Our first “Back to School Festival”

James is a big huge not-a-baby-anymore boy and started Pre-K this week and we just can’t believe it.  I tried for months and months to get him into a preschool after Auggie was born but it just never worked out, until finally we found one that only takes kids who have never been to any preschool before and is free!  So, yes, it was difficult having three tiny babies at home all day to take care of by myself for those first four months especially, but we are so grateful now that it has worked out the way it has so that James can go to this school.  Plus, he has three other friends in his class who all live within 2 minutes (walking!) from us and his teacher seems angelic and basically we are on cloud nine over here.  James could not be more ready for this experience. 

The night before he started his first day we had a special back to school festival (taking a page out of NieNie’s book…) that we will be making a tradition for sure.  I asked James what he wanted for a special feast and he sweetly said, “Meatballs, rice and bread, please.”  So meatballs, rice and bread it was!  I made homemade sweet and sour meatballs, rice, and our favorite homemade rolls (recipes to come another day).  We decorated our kitchen and I made the boys special crowns that they wore all night (and have worn every day since) and we did a little photoshoot of them and it was a pretty great night with all my efforts paying off (which doesn’t always happen, let me tell ya…).  John and I introduced our special family scripture for our school year theme and I had a little illustration of it all printed out and framed for our wall for James to “read” every morning before he leaves for school (more on that later).  We had a dance party and talked about how important it is to remember Jesus when we are away from home and parents.  Then John gave each baby a father’s blessing, which is sort of like a special prayer said on behalf of each individual child.

The morning of his first day I asked James what his goals were for that day and he replied, “First of all, to be so so nice.  Then to listen to my teacher and do what she says.”  Dad was able to come with us to drop him off, so it was a whole family affair.  As we pulled up to his school, I read the sign and said, “James your school is called Greendell school, isn’t that fun?” Then he said, “Let’s call it Green-Gotts instead.” #harrypotterobsessed … I thought he might get nervous once we were there to drop him off, but his excitement only grew once he saw his classroom and everything he’d get to play with.  He had no problem jumping right in and us having to leave.  Charlie, on the other hand… He was very lonely that day.  When we were all back to the car and he realized James wasn’t with us he started yelling, “WE NEED JAMES!  WE NEED JAMES!” Then here and there throughout the morning he would say, “Where’s James, Mom?”  So it’ll take a little getting used to on that end, but I think it’ll be good for them to have their own worlds for part of the day.  When we went to pick James up, the first thing he said to me was, “Mom! Thank you so much for letting me go to school!!”  

Here are the photo shoot pics, we didn’t leave baby out even though James is the only one starting school! ::

I think it’s going to be a great year!!