To blog or not to blog....

A compilation of the thoughts in my brain, the questions I have and the journey of life. Not meant to educate, but merely to entertain and (hopefully) initiate some good discussion. Comments are welcome...come join the conversation.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The new school year

Well, it's begun.  A new school year.  S is LOVING 1st grade and M, after a few days of not really wanting to go into her class, is FINALLY warming up to the idea of her preschool experience.  I'm learning so many things about both of them just from watching this phase of their lives.  S seems so much more "mature" and grown up to us...using words and expressions that I would attribute to a much older child (some of which I could live without like "my parents are weirdos") and it's been fascinating to watch her grown both physically, socially and emotionally.  She is interested in everything...including the most expensive of extracurricular activities-karate, horseback riding, figure skating etc.  She is reading and LOVING that she can make sense of things now.  She's working her way through social situations and figuring out who she likes based on their treatment of others (not that it's causing her to be any nicer to her sister, but we're working on that).  I want to sign her up for every program and every class just to see her happy and trying new things.  If only money wasn't an issue.......

M, well M is a different story.  Physically, she has lost that baby face and looks more and more like a kindergartner than even (even though she's not there yet).  Her movements are more in control, her thought process is much clearer and her language is exploding.  Emotionally though, we're still on the roller coaster.  She has proclaimed to me that she "doesn't like new people/places/things" and it's never been more clear to me that parenting her is going to take some creativity and patience.  She still has extreme reactions to the slightest issues and is showing some signs of anger that are quite troubling to me.  Finding ways to help her through situations in ways that are completely different than S would have needed are a constant learning experience for me.  She is VERY particular about almost everything and we're hard pressed to find a situation where she just let's things "roll off her back".  Gymnastics was a huge success last school year and summer and she's going to do it again in the fall, but only after her birthday (per her request).  Both girls did swim lessons outside this summer and it was awesome, but when I went to sign her up for indoor lessons at the Y, she balked stating that she wanted to wait and do them outside next summer.  I don't want her over scheduled, I don't want her doing things she doesn't want to do, but I feel that she NEEDS these things (or things like them) to build up her confidence.  Sigh....

Speaking of birthday's...the girls have decided that they want to share a birthday party this year!!  On the one hand, less planning for me.  On the other...5 five year olds and 5 seven year olds in one room???  Going to take some creativity on my part to make everyone happy.  They've both agreed on a Jessie/cowgirl party.  Wish me luck!

As for me, after almost 7 years, I have consistent chunks of time during the school day to myself and I'm LOVING it!!  For 2-1/2 hours Monday through Thursday, I am alone and once the novelty wears off and I stop scheduling appointments because I "can", my focus has GOT to be back on running/getting back into shape. body senses a slight lapse in consistent activity and just jumps at the chance to add the weight back on.  In a less selfish endeavour, I'm also hoping to get involved in volunteering at a local school through our church's project.  A great opportunity to help young children with literacy/math etc AND great training for me as I continue to feel more and more strongly that being a teaching assistant is the path I want to take in a few years.  I'm looking forward to getting started!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

And we're back...

Almost a year has gone by since I last blogged and I didn't think I missed it, but I was wrong.  Having this space to flesh out the thoughts in my head was pretty helpful before, so I'm hoping that it serves the same purpose now.  Plus, some friends have said that they missed knowing what was up in our lives, so I'm also using this space as a way to remember this time in our lives and update those that care to read about it. 

To update: S is now in First Grade and M has one more year of Preschool left.  Initally, she was going to head off to Kindergarten this fall, but after some careful consideration (and, let's face it, some pretty obvious signs from her that she just wasn't ready) we decided to hold her back.  Besides the money aspect of yet another year of Preschool, I couldn't be happier with the decision that we made.   We had a fantastic summer...complete with an amazing trip to Disney World, a few camps/swim lessons and general hanging out time.  Up until the last few weeks of the vacation, all was well but I feel like we all started getting on each other's nerves, so the start of school couldn't have come too soon.

M&S decided that they wanted to share a room for now, so we went and got them a bunk bed!!  My whole life (well, after I was 7) I said that I would NEVER, EVER get a bunk bed for my kids, but here we are and it seems to be working out just fine.  For those unfamiliar with the tale, when I was 7, I fell out of a bunk bed onto a concrete floor and broke my arm.  In all fairness to bunk beds, this was in the early 80's when the safety standards were, shall we say, lax compared to those today.  Slippery mattress, no railings, slippery sleeping bag...I never had a chance.  The cadillac of bunk beds that my children now possess is probably safer than the beds they slept in before
So far, the sleeping situation is a bit tricky, made even more complicated with S's early rising time (to catch a ridiculously early bus) and M's pre-school cold that has wiped her out.  All of my reservations and concerns aside though, I think it is such a special gift for them to be able to share a room.  They're learning to work together more to accomplish tasks and the laughter and creativity that comes out of their mouths makes my heart melt.