End of School Year: Get Organized

For the kids, it is freedom. School is over and the summer stretches its loving arms out to envelope them. But here you are stuck with a stack of yellowing papers, well worn book bags, smelly gym gear, art projects, pens and everything else that was stuffed into their lockers all year.

Before you go into a panic, inhale deeply and start on this task right away. You might wonder how such small people can accumulate so much junk. Instead of dwelling on that fact, it is best to get started sorting through it all. Leaky pens, holey gym clothes and old papers can be discarded.
One clutter free way to keep those A+ papers forever is to photograph them and save them digitally. If you are really on top of things, you have been doing this throughout the school year. But do not beat yourself up for not taking photos before now. Try to only keep one spectacular project per child per year. If you add it all up, by high school graduation, you will have plenty of memories.
If your kids are at that “growing like a weed” stage, you will probably need to go through their closets and drawers and remove anything that no longer fits. Depending on the age of the children, they may help you with this project. Unfortunately, a trip to the mall for summer garb may be in order after a good closet cleaning.
Old clothing can be handed down, donated or tossed, depending on how much wear they have had. If you have space, winter clothes can be moved elsewhere in your home. Bulky sweaters and coats can take up a lot of room.
Schedules will change, especially when all of the adults work outside of the home. While there are no more school carpools, there are kids that need to be entertained and watched all summer. Since there is no homework, summer chores can be added to their schedule to help you. And since most parents are not above bribery, special rewards or privileges can be offered in exchange for a job well done.
Try to do something fun with your kids at the end of the school year. Visit that new restaurant, play some arcade games, go camping for the weekend or take them on the trip they begged you about all year. Try to do an activity that you will all enjoy, and give yourselves a nice bonding moment at the same time.
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