5 on friday: the end of august edition

ice cream elbe wa

Happy Friday, friends! Can you believe we’re already at the last Friday in August? Fall is just around the corner and, for the first time that I can remember in my life, I’m not ready for it. We got a late start to summer out here in the PNW, so I’d love it if our beautiful, sunny, 80-degree days could stick around just a little bit longer. Plus, with all the chaos that’s to come with the coming school year, getting ready for a move next year, and the thought of corona continuing into the new year has my head spinning. So, honestly, I’d be okay if the end of August wanted to stick around just a little bit longer.

Yet, here we are…on the cusp of September. Things are changing, things are falling into place, and we’re taking advantage of the last bit of time we all have together (uninterrupted) before the chaos really begins. I know there are a lot of people in the same boat out there, so I wanted to tell you – I see you. I feel you. I’m secretly hoping that a new normal emerges from all of this that doesn’t feel so insane and that we all start to feel a little bit more comfortable as the season changes. Regardless, we’re doing our best to keep trucking along no matter what. So, today I’m sharing five things we’re focusing on at the end of August in 2020. Ready?

1 // Spencer starts school next week(ish).

A few weeks ago, Ryan and I mentioned we enrolled Spencer in private school for in-person learning. Literally the day after doing so, the school informed us they weren’t going to be allowed to do in-person learning after all, instead, were opting for a virtual model. Thankfully, they were letting families withdraw without penalty if they didn’t want a virtual model (we didn’t want to pay private school rates for virtual learning). So, Spencer is enrolled at our local public school. Virtual orientation was a couple days ago, and I was completely unimpressed. School starts on the 8th for Kinder, but they have this WAKids assessment next Thursday to see how prepared they are. We’re going to give virtual learning a month (I’ll share my thoughts on why later), but if it’s not working for us, we’ll pull him and homeschool instead. Yikes.

2 // We’re going camping again next week.

We loved camping with the kids so much the first time that we’re going camping again next week before all the crazy begins! Remember our one-day trip to Leavenworth last year? Since this is our last fall at JBLM, we wanted to take a little more time to explore and hike that area with the kids, so we decided to camp there for two days midweek next week. We’re excited for another camping trip, and we’re excited to explore a little more of that region of Washington.

puget sound

running into fall

gun safety with kids

swimming snow lake wa

end of august

3 // Is Halloween even happening this year?

We’ve heard rumors Halloween isn’t even going to be a thing on JBLM this year, and I don’t know how my kids are going to deal with that. We’re only about two months away from that little holiday, which is also my kids’ favorite holiday, so I’ve been thinking of alternatives just in case. If we can’t trick-or-treat traditionally, we’ll have a little Halloween and trick-or-treat station setup in the backyard, but that’s hopefully a “just in case” kind of thing. Who knows at this point?

4 // A few more last-minute hikes this season.

If you’ve been following me here or on my instagram, you know our goal this summer was to hike as much as possible as a family, and I’d say we’ve done pretty well! We have a few more last-minute summer hikes up our sleeves though – a couple in the Snoqualmie region and a few in the Rainier region again – before the weather really turns. We’re not opposed to hiking into the rainy season, but we’re definitely going to have to boost the kids’ rain gear again. We love these froggy rain suits, but we put them through the ringer, and we definitely need something more durable for all of them, especially since Mieke is on the go now.

5 // Getting rid of the excess before the move.

I’ve mentioned this one before, but one of the biggest things we try to do in anticipation of a PCS is get rid of all the extra crap that we’ve accumulated during our time at a duty station. Having moved on post last year, we already got rid of a lot of stuff, but most of the things in the garage that we haven’t looked at in 2+ years can go. We’ve got a lot of baby stuff that we no longer need because the baby shop is closed. It’s a lengthy process, and we’re starting with the little things, but they all add up.

So, here we are at the end of August, getting ready for another season of change, both as a family and as a society as a whole. I know I feel like I’m losing my mind on a daily basis, but I imagine I’m not the only one feeling like this. I hope you find time to relax and refresh this weekend, my friends!

Tell me – what are you focusing on as we head into September?