Friday, August 16, 2019

First Week of Kindergarten

We survived our first week of kindergarten! I am SOOO exhausted, haha!! The new routine and little bit of anxiety from the week has worn me out. I'm glad it's Friday so we can take a few days to reset and relax before we start over. Fridays (and Monday's) have a whole new meaning to me now!!
Campbell's first day of kindergarten went exactly as I expected. He cried at drop off and I counted down the minutes until I got to pick him up. We walked Campbell to school but thought it would be easier to drive to pick him up. We sat in the car line for over an hour and vowed to never do it again! I know they were working out kinks and I honestly wasn't frustrated at the situation because they warned us that may happen. We just figured why drive when we're so close. Campbell was happy and smiley when we picked him up and we looked forward to doing it all over again the next day.
On the second day of kindergarten I woke up at 4:55. I have no idea why but I never could go back to sleep so I just got up and hit the peloton. We had always planned on Scott taking Campbell to school but Campbell wanted me to do it this week. When I dropped Campbell off, he fought the tears back pretty hard. It made me sad but I wasn't surprised. At least it was improvement from the day before where he flat out cried. As soon as I dropped him off I went to the office to change him from being a "car rider" to a "walker." Being a walker is wonderful! The bell rings and a group of kiddos literally walk out of the door instantly. I had Campbell back to our house 9 minutes after school let out. When Campbell saw me, he cried with relief. It broke my heart. I had a moment where I thought "this isn't going to work for us" and then I was like "well, I guess we don't really have much of a choice though" Ha!! Campbell had, had a stressful day. He left his lunchbox on the playground and I guess he realized it when he was in music and he said he started crying. Thankfully someone found his lunchbox and returned it to his teacher. But that was obviously very stressful for him because I can't ever get him to talk about anything that happened during the day but he was quick to inform me about his traumatizing lunchbox loss. I prayed real hard for the next day to be better.
To our surprise, Campbell has woken up on his own every morning at 6:30. He has always slept until 7:00 on the dot for basically his entire life. We've been making sure he's asleep by 7:30 every night and I think he just crashes so hard that he wakes up at 6:30 feeling rested and ready to go! This has been such a nice thing for Scott and I. We had planned on waking Campbell up at 6:45 every day but he comes down on his own at 6:30, crawls in our bed, and eats breakfast while he watches a show. It's been nice that he has 45 minutes to just be before getting his day started. Our third day drop off went much better. No a smile, but not a frown. I informed his teacher that we were struggling and I'm glad I did because she took Campbell under her arm and told him about all of the fun things they were planning that day. He perked up and I snuck out. When I picked him up he was smiling so big and told me all kinds of things about his day like who he played with on the playground and something about Pete the Cat.
Drop off today was a million times better. Campbell informed me halfway into our walk to school that he didn't need me to walk him to class. But we brought Bennett along with us and he wanted to see Campbell's classroom so I tagged along with my suddenly brave boy. Campbell was proud to show Bennett his school. When we picked him up, he was so happy and seemed so much older than he did at the start of the week. A weight was lifted off my shoulders.
I woke up at 4:55 again this morning (what is this?) and decided to just get up and go to the gym. I managed to get my Peloton workout in every day this week and I'm glad. I wasn't sure if it would work out with the new schedule but it looks like it's going to....or maybe it's just that I think I need to wake up while the moon is still out, I have no idea. Regardless, our week went smoothly (minus the tears part) however, I'm just so tired. I think I'm mentally zapped. I'm looking forward to the weekend and hopefully Campbell is excited to go back to school on Monday. Starting Monday parents are no longer allowed to walk them to class and that just stresses me out(!!) but I know Campbell knows how to get to class and he'll be just fine. Lots of growing up and changes this week for our family. Big week for us that I'm sure we'll always remember.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

My Favorite Lunch Boxes

Now that school is back in session that means a lot of lunch packing. I actually enjoy packing lunches for my kids. I know most people don't, but I like it! I try to be different and make their lunches fun. I have every cookie cutter imaginable and like to cut their sandwiches into fun shapes (the star shape seems to be the easiest/best though, IMO). I've read that kids are more likely to eat food if it's in a fun shape and that is definitely true for my kids. I've been packing lunches for my kids for several years now and have tried all the lunchboxes and all the lunch containers. I have recently discovered my favorites thus far and wanted to share them with you all today!!

The Pottery Barn Cold Lunch Boxes are my favorites. Key word being the 'COLD' version. They have classic and cold. I do not like the classic lunch box. I got one for Campbell a few years ago and never liked it. It's very hard on the inside so no wiggle room for extras since it's isn't flexible. The cold version is insulated, soft and bendy. I absolutely love it. I love that it has a spot on the side for the water bottle. It has a divider in the middle which is perfect because I use the divider to separate their lunch and their snack. I feel like it's helpful for my kids to know exactly which item in their lunchbox is their snack!

As far as lunch containers go, I have two that I really love:
The Spencer Dual Compartment Food Storage Box is new for us and I love it. Having just two compartments may not seem like enough but I love using them for just a sandwich and fruit then throwing in an individual bag of goldfish, pretzels, chips, etc. There is also a freezer pack that snaps into the lid (see light blue lid for reference) which I didn't realize when I purchased but it made me love even more.
Yumbox is a container we've been using for years. These are wonderful. We have two different ones because they come in different compartment sizes. There's a tiny little compartment that I always fill with a special sweet--mini cookies, M&M's, skittles, marshmallows....it's small but just the right amount for a tiny little treat! The yumboxes seal tight so you can put yogurt, dips, etc in them without worrying about spilling although I can't speak from experience, I've never done it. However, I do find that a tube of yogurt will fold in half and fit perfectly in the 6 compartment box! A Danimal will also squeeze in that spot as well! Click HERE for the 6 compartment and HERE for the 4 compartment.

I typically get my cookie cutters from Target. They have a lot, especially in the seasonal section and that's when I usually stock up! I will say, I am not a fan of the Pottery Barn Kids cookie cutters because they are really big so you have to get gigantic bread slices for the cutter to fit. Besides cookie cutters, there are other ways to make lunches fun. I love using food picks. My boys enjoy eating just rolled up turkey or ham and the food pick not only keeps it rolled in place but is also a fun little something in their lunch box. I also like using silicon food cups. I use these all the time if I need a small little something for separating food. They wash in the dishwasher and hold everything in place perfectly. Even though they're small, they're always just right. 
I have a board on Pinterest which you can view HERE where I've pinned meal and snack ideas for my babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers and now kindergartner. It gives me ideas or helps spur an idea and maybe it will for you as well! I did the rainbow fruit for Campbell's lunch today and when he saw me arranging it last night he got so excited but made sure to inform me I forgot blue in the rainbow!! If only I'd had blueberries on hand. Next time!

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Campbell Goes To Kindergarten

It's official. We have a kindergartner! Campbell had his very first day of school today. He woke up excited and ready to go. I woke up at 4:55 am and could not go back to sleep. I finally just got up and showered so I could have plenty of time to settle into my morning before our big day.
I made Campbell breakfast, Scott woke him up and carried him to our room, and Campbell watched Bubble Guppies in our bed while he ate his breakfast. He was happy and calm and happily obliged to any request we asked of him. Once he was all dressed and had a (semi) fully belly of breakfast, we took some photos then headed to school!
Our school is a brand new school and it just so happens to be walking distance from our house. So we walked to school today (and will be every day after my eyes saw that traffic--no thank you!). We made it from our house to Campbell's classroom in about 7 minutes. Once we got to Campbell's class, we found his seat --right by the teachers desk! Then we found his cubby and hung his backpack up, then he walked back to his seat and immediately started stacking blocks that were on his table.
All was well in Campbell's world until I told him Mommy and Daddy needed to leave. His face instantly changed to panic. I guess he thought it would be like our open house last week where we all went and stayed for a little bit, then left together. He started crying and Scott tried to talk me into walking out but I could. not. leave. I pointed out all of the friends in his class he knows, told him I had a surprise for him in his lunch box, but nothing helped the tears. So I just got on my knees, held him close and we prayed. We prayed for peace, to be brave, and to be happy. We prayed for a great day and a calm spirit. Then Scott gave him one last hug while Campbell cried in his arms. My heart was breaking. Campbell stood up to walk to me and his teacher gave him a big hug and told him about all the fun they were going to have while Scott and I snuck out.....and I cried for the next two hours.
I knew deep in my heart that Campbell would be okay. I knew he would cry when we dropped him off but I also knew he would recover quickly. I was still so anxious and counting down the hours until I could get to him. I was so ready to hear how his day went.
After we sat in the car line for ONE HOUR to pick him up (never doing that again) I finally saw his sweet little face walking towards me. He was wearing the biggest smile and his face has never looked so precious. He got in the car and declared he "really likes kindergarten!" He told me how much he likes his teacher and his friends even though he doesn't know their names yet. There is a little boy he sat next to at lunch that has the same lunch box as Campbell and the same backpack too! And that's about all I got out of him but the smile and happiness he exuded was enough for me to know that he had a great day! It's not even 8:00 PM but I'm about to crawl in bed and call it. This momma is exhausted and looking forward to doing it all over again tomorrow! Minus the crying part....hopefully we don't repeat that.

Monday, August 12, 2019

The Night Before Kindergarten

"Dear God, I pray I have a good day, make friends, and love my teacher. Amen."
Campbell goes to kindergarten tomorrow. He is nervous and worried. I'm anxious and sad. This morning I was prepping fruit in my kitchen. Washing it, cutting it up, and getting it all ready to easily throw in a lunch box this week. And I was so emotional. I was thinking about Campbell as a baby and how I always knew, when he was a baby, that this day would come and how different it would make my life. Now here we are. We got here fast.
Deep inside my heart I am excited for Campbell. I really believe he is going to love kindergarten. I think he's going to make a lot of new friends and enjoy learning. Right now, the night before he goes to kindergarten, I am a nervous wreck. He cried when we said goodnight tonight and said "I want you to stay with me." It was all I could do to hold the tears back and not cry with him. This kindergarten world is so big and unknown to Campbell and not knowing what to expect is scary. I honestly have no idea if he'll cry when we leave or if he'll put on a brave face. But I know it won't take him long to warm up and feel okay. 
It's scary to hand my baby over. I think of him walking to his class all by himself and he just seems so young to be doing that. What if he gets lost? The building is so big for a five year old. I imagine him standing in the lunch line. Will he speak loud enough to tell the ladies what he wants to eat? Will they understand him? What if he drops his lunch tray while he's walking to his table. What if someone is mean to him? If he needs to go to the bathroom, will he feel okay asking to go? What if he needs a hug? 
I've kept my baby safe and loved for his entire life and now this big world is going to be opened up to him. He's going to be forced to become a lot more mature and a little more brave. I'm so excited to see him grow and shine but I sure am going to miss my buddy. Our sweet, simple days at home are no longer. It feels surreal. It's bittersweet. It's going to be sad tomorrow but it's also exciting. All the feelings, all the emotions. I pray my sweet boy has an amazing day, and an amazing year. 
Okay kindergarten, let's do this!!

Monday, August 5, 2019

Just Keep Swimming

We had a big weekend with our biggest boy. Campbell finally got the hang of swimming and now he's acting like he's been doing it all summer long!
Campbell and Bennett have been in swim lessons all summer. I've had a lot of guilt in not putting them in lessons last summer. I wanted to but I was SO sick all summer long from being in my first trimester with Wells and I just couldn't do it. I couldn't do anything. So I have been anxious to get them in lessons this summer. We haven't missed a lesson and have gone every single week. At first Campbell was terrified and he cried. For the longest time I was so worried I had waited too long to do this. Slowly he began to get more comfortable in the water but he's SO cautious and wouldn't push himself too far. I told Scott I was worried we weren't going to get it this summer and we talked about joining a local community center so we could keep up with the swim lessons. But then, something clicked for him while we were at my parents house over the weekend. It literally came out of nowhere but he suggested jumping in the pool and swimming across. My mom and I were both there in the pool with him so we said okay! And he swam across the pool like he had been doing it all along. I was shocked! And so proud!!! And also so relived.
Campbell was SO proud of himself. And that was that. He just kept going and going and pushing himself to go farther and farther. I ended up grabbing the GoPro and Campbell obliged me with some super cool underwater shots that I just LOVE. 
I'm so proud of Campbell for being brave and diving in, literally. Something I have learned with him is that he is very timid to try something but once he gets enough confidence to go for it, he always does great and puts his best foot forward. And that's all I could ever want from him--to just try his best. So proud of my little fishy!