THE McHugh family has not one, two or three but six children to get ready for the new school year next week.

Parents Joy and Benjamin have six girls attending Fairholme College - Natalie, 16, Katelyn, 14, Susan, 12, Melody, 10, and six-year-old twins Victoria and Philippa. They also have a new baby, 13-week-old Amy.

Mrs McHugh said while it was a stressful time of year, they had done it all before.

"It is just trying to think who needs new shoes and who doesn't and getting all the uniforms and lunches sorted," she said.

"We normally do the covering of the books this week and get the shoes.

"We like to cover the books with pretty pictures, so that's our tradition."

READY FOR SCHOOL: ( back from left ) Katelyn, 14, Susan, 12, Melody, 10, ( Front from left ) twins Philippa and Victoria, 6, and 13-week-old Amy with mum Joy McHugh. Wednesday Jan 18, 2017.
READY FOR SCHOOL: ( back from left ) Katelyn, 14, Susan, 12, Melody, 10, ( Front from left ) twins Philippa and Victoria, 6, and 13-week-old Amy with mum Joy McHugh. Wednesday Jan 18, 2017. Nev Madsen

Mrs McHugh said preparing for school really started in the new year but the week before was "crunch time".

She said the most expensive items were books and shoes with other more pricey items such as uniforms and an iPad (for years 4-6), they luckily already had from last year.

The McHugh family are currently the largest family at Fairholme, and with a young baby they have many more years to go. Getting ready starts when the children wake up between 6am and 7am before having breakfast, getting ready and being at school by 8.25am. The older girls also help out their younger siblings.

"Some of them you have got to get them up and trying to keep the younger ones on task is difficult. Getting them up, getting their hair done and brushed and then the lunches," Mrs McHugh said.

"It's stressful getting lunches ready but we will get back into the swing of it."

Lunches include toasted sandwiches and wraps, leftovers, cut up fruit and vegetables, crackers and muffins. School drop can be done in two rounds, with some of the girls participating in bands and choir.

Susan, 12, is excited to be entering into middle school for the first time next week.

"I'm looking forward to meeting new people because I'm going into middle school for the first time so there are a lot of new girls," she said.

"Also to see my friends again and just see how middle school is as well."

She added she was excited about making new friends with the equivalent of two new girls to every Fairholme girl starting this year.



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