Well, Jake was REALLY excited to go back, because Jake just loves life. And he was even happier about things than usual, because he knew he was a "third generation" for his teacher ... Nathaniel and Nick had both had her for 1st grade, too.
When we walked into the classroom for Meet the Teacher two days before The First Day, his eyes were as big as silver dollars.
First-grade classrooms are a little over-stimulating, yes?
But we LOVE his teacher! We are BEYOND excited to be in Amanda's class again.
As if Jake wasn't already smitten enough, she gave him some Pop Rocks for the road. #truelove
Next, we walked down to Nick's 4th-grade classroom. So cute and colorful!
Even though we've been at our wonderful school for seven years now, we'd never met his teacher before. We could tell immediately that we're going to love her!
When we were "touring" the classroom, Jake became enamored of the crate seats that lined the edge of the reading area. He asked if he could take a picture of them, and what was I going to say? SURE.
We wrapped up there and headed out ... it was a little bittersweet because -- as you know if you follow me on Twitter -- we're in the middle of a rezoning issue with our Board of Education, and this may be our last year at this elementary school. It will absolutely break my heart if that's the case, and there's a large group of us in our neighborhood that's lobbying against it.
The next day, I left work midday to take Nathaniel to his middle-school orientation. MIDDLE SCHOOL, Internet.
I mean, a handful of you have been around these parts since he was 5. Pretty unbelievable.
He humored me for a few minutes and let me take pictures of him in his Social Studies room -- in front of Braveheart and Mount Rushmore ...
And in his Earth Science room in front of, um.
Volcanoes? Sure. Let's go with volcanoes.
I can't remember what room this was. Language Arts? Who's that guy in the corner? "Laugh" doesn't help me. Anyway. Looks like he's going to have a good year.
We'd visited his locker and tried the combination several times before road-testing his schedule, and it only went so-so. So we went back and tried it again afterward.
It took him a few tries, but he finally got it.
Do I remember the anxiety of being in middle school, trying to get my locker open and failing repeatedly? YES I DO.
I WAS NOT GOING TO LET THAT HAPPEN TO MY BAY-BEE.
I only asked him for one more humiliating thing before we left the premises. I made sure no one was watching, and then I asked him to stand in front of the mural near his locker for a picture. He was all like, "Aaldkgfsflkgjdf, DO I HAVE TO?" And I was like, "Yeah, please."
Before you all turn 90 years old and croak, Ima try to move it along to THE ACTUAL FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL.
The boys got all dressed up in their finest clothes *snort*, and I made sure they brushed their hair *double snort*.
I'd make 'em miss that school breakfast again in a heartbeat for this picture right here. PUH-LEEZE. Totally worth a Pop-Tart.
It's so funny to me how now when I have pictures of the three of them, it looks like something's -- someONE's -- missing. And she is.
You, too, can be early if you don't brush your hair.
Or your teeth.
Or your hair.
In the end, Grayson and Amelia were rear-ended by an inattentive SUV-driver on the way to daycare that morning (they're fine, but his car isn't), and Nathaniel missed the bus, making me over an hour late to work.
The best-laid plans, Internet, the best-laid plans.
So on Day Two, I sat at the bus stop in my van and waited on the bus to make sure Nathaniel made it.
And -- knock on wood -- we've had good days ever since.