Last Wednesday was Hadley’s big day to finally throw on her new glow-in-the-dark unicorn backpack (this obsession with unicorns may kill me, haha) and march confidently into Kindergarten. She has been taking speech at her new school for a while now via our school system, so she’s been more than ready to officially be a student there and do all of the things she’s always imagined that big Kindergarten kids get to do.
For years I’ve watched moms lament on social media about the array of emotions felt surrounding the big kindergarten send-off, and I always wondered how I would feel when it would be my turn to watch my oldest reach this milestone. Though we have a very close relationship, Hadley and I never had issues being separated from each other during her MMO/Pre-K years, so I wondered if I would be one of the oddballs who didn’t cry on this day.
As we began to inch closer to the first day though, I did start to feel a little anxious about what this new milestone meant. I knew she was about to be exposed to a whole new world, learn about new things that I’ve probably tried to protect her from, be on her own to make all new friends, and navigate her days with much more responsibility than she’s had before.
I think the second thing was the thing that made me more anxious than anything else.
Would her world be rocked when a kid shares with her something that he or she already knows about from an older sibling? If she hears about something new and confusing, will she internalize it or will she come home and share about it with me? These thoughts began to roll around in my head, but I also know that I’m raising a kid to live in our world and not in our tiny little bubble. I know this is all a big part of parenting and life in general.
The night before Kindergarten started out nice. My neighbor bestie Alyssa and I wanted to celebrate our daughters, so we all ate some funfetti cupcakes and took pictures of our Kindergarteners in a “Class of 2032” shirt. It was a sweet little celebration!
The rest of the night wasn’t quite full of books and excited snuggles like I hoped, but instead full of shuffling around to make sure everything was packed, putting out Sadie’s tantrum fires, and tending to a cluster-feeding Jillian. Hadley was shuffled to bed pretty quickly, but later that night I went in to snuggle her sleeping body for a bit. I was surprised to find myself tearing up as I held this little girl who didn’t feel so little. I prayed many different prayers over her, and then put myself to bed as well.
On the morning of her big day, Jamie and I were up and at ’em at 5 a.m. We both wanted to walk her in to her classroom, so that meant Sadie and Jillian had to come to. Miraculously, everyone was fed, dressed, overly excited, and ready to go by 6:55 a.m. THREE CHEERS!
A printed poem was handed out to all the parents, which definitely got to Jamie once he read it in his truck after drop-off, but I managed to hold it together. I felt super calm seeing how happy she was. She was very settled, her teacher is adorable and definitely knows what she’s doing, and we love her little school.
So I headed up to the library with Sadie and Jillian after drop-off to attend the hilarious “Boo Hoo Breakfast” with a couple mom friends where we drank coffee, ate some breakfast foods, and hung out a bit before leaving school. It was nice.
I wondered about her all day and couldn’t wait to see her. We opted to have her ride the bus home on the first day since that’s what will work best for our family routinely, but I was admittedly very nervous and felt terrible that I wasn’t picking her up myself. But she assured me she wanted to take the bus, and her teacher promised she would be well taken care of getting settled on the right bus.
I took a video of the bus pulling up, and Hadley barreled off of it with a smile worth a million bucks. I tear up every time I watch it. She’s proudly wearing an “I rocked my first day of Kindergarten” hat and ran toward me full force. It was precious. Riding the bus has been going so, so well! I truly had nothing to worry about there.
Moving on to my Sadie girl!
She started her three-year-old class at her preschool and had the best day yesterday! We had her open house on Tuesday, and though she was a little confused why her teachers from last year wouldn’t be her teachers this year, she was super happy to see a bunch of familiar faces in her new classroom. She was shy with me at Open House, but as soon as we dropped her off for her first official day, she bolted right for the table with Play Doh and a few friends she already knew. Cutie pie!
She was a chatterbox the entire way home, and I loved listening to her stories. She got to eat an ice cream sandwich as a treat when she got home for not battling/tantruming before school, so that made her extra happy. We are not above hefty bribes around here!
She couldn’t wait to pick up Hadley from the bus stop and tell her all about her day. 🙂 Their conversations are so freaking CUTE.
For Jillian’s and my first official morning together just the two of us, we ran by my friend Jenna’s house to give her a hug before she moves to Birmingham this week, and then headed home to start prepping to host a big family dinner. We have relatives in town from Seattle, so the three of them plus my parents and my sister’s family all came over for dinner and hang time. It was an awesome evening.
Now that both kids are in school, we are looking forward to finding a routine that leaves us all in a nice groove. I know things will constantly change throughout the next year as Jillian grows and changes, but for now we are extremely excited that all of the anticipation of a new baby and Hadley starting “real school” is behind us.
What are some of your favorite back to school traditions? How did you feel when you sent your kid(s) off to Kindergarten?
Hi! I’m Erica, and I absolutely adore sharing my life on this website with you! I come here almost daily to blab about all of the things related to being a regular wife and mother in today’s ever-evolving society. I share about our new home, what’s on our kitchen table, what we’re hanging in our closets, where we’re traveling to next, my crazy 5 a.m. work outs, how I make time for girlfriends, our faith, and much more. We always have a lot of balls in the air and somewhat thrive on the chaos. I believe in the power of story-telling as a form of inspiration and entertainment, so I’m here to do both! I was born and raised in north Alabama and recently re-planted roots here again after my husband transitioned out of the Army (he is now in the Reserve and it’s going so well!) I’m a super proud mom to two little girls (ages 5 and 2) who seem to be the stars of the show around here (for good reason – they’re pretty great!) I’m so glad you found me and are here reading! I hope we can get to know each other here on the blog as well as Facebook and/or Instagram. xoxo