Parenting is fun but its not easy. Often in our parenting strategy meetings (not as fancy as it sounds...they are just impromptu chats) we'll remind each other that "we are raising adults", not a little person who makes us feel good about ourselves or makes us feel fulfilled. Its actually not about us at all. It seems there is a daily letting go and allowing for more independence so they are ready to be sent into the world at the appropriate time. Its good, its right, but its hard.
The kids were so excited they could hardly sleep the night before. I prayed with all three individually before bed and got choked up when I was lying beside Aiden in bed. But the next morning I could only be happy for them and join in their excitement.
(I like getting a full body shot because those jumpers will be showing a lot more knee by the time June rolls around.)
After pictures we walked down to school and kicked off the year with a brief prayer service, including a couple songs and a word from the new principal. Then she introduced the teacher of each grade and read each student name individually as they formed a big circle. I did get choked up again as I saw the big eighth graders standing at the front, knowing that in an instant Avery will be there.
Aiden has a new-to-the-school teacher this year, Sister Joan Marie (sitting behind him). Aiden is one of nine students in the first grade, just three boys. Remarkably, one of the boys is the son of long-time family friends. His dad and I go way, way back and he's weaved in and out of our lives in various ways. He was even a groomsman in our wedding 21 years ago! We each swore off children and now these years later, our sons attend school together. :)
These are Avery and Amanda's teachers. Amanda has Avery's teacher from last year so we already know she's amazing.
We're so very thankful for this school that is less than two blocks from our house. Its a close-knit community with many wonderful families who are committed to giving their kids a quality education.
I love that you can walk into the classrooms and find an American flag, the Ten Commandments, the Fruits of the Spirit, etc.
Particularly in the past year my girls have really found a sanctuary there with a lot of loving, supportive adults. And they have the opportunity to pray for me, along with their classmates right there in their classroom.
When I picked them up, they were all glowing from their first day.
Aiden Wednesday (12:15 pickup): It was awesome, Mom. SO great!
Aiden Thursday (regular time 2:30): Mom, today was kind of a long day.
Aiden Friday (regular time): Today was REALLY hard. Really hard. We did SO much work!
Aiden Friday (8:30pm pickup from Awanas) Mom, I have to go to bed RIGHT NOW!
And today Avery is bummed because its Friday so she can't go tomorrow. I expect that to last approximately two weeks.
Here's to a fresh new school year...full of potential and with no mistakes in it yet. :)