Saturday, August 17, 2013

Happy Days Are Here Again! Back to School!

Summer has come and gone and now the kiddos are back to school. They have only been back to school for three days. This year there were no partial days. Trust me I had no complaints but I could see it on my kids exhausted faces when they returned home, their day was a long one. We tried to "train" them back into their school routine but of course that didn't work. Good intentions and all that jazz. My oldest instantly fell asleep when she came home. My oldest son was frantic that he would miss a homework assignment being posted on their new class website. Plus, he was upset that he wouldn't have any "game" (video game) time because he had football practice. My younger two seemed the least bit affected by the long school day.

The youngest started preschool this year. He is four years old. He calls it "Priest School" and now that he is going to "Priest School" he is a priest. According to him. It's so stinking cute and I love that he is so excited about school.

I have to say I am so happy that school has started back up. Not just because the kids are out of the house. I have enjoyed spending time with my kids this summer. The summer did go by incredibly fast. The reason I am happy that school is in session is because my family will be back on a schedule. School forces us to get on a schedule and stick to it. Bedtimes, wake up times, homework assignments and deadlines, practice and game schedules, all of it forces us to adhere to a routine. And let's be honest we do better when we stick to a routine.

Part of our routine includes making lunches.  This year we are making the kids take their own lunch 4 out of 5 days a week. They can decide at the beginning of the week what lunch they want to purchase at school. With four kids in school, lunches add up quickly. I figured it to be about $200 a month on school lunches. If we pack our own and limit purchases of the school's lunch then we can save about half that amount. It adds up quick and with those savings we could afford to send three kids to summer camp next year. I searched Pinterest for several lunch ideas. My favorite one was of a three drawer Rubbermaid organization bin. Each drawer held different items that can go into a lunch box. In my top drawer I have things like fruit cups, granola bars, cheese and crackers, raisins. The kids can pick two from this box. In the second drawer I have sweets like Little Debbie treats, cookie packs and fruit snacks. They can pick one. The third drawer is for our drinks. We are allowing the kids to choose a drink from the drawer, a bottle (reusable) of water, or milk purchased at school. Plus, the kids can make sandwiches or rollups and get fruit and veggies from the fridge. So far (for the three days we've had) it's gone well. I hope we can stick with it. I believe that the lunch making will help my kids with decision making. They will learn about choices and healthy food. We also have an after school snack bin in our pantry. This keeps the kids from sneaking the lunch supplies.

Guess what also comes with the kids going back to school... FOOTBALL! I'm not a huge football fan. I cannot tell you what play is what but I do understand enough to enjoy the game. Yes, I am a football mom. And I love to watch my son play...when he plays. I enjoy the high school football games as well. We are a small town how else are we to spend our Friday evenings? But the best part of the season....wait for it... FANTASY FOOTBALL. Oh my goodness, my husband has his draft coming up next weekend. Now to be fair he isn't like most men who get all out of control with their teams but I do find it amusing. He enjoys it and that makes it worth it. I'm looking forward to the cool weather (which we are enjoying today) which means chili and sandwiches while watching college or pro games. Woohoo...I'm so excited.

So as you can now tell, I love this time of year. The routine of back to school. The excitement of football season. And the wonderful fall weather. I'm dying to start decorating with pumpkins, fall leaves and little ghouls and monsters. But I will give it a week or two.

I hope you are enjoying the back to school fun.

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