Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Back to School...in our own little way

As September approached we were not practicing getting up early; we were not trying on new shoes; we were not setting out new outfits for the week; we were not labeling backpacks; we were not brainstorming new ideas for school lunches; we were not yet nervous about spending our days apart with new teachers and new friends.  That will all be saved for next year when the boys start preschool.  And again in a few years when, gulp, they ride the bus to kindergarten.  

Instead we took off for the beach for a few days.  A last ditch effort for this summer's final road trip.  
Love this memory...racing from the dunes to the waves.  Just us 3.
And this morning, back at home in one piece after a fun filled holiday weekend with family and friends, our day didn't look much different for us either, despite the buzz all over Facebook with first day of school pictures...melt my heart.  No.  No, today we woke up happy around 7:10am.  I may or may not have heard the school bus roll by.  We missed the annual parade of new Kindergarteners down the street, which was fine by me because it just makes me cry.  And it makes me miss the chaos and chatter that used to take place in my own classroom each year on this day.  As we got ready for the day the boys chattered about the new light post their dad put in this weekend.  While we played in the sand over the last five days, Joe worked uber hard on various projects around the house and on his truck.  We watched our usual shows, ate a good breakfast, hit the gym to play and sweat, visited the car wash and post office, and enjoyed a pizza lunch date at Superstars.  And this afternoon we'll see Oma and Opa and our routine will remain unchanged for another sweet year.  When I feel 'bored' or 'antsy' I remind myself how fast this time flies even though the days sometimes feel long.  And even if the days feel long, it's during this precious time that my children are all mine for just a blink of an eye in their whole life.  Yep, school will wait.  For all of us.  
Yes, we brought our own stools to the car wash for just this purpose:)

But we are busy, busy these days practicing letters everywhere we see them; singing songs; counting to 30; figuring out which shoe goes on which foot; drawing space ships; chasing butterflies; inspecting bugs; digging and dumping sand; taking turns; shooting hoops; practicing sentences; learning 'please' and 'thank you;' making choices; hitting golf balls and baseballs; requesting favorite books and shows; enjoying the occasional dance party; and having running races in the alley or pretending to be dogs, cats, birds, lions, and frogs in the front yard. 

With so much learning going on how could I not seize the opportunity to set up some activities to have on hand?  Enter bins, baskets, tubs, labels, and supplies.

Had I not become a stay at home mom today would mark my 10th year returning to the classroom.  Alas, plans changed a few years ago and today instead marks the 3rd year I'm NOT at the first day of school.  But since I raided my teacher supplies pile in my parents' basement last week and spent one full nap time a few days ago totally 'schooling out' the boys' playroom, I've reached the conclusion that once a teacher, always a teacher.

No, we're not having home school preschool everyday, but to change things up a little I thought I'd have supplies ready for something new every now and again.  It may last 20 seconds, it may last 20 minutes.  Things might stay neat, things might will get messy.  But with some items on hand to thread, squish, smear, color, blow, connect, squeeze, stick, clip, roll, stamp, fold, spray, and paint, I thought surely we'd keep things fun.

Exhibit A: threading Fruit Loops onto pipe cleaners was a success!
There's something ingrained in me that still loves a new box crayons; an organized book corner; bright posters making a classroom colorful and welcoming; creating labels for supplies and tabs for notebooks; not-yet-crumbled chalk on a clean blackboard; neatly organized charts and checklists; fresh notebooks and plan books; shiny stickers; and a renewed spirit to inspire young minds.  And dare I admit that even though I don't like to eat the cafeteria food, without it, school just wouldn't smell the same.  The beginning of the school year means a few new clothes, lots of new supplies, shifts if routines; changes in schedules, and resolutions to be more organized, procrastinate less, and study harder.  And yes I'll admit that while I was up way too late last night doing one thing or another, organizing my calendar somehow just happened.  Nerd forever.  So no matter how your school year got started, ambitious or just aiming to survive, I hope it's a good one.

1 comment:

  1. They are seriously too cute!!! I can't agree more about the new, fresh school supplies. I get sad each year I don't get to start a new school year with all the fun school supplies. I have a feeling I'll be just like you with a 'teachers' corner' for the girls!


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