"I got the boogie boogie in my socks"
Rickie Lee Jones
From "Woody and Dutch on the slow train to Peking"
The first day of school in my house is a cause for celebration. The anticipation, the excitement, the sheer exuberance of that day is wondrous. My kids seem pretty excited as well. They finally get to wear their new shoes-(I keep them hidden till the first day..otherwise they would have magically outgrown them or worn them out in the three days since they were bought) new backpacks (also hidden for fear they will be lost or buried in the sandbox) It's a new adventure but the same routine. So they handle it pretty well. For the first day or two at least, after that, all bets are off.
The first day went without a hitch. I woke up before the alarm went off-an amazing feat. We had lived for so many years with sleep deprivation, and now that the kids are sleeping a solid ten hours a night, AND are able to get up unsupervised by themselves...So, I had the luxury of sleeping in this past summer. (Of course what I got up to could be an adventure in spilled milk, cereal,and jelly smears...but it was worth it...and, when I say "sleeping in" I mean lying in bed awake listening to them, because besides being very noisy, they would often come and check to see if I was awake-"IS SHE AWAKE????"..."SHHH YOU"RE TO LOUD!" "I AM NOT-MAMA! SAMMY SAID I WAS TOO LOUD!!") So , on the first day of school, I was surprised to get up as early as I did. I think it was the silence that woke me.
It is nice to be able to enjoy my coffee in that quiet hour before the sun is up, or on this day-the quiet five minutes before my excited herd burst out of their beds. Although "excited" is an understatement. Frenzied..crazed..over stimulated.... Lets just say they were raring to go. "Mama! LOOK AT MY NEW SHOES!!!" "I see them honey, I remember the three hours it took to pick them out" "LOOK MAMA!! THE"HELLO KITTY" ON MY BACKPACK SPARKLES!!!!!" "Yes, I know..you showed me fifty seven times last night" and on it went for two hours until the bus came to take them AWAY!..I mean, the bus picked them up. I stood there as the bus pulled away, shell shocked....just stunned by the absolute quiet-it was deafening.
I spent the day as I said that I would. I listened to music-loud, I drank coffee, I even cleaned out the refrigerator-something that NEEDED to be done. There are people who collect souvenir's of their summer trips, little trinkets to remind them of all their good times...I had my refrigerator. There were the moldy burgers leftover from our first barbecue...half eaten apples from the day I decided to teach them how to make a pie..I even found the ice cream bar Zoe had lost. Sigh...some people have photo albums..I had old food. If only there were a way to save it-preserve it-so that we could take it out and look at it in years to come. "Look Sammy, here's the tuna sandwich with a tiny crumb bitten off-remember this? You swore that you wanted to try tuna, and that you would actually taste it? Remember how you put it in the fridge to save for later?..Maybe next time you could wrap it in something?" "Oh look Lily! I think it's the really expensive blueberries that you couldn't live without !! or is it the bag of raisins Zoe lost..or raisinettes?..Did we ever have a rabbit?" It could be fun.
It took the better part of the day to finish this task- I did take lots of coffee/music breaks. The kids were on their way home by the time I was done. I couldn't wait to see them! Ask them about their days..what did they do? How did they like it? I was so excited! I could hardly contain myself as the bus pulled up to the house...They all came running in "Mama, Mama! We're home!" "Hey! I really missed you guys! How was your day? Did you like it? How are your teachers?" Sammy said "No homework...can I have a snack?" Oscar said " It was good, can I go on the computer?" and my Lily (for whom this was the first time she was in school the full day) "I loved it...I don't know why I didn't do this years ago!" That's about as good as it gets in the description department. They seem happy. We'll see how it goes over the next few days. In the meantime, I'm thinking about cooking something special to commemorate their first week of school. You know, something to stick in the back of the refrigerator to remind me of this special time.