Being the lame photo-taker that I have become, I do not have an official "first day of school photo" of H. All of us were so excited, we had so much to do, and Lire was SCREAMING, so it got missed. And then the second day I thought, "well, he's still wearing new clothes, I'll take it then," But then I had a little L. attached to my calf, so I forgot again. The third day I finally brought L. along, so there was no screaming or clasping of lower extremities, but there was the need to make sure L. looked as handsome as H. -- he would have no shirking of the hair duty, the shoes, etc. Then I just gave up on the fourth and fifth day. Tomorrow is another day, as Scarlett said, so I will attempt to recreate the first one tomorrow.
Good news is that H. LOVES school and was sad not to be going on Saturday and Sunday. As were Al and I. Honesty aplenty here at Holding Still. It was a whole new world, having one child instead of two. Oh my God. It was slower-paced, calmer, and I found myself having relaxed thoughts as L. and I strolled down Main Street. My mind actually slowed down closer to its former pace.
H. is a much happier boy now that he's in school. We're trying to encourage him to talk in front of other people more. He talks A LOT with us, and his English is developing well, but he is self-conscious in front of peers especially, which we understand. I barely spoke to other children as a kid, and I was a native speaker of English. Apparently, he touches the cheek of classmates when he wants their attention -- the teacher said he was "very affectionate, happy all day, and so sweet." Thank goodness! Sadly, Friday evening and Saturday afternoon he wasn't as sweet, affectionate or happy as described, but I think he had a major come-down from the high of school.
We've been lucky that Alex's cousins have been around this weekend, so H. and L. can play with a gang of kids. Alex and I have commented on occasion that we both had gangs of kids to play with as children, and H. and L. only have this a few months a year. We are in the realm of the playdates here, so hopefully H. will develop friendships in school that will turn into future playtimes. He's just getting comfortable talking with his 7 year old cousin, and the two of them have great fun building choo-choo train tracks, throwing the frisbee, and riding bicycles. Right now they're crabbing at the beach with Alex and Lire.
In general, things are looking up, though with H's Friday and Saturday tempest, I definitely felt like the fall guy. L. acted out and gave me a karate chop to the throat on Saturday, which pushed me into "evil Mommy" mode and eventually into tears and a late night vent to Al. Talking and two doses of Sepi@ (homeopathy) helped a bunch.
We've also had a friend come by at bedtime to get the boys used to the idea of her so someday soon we can go out for dinner. I'm going to make a simple stick-figure book of Mommy and Daddy jumping in the car to go to "Francois'" (not its real name), with this friend staying with them and tucking them into bed. Our next move, in addition, is to have her come by after dinner and stay with the boys while we go for a walk.
We've left the boys with Al's mom and my parents for hours at a time, and with Al's cousins, come to think of it, but we've always been within running/screaming distance. My parents took them in the car to shop at the local farmstand, too. I've got high hopes, though L. isn't going to be convinced easily. I think he knows what's up, because when I asked if he wanted our friend to come again to share bedtime reading he said "No. Yiye no yike it."
Here are some pics from our cousin's lemonade/book sale, since I missed the first day of school photo-op.