Favorite Little Moments: Back to School 2017

The last couple of weeks have been a bit of a roller coaster. It’s back to school time, and that is always a little overwhelming. And, this year was no exception.

Summer ended, my children went back to school, my youngest started kindergarten (!!!), extracurricular activities began, homework season has started, and I am already tired of packing school lunches. Not to mention all of the crazy natural disasters all across our country. In short, I have been stressed out and a little overwhelmed.

Goodbye to the lazy days of summer. Hello to the busy days of balancing school schedules and extracurricular activities. #backtoschool #balancingact

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But today I am choosing to focus on positive events from the past couple of weeks.

Here are a few of my favorite little moments:

Saying “Bonjour” to New Bonding Opportunities

My teen has started French this year in school. I took French for a little over three years myself, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that I still remember a lot of it. We have had a pretty good time speaking en Français to one another.

Adventuring with my Dad

My dad and I enjoy hiking. My children do not enjoy it as much as we do though. Lucky for me, all three of my children are in school now. That frees me up to do things that I enjoy more often. So my dad and I are trying to fit in a hike each week while the weather is still nice. Our first adventure was to Rosy Mound Natural Area in Grand Haven, Michigan. It was beautiful and calming. I can’t wait for our next adventure together!

Related: On one of my last major hiking adventures with my dad, we hiked 12 miles of the North Country Trail where we saw Big Foot and other interesting “wildlife”. It was a wonderful and fun experience! We plan to hike another portion of the North Country Trail this week!

Observing the Deepening Friendship of Siblings 

My two youngest children are in different grades – 3rd grade and kindergarten – at the same school now. Unfortunately, their classrooms are on opposite sides of the building and they play on separate playgrounds at recess. After spending  time together constantly all summer long, they are missing each other. My heart melted when I overheard this sweet little conversation after school the other day.

5yo: I wish I was already in third grade.

8yo: Yeah. Me, too. Then we could be in the same class together. I would really like that.

5yo: Yeah. I would like that, too.

Heart melted, right?

Discovering Rainbows!

We had a couple days of confused weather – you know, when the sun shines brightly through the broken clouds but it is still lightly raining. Both days, I kept looking outside for rainbows but never found one. Then one evening, we were rushing out to the car to attend a school open house when I looked up and saw it – a big, bright, brilliant rainbow! We all stopped to admire it – my husband, myself, my children, our neighbors… What a magnificent sight! What a beautiful spell-binding moment!

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 Scoring Big at the Used Book Sale

If you know me at all, then you know I love books. Our library has a used book sale twice a year, and I am a little addicted to these sales. I mark the dates on my calendar in brightly colored ink, and on the day of the sale, I am as excited as a small child on Christmas morning. Their most recent sale was last week. My mom and I arrived right as it first opened, and I am so thrilled with my finds from this sale. I scored two new Calvin & Hobbes books for my middle child to add to his collection. I bought a funny picture book titled Flo & Wendell featuring dogs for my puppy-obsessed youngest child. I picked up a Lord of the Rings DVD for my husband and teenage son to enjoy. And for me? I picked up a Sandra Dallas novel, Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, and a travel memoir titled We’ll Always Have Paris. These new-to-me books already bring me joy just seeing them on my bookshelves. I can’t wait to read them!

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With all of these lovely moments, the busy/crazy/hectic moments somehow don’t seem quite so overwhelming. Thank goodness for these happy little moments!

What were your favorite moments from the last couple of weeks?

The start of a new school year can be overwhelming. However, precious little moments like these ones make it all worthwhile.
The start of a new school year can be overwhelming. However, precious little moments like these ones make it all worthwhile.

If you enjoyed reading this, you may also like these other Minivan Adventures posts:

  • Read about our one-day 3-generation 12-mile hike along the North Country Trail.
  • See how the solar eclipse was a perfect end-of-summer experience for our family.
  • Join our family for one of our favorite wet weather activities – a rain walk!


  1. What a heartwarming article!! It’s so sweet how much your kids love one another. We are a full month into school now and summer vacation feels like it happened years ago!

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