Monday, August 26, 2013

First Day of School

Today was the first day of school, and let me just say, I had it going on! I mean, all four kids were dressed, breakfasted and brushed-of-teeth ahead of schedule. The girls were wearing actual matching outfits - though by matching, I don't mean the girls matched each other, because that would be an insane level of achievement. No: I mean that each of them, individually, had on pants and tops that matched. And their hair was properly done. Oh, and all four kids had packed lunches, actually in their backpacks (I had to double-triple-quadruple-check Ainsley's)! All of this by 7:15, when we went out to wait for the bus. (There's no schedule the first week, so you just have to sit out there and wait until the bus shows up.)

Now, before you all start nominating me for mother-of-the-year, I should confess that none of the kids had an actual water bottle, as required by the school. And the school supply list was tragically underrepresented in our backpacks. Both girls were supposed to bring pencil bags, but I couldn't find last year's bags, and I couldn't be bothered to buy new ones, so instead of actual pencil bags, I tossed a pencil or two directly into their backpacks, hoping the teachers wouldn't notice the missing pencil bags.

Whatever. I never said I was perfect. And neither will the teachers.

So there we were, the picture-perfect-family-if-you-don't-look-in-the-backpacks, waiting for the bus. Which, of course, never came.

7:15 turned to 7:25, which became 7:30. Still no bus.

Aidan and Kyra were kicking a soccer ball back and forth. Kyra wound up and kicked the ball in a perfect, glorious arc - straight into Ainsley's stomach. Ainsley doubled over and began howling in pain, crying and snotting and ruining her cute little pigtails in the process.

7:30 became 7:35. Still no bus.

The strap on Kyra's new shoe suddenly snapped off. I told her to run inside and find a new pair of shoes. She ran. So, of course, moments later, what should appear at our gate? That's right: the school bus. Of course.

Tear-streaked Ainsley and her brothers climbed aboard without a farewell hug from me. I was busy frantically screaming in the house for Kyra to hurry up, for the love of god, or the bus would leave without her.

She ran to the front door, still wearing the broken shoes, holding another pair aloft. I had no idea if the second pair would fit or not, but I threw her on the bus anyway and told her to figure it out along the way.

There was some mom riding the bus, a woman I didn't recognize. She sort of looked at me aghast when I poked my head in the door and shouted "Did Aidan make it on the bus? Has anyone seen my son in there?" Whatever, new mom, whatever. If you'd seen me fifteen minutes ago, you would have been in awe of my stellar mommy-hood. Swear it's true.

That was our first day of school. Tonight, all four kids are pleased with their teachers and classes and friends. Which is good. Also good? I survived my summer of single parenthood! Next up: surviving the school year. And possibly finding the missing pencil bags. Stay tuned.

For anyone out there (read: grandparents) who is interested in a little trip down memory lane, here is where you will find last year's first day photos. And the photos from 2011. 2010 is represented, as is 2009. 2008 is somehow missing, but the picture made it into a side-by-side comparison with 2009. And then there's 2007, the year I started this blog: Shay was in 2nd grade at the International School of Beijing. Aidan was a pre-schooler. Kyra was barely one year old. And I hadn't yet gotten pregnant with Ainsley, or lost my hearing - that was all still a few weeks off in my future. You'll love the photo of me on my Chinese bike in 2007 - seriously go check it out.

And here, for those of you who are still reading (Hi Nana! Hi Bart!), are today's photos.


2nd grade

5th grade
8th grade

Ainsley with our awesome boab, Reda.


The Hillbergs said... [Reply]

Hi, we are a family moving to Jordan in about 2 yrs... we will have elementary age children -- which is the best schools for them to attend? thank you!


Hannelene said... [Reply]

They are gorgeous, and you are supermom.

I'm in the precess of trying to find a **cheap** preschool for my 3 year old in northern virginia. Yep, clearly I believe in unicorns, santa, and the tooth fairy.

Since we don't know how long we'll be here, I can't look for a job, and hence can't afford a preschool at all. But my sanity can't afford having them home very second of every day.

Please. Write your own stuff.