Monday, August 27, 2012

First Day of School

Today was as good as it gets for the first day of school.  The boys were all smiles this morning, we were on time, and they only had good things to say when they came home.  Wyatt and I had nowhere we had to be, so we played in the dirt, went to the mall to replace a watch battery, and watched a little bit of a movie.  Quality time, for sure. 

My plan was to have cookies made when they got home and to set the stage for our new after-school routine.  But, I didn't get an early enough start and still had to bake them when they got home.  By the time I had the first batch out of the oven, my oldest was already at the neighbor's house and I had "lost" my audience. 

I decided I want to reserve the first 5 minutes after they get home.  5 for 5.  5 minutes for 5 details from the day.  If you have girls, this may seem ridiculous - they probably don't stop talking about who was wearing what and how they felt about what so and so said...But, my experience (and the experience of all of the boy moms I've talked to) is that we have to mine for details!!  They do not come easily!  So, my plan is to have a snack on the table when they walk in the door and for everybody to "come clean" during snack time.  I'm 0 for 1, so I can only go up from here.

Miranda Walichowski suggests having a set learning time after school, as well.  That way, they develop the habit whether they have homework or not.  So, instead of squeezing homework in at 7:00 after dinner, we're going to get it knocked out from 4-4:30 (hopefully 1st and 2nd grade homework doesn't take longer than 30 minutes).  Again, I'm 0 for 1, so I can only improve tomorrow!

I also told the neighbor boy he could come every day after school (like he did last year), but he would have to go home at 4, instead of at supper time.

We'll see how my great vision turns out.  I feel like just thinking about these things puts me in a better position than where we were last year at this time.  I'm going for proactive this year.  Reactivity is for the birds.

Here's a little blast from the past.  It's fun (and funny) to look back even just 2 years and read how many things have changed.

August 23, 2010 - 1:59pm 

Today was Brayton’s first day of kindergarten.  I can’t believe it is finally here.  Things I know…Walker still hears Bman yelling even when he’s not here.  He is ready for BMan to come home after 30 minutes.  He can also do “bear duty” (scouring the house at naptime for Wyatt’s bear – normally Bman’s job).  He likes to sleep in Bman’s bed when he’s gone.  He needs ME to play LEGOS with him (and I thought less kids meant less work J.  We also checked his class schedule a couple of times to see what Brayton was doing at any given time.  Brayton was excited to go!  However, we apparently need more crosswalk training.  The crossing guard gave us the go-ahead and Bman started riding his bike 90 degrees away from her, crossing the busy street she wasn’t guarding!  Traumatic, indeed.  I think we’ll be walking from now on.  The bikes can stay at home.   

Anyway, the only tears this morning were mine and thankfully, Brayton didn’t see them.  I held them back until he was on his way into his classroom.  I am so proud of him and I can’t wait to hear about his day.  Our schedule is going to be so much different at home.  Dressed, teeth brushed, breakfast eaten, Bman at school, and all of us home again a little after 8!  Wow.  I think I am going to get a lot more done in a day’s time. 

I have felt for so long that my kids were always going to be little and at home with me (even though I know the world is full of grown-ups and I’m one myself), but now I feel the clock picking up speed.  Next year, it is just going to be Wyatt and I after the first day of school.  Unbelievable!  So, here we go, this is the beginning of Phase 2 – having school-aged children.  Yay!

Dear God, Thank you for people who have the gift of teaching and for all of the people who change our children for the better.  Thank you for times of quiet and days that you don't have to leave the house if you don't want to.  Thank you for legs that can walk and ride bikes and for crossing guards to protect them when doing so.  Thank you for being such a gentle teacher.  Amen.

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