As many of you are aware, we now have a real life school aged child. People warned me that leaving our girl on the first day (or week, for some) would make for some tough emotional work as a parent. I mean, my entire Facebook feed was flooded with “Dear baby, on your first day of school” articles and a lot of really emotionally charged statuses regarding kids growing up. I want my kids to stay little as much as the next mama, but truthfully, it wasn’t really like that for me. I was nervous, sure. But it was pretty mild, I knew that was where our girl wanted to be, and that she was going to have an amazing time learning and having the opportunity to make new friends. Plus, it kind of takes a lot for me to cry, so there’s that.
Most of the moms I know personally all have little ones in similar ages and stages as mine, so it makes sense that I didn’t see a lot of practical advice being handed out. Hey, we’re all in this together! Luckily though, I have a friend (singular, yes) with a child older than mine, and before she moved she filled me in on the one struggle that us parents tend to overlook until it’s too late, and you’re drowning in it, and it’s taking up all of your counter space, and you’re laying awake at night thinking of how to deal with all of it. Yeah… I’m talking about school work. You know, the cute little worksheet and drawings your babe proudly brings home to you, without fail, almost every day. Just yesterday my little one brought home like four sheets of school work to show me. FOUR sheets. It was probably somewhere in the middle of week two that I realized I couldn’t see my beautiful white countertop, and decided I needed to follow my friends lead, and start organizing this stuff. As much as I love and obsess over each and every little pencil scratch, it all can’t stay.
I know, it’s so so hard to pick and choose what to keep, and it pulls at our heart strings to throw away anything related to our children, but I promise you, it’s for the best. Because let’s be honest, how many of us actually sit around looking at the school work of our past? I know I don’t. So I figured I might as well get ahead of the curve and only save some of the stuff they’re never going to look at. And I also figured that there is likely a mom out there like me, who knows she can’t keep each and every scrap, but can’t throw it all away, and has a hard time deciding what to keep. And since we’re all in this thing together, I felt it was probably a good idea to share what I came up with to minimize the school work takeover. All you’ll need is a binder (I chose a two inch), and some page protectors. Oh, and some sort of rules to follow. Mine are as follows:
- If it is a drawing/art or has actual writing on it, it can stay.
- Everything else goes.
Another trick I have picked up is to do this daily, so you don’t get tricked into thinking something needs to stay when it really doesn’t. That’s the worst.
Hopefully this is helpful to someone out there. At the very least, I kind of wanted to post about it so that I can look back on it a few years from now, ya know, just incase I somehow fall into the adorable schoolwork black hole.
Happy counter clearing fellow mom friends!