Where has the summer gone?!
We have a little less than 2 weeks left of summer, and its an emotional year for our household. BOTH boys will be in school all day for the first time.
My mom heart hurts for all kinds of different reasons and yet is excited about this new chapter for our family (more about this later).
I wanted to talk about ALL THINGS BACK TO SCHOOL!
What are some of your back to school traditions, fave shopping spots, and what do you do to prep for getting back into the school year routine. I’ll be sharing what we do. 🙂
Being a boy mom comes with a lot of chaos managing. They’re loud, they’re rough, they’re fearless, they’re messy (but what kids aren’t), and… they’re tough on their clothes!
I’ve been really lucky with the fact that we get some amazing hand-me-downs from good friends of ours which end up going to both boys because they wear the same things in the same seasons; since their birthdays are exactly 3 years and 1 week apart. So, anything we had for our oldest got passed down to our youngest, and our oldest wasn’t really rough on his clothes until he started kindergarten, particularly his jeans! LORD knows how this boy constantly got holes in the knees of his pants.
As we were constantly repairing and then throwing out his pants we started to buy Cat & Jack jeans at target. They had just started this line, and we always shop at target anyway! So we gave it a shot. The coolest thing though, is that ALL CAT & JACK clothes (shoes too) come with a 1 YEAR GUARANTEE! Like what?! Any defects, damage that your child may do, will be replaced! This was the best thing ever for us and the jean dilemma!
Save your receipt if you don’t have a Target Redcard, but you really should get one, and then they will honor what you paid for those items up to 12 months later! If you have a Redcard, just take your things into guest services and they will give you credit back to your account or a giftcard for the FULL AMOUNT of the items!! HOLY GUACAMOLE!
This is a little secret from the target employee, Target’s system doesn’t have the capability to look up receipts older than 4 months out. If you used a Redcard, they will give you a giftcard for the full amount and you’re good to go! Now you can replace the clothes, even in a bigger size for the next school year! Or, you could treat yourself to whatever you want since it’s a giftcard! I did this and I was so happy that I was able to take them back and get new jeans for this upcoming school year. Now I won’t worry about how hard he is or isn’t on his jeans! Give Cat & Jack a try!
This is where I kind of “splurge”, on their backpacks. I started getting cute Pottery Barn backpacks when my oldest went off to preschool, and it became something I looked forward to buying. I just LOVE pottery barn, and I know the backpacks are going to be great quality and last. Last year, I got my a bigger backpack for my oldest (size Large) from Pottery Barn, and this year, I won’t be getting him a new one since its still in amazing shape and is big enough for him to use for a couple more years. I did get my younger son since he hadn’t gotten a brand “new” one yet and I thought it would be a cute way to commemorate going off to Kindergarten.
I got him this oneand this awesome matching lunch box. I got this really cool hard shell lunch box that was on clearance for my bigger guy (since he is so rough on his lunch pails- I usually get a new one each year).
I used a 20% off coupon, and they offered free shipping on all backpacks and lunch boxes. I’ll call that a win!
Now for my favorite tradition for back-to-school (besides picking out PB backpacks), taking first day of school pictures! I know that you know there are a BILLION ways to do this thanks to Pinterest and everyone else you have to see on social media- here is what I did and stick with.
One of our good friends did this and I loved it, and knew when my kids were old enough I would do this too. I used a Crayola Easel we had, and use magnetic letters and numbers to write out their name, what grade, first day of whatever grade, and the date. This is something I love and really look forward to. Its especially amazing when you can compare the LAST day of that school year side by side. By doing this tradition, I plan on having all of their school years like this to remember. Imagine how annoyed and embarrassed HighSchool boys will me when I make them (and I will make them) stand in front of a easel on the first and last day of school! You can use a dry erase board, a letterboard, a banner, you can photoshop pictures and add text to them, there are all kinds of fun ways to mark the beginning of school for your kids, and making those tradition are what is the most fun.
Find what brings you joy, and stick with it!
I’m raising my coffee cup to you mamas and giving you a symbolic cheers to the upcoming school year with some (lets face it) lukewarm coffee!