In another version of my life, somewhere out there in an alternate Pinterest universe, I am the type of mother who is already prepping for the most amazing school year known to mankind.
The alternate-universe Chaunie has planned a rotating menu of lunches to ensure that my children will never be bored, researched the hippest trends so my girls will fit right in, purchased the latest in eco and organic lunchware and is fully stocked and ready with loads of lunchbox love notes.
But in reality?
The real-life Chaunie knows that her back-to-school enthusiasm will fade faster than my attempt at pink highlights. Lunches will be slapped together for whatever the kids will agree to eat, plastic bags will never look better and I’ll be lucky to remember a napkin, let alone a carefully penned love note. So instead of getting my hopes up only to fail at yet another motherhood task I’m “supposed” to do, I’m starting out the school year by keeping my expectations nice and low. Allow me to admit right here and right now that I will definitely not be doing any of these things.
1. Spending any brain cells on getting my daughter to eat a variety of lunches
My daughter once handed me — I kid you not — a list of “pre-approved” lunch menu items that included steak, bacon and hamburgers, and I’m still laughing about it. She pretty much refuses to eat any food I pack her, so instead of racking my brain and scouring the ends of the Pinterest-earth to find anything she will eat, I’ll be sticking with the basics and hoping her palate eventually catches up with civilization.
2. Printing any love notes
OK, fine, maybe I’ll print one. But that’s it. If I remember to do it any other day, you had better believe some Sharpie marker and a napkin is as fancy as it’s going to get.
3. Buying all-new wardrobes for the kiddos
Hahahaha, what do I look like? A money tree? Hand-me-downs for the win.
4. Attempting to cut anything into any shape other than the way it came
Unless it’s looking as nature intended, it’s not going into the lunchbox. We do realize that our kids are just going to chew up and swallow these elaborate lunches, right? As in, they are destroyed without so much as a downwards glance in the lunchroom?
5. Pretending to wake up early
You know you always start the school year thinking, “This will be the year I’ll get up 15 hours before the kids and work out and make homemade breakfast every.single.morning”? Yeah, I’m just not even going to pretend this time. We all know I’ll be snoring until the last possible minute and driving everyone to school with two different shoes on.
If they’re lucky.