Saturday, September 8, 2012

Back to School

It's the end of the first week of school.

While all vibes and reports are positive, the truth is... we're exhausted. I am SO glad I didn't have to haul three sleepy girls out of bed this morning and dress them like rag dolls so they could walk out the door on time.

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Of course, Eliza was up early the first morning, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.

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Giddy that Daddy was taking her to school.

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She is part of a 2nd/3rd split this year with a phenomenal teacher. Miss Reese is blowing me away with her organization, her effective teaching, the way she helps kids work independently, and makes learning fun. She received the Golden Apple Award last year from the state for her exceptional teaching and I can already see why. She's a wonderful fit for Eliza's creativity, has high expectations but gives her students the necessary tools, and so far Eliza has come home every day with the same response: "I LOVE school!"

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Ali and Sami also bounced right out of bed the first morning. Their teacher mailed them a letter with special sleeping dust inside. To put under their pillow the night before school started. It worked like a charm. No jitters. Just excitement. (We lucked out with some fabulous teachers this year and I am so grateful.)

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First day of Kindergarten.

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Kind of a big deal.

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The girls asked to be in the same class. And I figure as long as they want to be together, I'll try to accommodate them. There are benefits to being a twin. Who wouldn't want a familiar hand to hold while braving a new experience?

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They have a darling gang of kids in their class. All from our neighborhood.

After their first day, Ali and Sami crawled right into bed for the comfort of their mamies and some quiet time. It's only half-day but the poor things are wiped out when they walk in the door.

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Eliza consistently blazes in, all abuzz over what she's learned. Yesterday it was the class website and how she is learning to type. She never forgets to tell me how Fluffy (the class hamster) is doing, and all art projects are explained to me with great enthusiasm. Thursday she drew this picture of herself walking home from school in the rain. Complete with tether ball and the tree outside her class window.

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A few weeks ago I could sense the kids needed a change. They were getting restless. So I'm happy we've stumbled back into the routine. But I am a tad lonesome for the girls, especially when I see our five blue chairs sitting empty.

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The boys have been my errand buddies. On this particular trip, however, I had all four twinsies with me. This is what happens when we have 45 minutes to burn at Target (Eliza was at music class), the boys haven't napped, and the girls think trying on animal headgear is hilarious.

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Gordon became an owl. "Whoo.... Whooo!"

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Spencer a bear. Or wolf? Or some kind of furry, growling creature. "Grrrrrr...."

Ali "meowed" and Sam just giggled. Because... What does a penguin say?

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At certain moments during the week I found myself standing in the kitchen, staring off into nowhere. Kind of like this. (I found Gordon out on the street one evening, wandering. NO idea where he found those goggles.) It's pathetic when you wake up already plotting how you can squeeze in a nap.

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Last weekend we were in Jackson Hole, Wyoming (more pictures next week), so come Tuesday there was a landslide of dirty laundry in the baskets downstairs, no food in the refrigerator (finally made it to the grocery store this afternoon - thank you Hannah), new routines to adjust to, lessons and carpools to juggle. And with Doug working late every night, I felt like a one-woman show putting on a pathetically inept performance.

Two nights ago I bathed the boys at 9:15 PM... after everyone else was in bed. They hadn't had a bath in five days - oh man, please don't judge me. Bedtime kept trumping tub time. So I bathed them late, knowing they could sleep in the next morning if they needed to.

All the simplicity and slowness of summer has fled and I am dizzy with the new demands. A few more weeks of acclimatizing and I hope to have duties in the death zone straightened out.

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Last night we met Doug downtown for dinner so we could eat together before he went back to the office. We ate at the new City Creek Center. It's beautiful, truly. My first time there.

A nice woman offered to take our picture and just as she was clicking the camera, I saw my twin-mom friend, Annie. (Which is why I look so happy to have my picture taken). Annie, this one's for you. With a shout-out to your darling family and a high-five plus touchdown dance for hitting the two-year mark! No small feat when talking twins.

And that's the latest. I have no transcendent metaphors this post, no thoughtful prose to share. Just weary bones, a gaggle of sluggish but smiling kids (three of which are very happy to be in school) and dreams of a Sunday afternoon nap.

How about you? How was the first week of school?

9 comments:

  1. Beautiful post! Good to know your girls are in the same class - I want my kiddos in the same class too when the time comes. They started preschool this year and so far like it. The mornings are so quiet now and it's been tough for me to adjust to it - do you feel that way with all your kids at school?

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  2. ****They hadn't had a bath in five days - oh man, please don't judge me.****

    A well known situation at my house, -- and hey, they _do_ get dirty again within seconds, so why bother, *whistleinnocently*...

    I love the picture of the twins heading of to school -- or as my husband would say: "Hey, where are the bagpacks taking the girls?", ;-).

    We start school tomorrow, but we are so _not_ ready for it yet, we aren't missing a thing...

    So long,
    Corinna

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  3. Loved reading your post. Your kids are so grown up! And perfectly adorable. All in all it looks like you all are doing very well. I hope you get a nap someday, but don't count on it. Love ya!

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  4. K1, K2 - It's wonderful for your twins to have each other, especially in new or challenging circumstances. I bet you are feeling the emptiness... with my boys still at home, and the girls only gone half day, I'm not feeling like the nest is very empty. But give me two more years and I'll be awful sad over the quiet house. Hoping all is well your way. Blessings to you.

    Corinna - Laughing so hard over: "where are the backpacks taking the girls?" So utterly true! They span from shoulders to knees! Hope school goes well tomorrow! Let me know... I love that you aren't missing a thing. And I'll keep "whistling innocently" on those non-bath days. ;) bless you.

    Andrea - oh my dear lady. I miss you. No nap today. Just for the record. (I know you've been there.) Hoping life is well and you and Rich are healthy. Love you.

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  5. And now we know what the handcart pioneers feel like, don't we? " Yay for school!

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  6. Oh, darling friend, I can't believe how much older all your kids look! Seriously! Eliza is looking so much like you…just beautiful. I love that last picture of your family. Your smile is gorgeous.

    Best wishes with everything…all the busyness of school routines and Doug's crazy work schedule. My boys are in the same school class again, and it really has worked so well for them. It gives them an extra boost of continuity with a big change.

    Love you. xoxo

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  7. I hear you.

    By the end of the week, breathing is nice, huh?

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  8. Been thinking of you lately Cath-in this newborn stage wondering how you did this exhausting work TWICE with twins and survived with such positive gratitude radiating from you-you are incredible. Your girls are gorgeous by the way. I have major hair envy looking at each of them! :)

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  9. Liz - "push and pull" my kids along? yup. ;) yes, yay for school!

    Anne Marie - Glad to know your boys are in the same class again. I too find comfort in the continuity. Did they request that? Anxious to hear about all the moving parts of your life. And hoping things are slowing down a bit now that the boys are in school. I always appreciate your words. Bless you friend.

    Elizabeth - ah, breathing... I breathe on Sundays. And It is so nice. :)

    Sarah - thinking of you OFTEN. And so glad you're doing the bare minimum, short posts, no thank you cards yet. Give yourself plenty of space. You have such wonderful supportive readers. I'm enjoying watching everyone go through this journey with you. I adore you and your beautiful family of (now) 8!! Wow. Praying you turn a corner soon with little Janey. xoxo

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