Lovin' our Big Boy!

Lovin' our Big Boy!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Yesterday's BIG Accomplishment

A kid rides the bus. What's the big deal, right? Millions of kids do it every day. Well, it' a big deal for THIS kid. This kid said last year that he would NEVER be a bus rider. He'd just be a car rider. In fact, it took a lot of convincing that riding the bus to the Pumpkin Patch field trip was a GOOD idea. Whenever the topic was approached, the response was always the same "I will NEVER be a bus rider." So, you can imagine my surprise when Jack told me that he might like to ride the bus TOMORROW, on his way home during the first week of school.

I don't know what happened to change his mind. Bus riders do get to leave school the earliest, and he might have been told (by me) that you get home faster when you ride the bus, but I'd like to think it was one of those moments where you decide to kick the tail of one of your fears. I don't really know. All I know is that I found myself calling to find out where the bus would pick up my 1st grader and, just a few days later, I was sitting at home at dismissal time, biting my nails just a little, praying that he was happy, content, and traveling home at that very moment. I don't know what I expected, as things can go either way with Jack. I figured that either he'd love it emphatically or else he'd find it wasn't what he expected and he'd never ride again. I sure didn't expect the response I got, though, as he arrived at the top of our driveway yesterday...

Double click on the video if you want to see it without part of it missing...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

School Days...Welcome to First Grade!

Summer's over. School's in session! No longer at the bottom of the totem pole, Jack is returning to school with a notch in his (proverbial) belt, comfortable with his surroundings and routine on day 1 because he's done this all before...but now he's a First Grader! Woo hoo!

Friday was the official start of school with a warm up consisting of a 3.5 hour day. Just enough to get your feet wet but not a full commitment to the program! Jack and I drove to school, outfitted in a selection from his newly expanded assortment of Standard School Attire (think uniform) and sporting his excellent "rock star" coif.

Though nervous, he put on a brave face and walked confidently on the school grounds that seemed as comfortable as last year's bathing suit at the start of the next summer. A little unfamiliar but still a good fit...

Already mapped out and committed to memory, we found Mrs. Stark's classroom right away. She is a sweet and inviting teacher and made all of the students feel welcome immediately!

We found Jack's cubby, #10, and his DESK (this is new!), where he was seated beside new friend Reid and across from his Speech Teacher's daughter, Natalie. Though no old friends were in sight, Jack seemed to welcome this new experience and sat comfortably, attached his name tag to his shirt and checked out the papers on his desk.

Oh my goodness, textbooks!!!

Mrs. Myers stops by to welcome Jack to school.

His sweet friend Jayden came over from the classroom across the hall and, ever so brotherly, told Jack that he'd be right across the hall if Jack needed him. My heart melted!!!

I stayed for a few minutes longer, soaking up this moment and all of the nervous drama that was NOT occurring (no clinging to my leg, asking me to stay, with big eyes pleading) and then kissed him and assured him that I'd be back to pick him up at the car rider line at 11:30.

That was it! Wow. How easy! What a brave, sweet, big boy! I went to the parents' reception for a moment and then, on my way out, stuck my head in his doorway and peered in the room. I found the class, seated on the floor at Mrs. Stark's feet, captured by her every word. And in the middle, quiet and attentive, was my amazing little man.

The report that followed at pick up was short and positive. It was a 'great' day. He was only nervous for the first part of the morning. He sat with only 1 friend at lunch (because he was at the end of the table). He got to be the line leader on the way to the cafeteria, which he loved. And he received a "Perfect Day" behavior rating from the teacher. He was quick to share with me her scale for the class:

1. Perfect Day
2. Warning
3. 5 minute time out
4. 10 minute time out/note home
5. You blew it! (principal's office)

I am thrilled with the start of the school year for Jack. He has 2 full days under his belt now as well and is still enjoying it. I am so excited to watch him learn and grow this year in a new classroom with new academic challenges! I think it is going to be a great year.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

First Grade Preview...Roster Sneak Peek

Last night Jack and I (with Tyler and Grandpa in tow) headed over to school to see the 1st grade rosters that were posted on the school's front door the same day. Finally we got to see who Jack's 1st Grade teacher will be!

Jack scanned the list and found his name. His new teacher is the awesome Mrs. Stark. She's a perfect teacher for Jack and I know he's going to have another fabulous year! He found his friends names scattered about in other classes and pretty quickly had seen all he needed to see and was ready to head to the new and improved playground!

As we were walking to the playground he said "There are 19 friends in my class!" How ever did he count all those names so quickly? That little stinker!

Today was full of apprehension, as the reality of tomorrow is closing in. He said that he was scared. That he thought he wouldn't do well. He is nervous that the fans will turn on in the gym. So we talked about the fact that there wouldn't be PE tomorrow (it's a 1/2 day), what to do when the fans come on (cover your ears), what we expected the day to be like (my best guess), and how awesome it is that he already knows where his class is, where all the specials are, where the cafeteria is and that he knows 3 kids already in his class. This seemed to calm him a bit, and he enjoyed it when I prayed at bedtime for a great day with no nervousness.

I also reminded him that I will be taking his picture because tomorrow IS the first day of school...and it's a rule. Hee hee!

Good luck, our sweet boy! We know you'll win over all your new friends with your sweet spirit. Enjoy first grade! We are so proud of you!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Chicken Nugget Hiatus

If you know me well, you know that I grumble about making homemade GFCF chicken nuggets. I make them because I love my child. And, that child will ONLY eat the same homemade chicken nuggets that I've been making since he was 2 or so. That's 5 yrs of weekly chicken nugget making. Surely even Truett Cathy and Colonel Sanders got sick of frying chicken, right? I digress...

It seems that of late Sir Jack grew tired of the same old nugget. But, in his stubborn rigidity and resistance to change, he would eat basically no other dinner entree. We had gotten, this summer, to a success of sampling a bite or two of hamburger here and there, and he would actually eat baked chicken every now and again, but the chicken I was slaving over and offering each evening was going untouched on his plate. So, like all good mothers, I offered an ultimatum: Eat what is on your plate tomorrow night (of chicken nuggets) or I'll stop making them. Well, long story not so long, he refused to eat them on said night and agreed to a week w/o chicken. He really had grown sick of them after all!

So, the week drug on, with a few painfully long nights as we waited up to 1.5 hours for him to eat 4 bites of hamburger...and some better nights of 10 bites of 'white' (baked) chicken. And, surprisingly, at the end of the week, Jack declared that he's "tired of Mommy's new chicken (as he calls the nuggets) and only likes Mimi's new chicken, which tastes just right."

So I suppose I've received a chicken nugget cooking reprieve. He's eating more and more baked chicken but hasn't expanded his dinner repertoire thus far to include any other new entree. We'll keep plugging away at one of the biggest issues we have at this point.

I leave you with a picture of Jack, nearly 3 yrs. old, eating the chicken he has finally grown tired of. I can't even imagine how many days he has eaten that chicken!!