Sunday, September 14, 2014

Back To School 2014


We're coming up on the third week of September already and with the school year in full gear, summer seems to have all but disappeared...just about as quickly as this banana split....



The transition to a new school year is always a little tricky for everyone.  Lots of excitement and emotions to navigate...inevitably some nerves and apprehensions.  Saying goodbye to lazy summer days full of sun and nothing to do but play is always a little bittersweet. 

As Allie so eloquently shouted upon arriving home from school on her third day, "I'm just so sick of having to do what everyone tells me to do and never having any time to myself to do what I WANT TO DO!" 

Preachin' to the choir, babe....welcome to the rest of your life. 

Anyway, there was no question that I would make all the kids pose for their back to school photos.  Zach was pretty irritated about the whole ordeal, but I assured him every single mom in America was making their kids smile for a camera on their first day back to school.  Unfortunately such a blanket statement upon my part welcomed the third degree from my son...approximately 10 minutes before the bus was to arrive:

"But, mom, what if a kid's mom is at work, then they wouldn't be able to take a photo, huh?  Or, what if a family doesn't have enough money for a camera...or their camera is broken?  Or, what if someone forgot to take a picture?  Or what if the kids throw a big fit?" 

After acknowledging that yes, indeed, my first grade son was correct in calling me out on my gross exaggeration regarding back to school photography practices in the United States, I informed him that he would absolutely not be leaving the house under any circumstance unless I got a photo of him, smiling, on his first day of school so that when he is a grown adult and his son gives him a hard time about taking a picture on his first day of school, he can whip out this very picture to demonstrate how his mom made him smile EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. for the first day of school his entire life and grandma would be very upset if her grandson didn't do the same. 

Success.









Then, just like that, they loaded the bus and were on their way to school.  I'm always a little nostalgic watching the kids head off for a new year of school.  I'm not necessarily sad about the change (although I was a little teary eyed when Allie started first grade all day long).  I'm excited to see them become more of who God has for them to be, learning, maturing...that is such a rewarding part of being a mom. 

It's just that at this time of year, moreso than any other, I become keenly aware of how fleeting this time is...how yesterday I was just trying to get the hang of this motherhood thing:  my baby wouldn't stop crying, I was more tired than I ever thought humanly possible, my boobs were killing me, there was poop and spit up everywhere....

I couldn't even fathom my babies being big kids...it seemed like such a long time away.  And now, it's here.  They walk and talk (oh boy, do they talk) and think for themselves.  They actually make their beds and pick up their dirty laundry.  They wipe their own butts and read to themselves.  And while I don't necessarily long to go back to that time when they were little babies (oh diapers, how I DO NOT MISS YOU!), I'm reminded to find joy in the time they are in now because all of it--the good and the bad--is not forever (even if it feels like it is at the time...like when your second born does not sleep AT ALL between the hours of 10pm - 7am for the first 6 weeks of his life).  

After the wave of nostalgia upon seeing the big kids off on the bus, since Olivia didn't start school until the next day, we opted for some celebratory back to school mani/pedis:



The following morning, it was Olivia's first day of preschool...of course with all the mandatory pictures!








Olivia absolutely could not wait to get to school!  I made sure to take a few pictures upon her arrival as well.




We're now two weeks into the school year and everyone seems to be getting the hang of the new routine.  Teachers and friends are becoming familiar and expectations for homework are no longer met with as many groans. 

This week brings the start of piano lessons, AWANA, and flag football practice (for Zach). 

Here's to a great start to the school year!