Back-to-school: oh, how “special” it is

I talked a little bit about our frenzied first day and why I went back to bed but (horrors) I didn’t show my requisite first-day pictures. Hadley started on a Monday and Bode on Wednesday, which meant each of them could have the breakfast of their choice on our “You Are Special Today” plate.

Trust me, that plate doesn’t work at all when you have to share it on the same day. Kinda defeats the purpose.

Then, of course, their new outfits.

Is is just me or does Hadley look waaaaaaay too grown-up?

I’m feeling only OK about this school year. Hadley is in fourth grade and has looped with her same teacher (a Waldorf tradition). There’s good and bad in that. Good that we got a lot of kinks worked out last year and the teacher knows her strengths and weaknesses. Bad that I wish she had someone who knew how up to play to her weaknesses better. But best is this teacher loves experiential, multi-day field trips and that is what Hadley lives for.

As for Bode, welp, let’s just say he is rumored to have the worst teacher at his public school. I’m trying to keep an open mind about it because he’s a great student, a pleaser and highly adaptable in the classroom. Second grade is a mess with only one great teacher (whom Hadley had), the one Bode got and the third teacher isn’t great but she now has a grades 1 and 2 split class, which I’m glad we didn’t get.

His teacher’s first letter home didn’t exactly endear me to her, either. No, “welcome back!” or “I’m excited to get to know your kids!” It was:

“Attached is the S.T.A.R.S. rules matrix which outlines expected behavior in the classroom. We have gone over these together in class. PLEASE REVIEW THESE RULES WITH YOUR CHILD to ensure that you both know the expected behavior in the classroom at school.”

Doesn’t she sound like a lot of fun? Strict, I can deal with. It’s her rumored meanness, lack of competence and dislike of teaching that worry me. I hope to be pleasantly surprised. Anyone can change, right?

We had our most fun summer yet–these kids of mine are such adventurous souls and the older they get, the more I enjoy them. It helps that they got along marvelously and fought very minimally. When I kicked ‘em to the curb dropped them off at school, I felt a wave of sadness wash over me because I loved spending so much time together.

But then I had six glorious hours to myself where I worked, biked Bear Creek State Park, made peach pies and had a lunch meeting….

Hidden pond at Bear Creek State Park

….and I got over it.

Denver Day Trips, Back-to-School and More

Has it really been a week since I last posted? My sister-in-law Jane was going me to send me some photos of our B.C. lake adventures but I’m sure she’s busy so it hasn’t happened yet.  Hence the delay on my part. Oh, and because I’ve been too busy playing lately.

In the interim, we’re cramming in lots of goodness these final weeks of summer. And here’s a news item for you: I have very rarely complained about the heat. Of course, I was in Canada for much of July but that still leaves of couple of months of whining/misery.  Denver’s temperatures have stayed in the low-90s with the exception of a few horrendous days and I’ve realized I have learned to survive so long as the temperatures do not get above 94 degrees, after which all bets are off. You will note I said survive, not thrive.  And I am, indeed, counting down the days ’till fall and ski season.

So, we’ve been busy. The kids have less than two weeks ’til school starts and we’re cramming it all in. Yesterday, they did a fashion show on 9News, which I’ll write about later (never a dull moment, I tell ya). For my Denver Post column this month, I detailed Hadley’s lovely debut last year on the news and the (literal) mark she left on show business (think: puke).

Read it here:
Back-to-school clothes savings, the hard way  and also,

Colorado moms save on back-to-school.

In other non-school-related-news, I wrote about the best Day Trip from Denver–Peaks and Pies in Colorado’s Backcountry for Travel Mamas!