Thursday, January 08, 2009

New and Interesting

Isn't it funny how, as life moves along, you often discover that you're moving from one phase to the next without really noticing? It's kinda cool, really. The beginnings of very new phases, such as school, are often difficult in one way or another (even if the child isn't upset, the parent may have a hard time with the transition), but then you find new things melting in alongside the old things and morphing the experience into something new.

For example, last year Sweet Pea just went to school. 2 1/2 hours every weekday afternoon, with no extras. I thought that after-school activities sounded like too much and would make our day much more difficult, and possibly make her overtired. I did offer her the chance to go to book club after school one day per week at the tail end of last school year, but she didn't want to go. However, this year, as soon as school started, Sweet Pea started up with the book club. One hour every Thursday after school. No big deal; I'd pick her up from her classroom at the usual time, she and The Bug and I would go sit in the car in the parking lot and have drinks and snacks, then half an hour later The Bug and I would take Sweet Pea back to her classroom and then we'd have an hour at the park together, just the two of us, which was a lot of fun.

One of Sweet Pea's classmates who was also in book club was going to child care during the first two sessions, just for that half hour between the end of school and beginning of book club. She told Sweet Pea about the wonders of child care, and since then Sweet Pea has been all but begging to go to child care! The other classmate's mother and I laugh and shake our heads - we thought we were doing the children such a favor by staying home with them, yet they can't wait to go to child care!

Well, today Sweet Pea started her third session of Book Club, and this time, since it's most often too cold for The Bug and I to go to the park, and also because Sweet Pea's other classmate is in book club again, Slipshod and I consented to let Sweet Pea go to child care for the half hour every Thursday. Sweet Pea's glowing account of child care today began with being allowed to go upstairs for the first time ever at school, and included getting to open a rabbit cage in the room and pet the bunny, and making a jingly bracelet. She can't wait to go back next week! ha ha!

Watching Sweet Pea thoroughly enjoy her first year of school last year and come out of her shell so much more this year, along with the facts that The Bug has never been shy or quiet, really really enjoys being social, and already thinks that she goes to Sweet Pea's school, have all contributed to my feeling now that The Bug is completely ready to start preschool next Fall and will LOVE it there. And there it is again: Even though The Bug hasn't started school yet, we've made a plan, and here we are moving forward again, into yet another stage of our lives. I know that the girls are really enjoying the new things they get to do as they grow. I, too, am enjoying watching them bloom along the way.

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