August has turned out to be such a busy month, and I totally wasn’t expecting it! Perhaps this should have been obvious — Emma’s birthday, school transitions, etc — but I was unprepared and feel like I’m barely staying on top of things at the moment. So let’s see, a few highlights since the last time I posted…
We held a big birthday bash for Emma on Saturday the 12th at a local gym. (Same place we had her 3rd birthday, actually.) I invited all the kids in her preschool class plus a few others and amazingly, almost everyone was able to come! We had more than 20 kids plus another 20+ parents and Emma had a blast.
It was Trolls-themed, of course. We had a Trolls cake from HEB, pink and blue decorations a la Poppy and Branch, and she wore her Trolls dress. The party was a 5:00 so we got catering from Chick-Fil-A and many, many chicken nuggets were gobbled quickly down.
Since her birthday is in early August, she’ll always be out of school on her birthday from here on out. I figure that means parties will shrink in size as she just chooses a few close friends instead of the “invite the whole class” mindset since there won’t be a whole class to invite. Having a big ol’ 5th birthday party seemed like a fitting way to celebrate the milestone as well as serve as a sort of end-of-year party for all.
The last week has been full of school-related activities. Jose and I took Emma to the teacher meet-and-greet at her new elementary school last Friday, and she officially became a kindergartener on Monday morning! I mean — kindergarten!!! Look at that photo! Man, somewhere along the way she turned into a real KID. We walked her into her classroom and Monday and got her settled, and then went back at the end of the day to shadow the transition from school to after-school care.
Honestly, I think Emma handled dropoff better than me — I totally cried. I had no idea that would happen! I’m not often sentimental about this kind of stuff and I don’t find myself lamenting about how my kids are growing up so fast. I actually get a lot of enjoyment out of seeing them grow and move on to new things. So I was really surprised to find myself getting emotional on Monday morning! I managed to hold it in until Jose and I got back to the car, because I didn’t want Emma to see me, but whew. Parenting. What a ride.
That aside, all in all the day went really well, and Emma has reported thus far that she likes kindergarten so hooray! It’s a really strange feeling for me to have so little insight into her day now that we won’t be going into the school every day to drop her off and pick her up, and won’t have daily interaction with her teacher. But man. She’s taking her first steps towards being an independent little person out there in the world! Wow.
Charlotte moved up to a new room at daycare on Monday as well so it was a day of transition for both girls. There’s a big age range in her new room — she’ll be 2 in September, and the older kid will be turning 3 in October — but I think being around slightly old kids will be good for her. It’s literally been two days and I already feel like she’s been more vocal at home the last couple evenings. She’s also with two teachers that we know from Emma having them previously, and I really like them both. So I’m feeling really excited about the coming year for Charlotte too!
The first-day-of-school excitement was further compounded by the solar eclipse on Monday! For a while, we thought we’d be traveling with friends to Wyoming to see totality — until I realized about 6 months ago that it was also the first day of school. What are the odds?? I decided the first day of kindergarten was more important. (But dang it, I WILL be seeing totality for the next one in April 2024!!)
NASA posted files online to make a 3D-printed pinhole viewer, and lucky for me there is a coworking space at JSC with a couple 3D printers open to any employee to use. I was able to print out my own viewer on Friday afternoon. Pretty cool, right?? We had ~65% coverage here in Houston and it was fun to see how many people were outside at work looking up — with eclipse glasses, of course — despite the fact that it was about 95 degrees out there.
The school distract bought thousands of pair of glasses in preparation, so Emma got to see it with her class too. Jose went over as a volunteer to help make sure everybody kept their glasses in place. A solar eclipse on the first day of kindergarten = a pretty memorable day!
In house news, we got a new fence about a week ago! The old mildew-ridden wooden fence that ran between the corner of the house and the corner of the garage is no more, and now we have a lovely iron fence and gate. I love it! Emma was excited that she can now open the gate by herself since it’s got a doorknob. The old gate had a finicky latch that she could never get the hang of.
Last weekend we hired a guy to come pressure wash the back patio, driveway, sidewalks, and side of the house. Now all we need is some patio furniture and we’ll be ready to spend some nice time outside…once the summer heat abates, at least.