Getting children ready to go back to school can be a stressful time of year. But it's also an opportunity to find balance for the family between work, life, parenting and everyone's special needs. Donna Russow is a counselor at the Family & Children's Place. She has some ideas on how to find that balance.

1. Schedule daily quality family time: Set aside time for a family meal, reading time or play. Make sure this time is agreed upon and kept sacred. 

2. Set boundaries around time spent with friends and family: Limit or prohibit use of television, cell phones, emails, etc. during this time.

3. Get organized: Make sure you and your partner or children are on the same page with schedules, activities. A posted message board/family calendar is helpful.

4. Avoid over scheduling: Check your calendar FIRST before accepting additional work or activities.

5. Set age appropriate chores for children and engage them in your everyday activities. Break big tasks into smaller ones for them.

6. Establish a Support Network or "go to" team of helpers like babysitters, grandparents, and neighbors.

7. Be flexible: Let go of guilt and perfectionism. Understand that you are doing the best you can.

If you'd like to get more information on this or any other issue facing your family, you can contact the Family & Children's Place at 893-3900 or by visiting