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Can we talk for a moment about getting back into a school time routine?
I just know it is going to be hard this year, like really hard. Normally the holiday festivities start to feel a bit overwhelming and we all feel a yearning to get back on a schedule again.
This year it will be the opposite. I can see us all chanting “long live winter break”.
Being in SoCal, winter break can often feel like summer break with the unpredictable and often warm weather, so the thought of indoor learning isn't always the most popular idea…especially when you live steps from the beach.
But we know that all good things must come to an end, and it will soon be time to push through and get the school books and all that fun stuff back out.
Once we turn the switch back on, all will be beyond well. We will find the familiar pattern of school time comforting and dare I even say fun? Yep, I think that is the right word. We are going to make it a smooth, easy and fun transition.
How are we going to pull this one off? Here is how:
We will be easing back into it.
I'm not sure why this took me so long to do, but it is going to make such a difference this year. We normally jump all in on that first day back, because school has a hard start date right? Well, this year we aren't going to completely stop the school work. The girls are planning to spend a handful of hours chipping away at big projects over the break so that it won't feel like they were starting all over again. They will ease back into a full-time schooling. Even just having them read books throughout the day when they are on break can help ease the post-holiday back to school blues and help them ease back into their regular schedule.
We are going to be ramping up after school activities, one by one.
We aren't going to start all of them in the first week. Instead of attending every dance lesson and playdate invite we will be doing dance lessons and then slowly adding more activities. This should be a total game changer! Nobody will feel overwhelmed and everyone should be excited to add more fun to their days instead of being super tired that first week.
We are going to start scheduling our favorite things ahead of time.
Things like family dinner, seeing grandparents, and going for hikes are all being added to our schedules BEFORE new after-school activities. That way, we always will have time for the basic things we love. It's kinda like paying yourself first when you are saving money, but it is paying our hearts and souls first.
We make school work more fun.
There are a lot of ways to do this, but one of our favorite ways is to change the scenery. Instead of always working at the kitchen table we often will go to a coffee shop or the park. This inspires them to get their work done in a timely manner so that they get play and explore!
We are reconsidering Snack Time.
Our older two have always been a lot more forgiving when it comes to food, but Emmy really can't concentrate on anything else if she needs a snack. Her go-to snack right now is Jif® Power Ups™ chewy granola bars and Jif® Power Ups™ creamy clusters! They keep her fueled up and have really helped with our smooth back to school routine.
They are also so easy to eat on the go, in between school work or wherever else this time of year takes us!
I also know that smooth back to school routines are the product of flexibility, so we are dedicated to ours evolving, especially as the days get shorter. I'm kinda excited to see what we are up to in the coming months. I'm hoping that these bright and sunny days last until spring, but I know that winter will find us soon and the cooler days will outlast these warner ones so we are making sure our back to school routine involves a lot of outdoor time too, while we can!