Tips for Getting Through September
What is it about September? It seems parents everywhere are doing everything they can to stay sane. Breathe in, breathe out. Just a few more weeks, they tell themselves. October 1st can’t come soon enough. Does it really all suddenly stop on October 1st? For us it definitely doesn’t stop, but it certainly gets easier.
In addition to transitioning to new classrooms this September (first grade and Kindergarten Prep), which comes with its own set of anxiety for all of us, we’ve added new routines. My husband and I have switched schedules, he now does drop-off and I do pick-up, which gives me some time to take care of myself. After school, my oldest no longer goes to an after-school program, but instead we have our neighbor get her off the bus and play games with her until 5:30/6:00. We were nervous with this plan at first but it’s working out great.
In addition, my daughter has soccer twice a week which means there is practice on a weekday and while it thankfully doesn’t start until 5:30, it means we don’t eat dinner until 7:00. This leaves little time for baths and stories. We’re still making decisions on other after school activities but I know that running around will soon start up again.
September is busy, right? There are curriculum nights, school photos and sports photos. For me there are also PTA meetings, Moms Group meetings, a CrossFit Advisory Council meeting, a baby shower (which I threw with my sister-in-law), three family birthday parties and an anniversary trip to celebrate 10 years of marriage (and spend three nights away from our kids – a first). For my husband it’s one football draft after another and of course business travel. Then throw in flu shots and dentist appointments. In addition, the summer lull is over at work. Everyone is back from vacation and in full swing. September is by far the busiest month of the year and sometimes I can’t wait for it to be over!
What are some things I have done this year to make the month a little more bearable? Here are my tips for getting through September:
- Meals: Crock pot dinners. With several evenings committed, it’s been really helpful to use the crock pot and have most the meal ready as soon as we get home. I’ve sought out a few new recipes which have helped to spruce these up a bit, too.
- Calendar: Review, rework and hope for the best. Instead of looking at the calendar once a week, my husband and I find we look at it almost daily. There is so much going on and we both need to be at the top of our game. Take it one day at a time too. If you look out to next week, you may become overwhelmed by all you need to squeeze in.
- Home: Let the little things go. Baths, hopefully they happen but if not, it’s not the end of the world. Changing up seasonal decorations? Summer is my favorite time of year anyway so the beach scene on my mailbox and the seashells hanging in my bathroom may just have to stay there until October. Coupons aren’t getting clipped and magazines are piling up, but I know I’ll get to them eventually.
- Activities: Delay the start a little. School year activities can last all nine months, which is a long time. Delay when you start these a bit if you can. Sure, you may not get into the coveted gymnastics time you want, but there’s a good chance you will so take the chance (kids are always dropping out in the beginning). Plus, your child may not burn out as early this way by the time the year is over.
- Birthdays/Additional Commitments: It’s okay to say no. This has been a really hard one for me. My son has been invited to four parties this month. We’ve had to say no to every one of them. I’m sad about this but, I keep reminding myself, it’s okay to say no. We have enough on our plate at the moment and definitely have to prioritize.
- Support: Find a friend to lean on. Thank goodness for one of the newest friends in my life. I feel blessed to have someone to talk to, lean on, vent to (and maybe go out to dinner with if we’re lucky). Be sure to make time for friends. They will help you get through September. October is right around the corner…
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