It's creeping up on us. AGAIN. That time when the kiddos put away their well-used shorts and tank tops, put on their stiff new shoes and painstakingly chosen First Day of School outfits and... all of us Stay At Home parents get the house to ourselves again!
Kidding! ;) I've really enjoyed having the kids home with me this summer and it went by all too quickly, as life often does lately. But I do enjoy the Back to School shopping and the planning and anticipation of a brand new year.
We've been in school preparation mode for the last few days. It started out with one of my pre-move sort/toss sessions - this time in one of the storage closets and a box full of office supplies. Or maybe it was someone mentioning shopping for school supplies on Facebook. Whatever it was, I finally remembered to pull out the kids' school supplies list and started seeing what I could pull from our already existing stash of school supplies. As luck would have it, I was able to pull almost everything on their lists out of the supplies I already had on hand (well other than the multiples and random things. Since the kids are only going to be at this school for about 6 weeks I don't think they need 20 gluesticks or 3 boxes or tissues, etc etc). Score! That only left new pencil pouches and a pack of lined paper that I easily picked up the next time I was out. That really put me in planning mode and it wasn't long before I was on the computer seeing what else I needed to get ready for school.
If you need inspiration of your own, I have a TON on my Pinterest board. (here) I've been reviewing it myself so I can print out this year's round of Must Haves for photo ideas and memories. My picks so far:
-First Day of school signs for photos here or here. I think I will use the chevron print ones again this year - at least here in NC. I love the idea of the conversation bubble ones and am thinking those would be a great First Day of School AGAIN photo prop after we move and the kids have their first day at the new school.
-First Day of school interview questions (printable here or here). I try to do this every year in one form or another. I think I used this one last year
-Stocking up on lunchbox jokes like these cuties here and here.
I was on such a roll that I decided to finish the Back to School shopping over the weekend. We had run into fantastic deals for Tyler while we were on vacation so he was already set for new clothing. So Kaitlyn and I left the boys home Saturday and went shopping on our own. Turning it into a Girls Day Out was so much fun. At almost eleven she has opinions and a style of her own but is young enough that the thought of spending a whole day out shopping with just me feels really special - especially when she gets to chose the restaurant for lunch. She talked non-stop the entire day and I realized how easily I go through my days with the kids not fully tuning in to what may be on their minds or having full conversations with them. So I gave myself a "good mommy" pat on the back for doing that and vowed to be better at that.
Sunday found us all out at the Outlets in search of shoes - the final thing on the list. Does anyone else find that shoes are the hardest part?! We hit three full stores before Kaitlyn finally decided she wasn't going to find any she was truly in love with (and I had already accepted last year that I was no longer going to get off without shelling out a good chunk of change for shoes from now on *sigh*) and settled for a pair that were comfortable but not much of a fashion statement. Thank goodness we had already ordered her a super-cute inexpensive pair of boots online a couple weeks ago. The compromise on the gym shoes wasn't as big a deal when we remembered that. We found Tyler a decent pair of new cowboy boots plus some gym shoes he was excited about and after getting home I spent the next 30 minutes reteaching him to tie his shoes. Any bets on how long it takes me to get frustrated with his slow progress every morning and change out the laces for elastic again this year? lol
With that I considered myself entirely done with Back to School prep. Until yesterday. When something prompted a discussion on dressing up Kaitlyn's jeans and I heard myself mentioning we could Bedazzle them. Mental head slap right? I was DONE. She was HAPPY. But we had settled for 4 pairs of the exact same style of jean because my skinny little girl always has a hard time finding pants that fit and those were the only ones that worked. And they were very Plain Jane and you should have seen Miss Kate's eyes light up at the thought of adding sparkles to her jeans herself. So today they went from this
Now I'm done with Back to School Prep... except I need tags for the teacher gift...and maybe something cute to dress up the table at my annual Back to School Mom's Brunch... ;)
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