Wednesday, September 4, 2013

first day of first grade


I just got back from taking Natalie to school ... for her first day of first grade!  How is that even possible?!  I miss her already, and the house is far too quiet!

Preparations for the "big day" started almost a week ago with a School Supply Scavenger Hunt.  You see I felt a little guilty not taking NHV along for school supply shopping. I didn't want her to miss out on the "excitement" of it but also just wanted to get it done. So this morning I printed out the supply list, hid the supplies all over the house, and had her find everything before putting it in her backpack. She had a blast! I was able to double check to make sure we had everything we needed, get it all in one place and ready to go - with her help. She was especially excited to sharpen two dozen pencils - shouting out a different superlative with each pencil sharpened ... Awesome! Excellent! Fantastic! Great!

On Friday afternoon we found out the name of Natalie's teacher.  She had hopes of getting Mrs. F, and I was a little worried how she would react if that didn't happen.  Well, it didn't but - after looking at last year's yearbook - she was fine. She was also hoping our new neighbor Viv would be in her class but she's not; Viv got the teacher Natalie wanted. Surprisingly she took this double-whammy in stride, and just said, "Oh, Viv is going to love Mrs. F," with a big smile on her face.

Yesterday we prepared for "Meet the Teacher" by choosing a cute outfit and writing a little note to share some of Natalie's favorite things with Ms. W.  Her classroom is adorable and very organized - you know I love that combination!

Before going to bed last night, Natalie helped me pack her lunch ... her motives were two-fold: 1) she loves her new lunchbox and couldn't wait to fill it and 2) she knows I tend to run late in the mornings and she does not like to be late!  

She woke up bright and early this morning (like a good hour before she really needed to be awake) and got ready in record time. I couldn't believe how calm she was - excited but not nervous.  Just ready. 

So ... we leisurely took photos in the driveway ... 


Everything about this outfit - from the flower in her hair to the peace sign on her shirt and the little animal charm on her sneakers - and this pose captures Natalie and her personality.
 

Natalie loves drawing with chalk!  She is quite the little artist!


We have a new special handshake that involves giving each other a thumbs up ... love how this pose captures that!  Plus the sidewalk chalk is pretty cute!

... and then missed the bus!  Apparently I had last year's bus schedule - which I printed out just a week ago, so I don't know why the school district would leave old information on their website, but whatever!  I thought we still had plenty of time, ran in to check the time, heard her yelling that the bus was here, took off running, ... and watched the bus pull away.  Poor Natalie!  The one thing she really hates - being late, and I made her late for the bus on the first day of school!  She handled it like a champ - although I could tell she wanted to cry.  I apologized profusely, and she said, "It's okay, mommy, but maybe next time we shouldn't take so many pictures."  I may never get a first day photo again!

Thankfully, we still had plenty of time to get to school ... and Chad was working from home so I didn't have to worry about waking up CJV.  I drove Natalie to school and walked her into her classroom, which is what I wanted to do anyway - so it all worked out. 


I think Natalie had taken enough pictures ... but I couldn't resist capturing the length of the hallway and the shiny floors ... this is her place now!


Oh how I love the focus and concentration!

Going to be honest here.  I had the hardest time leaving that classroom.   Knowing that today marks the beginning of her {full day} school career - that she will spend more time in school each weekday than she does with me - that another adult will become an important part of her life - that this is the beginning of letting go - that she will still love me but will need me a little less - well, it overwhelms me.  It makes me hope with all my might that I didn't take those first six years for granted - that I was able to fully grasp what those years meant to both her and me.  

The realization that those years are over and aren't coming back fills me with longing and sadness.  However, the promise of what's to come - watching Natalie gain confidence and independence - witnessing the triumphs and being here when there are struggles - developing new roles and building our special relationship - fills me with such happiness!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin