9.08.2010

Kate goes to Preschool & Back to School Feast 2010

This is a big week for our family.
Kate had her first day of preschool yesterday & tomorrow Claire turns 2.
(I will be shedding many tears this week)
I can't believe I have a preschooler.
Seriously? Where does the time go?

For the past month, we have been prepping Kate about going to preschool.
We went shopping to get a first day of school outfit, got her a backpack (that she doesn't need), and told her how much fun she was going to have. Her preschool is at our church & her classroom is the same room she has Sunday School in, so she is very familiar with it. She couldn't wait to go!

But, then last week she started freaking out & having major meltdowns about going to preschool. She became very clingy toward me & sometimes cried when I left for work. She NEVER does that. Then on Sunday when I dropped her off at Sunday School, she cried & screamed. It was bizarre. She has NEVER cried at Sunday School, not even when she was a baby. All of a sudden, I was very nervous for her first day of preschool and worried that she was going to cry & freak out. After church on Sunday, Kevin and I decided we weren't even going to talk about preschool and we would just tell her the morning of.

Well, Monday night (the night before the first day of preschool) Kate wouldn't fall asleep.
At one point, she called us into her room to show us the outfit she had picked out to wear the next day.
It was this:
Her snow jacket from years ago, a butterfly shirt, white capri's & her boots.
(Kevin informed her that she couldn't wear that because you can't wear white pants after Labor Day.)

She didn't fall asleep until 11 pm. Yikes.

She woke up in a halfway decent mood & asked us where she was going for the day.
We told her it was her first day of preschool. She started crying & telling us she didn't want to go.
It was sad. But, we made her a special breakfast of scrambled eggs & pancakes and her mood vastly improved.

She got dressed (in her actual first day of school outfit) and she asked if we could go take a picture on the front step. She was getting excited.
You gotta have a sisters picture:
Claire actually took it the hardest that Kate was going to preschool. My mom said she kept asking for Kate all morning.

As soon as we got to the preschool, we ran into her buddy, Nicole and her brother Tyler:
Kate is so lucky because 2 of her best friends are in her class, Maddie & Nicole.
Love these girls and their families!
Meeting her teacher for the first time:
As soon as they walk in the classroom, the first thing they do is wash their hands. LOVE that!
Kate went right over to the paint easel. This girl loves art!
(and, check out Kate' new haircut)
Parents got to stay for 15 minutes & then it was time to go. Before I even said bye to Kate, she turned to us & said, "Bye Mommy & Daddy!"
Kate had a great day at preschool. She LOVED it.
She ate TWO peanut butter & jelly sandwiches when she got home.
And, then she crashed on the couch for about 2 hours.
Preschool wore this little girl out!

A couple of years ago, I was reading NieNie's blog & I read about a tradition that she does with her family the night before school starts. She calls it the Back to School Feast. She comes up with a family theme for the school year, the kids wear crowns & they have a fancy meal.
I knew that I wanted to start this tradition with our girls once they started school!
I was planning on doing it the night before school started, but because Kate was so freaked out for school, I decided to do it on the first day of school instead!
Our theme for this year:
"SCHOOL IS FUN!"
Since Kate is starting preschool & it is her first introduction to school, I want her to know/think that school IS fun. I have always thought school was fun & still do (as a teacher!). I hope my girls keep this attitude during their school years also...especially preschool. I mean, what is more fun than preschool? You get to paint, play on the playground & eat graham crackers! And, there is no homework. THAT is fun!

Usually, the Back to School Feast is a special & fancy meal served on china.
Well, with a 3.5 year old and an almost 2 year old, fine china was NOT going to happen.
And, they are picky eaters, so I let Kate pick out the meal.
She wanted chicken nuggets & tator tots. DONE.
I even found "fancy" tator tots shaped like letters. Now that is FUN!
And, I served them on their (plastic) ABC plates. Oh, and because it was the Back to School "Feast", I gave them chocolate milk with dinner. I'm nice like that.

Each of the girls made a crown to wear with their name on it:
At dinner we talked about her day & what her favorite part of school was and what was fun.
Her favorite parts were Art & Story Time.
We asked about her teachers and if she met any new friends.
We told her how proud of her we were for going to preschool.
We told her she was going to have a FUN year learning lots of new things.
For dessert, it was alphabet cupcakes
(actually, they were cupcakes left over from Claire's birthday party & I just stuck a letter on each one...D for Daddy, M for Mommy, K for Kate & C for Claire)
I am so relieved that Kate had a great first day...I only teared up once as we were walking back to the car. Kate was bummed she didn't get to go back today. (It is only 2 days a week).
It is going to be a FUN first year of preschool!

We will do this tradition every year on the first day of school.
As a teacher, I think it is fun to celebrate the first day of school with a special dinner & talk about goals & hopes for the school year! I need to start brainstorming different themes for the year!
I can't wait for how our back to school traditions grow as the years go on.
For now we have:
1. New outfit for the first day of school
2. Picture on the front porch the morning of the first day of school
3. Back to School Celebratory Dinner

Happy Back to School!

22 comments:

  1. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE back to school traditions! We added a "when I grow up I want to be..." to the official 1st day of school sign picture. This year Grace (3 1/2) said she wanted to be a princess when she grew up (of course ;)!

    Your girls are too cute! Hope it's a FAB year!!

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  2. Oh my gosh, Kate looks like such a big girl!! She is so cute, and I'm glad she had a fun first day! We're going to do a back to school feast on Monday - love that idea so much!

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  3. congrats on her first day! i love the nap picture! :) i also love the tradition you're starting. i'd like to start one too. i'll just copy you every year, k?!

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  4. i'm so glad she ended up loving it. i was getting a little nervous as i was reading the post! i like how you changed the tradition up and did it on the first day of school. i think that's a fun way to end such a big day!

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  5. awwww... Harper started today too. It was a great day. Very emotional, but great. I am so glad yours went well too

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  6. LOVE the pictures and what a cute outfit! And I love the back to school traditions...I might just have to copy your idea for tomorrow night's dinner...thank you!

    The girls start tomorrow and I am making signs right now for them. I think they are pretty excited...but it will be a long day for them, 8:30-3!

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  7. Such cute pictures. I'm glad her first day went well. I laughed out loud at the picture of Kate passed out on the couch. So cute. Pre school will do that to em. :)

    I saw that back to school feast on nie nie's blog too. That is such a great idea. (And how inspiring is she?)

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  8. love that tradition! I think we may have to consider that one. My little guy starts preschool tomorrow and he is so excited! I hope she continues to enjoy it and you all have a great school year!

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  9. i love the outfit she picked out. I can't believe she cooperated with you and held up that sign for the photo. Claire will never be a sign holder when she goes to preschool and you know it.

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  10. Your girls are too cute for words! I meant to tell you that in your last post but seeing them again just reminded me. I love back to school traditions too and hope to start some with my boys.

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  11. This made me teary thinking about how soon Mason is going to be in preschool. Crazy! SO glad Kate had a good first day. :) You are adorable, I totally want that dinner tonight... :)

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  12. awww...I love it how you had Kate holding the sign for first day of school picture. I'll do that next year for 1st day of second year...hahaha. I was tearing up too on both my kids 1st day of preschool.

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  13. I LOVE that idea, so cute!! I wish I would've started something fun like that, guess its never too late? My 3yo started this year too, except he is my baby, so I had a really hard time :( he was a little hesitant but he loves it now too!

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  14. Kate looks absolutely adorable for her first day! I absolutely love your idea for a family feast for the first day of school, I'm sure the girls loved it.

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  15. Your husband's comment about not wearing white after Labor Day had me rolling!

    I have a VERY similar picture of my little ballerina after her first full day of elementary school. Too funny!

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  16. aw yay!! so glad she had a good day. She is a doll! Noah went to Mother's Day Out for the first time yesterday.. i did pretty good. no tears were shed.. but it was hard to drop him off. I have to admit.. i did enjoy "me" time though. You are such a great mommy!

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  17. How cute is she?! Such a big girl and an adorable one at that! Glad she loved school. It's a wonderful thing. Her shoes are FABULOUS! Love them.

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  18. I love you and hate myself a little more every time I read, you are truely amazing and such a great Mommy to model after, I vow to be a better funner Mommy!!!

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  19. What a wonderful idea! This was out first year of big kid school so we'll have to start some traditions of our own. Love it!

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  20. Love the idea of the feast with a theme for the year! Your girls are precious! Stopping by from Kelly's Korner!

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  21. I love the idea of a "feast" complete with crowns... that is such a fun way to get the kids pumped up about going back to school!
    We homeschool so I miss lots of those traditions. We mostly just organize and rearrange books, desks, folders...you get it!! And we rest, rest, rest the weekend before school starts because once homeschool gets going in full force it keeps us super busy!
    Anyway, love your blog!!
    Hope you have a great weekend!
    -april

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  22. Oh I LOVE it, and I'm so glad she had a great first day!

    Cxx

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