The calm before the back-to-school storm in Chicago

There is a small bush in our backyard that only starts to bloom early to mid August. I call it our “back-to-school bush.” When it used to bloom, I would get twitchy and panicky and depressed.

The more flowers that would bloom, the more crazy thoughts that would start to form in my head: Did we make the most of this summer? Should we have done more academic camps? Did the kids have fun? Where did I put those school supply lists? Should I worry that they didn’t complete those workbooks yet? Should I reorganize the kitchen cabinets this week? Should I try Bento Box lunches this year? Step away from Pinterest, Erin. Step away. Do the kids have brain drain? Should we go bowling or mini golfing one last time? Dammit, where are those supply lists? Did I sign them up for enough extracurriculars? Does anyone need new shoes? When is the first day of Sunday School? I cannot believe I lost those school supply lists (again)!

Every year it is the same thing. There is the pressure of the summer coming to a close and hoping we made the most of the warm weather and carefree days while we could. Then, there is the pressure of making sure everything is “ready” for the start of the school year. While I would like to say it is important to have all our ducks in a row before the first day of school, I also know that there is only so much I can do. An infographic created by the children’s app put a few things in perspective for me.

This year I have gained little perspective. My thoughts are: Did the kids have fun? Yes! Did we relax? Yes! Did we read? Yes! Are we ready for school? I can call to get a new supply list.

I am not going to be caught up in all the “should be doings” and pressures that this time of year can put on us parents. Instead of looking at my back-to-school bush with disdain and dreading all that needs to be done before school starts. I’m going to grab a book and read to the kids in the backyard instead.

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