We've been back to school for over a month now, but I still don't feel like I've quite got in the groove of things yet.
I'm getting closer.
I have Syd's homework schedule figured out. Know when to leave for the afterschool pick-up. Know when I should leave in the morning in order to make it to my classes on time. I still forget that I need to pack Addie a lunch on the days I teach, but I luck out a little bit on that area because she's happy with milk, frozen peas, and Cheerios. Plus, some days she hangs out in the university's cafeteria with DeAnna and Lily (her amazingly awesome babysitters), so she's got options. There's the pizza bar, the cereal bar, the salad bar...actually, I think she mostly sticks with fruit.
Packing lunch for Syd and Jules is a different story because if you are in the Making School Lunches tribe you know that it can be something of a chore. Why? It's just lunch, for pete's sake! And yet. I just don't like doing it.
I went nearly my entire life without making school lunches--my mom and my younger brother made them for me when I was in school; the cafeteria made them for me when I was in college; Jason made them for me when we worked together--and then Sydney started school and *bam!* I had to figure out what to put in her lunch box.
Fortunately, Sydney has a very, um, limited palate. I pretty much get to pack her the same thing every day, and she's happy. And since Jules is still on the gluten/dairy/red dye free diet most of the time, then she has limited choices too.
Anyway, enough about school lunches!
Let's talk about cupcakes!
Last year I started the tradition of throwing a First Day of School cupcake party. Because the kids get to frost and decorate the cupcakes themselves then it somehow seems extra fun. Put on as much frosting as you want! Sprinkles! MORE SPRINKLES!
Our resident kitchen helper put everything on the table. As you can see, it was nothing fancy. Just yummy. Even the gluten-free chocolate cupcakes. It turns out that chocolate can make gluten-free cupcakes rather tasty.
The rule is this: eat as many cupcakes as you want.
Jules likes that rule. Cupcake total: four.
The other tradition is take Back-To-School pictures. The Family Farm kids are good sports about pictures.
Even the fancy pants newly minted high school kid. We're all still wondering who let Jarred turn into a high school kid. Crazy.
Fortunately, two more years before we have TWO high schoolers here on the farm. We tell them to stop growing up, but they don't listen.
Amanda started a new school this year. And she joins the Wears Glasses club. We like that club.
Sydney and Clover get to be the resident second graders this year. They seem to be taking it in stride, especially since they're both back to a mostly known routine. (Somehow I didn't get a picture of Clover. Not sure what happened there...fortunately, I'm sure Sarah got one because where there's a party, there are at least two cameras.)
The pre-schoolers are ready to take on the world.
This is Jules' third year of pre-school. I think she'll be more than ready to be in Kindergarten next year, hmm?
We're happy that Toby is rockin' the pre-k schedule too. Jules would get mighty lonesome if her favorite cousin couldn't come over to play.
That's it for school kids.
Of course, we can't forget the teacher mamas...
Sarah is homeschooling her kiddos again, and because she's super dedicated to teaching her kids about health and science, then she decided to throw pregnancy into the curriculum.
That's serious commitment.
As for me?
This is me last year:
This is me this year:
Can you tell I'm just a wee bit more excited this year? Yeah, there is no school lunch complicated enough to ruin the mellow vibe I'm feeling this year in comparison to last year.
Here's to a fabulous school year full of yummy lunches, not too many late arrivals, safe commutes, and lots of new stuff plopped into our heads! Yeehaw.