School is almost in session.
Right? Seriously, when we took the boys school supply shopping yesterday, This was what ran through my head:
It’s almost as great as Christmas, except the gift I’m getting is TIME. It also seems like this last week, which is the last of this summer, the boys are a wee bit insane. Okay, more like they’ve lost their ever-loving minds. Ahhhhh, yes, my tiny –
Yeah, they’re killing me. Within the first few moments of walking down our steps, well, I’m bound to see this:
So I figure, hey, they need large muscle activity. They need to get the heck out of the house. So by lunch time today, I come home from the store and find them still in their pajamas, fighting over what? MineCraft.
And what do I say? “Get dressed, and get outside and play.”
To which Thor responds, “Why? We didn’t do anything wrong!”
Yeah, apparently playing outside has become punishment? Oy. They would probably think Jason and I grew up being tortured medieval-style, because I think neither of us saw the inside of a house during the summer growing up… and we liked it that way.
So anywhoo, it occurs to me how much nicer, happier the boys are when they’re on a gluten-free diet. How much happier, nicer they are when they’re scheduled, stimulated without each other. How much they need school just as badly as I do.
In fact, just before I sat down to type this? I was rewarded with the following exchange:
“Ow!” Thor yells.
“Sorry!” The Hulk immediately cries loud enough so that I hear him. Refusing to apologize is a cardinal sin in this house, so he knocked that out of the way early.
“What’s going on?” I call back, dreading the answer.
“YOU HURT MY NOSE!” Thor shouts.
“I said I’m sorry!” The Hulk argues.
“Boys!” I yell, trying desperately to get some form of work done before they….
“YOU HURT MY NOSE WITH YOUR FART!”
The joys of raising boys.
Right, so we’re just a few days out of the start of school. Supplies are bought and divided between their new, monogrammed back packs, new shoes have been purchased, clothes too – and I’ve made it through turning over two of the four boys’ wardrobes for school clothes.
I love the sense of rejuvenation I get with the beginning of the school year. In some ways, it feels more like New Year’s to me than turning the calendar on January 1. Everything is new, from the pencils to the clothes, and I can’t help but feel a little new too. After all, once that school bus takes my tiny boys to their school, it’s just Little Miss and me… all day.
After a summer of writing to a deadline (which is new for me, so have some mercy), traveling, summer camps, and a little bit of insanity, I’m ready for routine and structure.
I’m ready to ROCK this.
So instead of New Year’s Resolutions, let’s try some School Year Resolutions, because I’m feeling all motivated and stuff.
1. This year, I will get up before ALL children, yes, that’s 6 a.m., and I will greet the morning with a smile even BEFORE that first strong cup of coffee.
2. This year, I will check all four backpacks both before and after school.
* Perhaps this will alleviate the moment I get the phone call where a laser tag gun has been taken to school because The Hulk wanted to play at recess.
3. This year I will diligently sign the teacher correspondence notebooks. Even when the child in question (Oh, who am I kidding, this is always The Hulk), has perhaps not emptied his backpack (see number one), or worse, has maybe hidden said notebook so I don’t see that he’s decided to not do whatever he was asked to do.
4. This year I will pack only nutritious, gluten-free lunches that I will lovingly prepare earlier than five minutes before the bus. Heck, I’m going to prep the NIGHT before!
5. This year I will make sure that completing number 4 doesn’t completely consume the entire grocery budget.
6. This year, I will schedule my time as rigidly as I schedule our kids’. I will hold myself accountable for my working hours so I can spend more time writing when they’re gone, and more time with them when they’re home. This will help me avoid looking like THIS, when I procrastinate a deadline and I’m up until 5:45 a.m., only to get up two hours later.
Oh, seriously, who am I kidding. My schedule is usually shot to shit after the first round of “look at the germs I picked up in Kindergaten” makes it’s way home and all four are out with fevers and doctor’s appointments until I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off like:
But wait, we’re all about making resolutions here, right? Right.
Back to the positive.
7. This year I will use my kid-free (a.k.a. Little Miss nap) time to block out the rest of the world, write, and catch up on my beta work. And if the phone rings, unless it’s one of the trio – (Jason, Aaron, or the School), I’m not answering it. Nope. I’m going to be like:
8. This year, I will promptly stop working the moment they walk in the door. Well… unless I’m on deadline, then all bets are off. But as I tell my little guys, if you want to play hockey… well, mama’s got to edit, because man, those skates aren’t cheap.
9. This year, I will make sure to hound them for their project due-dates and then I’ll make them do it… you know, like… before the night before. This way we avoid the inevitable dash to the store after school for poster board so Captain America can then write “Just say No to Mariwanna,” on his D.A.R.E. poster. Then again, having a kid who knows so little about drugs that he misspells marijuana? Yeah, that’s really NOT a bad problem to have.
Oh, and amendment – this year I will watch as he’s writing to avoid said typo.
10. This year I swear I’ll get everything prepped, or heck, teach them to prep their shoes/bags themselves, so that there’s a lot more, “have a great day, I love you soooooo much,” going on, and a lot less, “Oh my Good Lord, the bus is going to be here in less than five minutes, what do you mean you can only find two left shoes? And why haven’t you brushed your teeth? Yes… WITH TOOTHPASTE!” Yeah, I’m going to rock that organization and get everyone out of this house so smoothly that I’ll be able to sit down with my post-bus-rush coffee and say:
11. Lastly? Yeah, I’m going to forgive myself when the calendar turns to October and this list has gone to shit. Because I’m a mom, not a domestic goddess. I’m still figuring out this whole balance career / five kids thing, and well… some days are butter, and some days are sour cream… that’s gone bad. But hey, we’re a work in progress.
Welcome to the school year. We’re geared up, monogrammed, ironed, washed and ready to go. Oh, and the kids are, too. 😉
See ‘ya on the flip side.