15 September 2009

A week of firsts and ... a really rough day....

September is BIG in our house, currently. I don't want to say we have too much going on because I want to maintain the right frame of mind to get through it all, ya know??? (need that fortitude), but.... I am close to saying it - TOO MUCH. In just the past two weeks, we have had a year's worth of firsts, lasts, setbacks, triumphs, tears, laughter, etc.

This year is bittersweet for our eighth grader - her last year at her beloved grade school / middle school. She will participate in yearbook, play varsity basketball, go back to her old lacrosse team, run for student council - all like she usually does, but... this time, it will be the last time - for everything at this little school. She has already said good-bye to cross country and the big welcome back to school celebration held on the first day every year; she has picked a confirmation sponsor and has signed up to visit a couple high schools in the area (some all girl - some boarding schools, etc.). This is definitely a big year for her.

Our "almost five year old" guy is holding his own in kindergarten. Yes, we decided to send him early - not always wise for boys, but.... the pros outweighed the cons. He'll have this onetime benefit of sitting with his big sis in the same school (the last time they'll be together - HUGE for both of them) - eating lunch together, running around at recess together - singing in the Christmas show - walking the halls and passing each other - meeting the other's buddies and friends.... He is a bright, academic, fastidious, organized, inquisitive and eager kid. He is also shy and sensitive, but... rises to the challenge when presented with one. Swells with pride when he accomplishes something. Takes on more and more new challenges as new situations arise. We notice giant strides in development when he is presented with and accepts new situations. If he stagnates, he regresses a bit - seems at loose ends - nervous. So... that said... he loves his kindergarten schoolwork - he loves the structure of a day with foreign language, a science project, a storytime, a lunchroom, etc. Funny - my oldest had such different qualities. He is still adjusting to helping himself or directing himself a bit; he also needs to warm up to some of the other kids. I'm amazed, though - he's taking the bus, he's proudly mixing with the older kids - it's fun to watch and be part of. It is also worrisome and a bit stressful. Yes, I'm losing sleep, but... I'm also taking a lot of pictures and savoring every moment.

The three year old is having a little harder time adjusting.He is strong-willed and volatile by nature anyway, but.... I thought he would absolutely love going into the classroom that, for two years, he had to watch his brother enter, leaving him behind in the hall. And... I think he does like it - talks about the stories, the songs, the toys, the kids in the room, playing duck duck goose, doing art projects, etc. - but... he's never been without me for an extended period of time before. I also think he misses his brother - his house - his routine. It's a rough day for a picky eater with a bad temper and not enough sleep. He tells me he likes it, though. We "talk" a bit when it's time for bedtime story.

My baby - the 22 mo. old - is also enjoying a bit of a "Mom's Morning Out" program. Toys - other kids - snacktime, etc. I always feel so bad dragging her with me in and out of these classrooms with beautiful pictures on the walls and bins of toys and other interesting things all around. I mean her siblings get to stay - why doesn't she? Anyway - it was funny today to watch her gingerly put her little Saks Fifth Ave. back pack (used to be her sister's) onto her back - grab her little sippy cup - and walk to the car like a big girl, "talking" about her day the whole time!

All in all, it's great lately. My husband and I are sleep-deprived and cranky (his band from 10 years ago also did a reunion show a few weeks ago - like I said, LOTS going on). Today - 3 year old had tantrum - refused to have school picture taken - is now hanging on me, teary & tired - and.... I volunteered in the kindergarten room earlier only to have my little guy cry and want me to take him home (after a whispered conversation during quiet / lights out time about how his big sis sat in that very room at that very table years before seemed to make him comfortable, so I did leave him - sniff) . OH well... baby steps...... The bus is coming soon - got kids hanging on me - lack of sleep headache getting worse.... Still happy, though - life's little experiences.......

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