Back-to-School/Back-to-Sanity

Ding-Dong. Ding-Dong. Ding-Dong. The school bell is beginning to ring. In a matter of minutes, little people will scamper up the steps of the big yellow school bus and start a new chapter in both their parents’ and their own lives. Teachers are ready in their classrooms. Beautiful characters and borders decorating each room in hopes of grasping each child’s attention and subsequentially kicking off a fantastic school year for everyone. Lists have been made and photocopied and are waiting at the store so everyone will know exactly what they need on the very first day.

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School supplies: Crayons, Scissors, and Markers

On the purchase list pencils and crayons, notebooks and paper, book bags and lunchboxes. Some schools require uniforms while others let you show your individuality as long as you are within the guidelines. No matter what style you need, it is imperative that one go through the shopping and finding the proper sizes and fit of clothes and shoes.

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Backpack, Cell phone, paper, pencils, pens, iPad, and the perfect shoes!

Yes after the busy summer alive with activities, and vacation trips, we parents grab a colorful list and fight through the crowds of other stymied guardians to fulfill that supply list for each one of our children. Now here is the million dollar question: What possesses a relatively sain adult to trade away the fun and frolic of the summer for the long lines, disgruntled cashiers, and general frustration of the stores? It is the absolute peaceful silence and the sheer joy of an empty house when the children are off to school.

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Mom enjoying the first day of school in the first socks she found!

Now I am speaking on this subject from personal experience. I have lived quite a while, we will say, and I have come to the realization that school is good in many ways for our children. Yes, there is bad in it as with anything, but I am speaking of the good at this time. School -be it public or private- teaches students many things besides just the curriculum. My children are at the high school level and above now, and things are quite a bit different. However, when they were in grammar and middle school, in the midst of all the hubbub of getting ready to return to classes, we would joke about the party we were going to have on the first day of school. This imaginary party was parents only, no kids allowed. It would be during the day while they were safely in class. In the beginning, this received quite a stunned reaction. Although they finally caught on after a few years and would suggest for us to call some of their friend’s parents so we would not have to party alone. This was a part of our family’s Back -to School ritual, and we had a lot of fun with it! Honestly, my son who is a junior in high school this term asked me who was coming to my back to school bash this year?

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Back-To-School spelled in wooden tiles.

When my little hatchlings were small they finally grew big enough to go to school. As each of the three entered preschool I believe my heart broke just a little bit. There were tears that I had to hide from them because I did not want them to know how frightened I was for my baby to be with someone else. I took each of their pictures on the first day in their crisp and clean new clothes. Of course, with a new hairstyle and perfect curls for the girls, it was most expectedly a Kodak moment. Those first-day pictures are always great. Of course, the older the boy gets the harder it is to get a picture. Yet, I will try!!!

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Preschool beauty in an antique desk.

Those are pictures that I will cherish forever. I have sat in the car after drop off and cried, and I have followed the bus to the school tears pouring down my face that another little one was growing up. My son actually went to a preschool that was across the street from our apartment. When they went outside to play I would, more times than naught, peek out of my windows to catch a glimpse of my little angel.

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Life moves in stages. As parents, we love those little darlings. We care for them and nurture them. To them, we are the whole world, and they are ours. Then they start school and discover that the world is much larger than Mommy and Daddy. It’s good for them to grow and eventually, we realize that it was also healthy for us as well.

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Daddy, Mommy, and Baby

It is extremely important to realize going to school is not really a kick in the teeth to parenting, it is an extension of it. Parents+teachers+faculty=working together can cause great things to happen for our students. Afterall, great things for your baby is what you have wanted from the first moment you saw them.

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The first look at a newborn baby.

Summer Vacation can be filled with wonderful experiences! You may have camped or seen an 8-foot mouse or stayed home and played outside. Movies at home or at the theatre are also a great time. Time together as a family is unquestionably a necessity in the rambunctious world we live. However, Moms and Dads need to remember that it perfectly okay to have time for themselves as a couple as well as each individually. We can not care for our families properly if we are stressed out and exhausted all the time. So plan a few minutes for you once the kids return to school. You will be glad that you did.

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Okay, those of you in Okaloosa County Florida. Monday- Party at my house…NO KIDS ALLOWED!

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Party!

Have a great and safe new school year everyone!

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That goes for parents too! God Bless!!!

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