First Day of Preschool #BTSConBritax

Disclosure: As a Britax Latina Blogger/Advisory Board Member (and in partnership with Mami Innovative Media), this post is part of a sponsored outreach. All opinions expressed are my own.

With a 15-year-old daughter, I’ve been through a lot of back-to-school days.  I’ve seen her grow from the cutest little preschooler to a beautiful young lady in high school.  Every year it’s a struggle to get used to the transition and early mornings – and there’s always a first day of school picture.  This year, though, I was a little more apprehensive than usual.  I hardly got any sleep the night before as I tossed and turned the entire night.  Because this year, you see, would be the very first time that I’d be sending my youngest off to school.

For most kids, starting school is an exciting time.  Going to school, meeting new friends and playing with new toys are all things that most kids look forward to, but for my anxiety-prone kid with sensory integration issues and difficulty with transitions, it was something he was dreading.  We tried getting him excited about his first day for weeks, but every time we would bring it up he would immediately say, “But I don’t want to go to school.  Why can’t I stay home?”, and those statements are usually accompanied by tears.  It broke my heart a little more each day.

Why couldn’t he get excited about it?  Why was he so afraid?  What more could I do to get him pumped about it?  Thoughts like those and more are what kept me up the entire night before.

When morning finally arrived, I was probably just as nervous as he was.  I was probably most afraid that he would have a meltdown at drop-off and not let me leave.  (For those of you that don’t know, my son is very loud, and neighbors down the block would likely be able to hear him if he started bawling!)

We were able to get him up, dressed, and fed without much issue, but as you can see by the red eyes and nose in the picture below, he tensed up and started crying right before we headed out the door.  I’ll be honest and say that I was thisclose to saying to hell with it all and keeping him at home.

First-Day-of-Preschool

But, if I want my son to be a “big boy”, I couldn’t let him run from his fears.  We’d both have to suck it up, get in the car, and just go.

First-Day

The car ride was fine. He wiped his tears, and I kept trying to reassure him that he was going to have an amazing day, that he’d love his teachers, and he’d get to play with some new friends.  He was letting it sink in…a little.

We arrived about 10 minutes early, and it was just enough time to let him let loose a bit, get out of his super-comfy (and super-safe, and my-shameless-plug-because-I-love-them-so-much) Britax Advocate 70 CS car seat, and take some selfies, of course!  By the time school was about to start, he had calmed down a lot, and was ready to go.

First-Day-Collage

And you know what – he did have an amazing day.

How were your kids on the first day of school?

Back to School Memories #SafeConBritaxBTS

Disclosure: As a Britax Latina Blogger/Advisory Board Member (and in partnership with Mami Innovative Media), this post is part of a sponsored outreach. All opinions expressed are my own.

Just the other day I posted this picture on Facebook for #ThrowbackThursday of my daughter’s first day of Kindergarten.

Back to School Kindergarten

She was with me when I posted it and we started reminiscing about back to school firsts.  She’s in high school now, but still remembers her very first day – her friends, her teachers, and how nervous and excited she was on her very first day.  She came home bursting with stories to tell – about circle time, recess, story time, and even lunch!  She had a great day.

I, on the other hand, remember the day a little bit differently.  I was a nervous wreck because I wondered if she would miss me.  Would she make friends?  Would she misbehave?  Would she even like school?  The countdown to pick-up time was excruciating!  I remember being one of the first parents to arrive at the gate before dismissal time.  And then my relief to learn that all was a-ok…phew!  It was bittersweet for me to remember that day because I can see how much she’s grown and changed since then.  We’ve been though many “first days” since Kindergarten, and each year is just as exciting as the one before.

BRITAX Pinnacle

It also got me thinking that my little guy will be going to school in just a few short years.  The time seems far away now, but I know it’ll be here in a flash.  I’m sure I’ll be the same neurotic mess that I was 10 years ago, but hopefully I’ll learn to cope a little better by then.  Where does the time go?!?!

How did you handle your child’s first day of Kindergarten?  Please tell me I’m not the only crazy one?!?!

Back to School for a Teenager

I’m not sure why, but something about back to school – and back to the same ‘ol same, ‘ol routine – has had me feeling particularly lazy lately.  Not sure if it has been boredom, exhaustion, or just a plain old mourning of the summer months, but this year “Back to School” has really kicked my you-know-what!  It never used to be like this when I was a kid getting ready for my own back to school routine.  I used to LOVE it!

Hmm, loving back to school, you say?

Yes.  If you must know, I was a nerd.  Head of my class, straight-A student and all that.  When I was in grade school I couldn’t wait to go back to school.  I missed my friends, my teachers, and even my homework assignments.  Summers were ok, of course, but I mostly remember just getting to sleep in pretty late…like, noon late. (That’s one aspect of my childhood I wish I could get back!)

I grew up in Chicago, so the end of summer and Back to School meant no more playing volleyball in the street, no more freeze tag, no more hanging out at the “pump” (someone would open the fire hydrant and we’d have an instant sprinkler to cool off in), no more chillin’ on my friends front steps till it was dark out…Back to School promptly put an end to some of my best memories as a kid.

But Back to School was also a beginning.  The start of school supply shopping, buying a new outfit for the 1st day of school, organizing all my new gear in my brand-new backpack, and the beginning of a new year for learning. I already mentioned I was a nerd, right?

My baby girl back in the day (when school was still cool)!

This year, my daughter entered her last year of middle school. (Yes, I am the proud mom of an 8th grader!)  Somehow all the fond memories I have about going back to school seemed to skip a generation.  Back to school doesn’t hold the same sense of joyous anticipation for her.  Back to school instead means waking up too early, actually having assignment deadlines, fighting the urge not to fall asleep during a Science lecture, and falsely claiming to have learned something each day.

*SIGH*  Oh where did I go wrong with this one?  Why can’t back to school be something to look forward to, instead of something to try and avoid?  Don’t get me wrong – I do believe she learns something every day and she does have good grades, but would it kill her to actually enjoy it?

Sometimes I think it might.

Does Back to School conjure up pleasant memories for you?  Please tell me I’m not the only “nerd” in the group!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post as a Britax Latina Advisory Board Member and Blogger. As always, all opinions, ideas, and stories stated here are clearly my own.

Back to School: Transitions

It’s almost hard to believe that we’ve already entered the end of September.  Long, hot summer days are behind us (*sigh*) and kids are back in school.  I was especially nervous about this school year since it’s the first time – EVER – that my daughter had to ride a school bus for her last year of middle school.  On the bus with local high schoolers, no less!  I completely opposed my district’s decision to transition the eighth graders into an older, farther building (her previous middle school was modern, less than 5-years-old, and blocks from home).  But, I digress.  That’s a whole other post!

Whether or not I favored her new school, that fact remained that she was returning to school.  The last year before high school.  (I can’t ever remember feeling so old.)  As uneasy as I was about her return to school – and her first (and only) year at a brand new school – I knew I had to have a conversation with her about how she was feeling about the whole transition.

The first few concerns she had were typical: riding the bus with a lot of people she didn’t know, the condition of the school (no A/C, for example), the apprehension about entering a new school as an “outsider” – all topics I could handle and discuss at length.  Her fears weren’t abnormal.  In fact, I’d bet the majority of students that had to transfer with her were feeling pretty much the same way.  As long as I made sure she felt confident and prepared for the change, she’d be ok.

The confidence aspect, I knew, was largely up to her.  But the preparedness, I figured, “I’ve got this!”  School bag – check!  Pens, paper, notebooks – check!  Art supplies – check!  A TI30XIIS calculator – check!  I even went a step further and supplied her with a “Personal Beauty Bag” for her first day (which she loved, btw!)  I filled that little pink bag with everything I thought a teenage girl would need to get her through the school day.  She has hair bands, band-aids, a comb, sample-sized perfume, lotion, eyeliner, mascara, a mirror, lip gloss, and, most-importantly, her U by Kotex Tween Pads for those “oops” days.

At first she questioned the pads, thinking “Why should I carry those around every day?”, but I assured her that, especially at her age, accidents happen and you don’t always know when you’re going to get your period.  Sure enough, two weeks into the school year, her Personal Beauty Bag was a lifesaver for her as she found herself in the restroom in the middle of the day.  Just sayin’.

So moms, how do you help your child prepare for the school year?  What worked this year, and what didn’t?  I’d love to know.

For more information on the products offered by U by Kotex, the Kotex website www.kotex.com/tween is a great reference.  And you may want to pass on the U by Kotex website www.ubykotex.com/helloperiod to your teen or tween – the site may help answer some of their questions.

Disclosure:  I wrote this review while participating in a Brand Ambassador Campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of U by Kotex Tween and received products to facilitate my post and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Back-to-School Shopping with Famous Footwear

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Famous Footwear. All opinions are 100% mine.

I can hardly believe that it’s almost time for my daughter to go back to school.  The summer flew by way too fast!  Just this week I went through her school supply list and realized all the supplies that I have yet to purchase…it’s overwhelming really.  But while I know that finding her supplies is going to be a chore, I know that finding her cute shoes at great prices won’t be too hard with Famous Footwear. They have hundreds of brand name shoes and thousands of styles – all for a lot less money than other stores.

I love how Famous Footwear has all their shoes right out in the open, so when you want to try something on you just find your size and put them on.  No need to find (and usually wait) for the clerk to arrive, wait some more while they go to the stock room to find your size, only to have them come back and say they no longer have the shoes in your size.  (Yeah, after you already fell in love with those shoes while you waited!)

FF-BiggestVictory-GIF_300x250(1).jpg

What’s even better is that right now, through 8/18/12, you can score a really great deal with the BOGO + 15% off Famous Footwear Coupon!  Hurry and print now to take advantage of this fantastic back-to-school promotion!!!

Want to sweeten this deal even further?!?!  Join Famous Footwear’s FREE Rewards Program.  You’ll receive awesome benefits like:

• Earn 1 point for every $1 you spend in-store or online 
• Accumulate points to earn certificates up to $100 a year 
• Discount offer just for signing up 
• Other special inside discounts and perk

The deal is so much sweeter as a Rewards Program member because instead of saving the 15%, you’ll receive 20% off as a member.  That’s 20% off PLUS the BOGO (Buy One Get One ½ Off), making your back-to-school shopping SO much easier! :)

Visit Sponsor's Site

Kleenex and Back to School

School’s back in session…at least it is for us anyway!  My baby girl is officially a 7th grader!  YIKES!!!  (Nothing makes you feel older than having a little lady in the house.)  She’s loving it so far – but I don’t exactly love the amount spent on school supplies. :-)

Calculator, paper, pens, erasers, binders, folders…so, so much!

The one thing I did enjoying giving her for back-to-school, however, is…KLEENEX!

Thanks to the Mom Bloggers Club, I received three new Kleenex packages to review…and I LOVE them!  Well, one, I can’t live without Kleenex anyway, and these convenient new packages are perfect for anyone on-the-go.

  • The wallet pack. It is thin and sleek, so you can always keep a tissue on hand. Their trendy design and convenient size make it the perfect accessory for hip tweens and teens.
  • The auto pack. It fits perfectly in the car door or glove compartment – no need to lug around a box of tissue or fumble in a purse for a tissue while driving.
  • The new and improved pocket pack. A long-time favorite has been improved to feature three-ply tissue.  This one looks just like the old one, but the 3-ply tissues are in all of them.

I couldn’t exactly use the wallet pack, since my tween took that one right away.  But I really liked the slim design (guess she did too!).

Kleenex is such an awesome brand (who really asks for a “tissue” anyway – you always ask for a “Kleenex”) but now they’re doing something that only increased their awesomeness with me.  Kleenex has committed $500,000 to U.S. schools to keep field trips as part of the regular curriculum.  Field trips are the best part of the school year!  It really stinks that budget cuts have forced schools to cut all kinds of programs – but not field trips too!!!

Think your school could benefit?  Register your school for a chance at a portion of that cash!  Here’s how:

  • Visit www.Facebook.com/Kleenex.
  • Click on the “Field Trips” tab at the top of the page
  • Vote for your favorite participating school -or-
  •  Register the school of your choice by clicking the “Add a School” box and filling out the digital registration form
  • The top 100 U.S. schools that finish with the most votes on the Kleenex brand Facebook page will receive a $5,000 award from the Kleenex brand.
  • Voting ends on September 14.
  • Visit Facebook.com/Kleenex for complete entry requirements and to learn how you and your friends and family can help win field trips for your child’s school.

Good luck!  And I hope your kids have an awesome school year.

DISCLAIMER:  I received three (one of each) new Kleenex packs to review from Mom Bloggers Club.  However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

 

 

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