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Make a few quick changes to routine, purpose and appreciation to make the summer-to-fall transition smoother and happier.
De-stress one system. Rather than overhaul your home before school starts (was that even a goal?) organize fall one system at a time. Consider the one that bothers you most — kids’ lunches, entry way coming and going, school papers — and tackle that one first. For example, school papers can be contained in folders, magazine holders, trays, clipboards, etc.
Use the system that works best for you. I’ve used all of them and found a fit combining three: kids put to-do homework in a folder, graded homework in a tray and long-term project information in their clipboard. This may seem complex, but for whatever reason, it works!
Find your focus. If you have children heading back to school, they’re going to experience mental and emotional growth (we hope). Happily, you get to, too. Consider what helps you experience “joyful contribution,” meaning, something small or big that helps you feel creative, fulfilled or joyful.
For example, on a small level of this a few years ago, my daughters and I loved to make flower cookies: chocolate chip cookie dough pressed in a flower mold, then baked with a lollipop stick and tied with a bow. We would take these to friends and neighbors, and it absolutely brought us joy (and licking the bowl was joyful too …).
As you decide on something joyful, perhaps a medium-level adventure would include going back to school too, like a friend of mine. She is a mom doing an online program so that with little children at home, it’s more doable for her schedule. In this way, she can continue progressing toward her ultimate educational goal of receiving a college degree.
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