I am working on an article and the deadline is looming so after Mass this morning I planted myself at the local Panera's for some focused working. When I am at home there are so many distractions that make it easy to procrastinate. Laundry needs to be done, the bathroom needs to be scrubbed, dust on various bookshelves just screams to be cleared, and of course since Mom is home, everyone else who is home has a question/problem that needs to be answered.
In a couple hours I made real headway on my article. I didn't finish it, but I have a good idea of where I am going. This progress was made in spite of being surrounded by the constant din of parents and children having one last outing before school begins tomorrow. All of my children are either in undergraduate college studies, graduate school, or out in the work force. I realized that I miss the fervor of the first day of school. Fresh new binders, neatly stacked paper, perfectly sharpened pencils, a plethora of pens, markers that still have ink, and unbroken crayons all signal a new school year full of promise and potential.
The snatches of conversations I heard around me were interesting. Parents were exhorting their children that this year things would be different. Computer games and television viewing would be limited and allowed only after homework was done and some time was spent reading. Backpacks would be packed at bedtime so there would be no mad rush in the morning. Clothes would be picked out and readied the night before each school day. All homework and school papers would be reviewed nightly. I recognized myself in all these good intentions. We tried most of these at one point or another. Some worked. Others fell by the wayside either because they were too onerous or we were just not disciplined enough. Still, it is very encouraging to hear so many parents involved in their children's schooling and doing their best to enable their children's academic success.
So I am offering a prayer for all the children, their parents, and their teachers that this school year lives up to their hopes and dreams. May they appreciate their God-given gifts and use them for His glory. May all parents embrace the opportunity to share and nurture the intellectual and spiritual growth of their children.