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We are two working mothers — Lauren Rose, the director of business development for Name Bubbles, and Betsy DeMars, the assistant managing editor at The Saratogian. Try as we may to be really good at both, balancing motherhood and career can get pretty messy. As professionals, work schedules and mommy schedules often collide. So, we plow through, hoping at the end of the day, our kids — Lauren's 5-year-old son and Betsy's 11-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter — know how much we love them.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Same old stuff, new school year

Aaaaahhh ... the first day of school has arrived. No fanfare at my house this year, though. Other than loading their (used) backpacks full of (new) supplies, it was the same old bus, same old time, same old almost everything.

Sure, they both got a few new items of clothing, like socks and a couple of T-shirts. But they both had plenty of most necessities.

In previous years, new shoes have been a must after a summer of hard-core outdoor activity (in which their sneakers double as bike brakes). My son's seemed mostly intact, although we found some inexpensive back-ups at Target this weekend. This morning, however, the shoebox was nowhere to be found. I checked the receipt, and indeed, we paid for them. Somehow, they did not make it home from the store. Yeah, like I have time for that kind of mix-up. No matter to my son, who really just wanted to wear his old Vans anyway.

My daughter, whom I assumed would wear the nearly new Sketchers handed down from her cousin, instead opted for some beat-up old sneaks that I didn't know still fit her. "What are you wearing those for?" I asked. "It looks like you're going out to mow the lawn." Which was a weird thing to say because my daughter has never mowed the lawn. Isn't that where all old sneakers get relegated to, though?

"But Mom, these (the newish Sketchers) look weird with my "Tuesday" socks!" (She just got new socks with the days of the week on them.)

And off they both went to the bus stop with raggity shoes. It didn't matter to me, either. It made me think of something my sister said when we were camping two weeks ago. Her boys were covered in your basic layer of camping scuz, and she said, "It's funny, a couple years ago I would have been scrubbing their feet before they got in the tent, and now I don't even care if they sleep in their clothes." So true, how over the years you abandon the stuff that wasn't really worth stressing out about in the first place.

Being all shiny and new today didn't seem to phase my kids. And even without new shoes, they were both happy and eager to start their new school year, so it seems they were still getting off on the right foot.


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