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Jun 18

Last free day

The kids are almost done with school.  Two more days, and then we’ll be liberated for the summer.  I can’t wait.  Don’t get me wrong, I know I’ll be tearing my hair out and frustrated by the squabbling and bickering.  My house will be even more of a mess than it is now, and I’ll have a zillion kids tearing in and out of the house all the time.  But I still can’t wait.  I’d always rather have the kids home here with me than out somewhere else.

This has been a really, really good year for us.  All three kids have grown so much, in ways that I couldn’t have predicted back in September.

Julianna had her first year of preschool.  It wasn’t an easy one, not all the time.  She spent most of the first few months sitting up in the loft, watching the activities.  After the first week or so, she didn’t really cry at drop off, but she was still incredibly shy and unsure of herself.   But even though she was sequestering herself while she was at preschool, she was incredibly proud of herself for going.  She’d relate stories to me and anyone who’d listen, about what they did in school, songs they learned, and kids she played with.  Because even though she wasn’t actually participating, she was observing EVERYTHING and it felt, to her, like she was a part of it.  In December, I asked that we start to discourage the loft, and it was a relatively easy transition for her.  She was always a bit wistful at drop off, sometime actually crying, sometimes not looking back at all – but she played with the kids, she loved her teachers, and now, two weeks after school has ended, she’s even asked once or twice if she can go back.

Samuel Earl has made the most growth, I think.  From where he was three years ago, at the beginning of kindergarten to where he is today, as an almost second grade boy – the changes have been more than I could have imagined.  So much of his social and separation anxiety is in the past.  It’s not that he’s a different kid, exactly – it’s that he’s so much more of himself now.  He’s just Sammy – happy-go-lucky, laid back, relaxed, goofy, happy Sammy.  Not scared and anxious, not fighting and raging, not insecure and afraid to try new things.  He’s just happy.   He’s got a ton of friends, and interacts with all kinds of kids.  He’s got his own little group of immediate friends, and then a much bigger circle of kids that he interacts with all the time.

My Jessica is finishing up her last year at Flagg Street.  She’ll be in middle school next year, and she’s about eight months away from her bat mitzvah.  She’s growing up, faster and faster.  I’m almost used to it.  She spent her lunch periods down in the kindergarten classrooms, mentoring five and six year olds.  Her grades went from average to stellar, and it coincided with the arrangement to have her start helping out Mrs. Gravel.  I think because she is one of those people who thrives on being NEEDED – and she was so much happier that everything got easier for her, academics, socially, emotionally.  She really seems to have an affinity for younger kids – to the point where I’m a little concerned about having her lose out on that next year.  Her schedule is filling up already – she wants to take four dance classes, in addition to religious school and preparing for her bat mitzvah.  I’m researching volunteer opportunities for her, because I’d hate to have her miss out on that part of her life.   I don’t know when she’ll fit it in, though.  My girl has somehow become this incredibly overscheduled girl, and I’m not sure what to do about that.  But that’s a whole other blog post :-).

All in all, this year has been a tremendous success.  I’m really proud of all three of my kids – and I’m so ready for summer vacation so I can have my cherubs back home with me all the time 🙂

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