Last night children across our city lay in bed anxiously awaiting the start of the school year. Back packs were set out, next to “first day” outfits carefully selected, lunches were packed and alarms set. Momma’s everywhere moved up the bed time in hopes of thwarting the inevitable crankiness that comes with morning.
And yet, despite the thoughtful preparations, perhaps the morning didn’t go as seamlessly as you’d planned. Maybe someone walked out the door in tears and without a lunch. Or someone spilled milk down their new shirt or is anxious about a new school and leaving behind old friends.
Momma, hear me. It’s okay.
Even if you started the morning late, couldn’t find the left shoe and missed the bus, don’t worry.
It’s really not too late to start the year off right.
There’s no lack of good advice when it comes to sending our babies back to school and I’ve found much of it applies whether their 8 or 18.
Before the first day we try to start them early on a course of returning to a school routine. Early bedtimes, early wak-up times and the hopefully expectation that they’ll make their bed before they leave the house. (It’s good to be optimistic!)
We encourage them to eat a healthy breakfast and hope they follow the same approach with lunch.
And hopefully by now they’ve mastered the “finger-tip”, “reach for the stars” and “plumber’s crack” dress code test.
Everything from their backpack to their water bottle has been labeled with a Sharpie – they’ll lose at least one thing before the end of the first week.
We remind them not to chat too much with their friends, to listen to their teachers and double check that they put deodorant on that morning. In between sibling arguments about who was touching whom and who is wearing their big sister’s new favorite shirt we remind them to look out for their little sister when they get to school.
We remind them that they represent the family name and to make wise choices.
We remind them that we love them and to have a “good” day.
You’re off to a good start momma. Rolling down our mental checklist, many of those “pieces” of advice come to us instinctively.
Imagine what would happen if we took the bits of advice and encouragement we send our children off with one step further. In fact, it’s not too late to do just that.
As a momma and follower of Jesus I know that we are raising our daughters to be the next generation of Kingdom builders. I bet you feel the same about your children.
We expect and encourage our girls to be leaders in their classrooms, their community, at church and at home. The Weatherman and I set our expectations through our words as well as our behavior.
We work to make sure they see both of us leading and serving in a variety of capacities and purposefully seek out opportunities where they can serve along side us. We are also deliberate in our words and the instruction the girls receive.Be kind to one another. Be generous. And, don't be afraid to say you're sorry. #BackToSchool #AdviceForOurKids #ItsNotTooLate Click To Tweet
Here are a few of the words we share with our girls that you might like to consider adding to your morning routine.
- Honor your teacher.
- Use your words carefully.
- Be generous with one another.
- It’s good to talk about how you feel.
- Being first isn’t as important as doing your best.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help or to say your sorry.
- You cannot be the best at everything. We all have different gifts.
- Standup for injustice – speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.
- Be kind to your classmates, your friends, and your little sister.
- When you are struggling with something in school stop and pray; if you see a friend struggling pray with them.
The final piece to start the year off right.
No secret sauce, just words.
Make sure that the coming days, weeks and months are filled with prayer for and by your children. Join with other parents and teachers in prayer for the year. Give the grandparents and favorite aunties little prayer lists for your kids.
Momma, before this new week and then semester careen by, pray with your children and encourage them to pray for their teachers and classmates. Pray with your kids as they struggle to return to the early morning routine and after the first best friend tiff. Pray when their faced with the first math test of the year.
Pray for wisdom and the courage to do what is right.
Pray for them to lead and not follow.
Pray for wise choices.
Pray for Godly friends.
Pray over it all, and then do it all over again.
Remember Momma, no matter how the first day went it’s never to late to start the year off right.