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Keep Your Backpacks Packed Up!

The other day my daughter, Gabriella, and I were in the store casually minding our own business when we came upon a sight so terrifying it caused me to stop dead in my tracks, causing the person behind me to crash into me. What could cause such a reaction in someone who is (for the most part) able to go with the flow?

Back-to-school supplies, backpacks, and lunchboxes.

There I was with my mouth agape, stammering something completely incoherent as I stared at the horror before me. While I stood there -- receiving more than my fair share of strange looks -- I felt someone grab my back pocket and yank it. I turned to give the rude person a piece of my mind when I found myself face-to-face with the Phys-Ed teacher at Gabriella’s elementary school.

I pointed at the display of supplies mocking us. We stared together in what could only be described as a moment of shared dread. I turned to her with anguish in my voice and asked, “Why? Why would they do this? We are in the middle of summer! I don’t want to be reminded of school yet!” She was in total agreement.

I continued, “I bet we could take them down, you know? Grab the man setting up the displays and bury him under a pile of High School Musical and Transformer backpacks and no one would be the wiser.” I smiled as I thought about this wonderful, diabolical plan of mine.

She laughed and we chatted about our summers, about the ways we are both enjoying it and wasting it, and agreed to remain in denial about school breathing down our necks.

I'm nowhere near ready to think about school starting again, let alone actually go as far as to buy any supplies. I have things to do! I'm not sure what they are, but I know they do not involve anything that happens in a school. I have trips to take that will not occur on a school bus. In fact, I have work to do, and none of it is PTA related. (Okay, some of it is PTA related but if I call it “pre-PTA preparation while enjoying summer” it keeps me from throwing up in my mouth a little bit.)

You see, I am a summer girl. I always have been. I like the fun of the not-so-strict rules and schedules. I like that if I stay up until 3:00 a.m., I am not out of my bed at 6:00 a.m. schlepping kids all over town. I like naps, spontaneous trips, sleepovers, and staying out past curfew on week nights. Like my kids, I get through the school days knowing summer is coming. I am not about to cut this short -- mentally or physically -- to get back into school mode.

So, Mr. Stocker Man, kindly take your backpacks and shove them back into your storeroom for another few weeks before I have a meltdown right here in the middle of your store. Mama needs a few more weeks to catch her breath before the insanity begins.

And if you need me, I will be outside enjoying the summer with my kids. In a backpack-free zone.