Back to School…Say It Isn’t So! (and A School Supply Giveaway!)

AUTHOR: | POSTED: August 7, 2012 | COMMENTS: 25 Comments
CATEGORIES:

Carolyn Savage

It’s that time of year.  I wish that it wasn’t but there’s no escaping the signs.  They are every where I go.  The middle school  parking lot down the street is half full, indicating that the new hire’s and over achievers are hard at their prep work.  The seasonal shelves at the market have been cleared of the bug spray and sunscreen to make room for #2 pencils, crisp notebooks, and colorful boxes of crayons.  The summer camps have all ended and the local pool’s a little empty.  I guess the kids have had enough and are staying at home to burn their mother’s last nerve. 

When I was a kid, I loved back to school time.  I wish I could say my boys feel the same.  Unfortunately, they don’t.

I think that has something to do with the fact that during my childhood back to school happened around Labor Day.  Somehow, over the years, the first day of school has crept up the calendar, and what used to be sacred–the glorious month of August–has somehow become the beginning of school. 

I could rant and rave about how much I wish August was reserved for vacations, but instead of whining about something I can’t control, I’ll share some back to school tips that I’ve learned over the years.

Tip #1 –  Read That Letter from the School

Turns out you should read that long letter the school sent to you last week.  It contains important information about your child’s upcoming year.  And read it before you call and ask, because the as much as the office staff loves to assist parents, it’s annoying to them when it’s apparent a mom is too lazy to do her homework.

Tip #2  Don’t Let the Supply List Bankrupt You

Take the school supply list with a grain of salt.  Meaning, I know teachers actually want your child to have what they need for the year, but if the list says 64 #2 pencils odds are you don’t need them all on the first day.  (This is especially helpful if you’re pinching pennies.)

Tip #3  Know The School Calendar (Or at least hang it somewhere you’ll see it!)

Find out when the first day of school is.  I know…seriously…right?  But every single year I was a principal someone missed the first day! Please take my word for it,  nothing makes a parent look dumber than  when their kid misses the first day.  So look smare, read the calendar.

Tip #4  Ride The Bus

If your kid’s going to ride the bus to school regularly, resist the urge to drive junior on the first day, and make him or her take the bus.  This helps the bus drivers know that your child is, indeed, relying on him/her to stop the bus to pick up your child.  If you are dying to take pics as your child walks into their classroom do what Sean did: Follow the school bus in your car and then embarrass the hell out of your kid by meeting them at school.  (Ryan actually punched Sean in the gut for following him to his classroom on his first day of kindergarten.  We have it on tape!)

The rest of my tips can be read here at Today.com!  They are good.  Give them a read.

Now on to the fun stuff…  A Back to School GiveAway

In honor of our collective back-to-school state of mind, I’m giving away a Jansport backpack….

 

 

…. full of commonly needed school supplies!

 

 

To qualify you only need to leave a comment below this post with your favorite back-t0-school memory.  A winner will be chosen from the comments and announced in my Weekly Smiles Post, next Monday, August 13th! 

 

In the meantime, I’m going to bury my head in the sand and carry on with my summer.  “School?  What school?

 

25 Comments on “ Back to School…Say It Isn’t So! (and A School Supply Giveaway!) ”

  • Lori Lavender Luz | August 7th, 2012 11:35 pm

    I always loved having a new outfit to wear the first day.

    Looks like a cool backpack!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 8th, 2012 8:53 am

    I know…the first day outfit was a big deal back “in the day”. The back to school shopping day was always very special with my mom! Thanks for sharing!

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  • Diane Lukas | August 8th, 2012 7:03 am

    My most favorite back to school memory is buying all the supplies. Like you, I loved the first day! I color coordinated all my supplies!!! Math was all blue, Science was green, English was red, and so on. Maybe some indications of a bit of OCD, huh?! When I tell my children (15 and 10) this they literally roll their eyes at me! But I always smile at the anxiety of back to school and all it brings. Each year our kids grow, mature, and learn more about our world. Getting the opportunity to guide them through it is an honor and privilege! And yes, when they were younger, all their supplies matched,

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 8th, 2012 8:56 am

    Diane, You and I are cut from the same cloth! And, it is an honor and privilege! Thanks for the comment!

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  • Sharee Boellner | August 8th, 2012 8:29 am

    As a first time off to school parent I would have to say just seeing how confident my kindergarten is when it comes to all these first. He is doing better then his worrying mommy!!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 8th, 2012 8:58 am

    I love a kindergartener with swagger! Good for your little one! (And hang in there…you will survive this!)

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  • Valerie | August 8th, 2012 8:47 am

    My favorite memory (now, although not at the time) was my Dad singing “School days, school days, dear old golden rule days…” daily, as summer drew to a close. It would drive my sister and me crazy because he did it with such joy, and we were miserable about it! Of course, now she and I both sing that song to our kids – and we enjoy torturing them with it just as our Dad did with us!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 8th, 2012 8:58 am

    Gotta love those teasing dads. That’s a great memory!

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  • Whitney | August 8th, 2012 9:25 am

    I always loved that my parents bought me one new dressy outfit, one new pair of jeans, new tennis shoes. I loved going back to school. It was my favorite time of year. My 6 year old has SPD and change is not cool
    Summer not fun cause it is not normal to him yet. He hates the first day because new teachers, new classmates, everything is new to him:)

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:49 am

    I remember back-to-school shopping at downtown Hudsons in Detroit. We’d shop for pretty skirts and sweaters, and have a Julius salad at the fancy department store restaurant.

    I know…I’m dating myself!

    Kids who have a hard time with transition and change really do struggle with “firsts”. Best of luck to your son and you! Sounds like you are doing a great job!

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  • Katie | August 8th, 2012 11:10 am

    We did live far enough away from my school to be bused, so I walked to school (everyday, up hill both ways, I think.. 😉 ) On the first day of Kindergarten, I made my mom walk behind me so I could walk with my sister (the 4th grader!).. all of the pictures my mom took of me are of my back!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:50 am

    Okay..this made me laugh. I bet pics are prieceless!

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  • Kristen | August 8th, 2012 1:15 pm

    I love reading all of your posts! My favorite part of the first day of school was being there when the kids get off the bus and listening to each of their stories of their first day. Although all of my children are either now graduated from college or finishing their college careers – I still miss that when the buzz of school time comes around.

    A favorite memory is when the oldest child started pre-school. The youngest went with me to take him to school. When it was time for school to start and we were leaving, the youngest started crying and was very upset that we were leaving his brother. As I carried they crying 2 year old out (with much hesitation on his part) a mother looked at me and the youngest and said “I feel the same way”. The joy on each of their faces when pre-school was over that day was priceless. The excitement of the day for the oldest and the relief of the youngest knowing his brother wasn’t abandoned.

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:52 am

    Kristen, Your comment made me smile. SOunds like your then 2 year old and preschooler were pretty good buddies. I love that. It reminds me of my boys. I’ll never forget Ryan standing at the front window waiting for Drew’s bus to come home.

    I worry about Ry. I think Drew going to college next year is going to be tough for him.

    Thank you for sharing!

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  • Jesabes | August 8th, 2012 2:37 pm

    My favorite back-to-school memory is the first-day-of-school brunches my mom would invite the whole family to. We would wait for the bus with our grandparents and cousins and, a time or two, would even put a backpack on the dog. I believe he tried to get on the bus with us once.

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:53 am

    Back to school brunches? What a great idea!

    A back pack on a dog? You must have had one patient dog!!

    Thank you for sharing!

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  • Lynn | August 8th, 2012 2:39 pm

    My parents hardly ever bought us anything new when we were kids so back to school was the one time of the year that we got a few new outfits and new shoes. It was like Christmas! I LOVED school supply shopping (still do, for my kids now!) and arranging & rearranging all the school supplies at least 3 or 4 times a day in the days leading up to the 1st day of school. I love the smell of freshly sharpened pencils 🙂 My kids are 23, 8 and 3, so I’m getting to experience “back to school” for 33 years straight!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:54 am

    Oh wow. I thought we had the pro-longed parenting winning ticket. You beat us by 10 years!

    And yes…I love the smell of school supplies in general, and freshly sharpened pencils are up there with chocolate chip cookies in my book!

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  • Marion | August 8th, 2012 9:25 pm

    I always sing when I’m waking the kids up, “Off to school again, I can’t wait to go back to school again, I can’t wait to make those memories with my friends, I can’t wait to go back to school again” (to the tune of “On the road again” with an American country singer accent). The kids don’t seem to like it so much, but it works to wake them up and we always end up laughing about it on the way to school. I’m in Australia and don’t need any back to school stuff since our kids have been back for a while, hope the song inspires other singing Mums. Yeehaw!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:56 am

    Marion,

    First of all I am so grateful for your loyal reading and commenting. I smile when I see your name!

    Secondly, I bet your children will remember your singing fondly…someday.

    Thanks for sharing…Yeehaw!

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  • Lisa | August 9th, 2012 8:46 am

    I’m with you on the whole school starting in mid-August sadness. I remember wearing wool kilts on the first day of school. Not sleevless cotton! Love the post as usual!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 9th, 2012 8:57 am

    We must have shopped at the same stores! I always had a nifty wool plaid skirt, or two, in my back to school wardrobe.

    And yes, sleeveless cotton doesn’t scream back to school for me either!

    Thanks for your loyal readership and commenting. It means a lot to me!

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  • Missy Taylor | August 9th, 2012 5:10 pm

    Thanks so much for once again putting a positive and extremely unique spin on a parenting topic. I love reading your posts, especially the ones that tap into your educational background! Keep them coming!

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  • Carolyn Savage | August 10th, 2012 9:14 am

    Thanks, Missy. And thank you for your loyal readership! It means a lot to me!

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  • sheila | August 11th, 2012 1:37 am

    I love going into my boys ( ages 7 & 11) room on those early school mornings singing “wake-E, wake-E, eggs and bake-E. Of course they hardly budge probably b/c they know there’s no eggs and bacon lol 😉

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