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Kate is FINALLY able to go to school with her sisters!

Ever since Kate has been aware of school–what it is and that her older sisters got to go and that she didn’t–she has been impatiently waiting for her time to join the ranks of school children. On the cusp of starting kindergarten a few months back, we went to school to watch Evelyn in a spelling bee and halfway through, Kate started weeping and didn’t stop for about forty-five minutes. Why? Because she wanted to go to school right that instant. When she finally calmed down enough for me to explain she’d be joining her sisters in a few months, I also reminded her that she should enjoy her time at home. Being a carefree child doesn’t last long!

The milkman.

Sunday, we made sure everyone had their backpacks hung up, clothes laid out, shoes found, and sandwich bread made, we sent everyone off to bed and told them not to wake up early or they’d be too tired for school.

Henry didn’t get the memo.

He walked in with his usual grin before the sun came up. Knowing him well enough that he wasn’t going to go back to bed without some crying, which would wake up everyone else, I rolled out of bed and had Henry come with me to milk Dolly. Good thing he could live happily in the barn and is actually quite helpful when he feels like listening. We got enough milk to last us the next few days, then went in to get everyone dressed, fed, and sent with a lunch.

Taking Kate to class.

One of the things I love when watching the kids is that when they sense someone else is nervous, they cluster together and offer support. Kate was practically buzzing with excitement but at the same time, shaking in her boots. So, her older sisters took control of the situation. Claire marched up to the teachers and announced that it was Kate’s first day while Evelyn held her hand and led her to her classroom. I appreciate that they have such big hearts and look out for one another!

Jack being assaulted by a lion cub who didn’t want him to leave.

Then, without much fanfare, the rest of us went home, did our morning chores, exercised, tidied a bit, folded laundry, watched a show, napped, and sent Jack off on another work trip. The time, like every day, sped by. The difference was how quiet it all was. Sure, Henry and Zoey can make quite the ruckus but when you’re down three kids, the reduction in noise is impressive and almost unnerving.

Kate patiently teaching Henry to ride her bike.

I’ve been saying for a while that I think I was particularly emotional about Kate going off to school. Not that a piece of my heart didn’t stay with Evelyn, and then Claire when they went off to elementary, but for Evelyn, I put on a brave face for her sake and Claire was so ready, she never even looked back. With Kate, it’s like my right hand is missing. She’s such a little mother and is great with Henry and Zoey and helping when I ask for it. That and now, over half my children are in school. It’s an interesting conundrum to be happy my kids are learning and making friends and growing without me but at the same time, missing them terribly.

But, as predicted, everyone survived. Basically.
Tears were very expected.

They jumped off the bus with as much enthusiasm as when they were dropped off and were practically mauled by their younger siblings, who were so happy to see their missing sisters.

There is no rest for big sisters.

Evelyn and Claire are old pros but Kate did admit to crying or near-crying on a few occasions, which isn’t really a surprise (again, the spelling bee instance). Crying is her coping mechanism for when she’s stressed, overwhelmed, frustrated, overjoyed, angry, tired, when she can’t find the right color of crayon, when she’s hurt, when she’s hungry, tired of cleaning, or embarrassed. When I asked if she’d go back, she gave a thumbs up and said she would return.

Kindergarten is a-okay!
Here’s to another successful start to the school year! 


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True stories of raising children, remodeling, braving the elements and plotting out life, all while living on a humble acreage in central Indiana.

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