Oh, those lazy, hazy crazy days of summer! They’re over, people.
School starts today, and that means one thing: my “To Do” List is, again, over the top.
Fueled by good intentions and crippling perfectionism, I, like most mothers, have an epic “To Do” list that Franklin Covey couldn’t tame. It’s at its worst on the first day of school. While we want to use it as a guide—to bring order to that important first day—sometimes we expect too much from ourselves. Nothing gets a mother’s perfectionism stirred up like the first day of school. We all want to make the day go smoothly for our kids and start them off just right, but face it, we’re human.
That, my friends, is why I have constructed TWO “To Do” lists for your perusal. Perhaps we can manage to find ourselves somewhere in the middle.
First day of school “To Do” list (how we want it to be):
1. Wake up at 5:00; Preheat griddle for homemade spelt pancakes; tap maple tree for syrup; go for a run before waking kids and hubby.
2. Wake kids at 6:00 by singing original Good Morning Song composed during previous run; smile and kiss each sleepy head.
3. Shower and change while kids are getting dressed and hubby is flipping pancakes; be amused that he’s wearing an apron; snap random candid pictures.
4. Review last minute supply list for each child, being sure to include hand-written note in every organic, super-healthy lunch.
5. Gather kids on front steps for official “first day of school” picture; remember to mail it to Pottery Barn Kids for cover photo contest.
6. With 15 minutes to spare, gather everyone in the Odyssey and head to school; hand deliver homemade “first day teacher gifts” to each classroom.
7. Blow kisses and marvel at those precious people you made.
And for the rest of us:
1. Wake up at 5:45, hit snooze; wake in a panic at 7:25; run to fridge; curse like a sailor when it’s empty.
2. Wake kids by screaming that school starts in 20 minutes. Hand them breakfast: half a bag of donuts and a 2-liter of Sprite.
3. Pull on running shorts, bathing suit top and cowboy boots; tell hubby to pull the pillow off his head and find youngest child’s other shoe; curse again when the shoe is the only thing in the fridge; take batteries from TV remote and add to camera.
4. Scrounge for school supplies; hand everyone seven sheets of wrinkled, college-ruled paper and a highlighter; pass out lunches: tuna on saltines and a baggie full of potato chip crumbs.
5. Gather kids on front steps for official “first day of school” picture; insist that they smile, damn it, it’s the first day of school!
6. With no time to spare, gather everyone in the Odyssey and head to school, screeching on two wheels into the parking lot, just as the Pledge of Allegiance begins; walk kids to class while reciting the Serenity Prayer.
7. Blow kisses and marvel at those precious people you made. (Because some things are the same, no matter what kind of "To Do" list you have.)
Have a great first day, friends. May your lists be checked in all the right places.