That’s right: the French language has a whole entire word for that time in August or September when we all head back to school. I wish we had one in the English language because, no matter how you feel about it, la rentrée is kind of a big deal...
Many of us have to admit, myself included, that going back to school can be kind of exciting. Fresh new notebooks and schoolbags, brightly coloured pens and pencils... then there are the healthy school lunches I’ll be showing you (which, let’s be honest, usually last for about a week...) and seeing your friends each day or even making new ones.
Sometimes, however, the return to school can come with a lot of apprehension. Maybe you’re worried about starting somewhere new or going into an exam year like me.
This time last year, Wolf and I were about to begin Fifth Year, so we made a list of things we’d do to make it all more bearable. I don’t recall that we actually stuck to it, but it was nice to give ourselves something to look forward to and to know that the next year wouldn’t entirely be gloom and stress.
Here are a few things you might like to try to make the next term, especially if it’s a tough one, a little more manageable.
· Plan things to look forward to. Once in a while, do something really fun and make a memory—in a couple of weeks, Bambi, Crow, Bambi’s boyfriend and I will all be going to see the author Patrick Ness in Dublin, so I’ll have that to look forward to if ever a day really drags. Intersperse your “memory makers” with little “treats” like a long chat with a friend over coffee or an evening painting your nails... (do any boys want to weigh in here???) I plan to publish a list of such “treats” in a later post, but today I had another idea. I’m also going to make a bucket list of fun things I’d love to do in school. I got the idea when a teacher let down her teacup and said to Wolf and I that she hoped nobody took it... suddenly it seemed like the best idea ever to just steal a teacher’s mug of tea (I was really tired). So I thought I’d make a list of fun stuff like that, only obviously where everyone finds it funny and nobody suffers! Last year, I put up a poster in the girls’ bathroom saying “The chamber of secrets has been opened, enemies of the heir beware...” (yes everyone, it was I) and got an accomplice to do the same in the boys’. The list is planned for next Tuesday (sticking to the Blog Book!) so look out!
· Have some junk on hand. I know I’ve been going on about healthy living lately, and it’s totally important when you go back to school, but just occasionally you’re going to come home with a mountain of work to do and you’ll need some good old-fashioned rubbish to keep you going. You’ll need that bag of Haribos to dip into halfway through an essay, or those cheesy puffs to nibble on when you settle down with your notes. Last year I made a roll of cookie dough and froze it, slicing off pieces to bake so I had fresh cookies whenever I wanted.
· Exercise. As I’ve actually been doing some lately, I’ve realised that it can be a great stress buster—I know, I know why haven’t I been doing it all along?. Fit a jog or walk into your routine so that next time you get frustrated over the workload, you can pound your frustration on the pavement and let the fresh air clear your head.
So these are my tips, in case you feel like you’ve got the world on your shoulders! (Picture courtsey of Mollie)