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Since school starts next week for my boys, I thought I’d share five back to school tips that I have found particularly helpful.

Tip #1: Get into the swing of things now

If you’re like me, you’ve let your kids sleep in until 8 am and get dressed around 10 am all summer long. Which is fine right up until the first day of school when the kids need to be up and dressed by 6:45 and out the door by 7:30. So this year I have instituted a “Going Back to School” schedule. The whole family is starting their day just as if school had already started. That means earlier bed times and wake ups, beds made, dressed, fed and ready to face the day by 7:30 am. At least I can get the grumbling out of the way now instead of on the first day of school.

Lunch BoxTip #2 Plan out those lunch menus

I’ve blogged about menu planning before but I think it’s important enough to repeat here. Sit down with your kids and plan out a couple weeks worth of lunch menus which all of you can live with. And, if your child packs his or her own lunch, they have a guide to what to bring for lunch on any particular day. It really nips the whole “But I didn’t know what to make so I took candy instead” argument in the bud.

Tip #3: Go to Back to School Night

Even if you are exhausted from a long day at work, the kids are cranky, and it’s pouring rain/sunny and 150 degrees. Everyone is nervous about that first day of school and it isn’t just limited to your kids.

The teacher is getting a whole new set of children in the classroom, 5 year olds are heading to a new phase of their life, and you need to get a feel for the classroom and teacher. So, it’s a good thing to meet & greet before that first day of school.

Tip #4: Create a Central Calendar

Everyone in the family has a list of activities that come in to the house through a number of ways, i.e. through papers coming home from school, emails from colleagues, party invitations sent in the mail. The best way to coordinate schedules is to use a central calendar. There are literally hundres of calendars available through stores and the Internet for you to use. Pick one and post it where everyone can see it (even the 3 foot tall kindergartner!).

Tip #5: Spend Time With Your Kids

It will be all too soon that they are gone all day and involved in their own lives once school starts. While you, and I, may look forward to that, the excitement wears off pretty quickly. So, take the time now to let your kids know that you love them and that you are there for them (no matter what happens). Enjoy it becuase childhood doesn’t last forever.

Do you have any back to school tips? Please share them with me!

What a fun but exhausting day. Our church held it’s first annual car show and what a turn out! And the boys had a blast.

Here they are standing next to our friend Emilio’s car. Notice you can barely see our youngest as he leans against the car. I have no idea how many times we had to tell him, “No! Don’t touch the car!”

Big and Bad in front of Emilio's car

And then we wandered over to the drag racers and allĀ  the admonishments went out the window when the owner let them climb into the racecar and turn the wheels. I thought the kids were going to pee themselves they were so excited!

joracecar

jacobracecar

isaacracecar

Yessirre bob, a fun time was had by all.

By the way, all three boys crashed, i.e. napped, when we got home…..for two whole hours! Yippee!

If, at birth, you could select the profession your child would eventually pursue, would you do so? Why or why not? If so, what profession would you choose?
If not, what profession do you think your child might choose based on his/her current interests/personality?

If you had asked me before my first son was born, I would’ve chosen something grand or important or safe like a doctor, dentist or concert pianist. After having three boys, however, I have come to understand that my kids are going to do whatever it is that they want to do without my help or interference. They are three very distinct people with varying interests brought together by genetics, a roof over their heads, and an unyielding love for legos.

Eight years ago I would never had guessed that my eldest son would love turtles or that he would prefer juice to soda (yea for him!). Or that my four year old would love to hum and sing and dance. Or that my two year old can throw a ball at a hundred miles an hour with pinpoint accuracy (big leagues watch out!). I am amazed and awed by their talents and interests. So, my eldest may end up an engineer, my middle son a choreographer/artist/actor and my youngest might just be the next big baseball star.

No matter what they want to be when they grow up, and I expect them to change their minds about a hundred times before that actually happens (preferably before they have their own children), I want them to pursue something that makes them happy. There is nothing worse than going to a job that you hate for the rest of your life. All I ask is that they do that particular profession to the best of their abilities and make enough to live off of so they don’t have to live with me.

Thanks, Karen, for the best questions!

So, what profession do you, gentle reader, wish for your kids?

So I was supposed to see an orthopedist today about my knee but it looks like I’m not going to be able to go. Instead of billing my insurance for the copay and then me getting the rest of the bill, they want the copay up front. Which is $45 that isn’t in the budget at this exact moment considering our money is tied up in escrow.

Yes, you heard that correctly. Escrow.

We signed the papers and are waiting anxiously for the appraiser and inspector to do their jobs. The property is off the beaten track with plenty of room for three growing boys to roam on. When we move in, I’ll post some pics.

Speaking of kids, Jacob has seen the physical therapist who has confirmed that he has hypotonia. It explains quite a bit about his “body in space” and balance issues. She wants him to continue with the Tae Kwon Do and would like him to start swimming soon. Once we figure out how to help him deal with his sensory issue with wet clothes, we’ll do that. In the meantime, he’ll be seeing Miss Heather for the next few months until she feels that he’s improved enough to stop going. It shouldn’t take too long since he’s a quick learner and is pretty active.

My oldest son placed 2nd in the 100 meter dash at his school’s Junior Olympics. Which is awesome enough but that bumped him up to the next level of competition. He’ll be racing in the 100 meter dash this Saturday at Desert Section Area Track Meet. Whether he wins or loses, we’re very proud of him!

Now I’m off to find some motrin for my knee. Have a fabulous day!

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I lose my temper all the time. I try not to but it happens. I have to say, though, that the older I get the better I am able to hold my temper in check. Not that I don’t explode like Vesuvius on occasion but it’s not quite as bad as it once was. I’d like to think its maturity although it might be I have a higher tolerance due to living in a houseful of males.

Is it okay to show anger? Yes, otherwise how will my kids know what it looks like? At least, how it looks in our family, at any rate. Reading and responding to emotions is a skill set all kids need and that includes the icky emotions like anger and sadness. But is it okay to be overly angry all the time? No, and if that was the case then I’d get some help. Or a spa day since I know much of my anger comes from stress.

I sound like I’m a constant yelling machine, don’t I? I’m not. If you have children (most of you do), then you know that at least once a day you’ll lose your temper over something. If you have a special needs child (like we do) then that might be more than once a day.

How I display my anger at that situation is up to me. The knee jerk reaction is to yell, which I’m sorry to admit is something I do more often than not. Other times though, if I’m top of the situation, I might give someone a time out (including myself).

So, do you get angry and yell? Have some tips on how to manage it? Tell me because I want to know!

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