Back to School Gifts – First Days Emergency Kits

For several weeks prior to the start of the new school year, I pondered what the “Back To School” gift would be.  After a great deal of research, I saw the CUTEST idea on “It’s Written On the Wall” blog.  These little kits were just TOO cute!  I really wanted to do the same thing, but I had to make 120 of them and there was NO way I could find 120 boxes for less than $250.  Since that is pretty much the bulk of my budget, it wasn’t going to happen.

I finally got the idea to use clear favor pillow boxes instead.

These adorable little boxes come in a variety of sizes (I went with the 5-1/2 in.  x  3-1/2 in.  x  3/4 in.) and are reasonably priced.  I found these on Amazon.com (50 pieces for $9.25).   I have also seen them on a few wholesale gift packaging sites if you need even more.  Since I only needed 120, I found it was easier to just buy a few of the smaller lots.

Now for fillings:

I decided I really wanted to include the hand sanitizer, which is usually really expensive, so I hunted around until I found the small .05 oz bottles.  I was able to find these at Sam’s Wholesale for a bit more than I wanted to, but cheaper than anywhere else I could find.

Next I found band aids, antibiotic ointment packets, tylenol packets, paperclips, erasers, and starburst candies online through various sources.  I just found the cheapest ones I could buy in bulk and used every coupon imaginable to save my budget.  I knew this was going to be a large gift, but I also knew I really needed to make sure I was spending wisely.

I decided to go with the same label design as I saw on the original website… it really didn’t take me any time to do since it was all squares and rectangles.  (If anyone would like a copy of my labels, please just let me know!)

Assembling (Sorry about the dark photos – I worked on these pretty late into the evening):

Once I had all my items together, I had to decide how I wanted them to look inside the box…

I found the best way to do this was to arrange all the items on top of my label and slide them into the pillow box like so…  all I had to do then was reach inside the box to make small adjustment and slip in the remaining items.

I should mention that after a while of reaching inside those plastic boxes, the rough uneven edges  did eventually rub my hands bloody raw…blood, sweat, and tears baby!  Regardless, I was really pleased with the end result!

Here are my completed kits:

I also added red elastic ties as well as a cute little circle label to dress them up and note that they were a gift from the PTA.  I made 120 kits total… most of them were for the teachers, but I also made special kits with different labels for the staff and bus drivers.  Everyone really seemed to love them!

Bulletin Board Idea: Fall Time Fun

I know it might seem a bit early for fall bulletin board ideas, but as school ramps up and Room Moms get organized, I figured that a few moms might need a heads up in regards to bulletin boards.  Obviously it is different for each school, but at my daughter’s school the Kindergarten Room Moms rotated changing out the bulletin boards in the common areas every month.  It was a lot of fun, but can also be a bit of a challenge.  If you teacher gives you sole control of the task, it can be super exciting but also a bit daunting.

For the month of November, in my daughter’s Kinder year, I did the following board:

I used dark blue butcher paper (available in the teacher workroom) and cut out pumpkin dies with the die cutter machine (also available in the teacher’s workroom).  I hand cut out the little outfits (mostly just squares and rectangles) and the hats and used fall-ish scrapbook paper for the shirts and hat embellishments.  I also used a large bundle of plain raffia to give it the straw look on the hats and around the border.  It is hard to see it from the photo, but I also stuffed the little outfits with cotton to make them puff off the board for a cool 3D effect.  I took photos of each member of the Kindergarten team and printed them out at home to add to the board….so the faces of the scarecrows are actually the real teachers.  Too cute!  I don’t think I spent more than $10 on the entire thing – in bulletin boards, that is a real bargain!

Back to School Teacher Appeciation Gift Idea

The past few weeks I have been trying to find a few ideas on things to do for our new teacher for the start of school.  Every year I usually try to give our new teacher some type of small gift to wish them luck on the new school year.  Having been a teacher, I […]

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Super Cute Mommy Finds: Getting Ready For School!

Well, it is that time again… stores are filled with school supplies and the smell of new crayons and glue is in the air!  I LOVE this time of the year! This year I vowed to do my school supply shopping early – since in years past I wasn’t able to get the exact backpack […]

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Teacher Appreciation Gift Idea: Start of Year Gifts

Let me just clarify this one, we are NOT using these for our teachers this school year.  My budget was a bit smaller than anticipated, so it was one of those things I had really wanted to do, but had to cut at the last minute since it was a bit too pricey.  (The “Start-of-Year-Gift” […]

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Teacher & Staff Gifts: Tips for Gifting in Bulk

purchased at Sam's Club

In my role as 3rd Vice President of our school’s PTA, it is my responsibility to create appreciation gifts for our amazing staff and teachers each school year.  This is a REALLY fun part of my job!  I really love that the rest of the PTA board agrees that making our teachers and staff feel […]

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Mom Tip #1: Give Your Kids Bragging Rights!

"Higginbotham's Hotshots"

As a classroom teacher, I learned pretty quickly that kids truly thrive with just a few words of encouragement.  It doesn’t make them into overly confident snobby kids… it makes them into secure ones! For this reason, in my classroom, I had an established “Bragging Wall” where students could post their very best work every […]

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How to Be a Great Room Mom…

When my daughter started Kindergarten a few years ago, it was my first time walking into a classroom as a mom… and not the teacher.  It was so strange to sit across the desk from her pleasant smiling face, knowing exactly how she must be feeling and all the work she still had ahead of […]

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Hello world!

Is this thing on?  🙂 I have always loved giving gifts to people.  It’s funny, but on important holidays I prefer to watch gifts being opened than to receive them for myself.  I just love taking on the challenge of finding the perfect item and seeing the person open up that gem of a gift!  […]

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