Monthly Archives: September 2015

a long, long time ago, we enjoyed some OSTRICH style entertainment

back in march,
when our spring break overlapped with some friends from a neighboring school district,
we kept very, VERY busy with fun activities.
we finished our FUN week with a VERY entertaining event.
the ostrich festival.

yes.
you read that correctly.
the OSTRICH festival.
as in that weird looking bird that can’t fly.

from the Chandler Chamber of Commerce website:
“The popular Ostrich Festival is part of Chandler’s recent history, but it is based on Chandler’s colorful early history of ostrich ranching, which included raising these unusual creatures for their stylish and expensive plumes.”

anyway….
i’ve been wanting to go to this Ostrich Festival for years.
and this year was FINALLY the year.
and to make it even better,
we went with some of our best friends.
the Woods.
you know, Mr. Jared, Mrs. Casey, Caleb, and Grace.
and then, for many, many unknown reasons, i didn’t blog about it.
what’s that all about anyway?
but tonight, as i pulled up a list of photo collages i need to make,
this one topped the list.
and i decided it was time to address the photo situation.
and tonight, i managed to narrow down the photos to 167.
i started with over 200.
and that was after “purging” back in march when i took the photos.
by the time i make a collage, i’ll be down to 20-40 photos.
(40 photos would be two collages).

but i thought you might enjoy seeing ALL 167 photos.
yes, i’m serious.
see, the OSTRICH FESTIVAL is much like a state or county fair.
we didn’t see a ton of the fair, to be honest.
we mostly stayed in the area of the KIDDIE rides.
and then,
OF COURSE,
we made it to the venue for the Ostrich Races.
yes.
RACES.
with OSTRICHES.
and people RIDING the ostriches.
i’m not even kidding.

so, in no particular order,
though hopefully they’re pretty much by time,
i introduce you to the OSTRICH FESTIVAL,
a yearly event in Chandler, Arizona!

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i believe Mr. Jared laid down the gauntlet on this one:

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and never one to be outdone by her kiddos,
i had to get involved in this, too!

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how fun to bump into our neighbors and dear friends at the races!
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not to be outdone by the ostriches,
some poor donkeys had to get involved, too:

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whew.
that was fun.
time to head back to the kiddie rides.
except that Dave found some MORE entertainment on the way:

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(that would be dave….
and then me….
jumping off a VERY HIGH platform onto a giant inflatable pillow.)

time for the BIG carousel:

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evening ride photos:
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time for some of the big kids and Mrs. Casey to ride the swings:

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and then it was late.
and pretty dark.
and lots of people were just ARRIVING.
but it was time for us to call it a day.
after one more ride.
each.

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(and in case you’re wondering,
we did eat PLENTY of junk food.
i just didn’t photograph it.
any of it.
see, Dave is gluten intolerant.
and Jared is allergic to the world.
well, not really.
but he’s allergic to quite a bit.
so eating at the Ostrich Festival was not HIGH on EITHER guy’s list.
good thing the moms were there.
we made sure the kiddos got to enjoy funnel cakes,
cotton candy,
snow cones,
lemonade,
soda,
(LOTS OF WATER – it was HOT and SUNBURNS happened!),
and i can’t remember what else.
that’s what happens when you blog about something 6 months after the event.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

August Overview/Photo dump


so even though i have ALL KINDS OF ALONE TIME these days
(what with ALL THREE Munchkins in school each day),
i’ve continued in my old form of slacking on blog posts.

so here are a bunch of RANDOM photos from the month of august.
if you follow me on instagram or Facebook, you’ve probably seen them all.
so feel free to skip the rest of this blog post.
but if you’re family or a dear friend,
read on….
and i’ll try to entertain you.
(or feel free to skip my commentary and just smile at the faces of my Munchkins)!

as you know, the beginning of the month of august marked BACK TO SCHOOL for us.
davey found one of these waiting for him when he “met” his teacher:

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yep. that’s her.
isn’t she adorable?
i’m SO EXCITED he has Mrs. Linnen this year.
(she taught Kindergarten the year Davey was in K but she wasn’t his teacher.
then she took a year off for her family.
and then she came back but as a 3rd grade teacher.
and now we have her!)
she’s sweet and loving and fun.
but she’s also tough and really puts an emphasis on STUDENT RESPONSIBILITY.
my “forgetful” child will hopefully learn a lot this year!

samantha was eager to find THIS outside of her classroom:
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she’s the pink ghost in the upper right corner.
SO. FUN!
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you might recognize this amazing teacher.
Mrs. Hagemeister.
davey had her last year.
she’s the first teacher LUCKY enough to get to teach TWO of my Munchkins.
she’s also a loving, fun, energetic teacher who is more than willing to think and work outside of the box if that’s what will help one child learn.
and she has an amazing smile.
i’m ELATED to have her again this year!
(an added bonus is she’s a “down the street” neighbor for us.)

after visiting those two classrooms,
we headed home and drove to ALEX’s new school.
she loved meeting her teacher:

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Mrs. Burns was THRILLED to meet Alex.
see,
for the past few years,
Mrs. Burns has been teaching this CD (Communication Delay) Skillz class -
to ALL BOYS.
seriously.
BOYS ONLY.
and THIS year, she has my sweet, lovable, huggable, entertaining Alex.
who is very much a girl.
and she has two other girls in the class, too.
so this should be a fun year for Mrs. Burns.
it’s her first year in awhile with girls.
it’s her first year with Kindergarteners.
(alex’s class includes Kindergarteners and 3rd graders).
i’m excited to see how much alex learns this year!

the night before school started,
alex wanted to play a game.
her game.
which means her Super Why game.
it’s a really “boring” game but she loves it.
and it’s actually really good for her.
though some of it is too easy (matching upper & lower case letters),
and some of it is too hard (rhyming words).
she really loves it, though.
and she asks EVERYONE to play it with her.

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i spent the month of august selling Otter Pops after school.
it was a PTSO thing.
we want to take the money we earned to revamp the Teacher’s Lounge.
it’s a pretty dreary place.
just very blah.
and sterile.
a gallon or two of paint will go a looooooong way!

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it still makes me smile:
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this kid finally likes this shirt:
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it’s one nana found at macy’s.
it’s one of my favorites.
of all time.
ever.

the littlest munchkin is getting rather independent.
about once every two weeks she’ll pull up a stool or chair to do something in the kitchen.
one night, it was to put away the left overs from dinner.
this night, it was to “wash” a dish. 
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on the second day that the Munchkins were back in school,
i had a grown-up play date with my dear friend, Casey.
see, her two kiddos are ALSO in school this year.
all day.
every day.
so we have all kinds of “FREE” time.
on that first thursday,
we enjoyed some pedicure pampering:

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and yes, we DID get matching polish!

as i was walking through the laundry room one day,
i noticed i might have a sunglasses problem:

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but then i remembered that i live in arizona.
and there’s no such thing as “too many sunnies.”
****in the past week,
i discovered that those black glasses (3rd from the left) were broken.
and not fixable.
sigh.
i guess that means it’s time to go buy another pair!

without even knowing how much i LOVE photos,
alex’s teacher sent me this one day: IMG_5027

that’s my big girl working hard in class!

the month of august was also a VERY big deal for our church.
we’ve been attending this church almost since we moved to arizona 3.5 years ago.
and we’ve (the  church body) been renting space from a Christian high school.
until late last year when we bought a building.
and then we had to do renovations.
and we finally moved into our new building.

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it’s pretty spectacular.

i may have finally worn a “new-to-me” dress that i bought MONTHS ago on a site called “thred up.” i wasn’t sure about it but i waited too long to return it.
and now i love it.

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and after church that day, we enjoyed tacos at a yummy taco joint near the church.
and the girls both wore my sunnies (the now broken black ones) and wanted me to take their picture.

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stunning.
both of them.

back-to-school ALSO meant that BETSY came HOME!
after spending ALL SUMMER back up in Bellingham,
she was home and ready for some girl time.
i LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these ladies.
they are my core group.
my friends i turn to when i need anything.
my friends who will be there for me THROUGH anything.
we share the same faith.
our husbands work together.
we understand and enjoy one another.
these evenings where we eat and talk and catch up and share….
they feed my soul.
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love you so much, Jenni, Casey, and Betsy!

i love helping in the Munchkins’ classes.
this was a fun find on a bulletin board one day:

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some day,
i MAY admit that i’m “older.”
but i’m not ready to do that yet.
i still want to be “the cool mom.”
and sometimes i’m running late to get to school for various things.
but we only live 1/4 of a mile from the school, so i feel lazy driving.
so some days, i grab dave’s scooter and push my way to school.
it’s faster than walking.
and not as “lazy” as driving.
and some days,
when i’m scooting HOME from school,
i slip.
and i skin my knee.
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and it hurts like the dickens for a few days.
and i get a nasty scab.
and i hope it won’t turn into a scar.

i like to play word games with friends.
Words with Friends is like scrabble.
and i play a wide variety of people.
but this screen shot from a game in progress has nothing to do with the words on the board.
it has nothing to do with the score.
it has nothing to do with who i was playing.
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if you know me well, you know that my maiden name was Sarapata.
and that means that my NAME was TAMARA SARAPATA.
which means my first and last names combined had SEVEN As.
and they were EVERY other LETTER.
for real.
look at it.
T A M A R A S A R A P A T A
seriously.
apparently,
a nurse at the hospital pointed it out to my mom when i was about 3 days old.
she hadn’t realized it.
but she stuck with it.
when i was living on my own and had my own car and was paying my own bills,
i got a personalized license plate
(they were WAAAAAAAAAY cheaper in PA than in WA).
my plate read: TMR SRPT
my name without the vowels.
seriously.
pretty cool.
(that plate is actually hanging up in our garage now).
but if you look at the letters i had available in the game above,
you’ll see that i had my name (minus the vowels) IF you use the BLANK tile as an “R.”

and that was a much longer story than i had intended.
you’re welcome.
:D

i never tire of sleeping Munchkins:

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about a week or two after the pedicure date with Casey,
we spent another thursday (with Betsy) wandering around IKEA.
i was so excited to find this affordable beauty:

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it was almost exactly what i wanted to store some Lego bricks DOWNSTAIRS.
it was (mostly) easy to assemble despite the poor instructions.
the Munchkins really like have regular sized Lego bricks downstairs now.
i like that they’re not all over my living room!

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this little one wanted her fingernails painted:

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and she had picked off the nail polish within two hours of this cute photo.

i love getting notes like this from alex’s teacher:

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i love that other people can’t help but laugh at some of her antics.
but to know that the teacher is as thrilled as you are about little things like this:

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well, that tells me that we have the right teacher this year!

one morning,
while our kiddos were all at school,
maryann and i got together to chat about project life.
and projects.
and life.
and children.
and everything else.

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this photo was totally staged.
yet i still love it.
and i love her.
thank you, maryann, for a wonderful morning.

for many of you, august means good summer weather.
perhaps it starts to cool off a bit.
perhaps the humidity slows down.
perhaps it’s hot but not gross.
here in the east valley of phoenix,
we get GROSS weather in august.
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like really gross.
i love it.
but i also hate it.
we’ll have these kinds of temps for a solid month.
or two.
and by late august,
we’re all D-O-N-E with it.
this year was no exception.

on one of my Munchkin-free mornings,
I went to Walmart to do part of our weekly grocery shopping.
but i found a $1 clearance rack in the baby section and i got distracted.
and then i found a few more $1 clearance racks in that section.
and in the end, i narrowed down my purchases to these (all for alex):
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that would be 2 nightgowns, 5 pairs of pjs, and 1 pair of bermuda shorts.
for EIGHT DOLLARS.
total.
not each.
TOTAL.
SCORE!
i’m a sucker for a good deal.

i finally made some progress on school paperwork organizing.
i got these file boxes for the Munchkins.
and i ordered hanging files on amazon.
and i put all their school paperwork in here.
one file per school year.
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at some point, i’ll add their names on the boxes (using vinyl).
i also have to go back and add an INFO sheet at the front of each file folder.
the info sheet will include:
- a photo of them (or, if i have one, a photo of them with their teacher)
- the name of their teacher
- the grade
- the name / location of the school
- and as we move forward, i’ll have each kiddo write their name on that page

so i still have quite a bit more work to do, but the project has begun.
and i’m happy with it thus far.

i love, love, LOVE to organize and purge and tidy and ORGANIZE.
so i finally tackled the upstairs linens/game closet.

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ahhhh.
so much better.
notice how i labeled the linens shelf – FULL or TWIN sheet sets.
and the sheets sets are folded and stored INSIDE their matching pillow cases.
pinterest has some genius ideas!

i braved the VERY HOT temperature in the garage one day.
i moved, shifted, sorted, and moved more things.
and i finally cleared some MORE space there by the door.
and leading TO the door.
ahhhh.
no one needs to feel claustrophobic anymore.
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on my THIRD Munchkin-free Thursday of the school year,
i enjoyed ANOTHER adventure with Casey and Betsy.
this adventure included an unplanned shopping trip to the local outlet mall.
i found this “striped-but-not-striped” shirt at Old Navy:
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and the girls talked me into these AWESOME chucks:

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(what you can’t see too well in this photo is that there’s a zipper on EACH SIDE of the laces.
so you can ZIP the shoes on and off.
but for real…. ZIPPERS?!
i didn’t take much “convincing.”)

and finally, three weeks into the school year,
we were able to get an updated MOM SQUAD photo.
these moms are also my besties here.
we LIVE LIFE together.
day in and day out.
we’re there to help take kids TO school.
and bring them home FROM school.
and to mother them when we’re IN school.
and to watch them AFTER school.
or BEFORE school.
we’re shoulders to cry on.
and shoulders to lean on.
and we’re encouragers,
and commiserators,
and understand-er-ers (yes, i made up that word),
and jokers,
and we’re so much more.
we’re friends.
in and out.
up and down.
left and right.
back and forth.
it’s what we do.
it’s who we are.
and i love them so much.
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so to Geneva, MaryAnn, and Katie -
THANK YOU.
thank you for being my peeps.
thank you for being my friends.
thank you for being HERE.
all day long.
every day.
all the time.
i couldn’t walk this road of parenting without you.

thanks to Katie, who is an avid blogger,
i decided to stop reminding my Munchkins WHAT to do before school each morning.
i made them each a chore chart.
and these aren’t really chores.
these are simply “what you do to be ready & presentable for school” but for some reason,
i called them “chores.”
maybe i’ll reprint them with a title change.
but until then,
here’s what we have:

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if each of these items is completed BEFORE the timer on the stove buzzes,
that child will earn a gem for their gem jar.
motivation is a good thing.

this girl will be such a good little mommy….
i caught her taking the left over diapers and pull ups
(the ones i “reserved” for emergency purposes for friends)
and using them on her dolls.
and stuffed animals.
or stuffed make believe characters.
this is Muno, the one-eyed red “thing” from Yo Gabba Gabba.
notice that she’s changing his diaper….
COMPLETE WITH WIPES!!!
(i watched her pull out a clean wipe to wipe Muno’s bottom).

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fun PIN memories for me in a package from my mom:IMG_5229

after months (perhaps years) of searching for the PERFECT throw pillows for our couches,
i finally found some FABRIC i love.
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love.
in a random walmart, of all places.
yes.
i’m serious.
dave isn’t a fan of throw pillows,
so he’s not eager for me to load up our couches with fun mixtures of these fabrics,
but i’m getting “itchy” to make the pillows.
maybe this week…..

tam’s treasure box received a custom order this month:
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aren’t they fun?!

and then i decided to get creative with bleach.
remember my new chucks above?
i had to be talked “into” them b/c i already own grey chucks.
so i convinced myself that my already-existing chucks should have white polka dots.
sounds great, doesn’t it?
but i wanted to BLEACH them.
but not ruin them.
so i found a pair of grey chucks for $5 on a local FB garage sale group.
and i set to work.

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these polka dots are smaller than i wanted.
and it turns out bleach isn’t the right medium for what i want.
so i’m glad i didn’t “ruin” my existing chucks.
now to work up the nerve to paint them.
maybe i need to find a new practice pair?!

but since the bleach was out and working,
i decided to try something else i discovered while searching for bleaching techniques/tutorials on pinterest….

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um.
yeah.
i made those.
the bleach is a little (LOT) heavy in the inner thighs,
so that’s not cool,
but the rest of these jeans?
SO ME.
i may even have to go back to forever 21 for an $8 pair of jeans to make these but “better.”
i used scotch tape and washi tape to make the crosses.
and they worked as a “mask” to protect the jeans from the bleach.
i LOVE the look.
and i’m REALLY excited for it to cool off so i can wear them.
(remember the above photo that showed you triple digits?!)

i tried a lot of new recipes this month.
THIS one for pork chops was pretty good:

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near the end of the month,
we (as a family) attended the FIRST birthday of this sweet little one:

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thanks for inviting us to your water and flamingo themed birthday party, Sarah!

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after Sarah’s party,
but before Shilah’s party (also on the same day),
the kids continued to use their invention….

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“the carrydowninator”
basically, it’s a toy pot that has string running through the holes left over after the handles were “broken” off the pot. and they lower it from the loft to the main floor of the house.
and they don’t have to carry those things on the stairs.
but as you can see,
it’s a pretty small pot.
so it takes a lot of pulling and bumping and dropping to get things up and down.
but i applaud them for their creativity.
i only wish they would’ve called it the “carryupinator” so they would use it to take things BACK UPSTAIRS!!!!!

while the other two invented things,
the littlest Munchkin decided to show us that she’s ridiculously smart.
but i learned about it the same time everyone else on Facebook did,
since Dave shared it there first!

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she almost spelled the word CAT by herself!!!

 

Transportation…..

for the past three years of school,
dave has dropped off D&S in the mornings and I have picked them up in the afternoon.
(usually walking…. very, VERY rarely with the car).
for the past two years,
i have dropped off and picked up alex from pre school.
every day.
there have been days with other parents helping me bring home healthy kids while i’m home with a sick one.
or while i’m sick myself.
but there have been ZERO busses involved in our transportation system.
see, we only live about 0.25 miles from school.
it’s a quick walk or bike/scooter ride.
and the munchkins love to see their friends along the way.
but this year is a new year.
and dave wanted to leave for work earlier in the morning.
and alex is going to a new school.
so for the first time,
morning transportation was ALL on me.
for all THREE kiddos.
with two different start times.

after three days of driving Alex to school in the morning
AND home again in the afternoon
(which made for CRAZY afternoons),
the Transportation Department finally had all the necessary paperwork.

So on Monday, August 10th,
the big kids and I walked home from school.
and waited.
we looked at papers from school.
they had snacks.
they put away their lunch boxes.
they started reading.

and every 32.6 seconds I was looking at the clock.
or at the clock on my phone.
WHERE WAS SHE?
WHY WASN’T SHE HOME YET?
oh.
yeah.
school only got out 3 minutes ago.
3 minutes and 32.6 seconds ago.
4 minutes and 5.2 seconds ago.

you get the idea, right?
it was NOT a relaxing, restful, peaceful visit on the porch swing for me.
i was simply WAITING.

and then i heard it.
coming up the block.
the loud sounds of a truck.
or better yet – A SCHOOL BUS!

and then, at 3:59 and 23 seconds pm, there she was:

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THAT, my friends,
is my sweet, BABY girl
getting off the bus….
just like a BIG KID!

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it was SO WONDERFUL to hear her high pitched squeal yell “momyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!”
and then she ran up and gave me a HUGE, SQUISHY hug!
it was WONDERFUL!

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and the best part of all?
she LOVED the bus ride.
we’re talking L-O-V-E-D it.
after being TERRIFIED (and I do mean T-E-R-R-I-F-I-E-D) of the bus for TWO YEARS,
she LOVED LOVED LOVED riding the bus home!

in fact,
as soon as the bus rounded the corner and was out of sight,
she asked if she could ride the bus tomorrow.

FAST FORWARD two weeks.
to Monday, August 24th.
alex had been riding the bus HOME from school for two weeks.
and for two weeks (minus one day),
she had been asking if she could ride the bus TO school in the mornings.
but i was still taking her TO school each morning.
with the timing of the bus pick up AND getting D&S to school,
I just wasn’t able to be in TWO places at ONE time.
surprising, I know.
but every superhero has their limits.
that must be mine.
I can only be in one place at one time.
I hate admitting that I’m human!

But the day finally came.
Alex has a friend in her class who lives just two blocks from us.
two blocks away from our house but two blocks CLOSER to D&S’s school.
so on Monday, August 24th,
i watched my older two Munchkins cross the street by themselves (GASP!).
then alex and I walked down a side block to Lia’s house.

It was not an EASY morning.
It was not FUN getting the kids out the door a few minutes earlier than they’re used to
(for the past 3 years!)
But when that bus pulled up in front of Lia’s house (at 7:55am),
I knew it was worth it.

My littlest Munchkin ran STRAIGHT for the bus.
she didn’t even give me a hug good bye!

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and just like that, she was gone.
no early morning walk home from school with my littlest.
no last minute chances to fix her hair.
or get her to eat some more breakfast.
or give her 50 hugs and snuggles.
gone.
poof.
in the instant (or 29) that it took the bus to drive away.

and every day since then,
my heart has left me twice each morning.
we all stop at the corner to say “good bye” to each other.
and then D&S cross the street and go to school.
and alex and i walk down the block to catch the bus.
and i always feel just a little bit emptier inside.
it’s hard when your babies are growing up to be big kids.

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4 weeks ago….

as of tomorrow (wednesday), we started school 4 weeks ago.
as of saturday the 4th, we started school 1 month ago.
and by “we,”
i mean “the munchkins.”
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but really,
i started back to school, too.
before too long,
i’ll be back in ALL of their classrooms.
i’ll be taking photos.
i’ll be listening to reading groups.
i’ll be making copies.
i’ll be adding and removing things from bulletin boards.
i will hoping that i will NOT be helping with painting projects.
but it’s likely that i’ll be doing that, too.

and it’s all worth it.
i love my kiddos.
i love their schools.
oh!
wait!
did i forget to mention that?!
yes.
the munchkins are at TWO different schools this year.
D&S are at our local school.
alex is a few miles up the road at a public school that offers a special program for her communication delays.

this first month has been pretty great.
don’t get me wrong – there have been some rough patches.
especially regarding transportation.
more specifically, the Gilbert Public Schools Transportation Department.
did you know that they lost alex’s paperwork to ride the bus?
FOUR TIMES!?
plus they lost it in one e-mail message.
directly to the supervisor.

SERIOUSLY.

in the end,
alex’s pre school teacher (aka: from last year) faxed the paper to Transportation.
then she texted me.
so then i called Transportation.
and i didn’t get off the phone with them until they told me they held the paper in their hands.

again.
SERIOUSLY.

there was also the day where she got home an HOUR late.
via the bus.
and Transportation didn’t call me.

yep.
SERIOUSLY.

but we’ve worked through these issues.
and moved past them.
and i’m here to tell you that the first day of school ROCKED!

my Munchkins were all up EARLY.
and they were all ready to go EARLY.
so i was able to take some fun photos!

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this girl is SO goofy…. check out her funny faces:
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after each kiddo was walked or driven to their school (alex didn’t take the bus for the first week – there was that whole paperwork problem with Transportation),
i headed to the GYM for the first time since June.
it was good to be back.
kind of.

and after my work out,
and my walk home,
and my shower,
i realized i had an empty home.
and i realized that i would have an empty home until 3pm.
and i wasn’t sure how in the world i would stop myself over the next FIVE HOURS from calling alex’s school to check on her.
or worse – how i would stop myself from just driving by and stopping in….

so i knew i needed some help.
i went to my closet and pulled out this bad boy:

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i KNEW it would take my super hero WONDER WOMAN powers NOT to call alex’s school.
and NOT to call her teacher.
and NOT to just “stop by” at D&S’s school.
i will admit.
it was difficult.
i had no problem with davey starting kindergarten.
i had no problem with samantha starting kindergarten.
i had a few issues with alex going to pre school but i knew it was good for her.
and it was only a few hours each day.
but this whole “alex-in-kindergarten-full-days-all-days” thing threw me for a loop.

so in an attempt to be a COOL mom instead of an over-protective, crazy, freak,
i drove to dave’s office to have a KID-FREE lunch date with him.
we went out for tacos.
i ate THE BEST fish taco of my life that day.
seriously.
it was AMAZING.
(we went back on sunday with the kiddos but it wasn’t anywhere CLOSE to good that day.
consistency,
people.
i like consistency.)

when dave and i got back in the car after lunch that wednesday,
the car’s thermostat registered a higher number than i’d ever seen before:

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it wasn’t even remotely THAT hot.
but i guess that parking lot was smoking.

if you don’t know,
i’m on my school’s PTSO Board.
(PTSO = Parent, Teacher, Student Organization)
we decided to sell Otter Pops after school for the month of August.
but for the FIRST day of school,
we GAVE AWAY otter pops to EVERY student.
for FREE!
(hence the “gave away” part of the sentence above).

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it wasn’t 132* but it was hot.
it’s actually been triple digits every day since school started.
(the forecast is saying that it’s only going to be 92* this friday…..
we’ll see how that actually plays out!)

those Otter Pops were well loved by all.
including 8 of my favorite Spectrum All Stars:
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(those are the Mom Squad kiddos – minus Alex who was at her school and baby Sarah who, well, is a baby and therefore isn’t a student yet)
this picture shows you ONE 3rd grader, FOUR 2nd graders, ONE 1st grader, ONE kindergartener, and ONE kinder-prep (aka: amped up pre school) kiddo.

my munchkins and i had to rush home after handing out otter pops.
we had to drive 4 miles up the road to pick up alex from HER first day of school!
(while i’m not a fan of her school’s start and end times,
i am THANKFUL that alex’s school doesn’t start and end at the same time as D&S’s school.
AND i am THANKFUL that it doesn’t start and end even LATER,
which is the reality for some other schools in our district.)

once home,
my munchkins weren’t too talkative about their days.
just little things here and there that i had to practically PRY out of them.
i kid you not.
the only reason i know as much as i know about my kiddo’s classes each year is because i’m IN the classes.
i get involved.
my munchkins’ lips are pretty tightly sealed.
or they forget about things that happened.
and that’s okay.
because i know enough to keep me going.
until i get INTO the classes, that is.
then i know A LOT.

after a snack,
my munchkins spread out around the house.
and it was still quiet.
really quiet.
and this is what i found:

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READERS!
ALL OF THEM!

well, this one went back and forth between stickers and reading,
but it’s all book-related.
so i say it counts!
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i love these munchkins.
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after a yummy dinner,
we went out as a family for a BACK TO SCHOOL “special treat!”

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mmmmmm.
freddy’s frozen custard.
SOOOOO good.
(i didn’t get any.
and alex always gets a few spoonfuls from everyone else).

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and then dave was hilarious.
each of our kiddos has a certain “eating style” when it comes to frozen custard.
so he started pretending to be each munchkin.

samantha is The Licker:
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and Davey is the Face Maker:
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and Alex is The Shoveler:
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i think the evening was a success!
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in fact,
i think the whole DAY was a success!
even the sky agreed with us:

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here’s to another FANTASTIC year of school!