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Aug 19

Getting Ready

Another school year… I’ve got another week and a half before the dreaded first day.  We’re not really ready for it, the school supply lists have been in my car for the past two weeks – just in case I happened to end up at a store and in the mood to buy all the crayons and markers and folder and notebooks.  Thus far, it hasn’t happened.

Jessie is off to fifth grade this year.  In Maynard, where I grew up, fifth grade was as serious milestone year, starting junior high.  In Worcester, fifth grade is just fifth grade.  She’ll be at Flagg Street again, with new teachers.  Everything with Jessie is always new – I don’t know these teachers and their expectations.  Fourth grade was a tough year for my girl – thus far, she’s had better “odd” years.  First and third grade were wonderful for her, kindergarten, second, and fourth were the years where there was a lot more growth/adjustment/change.  So I’m crossing my fingers and hoping that this year – she loves it as much as she did when she had Mrs. Brothers and Mrs. Ring.

Speaking of Mrs. Brothers – my Sammy is starting with her in first grade this year.   I’m very cautiously optimistic about first grade for him.  He’s grown a LOT over the summer.  Much more relaxed about things that used to make him an anxiety-ridden wreck.  He’s more confident, more able to communicate when he starts getting anxious and able to talk about his fears, and as a result, able to have them resolved.   This is huge – because before, he’d be so scared and nervous, he couldn’t even figure out what was scariest, let alone talk about it and be able to get reassurance.

We’re planning on dance class for both the girls, plus Hebrew School for both the older kids.  And girl scouts/boy scouts for Jessie and Sam.  I’d like to find some sort of sport thing for Sam, but we’re going to take it slowly with him.  I’m going to start him in after school Hebrew school on Mondays and Wednesdays, as well as Shabbat and see how that goes.  I’m really not sure how I feel about all the extracurricular stuff – but it’s really hard to limit them from doing activities they really want to participate in.  For Jessie, it’s going to be the same schedule, pretty much, as last year.  Two dance classes, three days of Hebrew, and girl scouts every other week.  I know she can handle it.  I’m sure that the homework demands will be more rigorous this year, but I think we’ll be okay.  For Sam though – Hebrew is going to be a big change, and I want to make sure that he can handle it before adding more in.

I’m wistful about starting school.  Especially because Julie will be going to preschool as well, and that means a lot more time for me to get really serious about a writing career.  I’ve put it all on hold for the summer, because concentrated writing and taking care of a zillion kids is not a good mix for me.  I can handle blogging, between folding laundry and making cards and getting kids dressed and changing the toilet paper roll (all things that I’ve done this morning while composing this blog), but to actually sit down and focus – I need to be able to do it without interruption.

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