Why going back to school is like buying a new pair of jeans...

The newness wears off pretty fast and pretty soon those jeans look and feel like every other pair of jeans in the world. It took about 4.2 days for the newness of school to wear off, and now this year feels like every other year. Sure, there's still some new hip things going on, but for the most part we are "over" all the fun and excitement. Homework has started, and darn it if I don't have three kids who prefer that I sit with them while they work... and they all work at different paces and at different times so my evenings are going to pretty much be homework from 5pm to 9:30 pm. I'm the mom and I'm happy to do it, but I might have to enforce family homework time and stick to that. Also, Lily and Z started new schools and the glitz and glamour of new books and buildings and schedules now just feels like school. Lily has some pretty severe anxiety around school and it started to just plain blew up yesterday. Hopefully today will be better. And I'm pretty sure David felt like he was back in the grind when he had to chaperon the Luau Dance at his school on Friday night. Nothing like having to wear a Hawaiian shirt while hanging with teenagers when you'd rather be home watching Netflix with your wife.

And you? Has the newness of the new school year worn off yet? Or have you not started yet?


First Day of School
My back-to-school pics of my kids are always a crap shoot. Some years they are fantastic. Some years, they look more "authentic." Like today. Very authentic. Zinabu was nervous (and mad) that school was starting. Plus it's a new school, and we're navigating the whole drop-off and pick-up and where to go details. I admit, it tugged on my heartstrings to send him off to a new place where he knows no one. I asked for a big smile for a great back-to-school photo, and this was the best I got. That's ok. He's still my awesome rock star 8 year old.
Now, when you have middle-schoolers, you're lucky if you can get them to stand within 6 feet of each other, let alone hope for perfect smiles. I consider the picture of Lily and Carver a huge success, regardless of the photo quality.
So they're off. The 2012-2013 school year has begun. Cheers!


We are finally at the final stretch of all the repairs needed after the Hellish Hail Storm of 2012. The basement carpet has been replaced and put down, the sheet rock repaired and painted, and all the furniture moved back. This week they replaced the roof and repainted the house, and all that's left now is new gutters. It has been LOUD here. Pounding and more pounding... but we are so grateful for the repairs. Every house in our neighborhood is also getting a new roof and repaired basement. It was quite a storm.

David has been very busy getting ready for the first day of school (Monday) and preparing for his 30+ students who lost their homes in the Waldo Canyon Fire. I'm very proud of our school district and the schools that were mostly affected. They've done so much for the families, staff, and students.

My kids are ready for school to start. Is there anything that drags out more than the last week of summer vacation? They just need to start already. While Zinabu is still not thrilled about his new school, he's willing to give it a try. He needs to make a buddy and then he'll be fine. Being that he's so sweet and helpful, I don't think that will be a problem.

We are holding our breath for Lily. She successfully attended 6th grade orientation, got her locker and schedule, packed her supplies, and knows a few other girls there. We are ever hopeful.

Carver is his usual happy-go-lucky self. Can't wait to see his friends. Can't wait to be an 8th grader. Can't wait to own his own cell phone. Can't wait to grow up. I'm doing my best to prevent that last part but he keeps thwarting me.

I am really proud to say I am a runner again. Last fall, my knee surgery put a big dent in my get-up-and-go. I didn't really get moving again until December/January, and even then it was mostly walking on the treadmill. I had started running a bit in early spring but if you recall I got some nasty virus that turned into a sinus infection and I was sick for 6 weeks. By June I was back to square one. Weak legs and even weaker lungs. But I've kept at it and I'm now up to a decent level of fitness. I run four times a week: 6 miles three times a week, and one three mile run at a very fast pace, to teach my lungs that they can't get lazy. My goal is to stay injury-free during the winter and pick one or two races this winter/spring to participate in. If I can do that, I will be really happy. I try never to take my health for granted.

Happy end of summer!


Wordless Wednesday


Today Blows
I'm so tired I actually walked into a wall. Our dog bit someone. Lily's hair is a hot mess. Carver is being mean to Zinabu solely because Zinabu is 8 and an easy target. David's car is in the shop for 2 weeks. There is more debate of Gabby Douglas' hair and leotard color than an issue that actually matters. I didn't get to run today, which is probably adding to my foul mood. It's just one of those days where you wish you could pull the covers over your head.


Believe it or not, school starts for us in 18 days. Our summer vacation begins early and we go back to school early. I rather like it that way. But this school year brings with it some major changes. Two of my three children are starting new schools. Lily is entering middle school and Zinabu is switching to a different elementary school. The reasons for Zinabu's switch are long and many, and he's not very happy about it. This makes David and I pause, wondering if we are doing the right thing. After multiple conversations we've finally almost sort of convinced Z to give the new school a try. Basically it means that for the next 18 days Z is covering his ears anytime we mention the "s" word (school) and he cries every. single. day. that we are the meanest parents in the world.

All this over third grade.

It is so hard being a parent when you know what's best for your child but they don't see it AT ALL! Zinabu is pretty contrary to begin with, so anytime a new experience presents itself to him his first response is always "no way!" Usually, though, once he gets going he likes the new experience and conveniently forgets all his previous bellyaching. We hope the pattern repeats itself with this new school.

And Lily. Starting sixth grade. I was telling a friend just this morning that I am probably the ONLY mother of a middle-schooler that is hoping some peer pressure will rub off on their child. Lily certainly marches to the beat of her own drum--and I don't want to change that at all--but she is so painfully shy I'm hoping being in a new environment will push her to make some new friends and put herself out there.

I don't know. This year could go either way. A huge success or an epic failure. Wanna place your bets?