Back to Reality

As another summer comes to an end and the back-to-school mania begins, I find myself simultaneously longing for the warm, sunny days to linger a while longer and anticipating our return to a life of routine.  Our summer days have been unstructured and somewhat chaotic.  This mama needs to return to the regular schedule.  As much as I love leisurely days with nowhere to go, I find that my boys would prefer rotting away playing video games instead of playing outside.  The Fortnite addiction has gotten ugly.  I'm ready to implement the "no electronics on a school night" rule once again!

As always, I procrastinated in school supply shopping. School starts the Tuesday after Labor Day and I waited until last week to print the supply lists.  Usually I take the boys with me so they can enjoy the chaos of finding 2-pocket folders and notebooks in every color of the rainbow.  Why should they miss out on store aisle jammed with shopping carts, crying kids and their mothers?  Last year, I dragged the Huz along with us so he could see exactly what a nightmare this can be.  He was not thrilled but I believe he appreciated me more after witnessing the torture I endure every year.  Of course, he did mention I should have tackled it earlier than the week before school.  I refuse to buy supplies in July. It's just wrong.

This year I got a little smarter. Instead of dragging three kids to Target, I did all of our school shopping online and had some items shipped to my door and others I picked up in store.  I didn't have to fight the crowds.  I was able to purchase every color of folder and notebook needed and no one cried because they couldn't get a toy. When the UPS showed up last Friday with our four boxes of supplies, even I was delighted.  There's something nostalgic about the smell of freshly sharpened pencils and cap erasers that makes me wish I was back in school. No, I'm not sniffing glue.  I sometimes miss the excitement of a brand new school year; a chance to make a fresh start and to learn so many wonderful things.

Dawson thanked me at least five times.  "Mom, thank you for not making us go to the store with you! I hate school supply shopping!"

Owen doesn't even care that school is starting.  "I'm not going, Mom.  Why should I have to? School is boring."

Gannon just loves his backpack.  "Mama, it has Ninja Turtles on it! I'm gonna carry a book and a pencil and my lunch."

Never mind the fact that Ganny is going to 4K, where there's no lunch period because school is just 3 hours a day.  He is so thrilled that he gets to go to school like his big brothers.

Dawson is a Freshman this year and he started his third year of cross country.  Practice has been a struggle for him.  He's running at least five miles a day but he sometimes suffers from ankle pain.  His doctor believes they are growing pains.  His coaches tell me this is normal for the younger boys as they build strength and endurance.  I kept him home yesterday because I wanted him to ice and elevate the ankle that is bothering him. I think he's going to do well this year and I can't wait to attend some of the meets.

Owen is entering fourth grade this year and yesterday he found out who he'll have for a homeroom teacher.  When I told him he had Mrs. H he replied, "Duh, Mom.  I've pretty much known I'd have Mrs. H.  She loves me because I'm Dawson's brother."

I couldn't hold in the laughter. "I'm pretty sure that's not why she chose you.  She has gotten to know you and watched you grow up, Owen. You were just a baby when Dawson was in her class and I'd bring you in sometimes when I would visit the school."

Owen just rolled his eyes and continued watching YouTube. (Don't get me started on that addiction.  What's so great about watching other people play video games?)

I spent the weekend filling my day planner with all the events, appointments, sports and other important dates for the coming season. My kids are in so many sports and clubs. It's no wonder I have no social life. This week we've got the various Back-to-School Nights to attend. Flag football starts in a few weeks for Owen. Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts are gearing up for a new year of activities.  Only my sweet youngest child is not booked for anything. I'm sure that will change next year when he enters kindergarten.

Six more days and we're back to reality!  Happy School Year, everyone!


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