Thursday, September 22, 2011

All the Bright Side

It is coming up on 2 months since we moved into our new home in Fairfield. Is it all sunshine and light? No. (Yes, occasional dead mouse in the crawl space - I am looking at you).

But there are many, many things to be excited about.

Home: We are making fantastic progress on making the house ours. There is and will always be more to do and more ways to spend money (e.g., paint the family room, remove some trees, re-sod the lawn, get new blinds...), but we have plenty of time to prioritize and make small improvements. For now I am happy with the weeding I do while waiting for the bus and gazing lovingly at the tapestry we finally picked out and hung to cover the electric box in the middle of the living room wall.

Day care: The Hoos and I both remarked this morning that we think AK is happier at her new day care. There was nothing wrong with the old day care, but she just seems chattier and more relaxed at the new place. And I know she loves her weekly swimming class.

School: LP seems to be thriving at kindergarten. Always eager to board the school bus, she sits with her "bus buddies" (although she can't recall their names, or just doesn't want to tell me) and passes on the bus gossip. Shockingly, the big kids that sit in the back of the bus? Are still as raucous as when we were kids. She likes her teacher, enjoys aftercare, and continues to make new friends on a daily basis.

Etc.: We joined our local synagogue and LP is going into her 3rd week of Hebrew School. I am getting used to my commute and new routine and haven't had any complaints about my adjusted hours. The Hoos spent a couple of nights away earlier this week and while we missed him, he learned a lot and made some good contacts.

So really, who can complain?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

There's Nothing Wrong with a Little Traffic

This week is the first week of our new routine - no holidays, no randomly early closing times, just "normal."

Well, at least it would have been normal if LP's eyes weren't bright red when I picked her up on Monday, necessitating a trip to the pediatrician, anti-biotic eye drops and a need to keep her out of school for 24 hours. But I digress.

This means is that I am heading to work on my own, without having to drop the ladies off at day care in the morning and with little to no involvement in the morning routine.

Of course, I still wake them up and urge them to come downstairs and eat while the Hoos gets ready; I also heat up LP's lunch and put it in its hot Thermos container and make sure everything is packed up in their backpacks. But, again, I digress.

For the last year I have had the pleasure of driving to work without the involvement of any highways, parkways or main roads. Now I have to go one measly exit on the Merritt Parkway and it takes me 35 minutes. And, because the distance between my exit and my work exit is 5.5 miles, it has the wonderful name of "no man's land." So, if I choose to go on it - there is no getting off or changing my mind.

Like last week, when I got on the Parkway and then realized I had left my laptop at home, but I still had to go the entire 5.5 miles and then 5.5 miles BACK to get it. But I digress AGAIN.

So, I have been experimenting with back roads. And by experimenting, I mean GETTING LOST. And wasting LOTS AND LOTS of time.

So, my lesson for the week - sometimes the tried, true, traditional, traffic-filled the best one. Digressions aside;)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

One Day Down, 13 Years to Go

LP was so super excited for her first day of school that she jumped out of bed from a dead sleep and began running around her room in a spin to get ready.

As she grabbed her clothes she yelled to me, "Mom! Can you make me a chocolate chip waffle? I will be down in a minute!"

As I warmed up the waffle she put on her new light-up sneakers.

When she finished her breakfast she was ready to hit the porch. I reminded her the bus didn't come for another 55 minutes and recommended that she pee and brush her teeth - which she did in record time.

At 7:35 she was again ready to wait on our (fortunately covered) front porch in the rain.

Finally at 8:20 we all moved to the porch to wait. When the bus came and the Hoos walked with her to the end of our driveway, she would barely slow down to give him a kiss. And then she got on the bus and didn't turn back.

And then I cried.

Okay, not really. Then we jumped in our cars and went over to the school to watch her get off the bus. We were not the only people to do this - and we probably wouldn't have, except our across the street neighbors (who share our bus stop) were going.

At this point, I must note that a lot of parents are crazy. We might be a little wacky, but we were not there to make our kid cry. We were there so we could cry. And see how big she looked getting off the bus (and man, did she ever, hiking her new backpack up as she climbed down the bus stairs). Other parents? They got in their kids' faces to take pictures. LP didn't even know - or care - that we were there.

Of course, she did great. She didn't give me too many details, but she told me that you can buy a bagel for lunch and not just the hot lunch (none of which sounded appealing to her). She also told me that she shares a locker and her teacher is nice and that she needs a water cup for snack time. Oh, and that the classroom has its own bathroom. And you don't even have to ask the teacher if you need to use it, you can just get up and go. And because there is no lock on the door, there is a sign on the doorknob that says "stop" on one side and "go" on the other. And that there are some "really young kids" in her class. And she knows they are young because they are "so little". Then she sat on the couch and ate lots of snacks (because being in kindergarten is hard work).

AK is doing great at her new program too. Today was the first day she cried at drop off, but in general she likes the teachers and the kids. Both of my kids are super-troopers. I definitely lucked out in that department - which, I guess, should make up for not having power for a week. But that's another story.