Thursday, July 29, 2010

These are the things I'd really put in his backpack

My son starts kindergarten in less than two weeks.

I won't even get into how fast the time has gone, how I can't believe he'll be in school, real school, not just preschool or daycare.

Instead, I'm trying to focus on looking ahead and being excited about all the amazing things he's yet to experience.

This weekend, I plan to take him to buy school supplies. The school provided a list. He is to bring:

- 4 boxes of crayons
- 1 pack of Crayola markers
- 2 boxes of tissues
- 6 white glue sticks
- 1 plastic school box, no handle
- 12 #2 pencils, sharpened
- 1 bottle of Elmer's glue
- 1 pair of headphones
- 1 large backpack

We'll get those items, of course, and I'll help him fill his new backpack with them. Then on the morning he leaves me for the first real time, I'll help him get that heavy backpack on his shoulders.

I'll walk with him into school. I'll make sure he finds his room, meets his teacher.

And then I'll leave.

I don't even like the way writing that sentence feels.

While his backpack will be full of crayons and glue sticks and markers and tissues - the things we were supposed to send with our kids to school - these are the things I really want to send with my first-born, my baby:

-- Confidence. The gift of believing in yourself is bigger than anything I could ever wrap and put under the tree.

-- A sense of humor. Things don't always go the way we want. This is hard to accept, especially for us first-borns. But it's good to be able to laugh them off.

-- Courage. My biggest fear is that my little boy will need help and will be too scared or too shy to ask.

-- At least one friend. Please, God, let him make him a friend. None of us deserves to be alone.

-- Love. If I could, I'd stuff all the love I have for him in a little Ziploc bag, seal it tight and put it in his pocket to carry forever.

-- His blankie. It's the best substitute for Mommy. And it actually would fit in his backpack, if he'd let me pack it.

-- Curiosity. I want him to know everything there is to know about this world. Not just reading and math but about faraway places and great leaders and big ideas. I want him to ask questions. I want him to get excited about learning. I want him to be smarter than me.

-- Me. If I could, I'd smoosh Mommy up into a tiny action figure version and I'd slip myself into his other pocket. I'd be there just to listen or give him a little hug when he needs it.

But I know as well as you: He won't need it. He'll be just fine.

Also find this post on

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Beep beep

One of the cutest things my daughter says now is "Beep beep." Try imagining a 14-month-old just learning to talk saying this phrase with an upward inflection at the end, almost as if she's asking a question.

"Beep beep?"

It's what she calls her belly button.

And I LOVE it.

A few weeks ago, I touched her belly button and said "Beep, beep!" She giggled. So I did it a few more times.

And now it's stuck.

"Paige, where's your beep beep?"

And she immediately looks down to find it and push a chubby pointer finger into it. Often, she'll say "Beep beep?" and then look for mine.

Today, we went swimming and she got a little frustrated when her one-piece suit did not allow easy access to the beep beep.

(The other really cute thing Paige says now is, "Rye Rye?"

Her brother. She's almost always wondering where he is. It's like he's her north. Without knowing exactly where he is, she isn't quite complete.

Also love this. How could a mama not? )

Saturday, July 3, 2010

At least I'm second

Today, my 5-year-old said, "Blankie is my favorite person."

He's had this blanket, which is now much more of a thin, well-loved piece of cloth than an actual blanket, since before he was born. I bought it on clearance at Target for something like $8.99.

Who knew then what an investment I was making?

Five years later, he still sleeps with it. Every. Single. Night. (The picture above is what his blankie looked like before he loved it to death).

So he tells me his blankie his favorite person and I say, "What? More than Mommy?"

He smiles that smile and says, "Yep!"

Of course, I asked him where I rank.

He told me I was next, and I'm OK with that. At least I'm the first real person, right?

Rounding out the list is, in order, Paige (his sister), Daddy, Grandpa, Grammy and Papa (they go together), Grandma, Ashley and Justin (his aunt and uncle, my sister and brother), Daphne (our cat) and finally our house (which we are selling. Awesome).

I didn't realize he had a list of favorites, but I suppose we all have people or things we enjoy being around more than others.

He's lucky he has such a list of people (and one very important thing!) to love.