T is in grade 7 now. New teacher but the same kids. J is in grade 5, her first year in the Extended French program, and she's one of 12 kids from her old class and 17 new kids coming from other schools for this special program. A is in grade 2. He's got the same grade 2 teacher that J had but his best friend is in a different class this year.
My wife says that about the only good thing about having the kids at school is that when she cleans part of the house it's clean until at least 4 o'clock when the come through the door, kick their shoes off anywhere, dump their backpacks anywhere else, and start making themselves an afternoon snack.
The morning routine is that the alarm wakes me at 7:30. After the news, sports, and weather I wake any kids who aren't up yet, go downstairs and make them breakfast (they can do it themselves but they're lazy), have my own breakfast, chase anyone who hasn't made their way back upstairs to get up there and brush their teeth and get dressed. While we're upstairs making ourselves presentable my wife has had about 15 minutes more sleep and comes downstairs and packs lunches. By this time it's getting close to time to leave and I'm yelling at the slowpokes chasing them downstairs where they search for shoes and tell us at the last minute that they need some field trip form signed, or some money for something or other. I walk the kids to school, wait until the youngest is safely inside (I don't worry so much about the older ones anymore) then come to the office and get to work.
I miss the lazy pace of summer already, and it's only been one day. School's only the beginning. Tomorrow night is the first congregational council meeting since June 1. I convinced them when I came here 3 years ago this past June that we don't need to meet in July or August and they went for it. Thursday night choir practice starts again. This year my wife is joining the choir. T is old enough to babysit her younger siblings for the hour or 90 minutes of choir practice, and besides, we live next door to the church. The July and August calendars were so beautifully empty, and September is all scribbled in already.
But, there's good news awaiting us only a month away. Yesterday, Labour Day, the last day of summer, J was crying because she didn't want it to end. We were planning to spring the good news on them this morning but seeing her tears was just too sad. We've been making plans and reservations for months without the kids knowing. Yesterday afternoon I told the kids that I heard DQ calling so we went for ice cream. My wife doesn't go for ice cream much so she stayed home. When we returned she was ready with the video camera to capture their reaction when they came in and saw a new t-shirt for each of them along with a card that said:
Walt Disney World
Been There, Done That, Going Back
October 6, 2005
We are all so excited! We can't wait! It's exactly a month away. Four weeks from this Thursday. I don't know how long the wait is going to be. It's really not a long time from now but it's going to seem like forever.