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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy New Year...

Dear Family and Friends,

Forget New Year's, there is something about school starting that feels like a new year of new routines, goals and plans has begun.  Most be all the aroma of sharpened pencils and still blindingly white new tennis shoes.

Taylor had his last pt appointment on Monday and then started school on Tuesday.  You could tell it was the first day of school because he was snoring by 7 pm that night and had to be rousted out of bed the next day.  Spencer and Allison started school Wednesday.  The spent Monday and Tuesday doing their school assessments and last minute school shopping and getting every last minute of non-school play/tv time they could.  First day pictures to come when Jeremy gets a spare moment to post them - something hard for him to find lately.

Allison bounced to school with a smile on her face.  Spencer was a mixture of nerves and excitement making things a bit tough around here.  I often wonder at what point are his behaviors caused by our inept parenting and at what point does the bi-polar kick in.  But he pulled it together and is thrilled with all his classes.  He was supposed to repeat last year's math class which would put him at grade level, instead they bumped him ahead.  Problem was he already knew about it and all his other classes so we couldn't rearrange his whole schedule to bump him down into a math class with a teacher he didn't like.  So he is going to go for it and hopefully be able to pull it off.  We will see how it goes. If he can't keep the grades up he will get bumped down.

To celebrate Robyn's last few school free days on Thursday we went to the Children's Museum with a few friends in tow.  The played hard, then went and ate lunch at the fountains and then played again.  Robyn who hates to get her clothes wet stayed outside the circle of water and "did magic" to make the fountain go with the music.
Luke, Jake, Robyn and Raquel
Friday I had a mom's celebration by meeting a few friends for brunch at Kneaders.  Robyn was less than thrilled that her mom's breakfast meant sitting around and talking with grown-ups but she was a good sport about it.

Between Taylor's surgery and my broken foot we have not gone camping as a family this entire summer.  So this weekend we cleaned and packed up the trailer and met Jason and his family down at Burston Ponds in Mona.  We are so out of practice in packing up the trailer!  But we did eventually get under way and had a great time.  We stayed up late roasting marshmallows and telling stories.  Spencer, Garion and Allison were enthralled with whittling and the power of a sharp pocket knife.  They filled a sock with an unbelievable amount of shredded pork to fish for crawdads but no luck.  All we saw were frogs and minnows.  Saturday we found a bunch of rope swings and Jeremy initiated our kids in the lost art.  I had never been to this campground so didn't know to pack swimsuits but out kids were happy in their clothes.  The reason there are no pictures of me is that I wore my pjs to swim and after doing one rope swing Jeremy nicely told me that it was a definite wet t-shirt contest look I stuck with an inner tube and hanging out with little kids.  Only sad part was coming home to clean the office and clean out the trailer at the end of the day.  But our kids are getting better at realizing that when you play, you pay as they buckled down and got it done.  Leftover ice cream cake from Jeremy's work and cold showers with lots of soap never felt so good at the end of a great, long day.

Tomorrow Robyn starts kindergarten.  She is very excited and Allison has told her she will give her a special bath tonight to get her ready.  Allison does her "special baths" for Robyn almost once a week.  They involve bubble bath and Allison reading her stories in the tub.  Robyn is our first kid who is starting kindergarten without being able to read and only knowing half her letters/sounds.  But I have worried a lot less with her knowing that it will all come at the right time.  And she is so excited to learn how to read on her own this year.  I am going to be teaching art (I know, the blind leading the blind...) in Robyn's class this year.  It should be fun.  So if you have any great art projects for little kids, let me know.  I still can't believe all my kids will be in school this year.  Although really there is only 1 hour and 50 minutes that everyone will be gone.  To help with the transition too I am babysitting in the morning a cute little 5 month old neighbor three times a week.  But I am looking forward to some quiet time, having a clean floor that lasts a few minutes and kids going to sleep when the sun goes down.

This week I have been walking and biking a lot in the early mornings.  In the 7 weeks I took off my muscles seemed to disappear along with the early morning sun.  But it feels so good to be up and moving again.  I haven't tried running yet as my foot hurts at the end of each day but its getting better.  The early morning alarm clock though still seems awfully early.  I am definitely not used to that yet!

Love, Heather
Jeremy had been catching little kids.  They thought it would be hilarious if he "caught" Jason too.
See that person in the distance way up in the air?  Thats Jeremy doing the BIG rope swing

It doesn't look that hard till you get up there and have to take that leap of faith for the first time


The Skeehan Family said...

First off, you are the most non-inept parents I know... so just stop it :)

Secondly, Luke looks HUGE! He has grown up so much! He towers over the others - although Robyn seems to be keeping up a bit, the little bean.

And, how fun - teaching art! You will be great!! And I might have a couple fun ideas for you - some I actually remember from MY kindergarten - so they must be good :)

So glad the kids had such a great first week. And tell Robyn I am way excited for her - kindergarten ROCKS.

... and a final ps... of course you are babysitting a five month old. I knew you couldn't just give it all up completely ;)