Back-To-School Traditions Shared. (I Hope)

When my daughter first started school, 14 years ago, we started a tradition of dinner out at the restaurant of her choice on the first day of school. It was a tradition born of necessity. I was teaching at the time, a single mom, and was completely overwhelmed and frazzled on that first day of school. She had no idea she was saving me from having to tackle dinner.

She thought it was all about her.

Which it was.

And continued to be.

We’ve done that every year as our little back-to-school tradition. Not very original, though. Especially when I read a Facebook friend’s little shout out: “Just finished our end-of-summer-back-to-school tradition of ice cream for dinner! Yum! Yum!”

So cute. A little too sugary for my tastes. (Ba-dum-bum! Chhhh!)

 But original. And a lot more exciting than our boring ol’ go-out-for-dinner-on-the-first-day-of-school.

There must be other traditions out there that I hadn’t heard of.


Shout them out in the comments section below.


I’m looking for new material!


Filed under Because I'm Curious

14 responses to “Back-To-School Traditions Shared. (I Hope)

  1. To the utter embarrassment of my kids, I took pictures of every first day of school… Every. Damn. One.

    Um… now that we’re on the threshold of college, where will I stash my handy Canon?

  2. Like Wolfie, we take pics. They also get to pick a special kind of cereal (read:sugar) for the morning and after school, it’s smoothie time. Nothing Earth-shattering, but it works for us.

  3. I like the picture idea that Wolf and Kitch mentioned, but I still think the dinner idea is great. My parents took me for donuts the Saturday before school started. Those were fun times.

  4. We ignore the reality of school starting completely. Our tradition is to never (or as close to never as possible) say the word school during the summer. Cole does not need school supplies (how sad it that) and he does not need special clothes. The kids dreads the thought of school starting. When he was younger I realized nothing would change that so I joined him in denial. I just wake him up on the first day and off we go…

  5. I was reading this and thinking…’how cool, dinner with my Mom, just about me.” I don’t think you need to change a thing. And I double bet that when your daughter has kids of her own she starts the same tradition. Because there’s no better gift then the gift of you and your time focused on her. To hear all about it and share the experience. She’ll remember those dinners forever. I know I would.

  6. When both my kids were in elementary school, I’d pick them up on the first day (who wants to ride the hot bus?) and go get ice cream so they could tell me about their first day. Did it every year until the oldest went to middle school and our fave ice cream place closed. And I’m with Wolf. Pictures every first day of school morning!

  7. Are you kidding? I think dinner out sounds pretty awesome! We got the obligatory first-day photos taken in the front yard every year. My mom always got a little crazy with hairspray and bows 😦

  8. Doing dinner out sounds awesome! We just do school pictures. And I Try to take one on the last day at the same place.

  9. linda

    I guess the one thing I do different is that I also try to get a photo of them getting on and off the bus the first and last day of school. Great to see them running off the bus smiling that last day!

  10. Lee

    I am carrying on the tradition my mother started … green eggs and ham for breakfast the first day of school. We of course take the pics too but my kiddos (11th, 7th and 5th grades) love the breakfast! Our first day was today and it was all the younger two could talk about last night. =)

  11. I love these traditions. Ours is simply the pictures. Also, the week before I get the kids back on the school bedtime schedule.

  12. I agree: your tradition sounds great. A special treat for your kids, a night off from dinner prep for you. A win-win!

    My oldest started preschool last year and I took a photo of him in front of our house. Ideally, I’ll take a picture of him (and then his siblings too) in the same place each year to document how much he’s grown.

  13. The week before school starts, the first week of school, and the last week of school, all at bedtime the night before: they dictate a story. Any story. A sleepy stream of consciousness story. And I make it into a book. And file it away for when I want a good cry or when they have a child, whichever comes first.

    That’s my hope, anyway. We start kindergarten in two weeks. [sob] I’ve been trying to think of a tradition and I like this one the best.

    Stories start your engines!

  14. And now that I”m “back” from my own little cross-country college move-in adventure (and yes, I took a few pictures), I’m well aware that today is a “first day” that my son will meet on his own. As it should be.

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