Back to school blues

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I’m not ready for back to school.

Oh, sure we have our clothes in line (the uniforms my kids wear make this easier), everyone has new shoes, our supplies are neatly packed inside each backpack, which is hung on its respective hook.

The kids event want to go back! That makes me happy because going back to school was not a pleasant experience for me. I went to the same Catholic school as they do, but back then it was a way different. I literally lived in fear and trembling of somehow messing up and incurring the wrath of the nuns. The atmosphere today is upbeat and positive. My kids love going to school.

This year, the first day back (Aug. 2) is Warner’s birthday. He thinks it’s awesome that his birthday is on the first day! He’ll be in first grade and we’ve been working all summer on sight words and reading Dr. Seuss.

Sylvia moves upstairs with the big kids this year. She’s in third grade and Hays is in fourth. The theme in the upper hall is Harry Potter. The third-grade door is decorated to look like platform 9 3/4, the one students use to move from the Muggle world to Hogwarts in Harry Potter. Hays doesn’t know how his room is decorated yet, but knows the students will be sorted into classes, just like in the books, and he’s praying pretty hard to get into Gryffindor. According to the poster on his bedroom wall, that’s the house he’s already in.

So back to school is looking cheery for everyone but mom.

I remember when the debate over year round school was raging, before any schools adopted it. I was all in favor because there’s no doubt it’s better for academic retention. Then I had kids.

So-called year round school transformed to a “balanced calendar.” I still support it academically, but I want more summertime with my kids! It’s hard to fully enjoy that relaxing time when you work, even if it’s not full-time. I want more days to just hang out at the pool. More evenings enjoying time in our shelterhouse having cookouts. More nights to stay up late and look at the stars. More time to read aloud (we’re currently in Book the Eighth in A Series of Unfortunate Events and are eager to finish this great series). More time to not be rushed in the morning and in the evening.

Honestly, I dread the start of school most of all because the year just seems to fly by, my kids more grown up, one step closer to adulthood all too soon. And somehow, each year seems to past more quickly than the last.

That just seems to be how life goes. I’m going to try to slow down and enjoy these last few days and get excited about the start of a brand-new year. It will be fun and lots of memories will be made.

And at least, all supplies are in order – a full week before the first day! I can be happy about that accomplishment!

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