Aug 152013

It’s been my habit over the years to offer a Q & A invitation, wherein readers are free to ask me any questions they might have. Depending on the number of questions I receive, I typically group them by topic and answer them in a series of posts on Wednesdays, which I refer to as “All Request Wednesdays.” These posts are reader favorites, and I’ve had several requests recently for another one, so here’s your chance to ask me stuff! You can post your questions in the comments, or by email if you prefer. Please keep in mind that if questions are of a personal nature I may choose to not answer them on the blog (or at all, if they’re too personal).

Yesterday the girls went back to school, and getting them ready was a lot of work. Of course there were supplies to purchase, but fortunately I had the majority of what they needed in my school supply stash (purchased on clearance last year). I’m more dismayed every year as the school supply list gets longer and longer. This year, for 3 kids (1 in preschool,) we bought:

(3) boxes of pencils
(3) erasers
(1) pencil box
(1) zippered pencil case
(1) package pencil top erasers
(2) boxes of crayons
(5) boxes of markers
(1) bottle of glue
(20) glue sticks
(4) dry erase markers
(2) packages of red pens
(6) spiral notebooks
(1) box of colored pencils
(2) pairs of scissors
(4) highlighters
(10) 2-pocket folders
(2) packages of loose-leaf paper
(2) 2-inch binders
(1) composition notebook
(1) package of index cards
(1) flash drive
(1) set of computer headphones
(2) spiral-bound sketchbooks
(3) Sharpie markers
(1) package construction paper
(2) packages copy paper
(1) box of Ziploc bags
(1) container of Clorox wipes
(3) large boxes of Kleenex
(1) box of Dixie cups
(1) package of safety pins

Whew! Fortunately, for the last two years the school has waived registration fees for all students, for which we’re very grateful. With supplies, new clothes and shoes, haircuts, dental check-ups, physicals, eye doctor appointments, immunizations, and other requirements for back-to-school time, the financial burden on parents can be quite heavy.

I can’t believe I have a 6th grader now!

I love the shirt she picked out.

And my little Cakesie Jane is in first grade!

I always try not to cry on the first day of school, but I always, always do. I did OK this year until we dropped Cakes off at her classroom. When we left, I peeked through the little window in the door, and saw the back of her pig-tailed head as she sat proudly at her very own big kid desk, and that’s when the waterworks started. When did she get this big? When I started writing this blog she was a little baby who had just started walking.

My baby girl. *sniff*

I’m so proud of both my beautiful girls. I hope they have a great year!

DJ doesn’t start preschool until the 29th, but can you imagine how much I’m probably going to bawl that day? My BABY going to school? WAAAHHHH!

Over the summer, I’d gotten into the terrible habit of staying up way too late, and then sleeping in. Yesterday I was up bright and early at 7:00 to get the girls off to school, and I was determined to reset my body clock. I¬†temporarily deactivated my Facebook account because I feel that I’m too distracted by it, and it eats up too much time (I think that anyone who is on Facebook and claims that they “don’t have time” to work toward their goals needs to do some serious self-evaluation. Which is what I did). I forced myself to work hard all day yesterday, in order to really tire myself out. I got groceries, put them away, cleaned out the fridge, went to an appointment, cleaned both bathrooms, mopped floors, dusted, washed two loads of laundry, cooked dinner, cleaned up the kitchen, and did some organizing in my office. And let me tell you, by the time 9:00 rolled around, I was BEAT. I passed out as soon as my head hit the pillow, and didn’t wake up until my alarm went off!

Do I miss Facebook? Sure, sometimes. But I feel much better when I use my time wisely and get stuff accomplished, so it’s a worthwhile trade-off.


  12 Responses to “Back to School 2013, and All Request Wednesdays”

  1. All I can say is WOW!!! This was an excellent post! First, I can’t believe the long list of things you had to purchase this year!!! It’s amazing that parents have the funds to do this especially if they have 3 or more children! I can’t get over how big the girls are!!! They are so beautiful…I would have cried as well Heather! (I just love Bee’s shirt <3)

    Leaving Facebook will be happening again for me as well…it eats up a lot of my time too. I am in awe of the amount of things you were able to accomplish in a day…you are my mentor!!!

    I LOVE "All Request Wednesdays"!!! I was wondering if you still use your homemade dishwasher and laundry detergent…and if you are happy with the results? I feel like I should be using products that are eco-friendly, but they are so expensive! (I do use vinegar in place of fabric softner now which I am happy with)

    Well, thanks Heather for an excellent post…as always!!! Keep us posted if you have been able to keep your body clock reset…this is something I so need to do!!! Janel xo

  2. And another year begins. I still have until the 26th…but we still wont be in a house. Just not right. LOL.

  3. Wow! It’s hard to believe its back to school time already! We have another two weeks before the kids go back here in Michigan, thank goodness! Where did you get such cute girls clothes? I have a first and second grader and have had the hardest time finding cute clothes this year that I find appropriate for their ages.

    • Jennifer, I bought all of their clothes at The Children’s Place. They carry up to size 14. I had a 20% off coupon, and everything was on sale already for back to school, PLUS they gave me a credit for $20 off my next purchase of $40 or more! I got 4 shirts and 3 skirts for Bee, 3 shirts, 1 skirt, 3 pairs of shorts, and flip-flops for Cakes, and a shirt for DJ, for $60.

  4. Our boys start Aug. 26th and I will boo-hoo that day too. The oldest is going into 8th and the youngest into 5th and they don’t like mom walking them in on the first day anymore. So it will be drop and go and I will cry all the way down and out the drive-way.
    By the way, your hair looks really pretty. It looks like it has grown a lot.

  5. In just a couple of weeks, my older child will be having his first day at school and my younger child will be starting pre-school. It is good to hear that it is not just me who gets emotional about these things! While there is a bit of me which is looking forward to things being easier at home, I also feel a little sad that my kids are fast growing up.

  6. Heather, I can’t believe how big the girls have gotten! I’ve always enjoyed when you answered questions. So here are two of mine:

    #1-How do you find time to do all of those household chores (like the ones you mentioned when you were trying to tire yourself out! with DJ underfoot? I’ve always found that I can accomplish about 2 things, and that’s it! Right now I have a 10 month old

    #2-Unfortunately our credit card debt has gotten quite high this past year. I’m going to try to add some extra income to pay it off…and also throw ANY extra money (bday presents, Christmas presents, tax refund) at it. But aside from that, what are your top 5 suggestions for getting it paid off. And do you think it can actually be done without winning the lottery?!


  7. Kudos to you for your decision to put FB aside for awhile in order to focus on more important goals. You’re my hero when it comes to discipline. From reading your blog for the past 3 years, I know that we share similar personal tendencies (being night owls, procrastinating at times, needing order in our surroundings, etc.). It’s always an encouragement to see you win in these efforts. It’s hard to believe all the kids will be in school this year. They look so happy in these pics. I hope they absolutely love it!

  8. Those are beautiful children. We have 2 weeks till school starts. It is still so hot here (over 100 every day) that the boys will be wearing shorts and tee-shirts mostly till Dec. Got them new shoes. Oldest is 13 and going into 8th grade. He is in a real growing spurt and I can not keep him in shoes. He is wearing a size 9. His brother is 11 and not growing as fast right now. Our school supply list looked very much like yours. My oldest did need a real notebook with notebook paper this year.
    My question is about your laundry room. Have you been able to finish it?
    We recently worked on our laundry room. I had new floors put in and a new shelf unit built all around the top. It is U shape and has 3 shelves going to the top. I have it filled with my laundry soap, vinegar, and paper products. It is nice to have the space.

  9. Wow! That list is about what I can do in a week if I’m really disciplined. Great post, Heather.

  10. Hi Heather, I’d love to hear your best ideas for using a beef roast. My dad is a beef farmer and we are fortunately supplied with many roasts throughout the year, but I get SO tired of cooking them the usual way, in the crock pot, with potatoes and carrots. Any ideas for incorporating the leftovers into other meals, or for using them differently in the first place? I know a lot of people would shred them for sandwiches, but two of us in our house are gluten-free so we don’t eat sandwiches often due to the expense of gluten-free bread/rolls. I’d also love some basics for reducing garbage, and I know that starts with purchasing less prepared foods.

  11. Hi Heather, I was wondering if you could give me some examples of things to do during the day with my 13 month old… Maybe give me a sample schedule that would be good for her. My other kids are older and I worked when they smaller, now that I am home with her I really am at a loss for things to do with her or what our day should consist of. You always seem to have creative things to so with your kids. Thanks for any suggestions!

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



error: Copy and paste is disabled. Please use the print icon to the left to print posts for personal use.