Monday, July 31, 2017

The BIGGEST Rookie Parenting Move

It's that time of year again. The time when the stifling August humidity starts to break with the tiniest of nips in the air in the morning and evening. The summer stock is going on sale and the back to school ads are filling the Sunday paper. I'll admit it. I'm a sucker for the beginning of the school year. I like the smell of freshly sharpened pencils. A new box of crayons with their tips nice and pointy fills my heart with glee. A crisp white sheet of notebook paper brings a little bit of calm to my heart.

There is one thing that can stop my heart in it's tracks. One errand that leaves me in dread and fear each time this fresh new beginning comes around each year. That would be shopping for school supplies with all of my kids at the same time.

At first glance, you might think that I would have the school supply shopping handled. I've got three kids. They're in the beginning and middle of their school careers. I should probably have some kind of game plan for the back to school supply madness. I haven't. For some reason I thought it was the RIGHT THING to let the kids come and pick out their school supplies. Because, apparently, I have some need to punish myself.

Why did I think that the same three beautiful children that can't control their need for IMMEDIATE SATISFACTION while grocery shopping could somehow manage that same urge while shopping for
school supplies? Where in my mommy-addled brain did I believe that my children would somehow miraculously turn into miserly penny-pinchers instead of greedy goblins?

I remember last year after I came home and slept for three days to recover from the horror of supply shopping that was worked out thru the aisles of Target. I called my mother. I'm one of four kids. Surely my wise mother had some tips for how to get thru the supply list without LOSING HER MIND. Her advice was so simple and obvious. She said in response to the question, "how did you do this with four kids each year?"

"Simple, I didn't take you. I would go after work." 


Now that is wisdom to hold onto. It's okay not to take your kids school shopping with you! They will survive without the glittery pens or character emblazoned backpacks. Those things are crap anyways. Chances are the pens will get lost and the backpack will lose a strap by December.  P.s., teachers hate them. It's much better to stick to the list given. It's specific for a reason.

So, please, take my advice. School shop alone. Or even better, go with a friend. Follow it up with some dinner. You and your family will feel saner, happier and lighter as you begin the school year.

Your welcome. 

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