As we begin another new school year, what are your hopes and fears for the children in your life?

The past couple years have been full of change. Nothing if not exciting — and exhausting — we welcomed our second new baby in less than 13 months this summer. Our house and our lives are in general chaos most of the time.

And so, it was with relatively little fanfare that we sent the two older boys back to school this week. Julian is in his sixth and final year at Emerson, our neighborhood school. Zeke is in his third and final year at Columbia City Preschool of Arts and Culture, and there's a sense of fleeting familiarity to this fall all the way around.

And with two babies and, you know, the constant chaos, that's not a bad thing right now. It was a blessing to be able to drop both the boys off at places they were excited to return to, among friends and teachers they were eager to see again.

Next year will be a different story, and looking ahead, it's hard to picture what life will look like in 12 months. "This time tomorrow, where will we be?" Exploring uncharted (for us) territory one way or another, that much is for sure.

Regardless of what's yet to come, I hope my children are seen and valued for who they are, that they're safe and nurtured during their school days, and that they learn without being schooled.

What are your hopes for the children in your life as they embark on a new school chapter? What are your fears? What is on your mind in the first fresh days of this new school year?