Monday, September 2, 2013

Winding Down

It is the night before the first day of school.  The outfits are picked out. Lunches are planned. Backpacks are laid out by the door.  Lectures were given on the importance of kindness and compassion towards all classmates, being a friend to all, always trying your best, and being responsible and dependable. Showers are taken, teeth are brushed.  Prayers have been said. The children are now snug and in their beds.  

The kids are excited for school to start.  Part of me wonders if I failed them.  Didn't I make summer fun enough for them to lament the return of school?  Last year they wanted summer to last forever. 

Just as I begin to get that old guilty feeling I look back over our summer and see we had plenty of fun this past summer.  Sure, it may not have been the warmest summer, and very little swimming was to be had, but we still managed to have some wonderful times.  We took our first family trip to Chicago.  We went up north often.  We took a trip to Bay Beach.  The two older boys went to Boy Scout camp. The boys played baseball, Gracie started ballet. And, yes, we got in a little bit of swimming too. Even this last weekend before school we managed to get in some more fun.  

On Saturday we went to the county fair.  Of course, one of the kids' favorite summer activities. Tommy was finally tall enough to ride The Zipper and he and I braved the crazy ride together.  After experiencing just how wild that ride was Tommy and Joe (who is an expert at The Zipper now) encouraged Ben (who is already tall enough) to wait another year or two.

The kids ran from ride to ride, getting more and more daring with each one.  Gracie may just be the bravest of the group as she constantly asked for the ride to go faster and higher and spin more.  No more baby rides for Grace.  She likes the big rides. It is good to know that there will never be a shortage of riding partners for me when it comes to the big crazy rides and roller coasters.
Sunday was the first wedding our whole family was invited to.  It is difficult to get an invite for a family of six and we never expect it, so it was a pleasant surprise when my cousin went out of her way to make sure I knew the kids were welcome at this wedding.
The kids were so excited (mostly for the dancing and cake). Grace loves watching all the wedding shows with me on TLC so she insisted on going to the church ceremony while Todd and the boys sat that one out.  The wedding was about an hour away with a three plus hour wait in between the wedding and the reception, so I didn't think it was a good idea to bring four kids to a ceremony and make them sit around for close to 4 hours.  Instead, Grace, my mom, and I went to the ceremony and then came back home to pick up the menfolk for the reception.  
It was a beautiful, fun wedding.  As predicted the kids had a blast dancing.  We could barely pull Grace and Ben away from the dance floor at the end of the night.  Those two were dancing together for just about every dance.  Ben would spin Grace around and dip her.  Man, he is gonna be such a ladies' man someday, and she is definitely aptly named.  And bonus! There was a photo booth at the wedding that the kids became obsessed over.  It was definitely a good time for them.

Today was a bit more laid back.  Grocery shopping (remind me to NEVER go grocery shopping the day before school starts, EVER AGAIN), making cookies, riding bikes, playing outside, and stacking wood for the coming fall.

Now the kids are sleeping (hopefully) and I am busy prepping cameras and video cameras, filling out last minute paperwork for school, and writing special notes for lunch boxes on the first day of school.

I'm glad the kids are excited for school. I'm happy for them. But I'm sad to see our summer go so quickly. I would have liked a little more time.  A little more time with my littles.

The are little for such a short time.


Elaine Alguire said...

I know, it goes so fast.

The wedding looks like a blast, and a great end to a fun summer! Hope they all have a great day tomorrow!

Bijoux said...

You have such a great family, Kat. I'm glad they aren't moaning and groaning about school because it makes it harder on Mom to send them back.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

You gave them a GREAT summer. And there's nothing wrong with them being excited to start a new season--that's a sign that they're in a good place to learn and grow!

Dawn said...

That wedding does look like fun...cute pictures! My daughter left for her first day of high school, just a few minutes ago, and my son will be homeschooled again. I didn't even sleep last night, I was so nervous/excited. I hope your kids have a great first day of school!

Wisconsin Girl said...

Fun wedding pictures and what great memories for your whole family! Hope today goes well for all of you! Summer was fun, but I'm ready for the routine of fall around here!

Mom24 said...

That looks like a pretty wonderful end of summer weekend. On a side note, what is with the gap between weddings and receptions? We're going to a wedding at the end of the month at 2:30 and the reception doesn't start until 6:30. It's out of town, so I have no idea what we'll do for all that time.

Glad you all had fun though.

Words To Live By

Be grateful for each new day.
A new day that you have never lived before.
Twenty-four new, fresh, unexplored hours to use usefully and profitably.
We can squander, neglect, or use them.
Life will be richer or poorer by the way we use today.
Finish every day and be done with it.
You have done what you could;
some blunders and absurdities crept in;
forget them as soon as you can.
Tomorrow is a new day.
You shall begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be
encumbered with your old nonsense.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson