Tomorrow the public schools in our town have their first day. We kick off our not-back-to-school week. In the past the girls have walked to school where they were greeted with a balloon arch and a welcome back to school sign. I would stand on the sidewalk, kiss them hard, hug them harder and send them on their way inside to begin another school year. There is excitement surrounding this day. New clothes are purchased, and school supplies are packed inside brand new backpacks. New lunch boxes hold not only snack and lunch but at least from me, a love note as well. Friends are reunited after the summer break and teachers, both old and new, are usually standing in doorways waiting to welcome the children into their classroom. It is a big deal.
Since this is our very first un-first day of school, I figured we better make it special. Tonight we went to a local frozen ice parlor for the very first time. Grace chose blue raspberry, Lilah picked swedish fish and Greg and I had frozen custard. Very colorful. Very yummy. We wanted to begin a new tradition in our house, one that celebrates learning, family and fun.
I am looking forward to this week. I have some things planned that are sure to be both educational and unforgettable. Tonight as my children prepare for bed, there are no anxious stomach aches. There are none of the lunchroom worries of the past. There are no “I don’t like my teacher” or “I wish so and so was not in my class”. There are no clothes to be laid out, no backpacks waiting at the door. My children will miss some of this excitement for sure. It is all they have known for years.
I wish my friend’s children who are beginning their new year tomorrow all the best. We will be thinking of them and at times missing them. We will certainly be waiting until 3:30 when they come home eagerly anticipating their stories. But we will not be doing this from home. Nope. For us, our first un-first day of school will not be spent here. We will be taking the train and having an adventure. Stay tuned to find out where it will be!