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An update on the boys…and stuff

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Dexter completed pre-school and Theo graduated from Kindergarten at the end of May. Here we are, already almost a full week into their school year. It’s hard to believe that my youngest is now officially in elementary school. We feel so lucky with the teachers our boys have this year. Dexter has the same Kindergarten teacher Theo had last school year. We had heard wonderful things from 3 different sets of parents about Theo’s first grade teacher and after  meeting her and hearing more about her teaching philosophy, we are jumping on the fan club bandwagon too.

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Summer flew by. Nine short weeks from the last day of one school year until the first day of the next. They went to a summer day camp for 8 weeks. Theo was in the Kindergarten and up class this year while Dexter was still in the pre-school class. The separation was a little difficult a few days here and there but overall everything went well. Theo had the opportunity to swim every day and about halfway through the summer, he passed a swim test so that he no longer had to wear a lifejacket in the pool. Now he is comfortable with swimming above and below the water and swimming down to touch the bottom of the pool. My mama heart wants to beat out of my chest watching him (like a hawk) but he is so proud of how much he’s learned and I am too.

Dexter reunited with a favorite friend from summer camp last year and begged almost every day to have him come to our house for a sleepover. Ha! If only it was that simple. Maybe if they meet up again next summer, we can try to arrange some get-togethers. Dexter always looked forward to seeing Theo at the flagpole and playing with him during before care for about 20 minutes.

Every day on our way home from camp, we passed their former Montessori pre-school. Of course, going there is fresh on Dexter’s mind, as are the friends we leave behind as we transition to this next phase in their lives. Often, Dexter would comment that he missed school, his teachers, or various friends. Theo never looked back once he left Montessori school so this has been a change of conversation and a little bittersweet. It hurts my heart to know that he’s thinking about the past longingly like that but I know that he too will move on. Soon those days will be a distant memory for him. Thankfully, we’ve become friends with the parents of some of his closest friends and hope to continue our connection to them and the school where it all began.

After 3 days of Kindergarten and 1st grade, I complained about not getting enough information. I’d ask them a million questions but I think they are just so busy that they can’t pick out specific details to share with me. It’s been an overwhelming change for Dexter. Theo is very excited about his teacher and having some of the same friends from last year in his class again. Dexter has been a little wild and crazy as he always is when big life changes are going on. Every day, everything is “good!” or “great!” so I’m trusting that all is well. I’ve been trying to hold back from emailing Dexter’s teacher for at least a week as he settles in to new routines and develops new friendships. Well, today on the fourth day I wish I had a little less information. Dexter said he had to walk five laps around the playground at the beginning of recess for talking while the teacher was talking. While I’m not terribly surprised, it’s disappointing and I kind of wish I was in the dark again.

Having a little one starting Kindergarten is tough on parents. I always heard people talk about crying when their “babies” started school and I guess it’s one of those things where you nod and give an empathetic “aww,” but you truly don’t understand what a big milestone it is until it happens. Before kids, I dreamed of having babies and young children but I guess my daydreams didn’t go much further than that. As a young girl, young woman, and young wife, I envisioned holding my babies for a good 20 years or more before I ever had any. 9 months of pregnancy flies by. A year of infancy and a couple years of toddlerhood fly by. The next thing you know, you’re ushering them onto the school bus and waving goodbye to them and their baby days all at the same time. Those precious 5 years are so unbelievably hard at times, but more than that, they are ridiculously short. When you send them off to Kindergarten, it is a milestone for the parents too. Off they go…into the world, or their miniature version of it anyway. I hope they are kind to others. I hope people are kind to them. I hope they follow the rules, but stand up for themselves when they need to. I hope they pay attention. I hope someone pays attention to them, shows them that they care. I hope they work hard and take pride in their accomplishments. I hope they enjoy learning. I hope I’ve prepared them well.

I hope they enjoy their childhoods. Because the next 13 years are going to fly by, too.

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catch the moment: wk 51

Whoa, I should have posted this last Wednesday or Thursday but got way too busy with holiday fun. My sister and her family arrived for Christmas on the 23rd and my mom on the 24th so posting my photos for the week before was the last thing on my mind! I haven’t spent much time on my phone and even less on the computer over the past 7 days and while I feel a little more disconnected from my friends than usual, it’s been nice to focus on the here and now. It just occurred to me yesterday that I hadn’t sorted, edited, or shared last week and now it’s almost time to post another set – the very last set – of photos for 2015.

351/365: Thursday, December 17th. Theo’s busy making Spider-man drawings with his new art set from Aunts Emily & Lauren. 12-17-2015

352/365: Friday, December 18th. Sorry for the blurry photo, but that’s the best I could do at capturing Theo in all of his excitement about wearing pajamas to school for Polar Express day. Also, he was gearing up for a fun weekend at Nana and Pop Pop’s. 12-18-2015

353/365: Saturday, December 19th. With our kid-free weekend, we got TONS of stuff done. Including buying and assembling new bar stools, buying new TVs and a new entertainment center, finished shopping and wrapping Christmas gifts, and cleaned the house in preparation for our holiday house guests.12-19-2015

354/365: Sunday, December 20th. I didn’t take this picture with the intention to post it here but I suppose it works well. Ryan and I bought this entertainment center when we moved in together right before we got married in 2003. I de-cluttered it on Sunday and posted this photo on a local facebook garage sale site Sunday. I was so tired of looking at it and all the clutter we crammed into every drawer, shelf, and cabinet. Ryan felt a little sentimental when it sold. I do remember us assembling it together, sorting through the instructions and millions of pieces. But still…bye.12-20-2015

355/365: Monday, December 21st. The boys’ first opportunity to sit at the new & improved breakfast bar and watch a cartoon with daddy while they ate cereal. Pretty much Ryan’s dream come true. Most of the vision for the kitchen was mine but this was a non-negotiable for Ryan. Turns out, we all love it. The bar is everyone’s favorite place to congregate now. 12-21-2015

356/365: Tuesday, December 22nd. Theo has been showing me some of the games and websites he uses at school. During summer, I’d take him to the library and he couldn’t use a mouse or operate a computer at all. It was so frustrating for me to try to show him and have him not listen, I’d just shoo him to something else. He’s learned a lot in his 5 months of Kindergarten! Apparently it’s a good thing I’m not a teacher.12-22-2015

357/365: Wednesday, December 23rd. I got off work early and came home to find our new entertainment center in place and our new TV being set up! YAY! Less clutter! Then we went into last minute madness mode, prepping for my sister and her family and my mom to come stay through Christmas weekend. Also, our sad looking Christmas card tree – funny enough, we’ve received many more cards since the 23rd. It’s all the way down to the floor now!12-23-2015



catch the moment: wk 29

Woo-hoo, we have slipped past the 200 day mark of 2015 – crazy. This time next week I’ll probably be sobbing into my pillow about my first baby boy starting Kindergarten the next day. He’s not nervous but I sure am. It’s pretty backwards that his calm and confidence helps to ease my own anxiety. It should be the other way around but thanks to a combination of his personality and his amazing pre-school / pre-school teachers, he is ready for this big day. Figuring out all the little details has kept my mind busy the last couple of weeks. While I am in not emotionally prepared for this shift, I am looking forward to moving beyond all of the uncertainty during the first few weeks and get into a comfortable routine.

197/365: Thursday, July 16th. School supply shopping with Theo. He enjoyed finding everything on our list like we were on a scavenger hunt. Only it didn’t end with anything cool, unless you call an $82 tab cool.  Seriously, though. It’s cute how excited he is.07-16-2015

198/365: Friday, July 17th. It just wouldn’t be a Friday night in Indiana without torrential rain, damaging wind, flash flooding, and no electricity. Right when I wanted to make dinner.07-17-2015

199/365: Saturday, July 18th. FINALLY! A super gorgeous, super hot day at the lake. 07-18-2015

200/365: Sunday, July 19th. The theme of our weekend was fun in the sun. I had a moment out there on my raft this weekend. I hope these summer weekends at the lake are culminating into amazing childhood memories for my boys. I hope these memories from their childhood when they are grown are as good as my memories of their childhood. Does that even make sense?07-19-2015

201/365: Monday, July 20th. We celebrated Ryan’s 37th birthday with dinner and a quick trip through Target (whoa, twice in one Catch the Moment post), along with a few domino set ups and knock downs. See day 203 below…07-20-2015

202/365: Tuesday, July 21st. Since it had rained and we’d been gone a lot, we hadn’t mowed the grass in 2 weeks or more. It was super long. I can’t remember a summer when we needed to mow so often or our grass was this green towards the end of July. The amount of rain we’ve had is ridiculous. 07-21-2015

203/365: Ryan’s got the boys on this domino kick. My men are thoroughly obsessed. If you follow me on Instagram (mommyinthemidwest), you may have seen a couple videos. The set ups and tricks are getting more and more elaborate. It’s serious business. Don’t you dare knock down someone’s track!07-22-2015What’s your favorite photo this week? I kinda like that one of Theo picking out school supplies but the lake photos just bring up warm fuzzy feelings and happy family memories. Linking up with Mindi,Stephanie, and Carrie for week 29 of Catch the Moment 365.