Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Bye, Bye Summer - Hello School

Gone are the days of...

sleeping out in the tent night after night...

catching lizards, snakes, frogs, dragonfly nymphs, and watching moths emerge from their cocoons...



hunting bunnies in the back yard (Sammy killed his first one)...


fishing...

playing at Wet Beaver Creek...


heading downtown for the 4th of July parade...

playing in the water with friends...


The mornings and evenings are getting chillier now. Yesterday morning I even had to forego sitting in my newly refinished front porch bench (with pretty cushions) because it was a little too chilly. It's been a great place to sit and welcome in the morning before the day begins.


Although most of the flowers in Noah's garden are already fading, the vegetable garden is in full bloom. We're eagerly awaiting it's yield in another couple of weeks - the sugar snap peas are especially coveted. We even have apples on the apple tree for the first time in four or five years. Yummy apple pies are in our future.

And as another summer passes away, so the need to get back to schooling has risen. It took me the first couple of weeks of August as the public school kids were heading back to school to realize that it was up to me as to when to start our schooling again. The beginning of August was definitely too soon to return to the books in my opinion, so I opted to wait. Unlike in years past when we've started back up after Labor Day, I chose the week before as our start. I used our annual Friday school day trip to the Coconino County Fair as an incentive for getting back to school with a good attitude - seemed to work fairly well.

Whether it's old age or just mommy brain, but I can't seem to remember how I've done school in the past, especially in regards to having a crawling infant. I remember our great routine that we had last year, I even spent hours mulling our schedule for this year, but... How did I do school when Jon was a wee one waking up from his morning nap when we still had an hour or so of school to accomplish?

The first day of school was the worst. It's gotten better in regards to settling everybody else back into our routine/schedule, but...(notice a theme here). Danner failed to read the part of the schedule that said that he was to play by himself for 30 minutes in the room adjacent to the school room with a gate at the door so he could see us. I clearly remember putting a gate at Livvy's bedroom door when she was about Danner's age and she would play very contentedly for up to an hour for her "rest time". Usually Danner is crawling around by himself exploring his world very willingly for at least 30 minutes. I truly thought he'd be fine exploring the guest bedroom, playing with special toys, behind the gate. The thing that makes Danner go from happy-go-lucky baby explorer to "you're torching me" screaming is the gate at the door.

The first day, and every consecutive day, Danner has stood at the gate, with snack in hand, crying big crocodile tears - totally disrupting school. He was so sad that Sammy teared up too because he felt so sorry for the little captive. If it wasn't for my three big kids, who are very sensitive to the cries of their youngest brother (which is very sweet, I have to admit), I know I could train Danner to be quite content with his 30 minute alone-play. But, every time they look over at that cute, chubby-cheeked, tear-stained face standing at the gate they beg me to let the him free, which, because I've gone soft, I comply. Oh, brother.

I know I tried something similar with Jon when he was a baby, I can't remember if it worked or not. I seem to recall Jon spending a lot of time on Livvy's lap while she did her school. If I can't seem to make the guest bedroom work for a play room for Danner, I might drag in his highchair or retrieve his jumper from the attic. I know we'll find something that works, I just hope it's sooner rather than later.

Although we've had a bit of a rocky start to school, I think it's going to be a good year. Even though I don't quiet feel enthusiastic about the year yet, and have questioned my abilities to manage, this year over all the years in the past, I feel pretty good about having all of my bases covered.



So, here's to a new year at home with my kiddos. - except for those momentary overwhelmed feelings that make me want to cry for just a couple of minutes, there is no place I'd rather be!!



~~~~~



Oh! And here are Danner's 9 & 10 month shots before he turns 11 months: