12 Back-to-School Resolutions

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When you have kids, September, even more than January, feels like the time for a fresh start. The arrival of a new school year brings with it the chance to do better, especially when it comes to juggling all the moving parts that make up our lives.
I have a bit of a history of starting the school year with a huge burst of energy and then slowly fizzling out by Halloween. This year we have a lot on the go and it’€™s my responsibility to keep us rolling.

So I’€™m making some ‘back-to-school’ resolutions that I hope will keep me honest and the whole family on track:

  1. Build on the momentum of our current physical activities. Continue with karate, swimming and find a nearby, affordable gymnastics program for both kids.
  2. Come up with a daily routine that fits everything in. This means time for homework and reading, practicing instruments, outdoor play, household responsibilities, hanging with friends and downtime.
  3. Walk with friends a few times a week to keep my own physical activity levels up. A good friend of mine and I were doing this last year and it was a great way to catch up and get exercise.
  4. Be better at organizing playdates. I’€™m such a bad planner and I feel like my kids are lucky to get one playdate a week, while it seems other kids are marching off holding the hand of a different child every day.
  5. Do a load of laundry every night. If I had a dollar for every time I’€™ve heard the refrain ‘I don’€™t have any clean underwear,’ I’€™d be writing this list under a palm tree while someone else folds our delicates.
  6. Prepare, prepare, prepare – the night before. This includes homework, library books, gym clothes, signed forms in backpacks and by the door.
  7. Keep easy-to-grab snacks stocked in the pantry and in the fridge. This way the kids can be in charge of packing their own school snacks. Preparing food takes a lot of my time and energy, and I’€™d rather spend a bit more time stocking up once a week so I can delegate this daily responsibility.
  8. Plan meals. In the past, I have looked at the clock at 5 pm on too many school days and realized I had no clue what was for dinner.
  9. Try something new. I might finally try tennis. There is a court right behind our house, and even though I like listening to other people play, maybe it’€™s time for me to get one of those cute little tennis skirts and join the party. There’€™s also an art class that looks interesting; I might give that a whirl.
  10. Make my 5-year-old walk. I’€™m not pushing or pulling that kid around unless we are going somewhere really far. Resolved.
  11. Get off the hamster wheel and play with my kids. Like all of us, I can get caught up in the never-ending list of to-dos. This is the last year that I will have a child at home in the afternoons and I want to spend that time playing with him.
  12. Be on time! When you live a five minute walk from school is there really an excuse for arriving late, sweaty and dishevelled?

Wish me luck. If I’€™m still doing half of these by December I’€™ll consider myself successful. I’€™ll keep you posted.

And let me know if I’€™m on the right track by sharing your strategies for a smooth, healthy and active school year.

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