#Back2School in #31Days: Day 1 – The Why

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Last year in August, I found myself heading back and forth to the store 6 times for school supplies. I love office supplies – new Sharpies (or my new favorite pen), Crayola, journals, binders – this is one of my happy places danger zones.

The first trip I was armed my list, piled the backpacks, notebooks, colored pencils, etc. high, and paid quite a large sum for such not-long-lasting things, and went home still feeling excited for Back to School.

Then around the first week of September as we got into our language arts, I realized I needed a couple more notebooks.

And 3-ring binders for Bible.

And I still didn’t have a “24oz water bottle” for my daughter.

The back and forth was driving me crazy. I was sick of Back to School by the 2nd week of September.

Procrastination and I are not good friends. I super don’t like feeling overwhelmed – the feeling that I’ve forgotten or lost something. When I have too many things stored in my brain and not on paper – I start to get short and snappish. It isn’t fun to be around me. It isn’t fun to be me.

In Emily Freeman’s new video about her new book, she talks about how it’s hard sometimes to live with the hustle and bustle of life on the outside, but what about when you have that feeling inside?

Have you ever been there? I have.

For me, I’m realizing that Christmas and Back to School are some of the most fun times of the year, but also the busiest. I mean, the lists and all the shopping they demand is enough stress to make me throw up my hands and give up. To not care and not try.

The resources – time, money, energy flowing through my fingers from the stress of getting things together at the last minute. What should be exciting and energizing makes my soul feel weighed down and crushed. And don’t get me wrong I love to buy me some Crayola – I would have 3 sets of every product they sell if I had unlimited resources.

Last August, after what felt like the hundredth trip to the store, I developed a weird connection between how much I loved my child and whether they had the best name brand water bottle for school. That’s when I knew something was wrong in my spirit, and I had waited too long to get ready for going back to school.

Waiting until the last minute, or doing a whole bunch of preparing all at once isn’t good for my soul. The rush, the pressure, the money, the panic to do-everything-right weighs me down and I don’t make wise choices under these circumstances. I make fast choices.

Fast choices during a Back to School sale aren’t good choices.

So this year, I’ve decided to chronicle my #Back2School adventure (using this hashtag). I’ll be sharing daily (except Sundays) what little progress I’m making on getting ready for school in a way that allows me to breathe.

Since we just moved into our home the first weekend of July, the series will start out with a bang – some really awful BEFORE pictures of what our schoolroom was. WAS. There will be an AFTER picture but I’m not aiming for perfection.

My motto is: Focus on function – don’t pine (or pin) after perfection.

Focus on Function don't pine after perfection for B2S

I found this little scribble in an old Bullet Journal (more on Bullet Journals for school on Day 8!).

I’m asking myself what little step can I take today to get me closer to my goal of being ready for school?

It can seem so overwhelming to face transitions, change, and challenges – but I’ve been slowly learning that I can break down what seems like a huge task into bite size pieces.

I hope this series will inspire you to break down your challenging tasks – will you join me for #Back2School in #31Days?

Here’s the index:

For more help to break down tasks into bite size pieces, I highly recommend Tsh Oxenreider’s book One Bite at a Time 52 Weeks of breaking life’s tasks into manageable chunks. (This is an affiliate link. I own the book and love it – I think you will too.)728x90

6 thoughts on “#Back2School in #31Days: Day 1 – The Why

  1. I can so relate to this. Why haven’t I thought to write out what all I need to do and break it into pieces? I definitely need to do that. Also, Christmas stresses me out so bad, just hearing the word starts the stress.


    • I just wrote about preparing for December now. I know the crazy feeling of dread when it comes to Christmas – and then the shame/guilt of feeling like “this is supposed to be so exciting and happy, why am I so freaked out?”

      I’m strategizing for that now in hopes to relieve some of that pressure come November 30th. 🙂


    • Check out Fly Lady’s Christmas Control Notebook & Cruise Missions. The idea is you pretend you’re going on a cruise the last 2 weeks before Christmas and have to have everything done ahead of time. She has daily goals, that are manageable, and it really has been helpful. (e.g. one day it’s nothing more than making sure you have wrapping paper and tape in the house.) Very helpful!


  2. Cara, thank you for this. Today is Aug. 23rd, and while I”ve been planning in my head, now I’m trying to plan for real, and am on the verge of hyperventilating. So happy to have found your blog, and your list. Thank you!


    • Kim,

      Whether you’re a veteran home schooler or a newbie – I think this time of year is tempting for us all to hyperventilate! Even if it’s just in the check out lane of the local school supply store – ouch, right?!

      I’ve been wanting to help myself work through better planning (I too tend to plan in my head) since the spring when we bought our curricula for the fall – I know how challenging it is to go it alone.

      So I hope you know you aren’t alone! Going back to school for a home schooler is intense. You’re in good company. 🙂


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