The Back To School Honeymoon is OVER!

Second semester,  it is time to face facts –  the back to school honeymoon is OVER!  Don’t kid yourself or worse blame yourself that your goals for the school year are dwindling before your eyes.  You are not alone, I repeat, we are all rowing in this sinking boat.

So, for goodness sake, let’s stop pretending…

… that all of the tags haven’t been ripped from the new clothes and that those same clothes are not part of the obstacle course that is your child’s bedroom floor.laundry_pile_teenager

… that the beautiful, healthy, lunch of fresh veggies, a palm size serving of protein, water in a BPA free, hypoallergenic, bottle that you made the first week of school has not devolved into the what can I grab quickly and throw in a bag so they won’t starve lunch.lunch_snacks_lunch_bag

… that the  “place for everything and everything in its place” mantra doesn’t now include the piles on the staircase.piles_staircase_

… that the hot, nutritious, breakfast you saw on Pinterest hasn’t been replaced with “grab the muffins and get in the car”.muffins_breakfast

How do I know this to be true?

Because these beautiful photos are from my home with my three teenagers.  I will be the first to admit I started the year with grandiose promises to myself and now that the back to school honeymoon is over I am adjusting the oars on my boat!  For example, I made egg sandwiches the second day of school (I forgot to make breakfast the first day of school yes, please read about me in yet another mother of the year audition.)  I would love to say I have made egg sandwiches since, but my momma taught me not to lie.

My teenagers have bureaus and closets however they prefer the floor method no matter how much I nag.

It never ceases to amaze me that when I pile things on the stairs for the next person to take upstairs I am the only one who sees them.

We started the year up and early and ready for the bus, currently we are cutting it ever closer, including missing the bus one day this week. The day they missed the bus was the same day I had an early appointment, I will let you imagine how that car ride went.  (Which reminds me… here is a link to a workshop video where I talk about one of my children missing the bus!)

What to do…

Well if I had the cure for teenage floors and healthy eating, I would be a very wealthy (and healthier) Mom.  Now that I realize my goals were probably unattainable, here are my household adjustments.  Living better is an ongoing effort, it requires continuous attention and adjustment, so here goes the adjustments for this house!

  1. Three cheers for football season and friends and family coming over to watch the Patriots!  I say this because I am a volume cooker and Sundays mean cooking.  Anything and everything it does not even have to “go together”.  I have been known to make rice and mashed potatoes (because someone requested each one) for the same Sunday meal.  The beauty of this is LEFTOVERS!  If two or more meals during the week are reheats or simple additions from the cooking on Sunday, I am golden!
  2. I will ask my kids to pick three healthy snacks that they will either pack in their lunch or eat when they get home.  Add these items to the shopping list (which means start using a shopping list again, the summer is over, no more winging it when you get to the store.)
  3. See if I can’t get a smoothie or parfait done at least once a week for breakfast.
  4. I have actually resolved the bedroom floor issue by closing the door during the week, HOWEVER, floors are cleared, laundry is begun and beds are made before anything else happens on the weekend (including Friday night)!  This has been a game changer… give it a try!
  5. I’m still thinking about the staircase thing…. I mean really, you walk upstairs, you said you needed more deodorant, there it sits just waiting for a ride upstairs to your armpit, I just don’t get it.  Your suggestions here are most welcome!
Thank you for reading this post!  I hope you enjoyed it and as always I would love to hear your suggestions for anything and everything that makes life during the school year easier, not perfect, just living better.
To read more about organization and children please pick up a copy of my new book Barbies in the Horse Bin, Living Better with Organized Children.  I can promise you it reads like no other “organizing” book!  

Want to learn more about raising an organized child?  Contact me about a presentation for your school, parent group, library or church!

About LB Living Better

Lisa Bates has a Master's degree in Counseling Psychology, Certification to teach Behavioral Sciences and a degree in Business Administration. From school administrator and non-profit executive, to teacher, coach, counselor and mom, Lisa has extensive experience, knowledge and training working with children from toddlers to teenagers. Currently, Lisa owns and operates LB Living Better an organizational and educational services business. Lisa has just released her first book, Barbies in the Horse Bin, Living Better with Organized Children and she is a seasoned, energizing, humorous, workshop presenter with extensive experience. As a mother of three teenagers including twin boys, Lisa maintains her sanity by writing, travelling and playing with her dogs. Read more about Lisa Bates at or contact her at

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