All I’m saying is, I might have let some things go a bit wild this summer.
And my workout routine.
And cleaning routine.
And decluttering routine.
And quiet time routine.
And screen time limits.
And chore enforcement.
You get the idea.
Now I’ve got some extra fluff on my hips, some extra dust bunnies under the furniture, and a pack of kids who see nothing wrong with playing video games all.day.long.
There’s part of me that sort of just wants to throw in the goals towel and try again come New Year’s 2018. But I know there’s a bit of magic just around the corner.
In some ways, September feels more like the click of the clock to a new year than even January does. It’s embedded deep in my childhood memories, the school calendar kicking off again, fresh notebooks purchased, pencils with intact erasers ensconced in a clean pencil bag with a working zipper. While I adore the more casual flow of summer days, the momentum of a community all getting back into the school time groove is a great time to reboot some healthy habits.
Even though as a family we homeschool and follow a year-round educational model, we do adapt how we do what during the summer so that the kids can enjoy summer camps and travel and time with their friends who are in a traditional school model throughout the year. That flexibility and adaption is a beautiful thing for our supersize troop, but it also means that we tend to chuck out more of our daily disciplines as well, when neighbor kids come knocking on the door and a surprise invitation to go swim comes a’calling. And for some reason, somehow, it all seems to justify falling off the exercise train, the good diet train, and the reasonable accomplishment of household chores train for me.
We’ll be back to full staff at work. The busyness of the fall calendar will mean keeping a closer eye on the clock. The extracurricular activities will revert back to their late afternoon/evening routines. The neighbor kiddos will be back to their classrooms during the day, which means the homeschool classroom for my kids won’t experience as many interruptions and surprises. And if I’ll let it, all that flowing stream can help more easily carry me back into the rhythms of some healthier living, earlier bedtimes included.
It seems to me that the Israelites (under God’s directives) were on to something when it comes to those days when summer is tilting to fall. Under the Jewish calendar, the New Year begins this year on September 20th, Rosh Hashanah, meaning ‘the head of the year’. Its beginning is signaled with the blowing of the ram’s horn, the shofar, and its observance starts with ten days of repentance. The timing of this Jewish observance corresponds with the bringing in of the harvest, a time of gratitude, of planning, of celebrating and also of reflecting.
What a great thing to apply in my life.
To allow September to be the time that I evaluate if I’m staying on course. If I’m doing the things I say are important. If I’m modeling healthy living, routines that can be maintained, repenting of where I’m getting sloppy or careless. I love how author Lara Casey likes to remind readers that any day you choose can be your January 1st, a fresh start available with every new day, regardless of Auld Lang Syne.
So September, I see you coming. And I’m going to be ready for you, ready to repent of summer’s excesses and excuses and prepared to dive into a healthy fall.