. The player may get a choice but they do not get to make the final call.

How the Game is Played

When a game goes bad, who’s to blame? You got it, the coaching staff! Huh, what? Yes, I said it! Parent’s you are to blame for the “game” not going well. Not the child, teacher, school, dog, waitress, nope… just you. See you are the coaching staff and the coaching staff doesn’t just show up for the game. The coaching staff practices every single day! They practice over and over, they see which players have which skills and they give them jobs that enhance those skills. When you give your player a job and they fail, you too have failed. It is alright to fail!

We as the coaching staff are going to fail… A LOT!

See we don’t get to trade players or take a vacation or change teams. We have to work with what we have and go back to the drawing board a million times until we get it right!

We may never get it “right” but at least we have fun through the process!

A House Becoming a Home

Dear Michelle,

I cannot express the extreme amount of gratitude of you coming over and helping me make my house a home. We moved into our 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath townhouse a little over a year ago and coming from a 1 bedroom apart to a townhouse one would think you would dive right into creating your home.  Well we had one more variable to add to the equation, our infant (now toddler) son, Mason.

In the past year it was difficult to entertain since our space wasn’t really entertaining friendly for the younger crowd.  You showed me that with a little rearranging I could transform and expand my “limited” space resulting in now having a play spot for Mason (and his friends) and a space for Mommy and Daddy to sit down and relax with their friends too!

Everyone tells you when your pregnant how much your life is going to change. And you usually equate that to the sleepless nights, putting your little one before yourself and not how to create a physical home from a family of two to a family of three.

You are just beyond fabulous!

Loving our new home!

The Obandos (Myleen, Allan and Mason – Bailey and Aries too!)


Family Area

Dining Area

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Back 2 Basics Bill Binder

B2B Bill BinderI have been looking for a system to make filing my bills easier. Being that I am the CFO of Back 2 Basics, JMK Appraisals and The Reynolds home, nothing really worked for me. I would always end up with the “To be filed” pile and next scene, it’s the end of the year and both business and personal stuff are all combined.  At the beginning of 2012, I started a bill binder and this year has run super smoothly!

This has proven to be wonderful for me because I never have a pile of “to be filed” papers and once when my husband called me to get information from an account, I could tell him exactly where he needed to go to find it! Fast, effective and efficient!

The Back 2 Basics Family knows you are busy and we are offering to make your bill binder for you! Email Include your name, a list of your bills, address and phone number and I will complete the binder for you!

The price of the Bill Binder includes a binder, zipper pouch, dividers labeled just for you, a “Paid” stamp and a free 30 minute consultation for $45.00.

On Sale for $35.00 until January 25, 2013.

Please HELP! My morning is pure CHAOS!

Blog PicDoes your morning look like this? Do you have time to enjoy the beginning of a new day with your family? Enter your information below to learn from a successful working mom some Back 2 Basics tips for a carefree morning and an easy going ride to school.

These simple tips will transform your morning from hectic and frenzied to fun and productive!

What’s the secret?  Allowing your child to be independent the afternoon before! Children are smarter than we give them credit for! A 3 years old child can remember certain steps if modeled daily and then they will become routine! The word “home” is italicized because a home is a designated place for an item.

  1. When you walk IN from school/work each child should have a home for their book bag, lunch box (if they have one) & papers to be given to parent.
    1. Children as young as 3 should be carrying their own book bag, this gives them a sense of responsibility and independence.
    2. Child should walk to the home of their book bag, unpack papers for parents and place it in its home. Unpack lunch box and place it in its home. Unpack homework and place it in its home.
    3. If your child is 6 years old or older they should be responsible to wash, dry and put away the dishes from their lunch box.
    4. Lunches used to be a huge issue in my house in the mornings until we decided to pack 5 lunches on Sunday night. I choose 5 main courses for lunch and my children get to choose the sides. I have a specific shelf in the fridge where I keep the lunches for the week and each night they pack their lunch boxes and leave it in the fridge for the morning. This allows the children to have some choice as to what they eat and they help make it. If you have an older child 6 and up they can wash their lunch box afterschool and pack it for the next day, taking this job completely away from the parent!
    5. When my daughter is done with her homework it goes with the papers that need to be given to me. This way I can review homework and school papers at one time. We have a specified home for these items. This way the whole family knows where the papers from school and homework are.
      1. Children should be completing homework in a general area where parents can see them. This will allow for a parent to start dinner while still keeping one eye on the child. Remember most homework is an extension of what the child has done in class and your child should be able to complete it on their own. Setting a timer for each assignment will allow for the child to feel in control of their time and work. Some children may need homework broken into two sessions. 30 minutes each, with a playtime involving physical activity to keep their brains moving, in between. If children are in a general area parents can always call out words of encouragement or a little I’m watching you, to keep the child on task.
      2. When done, homework should go with the papers from the day that are to be given to the parent.
      3. As the mommy, it is my job to look at the papers from the day and homework right after dinner. If anything has to be redone or retaught I have time to do so. Then I have my children place the homework back into the book bag ready for the morning. It is at this time that I ask, “Is your book bag packed and ready for the morning”?
        1. This step alone will take away all the stress of homework not being completed, lost in bedrooms and if it’s back in the book bag and the dog can’t eat it!
        2. This also gives parents a sense of where their child is academically. Remember, you are your child’s first teacher and you are responsible for their learning.
        3. Parents, I hate to be the bearer of bad news but you have a job to do before your paying job and it’s called being a parent. The most important part to having an easy and carefree morning is to wake up at least 30 minutes before your children. Take a moment to have a cup of coffee and reflect upon your life, take a shower and get dressed. Then wake the children! You will feel more relaxed and in tune with the day because you took care of yourself first. While the children are getting dressed you will have time to make breakfast and you all should have time to eat and talk to each other. Book bags & lunches are ready to go and so are you!

Bring it Back 2 Basics people. Let your children take on some responsibility and take care of yourself first!

Post-it copy

  1. Right from the car your child needs to unpack book bags, lunchboxes, papers from school & homework. All things need to be placed in specific designated homes.
  2. Lunches: Make 5 lunches over the weekend and place them in a specific area of the fridge. This way all that needs to be done is to throw it in the lunch box.
  3. Homework completed and placed with the rest of the papers from school for parent to check.
  4. Parent checks homework and papers from school, give them back to the child, child repacks their book bag for the next school day.
  5. Parent needs to get up at least 30 minutes before children to at least get dressed and ready.