That Back to School Feeling
As the summer draws to a close I’m starting to accept that Back to School feeling that has slowly been creeping in. We have backpacks, lunch bags and school supplies ready. The kids even have a new outfit or two to wear the first week of school. It’s getting dark a little earlier each day and I’ve seen some school buses out practicing their routes. So it’s almost back to the books for the kids and back to work for me. But I love having summers off and am so thankful for the opportunity to spend time with my kids, family and friends, puttering around in my garden, enjoying the sunshine and tackling some extra things that need to get done. I look forward to summer every year and every year I’m amazed at how quickly it goes by.
We had another good summer and although I’m sad it’s over, I can honestly say that I do feel rested. The summer didn’t exactly play out as we planned, but I feel that everything worked out in the end. For the month of July and the beginning of August, the kids and I were away more than home. That was strange and sometimes stressful, especially when you add a new family dog to the mix and a 4 month old puppy at that! But, we enjoyed our time away whether we were visiting family, staying at the cottage or camping with friends. Our new dog learned quickly that summer means lots of travel and time away. But I think it helped him realize that we are his new “people” or “sheep” as we like to joke since he’s a border collie and he now shares our love of our happy place - the cottage - where if he had his way, he would swim all day and never come out of the water. He still doesn’t realize that he’s the one making the splashes that he so enthusiastically chases.
Although there were moments where the kids were driving me crazy, that’s just typical life with kids. They got along pretty well and this is the first summer where the last two weeks didn’t fall apart. What’s my secret to that gem? Make sure to plan the visits to the grandparents where Mom drops them off and goes home to peaceful bliss during the last two weeks of summer! It’s been lovely getting a few extra things done, spending time with the dog, having a date night (or two) with my husband or working til dark on something outside. Last night we buried the supports for the sugar shack he is building this fall and it was just like before we had kids. It was really nice to have that time, just the two of us working together. Tomorrow the kids come home and we may sneak in one more visit to the cottage before we hit the books again.
This year Back to School brings a mixed bag of emotions for me. I will miss the freedom of summer, but at the same time I crave the return to more solid routines and structured days. My youngest is going to school full time. I’m excited for him, but also surprised that I am already here at this huge milestone in his life. In a way it’s also funny because our youngest child always seems to do more sooner. The other two attended school gradually, but not the youngest. He’s going every day. Go big or go home, I guess. But the nice thing is that we will all be in one place - me working and the kids with their classes.
Over the summer I also took some time to organize and back-up some pictures off my camera and I can’t believe how young my older two kids were when he was born. Then I came across pictures of my oldest when she was just a toddler and my middle child when he had a head full of curly hair and again it shocked me again that they were ever that little. It seems we’re always looking forward to the next stage in life and when we look back it feels like it went by way too fast.
I plan to enjoy my last few days of freedom. Maybe I’ll get one more thing done off my list, or maybe I’ll just sit back and relax with a book or teach the dog a new trick. Whatever I do, I’ll look back on my summer with a smile on my face and look forward to a new school year and return to work with renewed optimism.