Like everyone else around the UK, this week has been all about frantically getting uniforms, shoes and bags packed in preparation for going back to school. For Ethan and Megs that meant Years 2 & 3 and by some complete miracle (or fluke?) we have made it on time every single day! I cannot believe we are already back to school, but I am glad we are in somewhat of an organised state so far!

We have had a great week getting back into the flow of things, getting organised for the Autumn term and adjusting to the days of just Alice and I again – We have returned to toddler group and done some shopping!

Grateful For

This week I am grateful that school runs have been so much easier and that we have has a great first week back. I am grateful to know the kids have slotted in so easily to their new classrooms and teachers, and are happy in school. I am grateful for hot chocolate with Naths mum and Aunt on Wed and also grateful to have had a lovely lunch and chats with my friend on Thursday for her birthday (and that we both love pizza!).

I am thankful for a great weekend this weekend going to our Temple in Chorley and seeing my family today to celebrate my cousins baby blessing.

Succeeded At

I have to say it again, but this weeks biggest success has most definitely been that of getting to school every day ON TIME! I cannot say enough how great that is, and how good it is to be in time to walk with our friends!

Found Beauty In 

The most beautiful thing this week was seeing the kids in their crisp new uniforms with smiles on their faces. It was lovely to see them so excited to get back into school. It was also beautiful to see Alice trying on my shoes, and hearing her say “wellie Boots” over and over again, with such glee at her new unicorn wellies!

I wasn’t really sure how this week would go, and certainly felt somewhat worried that school might take some getting used to again, but I have been pleasantly surprised. I have loved all of the things Alice and I have been doing whilst Ethan and Megs have enjoyed seeing their friends and scoffing their packed lunches at school! I have a feeling this half term might not be so bad…

 

 

 

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The weather is suddenly cooler, the house quieter, and everything is pretty much back in order as we have swiftly found ourselves in September and a new school year! There were no tears, no stressing, no worries – just excitement, enthusiasm and crisp new uniforms, as they eagerly made their way up the village green yesterday to embark on years 2 & 3 of their school life.

This year is a little different to previous years, as we have our first male teacher (Ethan is rather excited) and it’s also the year they wanted to try pack ups (except for on a Friday which is the best because it’s “Fish Friday”!)! I am excited to see what work Ethan does now he is Key stage 2, and how different it is having a male influence on a daily basis. I am also pretty sure that in a week or 2 I will be pinning ideas like mad over in pinterest in desperation to be more inventive than the egg or cheese sandwich option accompanied by crisps, fruit, veggie sticks and a baby belle that they skipped off with yesterday in their new lunch boxes.

But for now we are most definitely winning at life and excited for this term.

I will of course miss my little buddies – how could I not? But the timing is right. We have had a wonderful Summer with no regrets and plenty of love and fun, but somehow we woke up yesterday and felt rich in the back to school vibe and looked forward to what learning and knowledge will be coming there way over the coming weeks. We quickly and naturally fell back into the routine and were, much to our amazement, early!

I still often flit between wanting to homeschool them and keeping them in school – I love the idea of having them home and learning together in a less formal way. I like the idea of discovering together and allowing the world to teach us, but for now things feel right and they are settled and happy!

As always I asked them what they want to be when they grow up – I love how it changes year on year, and how funny it always is! This Year Ethan wants to be a DJ and a rockstar. And Megan? Well she wants to work at Mcdonalds of course… I am hopeful that that is whilst she trains to be a vet or Trapeze artist like she has previously expressed interest in, and not just because she loves chicken nuggets! Either way, these 2 little nutters are excited to learn, be with their friends, and start new clubs.

Years 2 & 3 already? Sheesh! Let’s do this!!

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Last week (like many of you I’m sure) my social media was flooded with back to school pictures of friends, family and fellow bloggers kids, all kitted out in new uniforms and excited for the new school year. It has come around so quickly and I am honestly really sad to see Ethan and Megan returning to school after what has been an incredibly fun and adventurous 6 week Summer holiday!

I am really proud of how quickly we have all fallen back into the school run schedule, and how much they love being in their new classes and seeing all of their friends again! They were super excited to get back to it, and I smiled as I peered in on them before we went to bed last Monday night, and caught a glimpse of their new little uniforms all laid out with precision – Megan’s on the end of her bed, Ethan’s on his desk. Their little shoes, a size bigger, were sat by the door all shiny and ready for them to trash… their PE bags repacked, and book bags sat waiting to be filled with all manner of tat they choose to bring home!

I cannot believe they are now in year 1 and 2. I cannot believe that those busy days of having them at home and going to toddler groups are so far gone now and they are well and truly in the flow of school life, our family a new seasaon. Life is filled reading books, playground antics, school dinners, PE, assemblies and sports days (to name a few). They have mastered the playground, their teachers names, and they have their crew! They are so happy, and I am glad for that, but it really is a stark reminder at the start of a new school year, just how fast they are growing up, and just how fast time is flying by.

This time of year is always a struggle for me too, and not one I always wear on my face. It is just my new normal and a time of deep reflection. It’s a time of year that thrusts me into a moment where like you, having had my kids with me daily, it’s all suddenly gone. It brings a quiet house and moments where I suddenly realise they’re into a new school year, a few inches taller, a few months older, a little more independent. All of that is okay, its weird and a little emotional, but its okay. Its all of that combined with it also always being a week or so before we pass through the anniversaries of loosing Poppy, that means that September has now become a huge reminder of days that will never come for us with her.

Back to school is exciting, but its the marker to countdown to her anniversaries and remember what we will never have.

We will never get to see her starting Nursery next term, or buying her uniform and new black shiny shoes. We won’t see her running up the road excited to see her friends after the summer, or nervous that her new teacher might not like her. We won’t ever know if she will love school dinners or get to post the pictures of her celebrating the start of a new school year with her siblings all over social media.

No one will ever know that their child might be missing out on another friend and class mate, the teacher one less pupil to teach that year, but with each school we will. So, whilst I am pleased with how smooth these last couple of days have been, and how excited Ethan and Megan are for school again. Whilst I love to see them excited for school and get excited to hear of what they have been doing too.  I am always a little sad for our little flower missing from the action, the pictures and new adventures of going back to school!

This Year Megan still wants to be a vet, and Ethan a Teacher (“NOT the assistant – the actual teacher”). I hope your kids are enjoying their new years, classes and friends!

 

The Ordinary Moments
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I think life has easily slipped into Ordinary this week with school runs, housework and baby routines being at the top of my agenda instead of days out, adventures and free living. I feel proud of myself that despite the occasional rough night with Alice and having an extra person in the mix now, we made it on time every day and both Ethan and Megan have thoroughly enjoyed being back at school. I have missed them and its easily taken a couple of days to adjust to the silence and slower pace of life at home but the number one positive of School for me is that as their mother I have loved to see their relationship take on a new dimension now Megan has joined E at school.

Of course I worried about this step; sending your kids to school holds so many worries and general missing their little presence in everyday life at home with you, and I have certainly felt all of that because it is what I have become accustomed to. But something changed and worry left me when I noticed how Ethan was helping her with this step, and that she was paying more attention to him than me about it all…
It began the day before when I would tell her things to prepare her for the day ahead and he would jump in with “Yes I did that too Megan and its not scary” or after her pre-School boosters (yes the day before #lastminute haha) I had to laugh when I heard from the back of the car “Did it hurt Megan? You were brave because they did that needle in my arm too before I went to school… you just get it I think”! And then when the morning came he was ready by 7am and wandering around with arms behind his back instructing her on what was to come and telling her she better start getting ready!! But I was most aware of something special between them when as we left to walk up to school he held her hand and promised her that he would look after her and show her the way.

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It touched my heart to almost bursting and all worry left me to see the kids that so easily wind me up and can at times be rude or mean to one another, that I say never listen, in a moment that mattered demonstrated such love and kindness. I saw so plainly that by having them close, being at home with them over the last few years and making it through those hard days was all paying off… they have in each other a friend for life and Ethan desires to look out for his sister, what more could I want? It was a moment of pride that they do listen and watch what we teach them and it was on the important things. The things that will make them good people in life and society. Following behind and seeing the bond they had, love and awareness of each other made me realise this relationship is something I am only a spectator of and I am more than happy with that because it is all I hoped to see in my kids. In fact my little 4 & 5 year olds in their crisp new uniforms, hand in hand and not ashamed of it, ignited strong hope that these characteristics will be in them forever, that they will always be aware of others, especially each other. That this relationship is strong because they want it to be, they adore each other, love playing and being together and can now after school separating them for a year, can continue to grow it and experience new adventures, make new memories and have their own little secrets independent of me.

Each morning they walk together planning the games they will play and each afternoon they tell me all about it. They tell me that they waved across the dinner hall to one another and love to see each other and say Hi at lunch. They tell me how much fun they have each playtime playing games and making mutual friends and chat about the same people and teachers. I am grateful that this is their early school experience and that they can share it with each other.

Whilst I miss their little faces, our chats and daily adventures, how could I not be grateful for this new angle and bond to their relationship…the mornings sat watching a bit of TV and planning together, followed by the excitement to get ready in the same uniforms and then the glee on their faces to see their friends and play together. The eagerness to tell me how happy they were to see each other and how much fun one another brings into their lives. Their is nothing like a sibling bond and I am glad they have a strong and happy one. I know that there will still many a fall out and trying days ahead but I do so much look forward to seeing how it will grow and how it will develop with Alice too, because in 4 years the 3 of them will be at the same school together for a year before Ethan moves onto high school and that suddenly seems exciting when I see how much Ethan and Megs love each other and sharing school together.

These Ordinary moments we witness make hard parenting days worth it, and whilst I am always aware of one sibling not in these memories, pictures and experiences, I hope she too is somewhere in the fabrication of life that they always feel connected to her and continue to talk about her in their games and daily experiences. Sibling bonds are wonderful to have and especially wonderful to see as a mother. I couldn’t imagine my life without them.

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Linking up with Katie @mummydaddyme for #ordinarymoments 

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