#MindfulMonday: Back to School

The one week countdown to school starting begins today!

So many emotions…

  • Excitement for a new school year.
  • Happiness that at least a few times a week our houses will be SILENT and messes can successfully stay clean (until they come home).
  • Sadness because even though you prayed for more moments of peace and quiet you’ll now miss those monsters while you transition being away from them.  Because as much as they can drive you crazy, you end up missing the crazy 5 minutes after they are gone #momhormones
  • Nervousness that you will be able to keep track of all the extracurricular times, school party sign up lists, volunteer opportunities and teacher planning days.
  • Worry that your children will remember their manners, be grateful and show empathy towards others, and little friends will be nice to them and vice versa.

One emotion we are actively trying to avoid is STRESS.  This year we want to have stress-free first days and first week’s back.  This may be completely wishful thinking, but to calm our nerves and help us at least feel like we gave it a good attempt we started brainstorming.  We tried to come up with a plan to help us enjoy the last week of summer, while also preparing our little ones for the first week back and the schedule it brings.

First day of school & Last Day of School 2015/2016

We decided the best way to do this is to do a few dry runs this last week of summer. We want to get our kids back on the schedule of waking up early (really this only applies to C’s littles because mine wake up with the sun, every morning, without fail).  We want them to be used to getting dressed, making their bed, eating breakfast, and brushing teeth within a reasonable amount of time in the morning.  Summer has been exactly what it should have been; many mornings waking up slow (even if it was at 6am) staying in PJ’s until 10, watching cartoons, and leisurely eating breakfast .  As much as we have enjoyed this routine, it will be a beast to slay when the first week of school is back and their routines are cut down to an hour at best.

That being said, C and I decided our plan of attack.

  1. We are going to pack lunches and layout clothes the night before.
  2. Set alarms as if we needed to get up for school.
  3. Have a set breakfast menu for the week (morning choices can be detrimental for some, so we are keeping it simple)
  4. Find an activity that requires us to get out of the door by school time
  5. Make sure everyone is dressed, hair combed, teeth brushed, and shoes on by that time

This plan is as much for them as it is for us.  There were plenty of mornings last year that were running behind because I forgot to pack lunches. So I’m going to work out those kinks and get in the routine of doing it at night.  I am going to try out a few lunch combos and snacks so I have an arsenal of options to keep them interested for the first few weeks.  We will be sharing these in a post at the end of the week. (Just in time for grocery shopping!)

As much as we want to focus on preparing for the coming week and keeping tears (on all accounts) to a minimum, we also wanted to focus on all the fun we had this summer and still squeeze in a few more fun activities.  We are planning on a beach/pool day (getting out of the door by 8:30 because of our above plan will be spectacular!), lots of end of summer treats (our kids love froyo), and maybe a water day in the backyard (for old time sake since we did this multiple times a week).

To reflect back on all the fun we’ve had this summer, big and small, we have started talking about this at the dinner table.  Every night my husband and I ask, what was the most fun thing they did that day, and then what was their favorite activity from the summer.  This may seem redundant but you would be surprised how often the answers change.  Also this week, I am giving my oldest a few empty blank page books and we are going to make a picture book of our favorite days from summer.  This is an easy activity that can be broken up into small amounts of time each day.

(We had a lot of beach days, pool days, zoo/splash park days, scooter days, and dinners with friends!)

We genuinely would love to hear from you if you have any ideas on how to prepare for the first week back at school, how to ease nerves and stay stress free and also if you have any fun activities you do with your kids to reflect back on the summer and capture all those memories!

Enjoy this last week of summer and for your sake and your littles relax and just do whatever fun activity comes to mind!  (And try to get them out of bed by 7am!!! I think this will be key ;))

(If we are extra put together we may be trying out the new insta stories on one of our dry runs.  So keep an eye out because I am sure it will be much more comical than successful)

LO + CO

 

 

 

Last Minute NSale Picks: Baby & Kids

As I am sure you are aware the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is going on right now.  (You can see our picks from the start of the sale here).  The sale ends August 8, which means there is exactly 5 days left to shop.  We have been noticing  a handful of incredible Baby & Kids picks.  Some that we swear by as moms and others that will help with back to school prep.  Below is our last minute NSale picks for Baby & Kids.


 

 

JU JU BE Legacy BFF Diaper Bag – I live and die by this diaper bag.  With my first and for the first 8 months of my second’s life I used a large Marc Jacobs diaper bag tote.  It was super cute, but this JU JU BE Diaper Bag changed my life.  It is stylish, easy to see everything in your bag, and most importantly it can be worn as a backpack, saving your arms for corralling children.

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Oh The Places You’ll Go! – Capturing Moments From A School Year 

As the school year comes to an end and the summer draws near, I have started reflecting back on how much both of my littles have grown.  As I was thinking about my special memories from the school year, I realized I wish I was being more proactive about holding on to them. Cue Pinterest. 

Everyone has seen it floating around on Pinterest, the “Oh The Places You’ll Go!” book filled with teachers notes from a lifetime of school experiences. I had always kept this idea in my back pocket and planned on doing it, but as the end of school got closer and closer I realized I had done nothing about it. Cue Amazon Prime. 

I ordered “Oh The Places You’ll Go!” by Dr. Seuss on Amazon (for half the price as target). It was delivered two days later. I then dropped it with my oldest littles teacher and got it back a week later with two heartfelt notes.  

Oh The Places You’ll Go 

I cannot tell you how thrilled I am that I did this. The teachers were wonderful and wrote sweet messages to my daughter highlighting what they love about her and what her favorite things to do in class are.  Their messages were just as heartwarming for me to read as I am sure they will be for her to read when she graduates highschool.  Her teachers play such a large part in her day to day and are helping set the foundation for future educational and life experiences. Of course I want to preserve how they experienced her!  The best part of this book is that the mark they are leaving on her is tangible. We will have this book forever. As memories start to fade, my oldest will be able to read these messages and remember little experiences from her past. 

Thank you to the genius parent that did this and shared the idea! 

With that said, there is still plenty of time to do this before the end of the school year!! It doesn’t matter what grade your child is in, start one today! If you have prime I highly suggested ordering from Amazon (Amazon – Oh The Places You’ll Go). It will save you about $7-$10 and it with the press of a button it will show up at your door. You will not be disappointed you did this and the teachers are so happy to do it too! 

LO