back to school 2015

This is Theo’s third full week of school and Dexter’s second and I can honestly say things are going better than expected! It was a little rocky leading up to school starting but now that we are into the groove, I couldn’t ask for it to be going any smoother. I don’t know if I can even fully put into words how I was feeling leading up to Theo starting Kindergarten. Aside from the emotional aspect – being forced to acknowledge that my baby is no longer a baby – it was a stressful experience for me as it seemed like there were so many ducks to get in neat little rows. Transportation plans, lunch accounts, aftercare arrangements, in person registration, online registration, school supply lists to fulfill, Kindergarten readiness packet to complete, book fees, back to school night, and the list goes on and on. A week before school started I realized that the school has an odd policy of not allowing parents to walk their children into school on the first day or visit the school for the first few weeks. Heartbroken. Two days before school started, we were scheduled to meet the teacher and see the classroom. I received an email from the principal saying that his assigned teacher was leaving the district and they “hope to find a highly qualified teacher by next week.” That left me feeling like crap. This is where kids can teach us such wonderful lessons about going with the flow. Theo was not phased, despite the fact that we’d been practicing her name (and I might have facebook stalked her once or twice) since we found out that he would be in her class.

Theo’s Back to School night: Tues, July 28.

0001 0002At back-to-school night I overheard her saying she got an offer she couldn’t pass up just 2 days prior with a different school district. She didn’t owe us anything-I think I had already become attached to her on some level because I had to. I had to trust her with my baby boy even though she was a complete stranger. I trusted her to supervise him, take care of him, and comfort him if he needed it. And just like that, she quit on us. 2 days before school started.

Theo’s First Day of Kindergarten: Thurs, July 30.

0003 0004 0005 0006 0007 On his first day, Theo was SO excited. He bounced out of bed and cooperated with every little thing we asked him to do. He grinned for a million pictures and asked a thousand times if it was time to leave yet. We took silly selfies in the endless dropoff line and talked about his plan after school. Don’t get on the bus! You are a car rider today! Ryan drove so I hopped out quickly to get the door for him and give him a hug. As I did, I smashed his ear and he burst into tears. Oh my gosh-I felt like the worst mother alive. The day started with so much excitement and promise and within seconds it was turned upside down. I felt the pressure of eyes on us as he stood on the sidewalk bawling, and I – the mom who wasn’t supposed to get out or walk her kid in or hold up the line or show any emotion at all – basically had to shove him, crying, in the direction of the principal who was waiting to greet all the newcomers. I watched with my head out the window like a happy Labrador as she got down on his level and rubbed his arm to comfort him. I wanted to shout “he’s fine! I smashed his ear! He’s NOT scared!” I’m sure he stopped crying within seconds but I did not. {Immediately after school we went to urgent care, where he was diagnosed with a double ear infection.}

I planned on only working 9-3 that day so I’d be able to drop him off and pick him up and it was the longest 6 hours ever. I thought about him all day, felt awful about how I left him crying on the sidewalk, and was generally anxious thinking about what he was doing and how he was feeling and how did lunch go and is he making friends, blah blah blah.

At 240pm on his first day of school, I got a call on my cell from a number I didn’t recognize so I answered it immediately, thinking he’d gotten hurt or was running a fever. It was school, calling to say that “little Theodore is just INSISTING that he’s a car rider. And honey, we have him down as a bus rider. So we were just calling to confirm that we were right.”

Okay, stop. Pause the scene. This was the part where my jaw dropped to the floor. I had filled out two separate forms prior to back to school night. One at early Kindergarten registration in April. Another online in July. When we got to back-to-school night, the teacher had him down as a bus rider. I explained that he wasn’t riding the bus. Ever. She filled out a new paper and marked on his little pink tag. We put the pink tag on his backpack. WHERE DID I GO WRONG?

What if that sweet lady from the office had not called to confirm? Theo would have just been walking up and down our street while I sat in that pick up line for 30 minutes.

I had never been so happy to get my hands on that little boy and hug and kiss him and hear everything he had to say about his day.

What is so confusing about this?

I found out right away that a new teacher had already started and was there for the Kindergarten babies from the very first day of school! She switched from another classroom and that gave me great comfort. So far, Theo loves her. He has memorized his lunch number. He tells stories about every kid in his class. He seems to know how to behave. I am just in love with him at this age-he’s so enthusiastic about everything. He said to me “Kindergarten is not even like hard work, it’s all about playing and fun.” Good, buddy! You enjoy it while it lasts. I asked him if his teacher ever tells him he’s cute and he said “yeah.” I said, “oh really? How does she say it?” He said, “she just says ‘oh Theo, what would I do without you?'” Love it. The second week I sent a note to her in his folder explaining when he would be a car rider and when he would go to aftercare…just one more time. In case he forgot. In case she didn’t get the memo from the previous teacher. She was so kind-she called me that day to let me know she got the note and then proceeded to chat for 10 minutes. We love Kindy.

Dexter’s Meet-the-Teacher night: Fri, July 31.

Found his cubby but sat right in front of his name…
New guide making a good first impression. He immediately pointed out a favorite book and asked me to read it to him. I said no because it had a lot of words -ha!- and I honestly did not know how much time we were going to spend there. She immediately offered to read the book to him and he immediately liked her. Well played, Ms. Jyoti. Well played.
Montessori boy at heart.

0012 0013 0014 0015.

A year ago today I posted about how Dexter was having such a difficult transition starting pre-school. Long story short, we had opted to put him in a class separate from Theo’s for his own growth and independence. It was rough. He really has a hard time with change so we thought this year would be no different. We found out at the last minute that his primary guide would not be returning to the classroom this year so that added to MY stress, worrying that he would be stressed. I was already concerned that he would have a hard time with Theo moving on to Kindergarten at a completely different school. I am so happy to report that this transition for Dex has been flawless so far. He loves his new teacher and loves that his favorite person in the entire school continues in her role as assistant guide in his class. I can’t overlook his excitement about having his little buddy from last year in the same class again. I think this really gives him something to look forward to. We haven’t had epic meltdowns at drop-off or pick-up (well, maybe a couple that were borderline epic but only because we picked him up before he got to play in the sandbox). Not a single accident. No tantrums in the mornings. Not acting crazy at home in the afternoons. So far so good. He was also excited to be dropped off the first day and we didn’t even have any last second injuries or pain inflicted by a too-hard-hugging mom.

Dexter’s First Day of Pre-School (2nd year): Tues, Aug 4.0016 0017 0018 One big perk to being back in the school swing of things – the boys are exhausted from wearing out their brains and bodies! During summertime they were taking naps at camp and not tired at bedtime. It was frustrating for us just because it was a 2 hour battle/waiting game every night and they were tired in the morning…perpetuating the cycle with those darn afternoon naps. They are back to falling asleep when their little sweet heads hit the pillow at 8 or 830 every night and rolling out of the right side of the bed in the morning. Happy and compliant with all of my crazy morning requests like “get dressed” and “eat your breakfast” that seemed like such chores over the summer. Things are pretty peachy right now and I’m hoping they stay this way for awhile. I am loving my little boys at their current ages and (like always) wish I could freeze time. They are so much fun and bursting with personality. It won’t be long until they are teaching me and I won’t be able to help them with their homework. I’ll look back at these times and remember how much fun they were. School will get more stressful. Less fun. Less exciting. This is only the beginning of their journeys. I’m so happy to be a part of their lives.



catch the moment: wk 32

The theme of this week, if there was one, would be lazy. Because that’s what I’ve been when it comes to taking pictures. Waah, I left my camera in the car. Waah, I left my camera in the house. Waah, my camera is way over there on the table and I’m on the couch. I just haven’t taken every opportunity to capture those little moments that add up to our ordinary life, which to be honest, has been fine but not particularly awe-inspiring by any means. So just like anything else, you have good days and bad days…all you can get are lazy shots sometimes.

218/365: Thursday, August 6th. If you look hard, you’ll see a couple outlet covers still missing but this was the day (or was it the day after?) Ryan finished sealing our tile backsplash. If you remember from last week, the bar was COVERED in all this junk and it was driving me crazy. It felt good to put things back where they belong. Don’t mind the dishes drying by the sink!08-06-2015

219/365: Friday, August 7th. The boys and I had a sleepover with my friend Angie and her 2 kids while her hubby was out of town and Ryan tackled a to-do list I left for him. Potentially the best part of the whole event…this homemade margherita pizza. YUM. Fresh tomatoes and basil from her garden. It was heavenly.08-07-2015

220/365: Saturday, August 8th. Because it can’t always be all about food, we went to the park between breakfast and lunch. 🙂08-08-2015.

221/365: Sunday, August 9th. Hey, Lazy Lady here–another picture of my kitchen because this was literally the only pic I took that day. A good Sunday though- we cleaned and lit a candle and had a cozy dinner together while it rained outside. And of course I admired my clean countertop some more.08-09-2015

222/365: Monday, August 10th. I am still working on timing the drop off of both boys at their different schools. I definitely don’t want Theo to be tardy (again) and his dropoff is between 825-845. But we can’t drop Dex til 9. You wouldn’t think sitting in the car for 15 minutes would be so brutal, but it’s the longest 15 minutes ever. Yes, we could take him in at 845 and pay $8 for before-care but I just don’t see the point in paying for those few minutes. So we wait. We goof off. We climb all through the car. We strap Curious George in the car seat and sit on his lap. “We” being Dexter. Whatever it takes to pass the time. {sometimes that means going through the Starbucks drive-thru}.08-10-2015a

223/365: Tuesday, August 11th. After school play time. Super typical, frequently photographed scene at our house. Because this is our life.08-11-2015

224/365: Wednesday, August 12th. Theo has always been Theo to us – we don’t call him Theodore often. However, when I registered him for Kindergarten I registered him as Theodore and I don’t recall ever having an opportunity to designate the name that he prefers. On back-to-school night, his cubby and mailbox and desk and binder and everything else in the world said “Theodore.” Initially I felt bad, thinking he doesn’t want to be called Theodore! Now I’ve noticed that he’s started writing Theodore on all of his papers. I think it’s adorable for some reason. 08-12-2015There’s a peek into our exciting week!




Catch the Moment: Wk.22

hello again.

It’s been a week full of Fs. Fun, friends, family, and festivities! Linking up with Mindi, Stephanie, and Carrie for week 22 of Catch the Moment.

148/365: Thursday, May 28th. Sweet little toes.05-28-2015

149/365: Friday, May 29th. The boys were out of school the week of Memorial Day and camp didn’t start til the next week so we had to piece together childcare for the whole week. Ryan stayed home a day, Ryan’s parents kept them 2 days for us, and I stayed home Friday. It worked well because Dexter had a dermatologist appointment that morning. Afterwards, we met up with friends, waited out a thunderstorm, then had some fun in the sun. 05-29-2015

150/365: Saturday, May 30th. We finally celebrated Dexter’s birthday with family and friends at the lake. Again, we waited through a thunderstorm before the clouds parted for a few glorious sunny hours on the water.  It was such a relaxing and fun-filled weekend.05-30-2015

151/365: Sunday, May 31st. After we got home from my in-laws’ and I ran a few errands, the weekend was winding down. Snuggles on the couch before getting ready for bed and the first day of summer camp.05-31-2015

152/365: Monday, June 1st. What else could I expect when I asked them to smile nicely? Eh, that’s alright…this is the real Theo & Dexter. Silly faces, fart noises, tongues out, and muddy shoes – they are my little boys through and through. Good news – they seem to love their new summer camp so far. Shew. 06-01-2015

153/365: Tuesday, June 2nd. Lazy photo night. Yummy dinner night. Chili & grilled cheese!06-02-2015

154/365: Wednesday, June 3rd. Well, well. Look who we have here. Some of our closest friends welcomed sweet Kennedy Noelle in the wee hours of the morning. We were over the moon in love and through the roof excited to make her acquaintance. Perfect ending to this post, but just the beginning of getting to know this little lady. My favorite picture for this week by a million miles. (That’s Dexter’s gigantic-looking hand next to hers). 06-03-2015xo,