Monday, June 13, 2016

End of the school year, cusp of vacation, it's chaotic.

So last week was the last day of school for the year and to say my kids were excited is an understatement. They were equally excited but also a little sad because they LOVED their teachers this year. We've been looking forward to summer for awhile, but I have to agree with them, I'm a little sad to say goodbye to their teachers this year because they have been so great to us. And that's where I put a little plug in for their school because we truly are lucky. I hear SO MUCH about people complaining about the school their kids go to and honestly? It's what you make of it. I really try to be present in the class as much as they can, I have never hesitated to email or stop in and talk to the teacher with any issue I have ever had and I make sure their teachers know that I appreciate them. I do. They have my kids for long hours day in and day out, and they are a big influence in their lives. I really appreciate knowing that they would do anything for my kids while they were in their care and that means the world to me. So yeah, enough sap.

Our obligatory last day of school picture. You can tell Penelope is just as excited to have the kids home to play with!
Jackson is now going to be a third grader. I can't even wrap my head around that because he will always feel like a baby to me. Maybe it's because he's a mama's boy through and through, maybe because him and I have some of the greatest conversations and if there was ever a kid who just epitomized someone who loves his mama, it would be him. 100%. He's smart, too! He improved SO MUCH over the course of this year in both reading and math, he enjoys learning about space, and he's the funniest kid I know. He loves to be a helper, too.
Miss Sass, also known as Olivia, is going to be a fifth grader next year. You guys, this will be my baby's LAST YEAR at elementary school. I saw the current fifth graders crying their eyes out on the last day and I am mentally preparing myself for that with this one. She is SO smart and her favorite thing is reading. She does well in all areas but she says science is where she struggles, despite getting good grades in it. She is really the best helper I could have asked for and has such a kind heart. She's the kid who tries hard to be friends with everyone and often struggles when friends make her choose who to hang out with.
Olivia absolutely loved her teacher this year, Ms. O'Connell, and is super excited to get to hang with her for a few more weeks in summer school. Her teacher often calls her Sara, because Olivia is my mini-me and she will jump in wherever she's needed. I couldn't be more proud of what a great girl she's turning out to be.  Her teacher pushed her in every area and helped her make lofty goals and then gave her the confidence to achieve them. This kid also went up HUGE in math and reading from fall to spring, and I wasn't sure we'd make such big gains. She was already pretty ahead of the curve and I just figured we'd kind of plateau a little bit, but nope. Smarty pants is what I have here.
Jackson had Mrs. Helenius this year, which is so great because Olivia had Mrs. Helenius' twin when she was in second grade, and I love these teachers so much. Like I'd want to hang out and be their friend kind of love. She was exactly what Jackson needed in a teacher. He can be a quiet, reserved kid but he can also be absolute goof ball and she always knew how to balance the day to let him be both and still excel in every way. She appreciated his personality, she knew how to keep him engaged and encouraged even when he wanted to give up on hard stuff. And whatever she did worked because his test scores went up so much from the fall to the spring and he left second grade feeling so confident and ready for third grade. 
I couldn't leave without getting a picture of Olivia with her best friends. I think they are all in the same class next year? Most of them at least, which thrills her to no end. I have to try really hard to get the girls together over the summer and it's one of my least favorite things as a mom- hosting kids at my house. I mean, yes, at least I know they are all safe and doing age appropriate things and that gives me great relief... on the other hand the noise, the mess, ugh. I'm not even sure it balances out. HA! But yes, the goal this summer is to get the girls together at least a few times for sure.

But now that school is over, we are going on our BIG TRIP to the Wisconsin Dells this week! If you don't remember the excitement of this, go HERE and read that post. The kids still have no idea where we are going, only some ridiculously vague clues I've given them and they can hardly stand it. I think I am more excited just seeing their faces as we pull up to Great Wolf Lodge and they realize we are going to a water park for two days! I also booked us on a Upper Dells boat tour, and Jackson made an off hand comment that he'd like to go to a Ripley's Believe It or Not museum (he's in love with the books) so time and money dependent, we might do that too. We'll see. I'm kind of afraid of the cost of food and just the trip in general so I didn't book that in advance yet. But it's going to be so much fun. And it's Penelope's first time spending the night away from home, which is stressing me out a little but I'm sure it's going to be just fine. I can't wait to post pictures and tell you how the trip went. Soon!


The Flynnigans said...

Holy smokes flamingo legs. You really see how long Liv's legs are. Yowza!
Have fun!!!!!! :)

Mattie @ Northwest Native said...

I'm so excited to hear about the trip, especially how surprised the kids are! Here's hoping they continue to have great teachers year after year!