Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Kindergarten: Week 2

Bella seems to have adjusted easily to her new school routine. I was really worried about her staying on task while getting ready in the mornings but she's been following directions well and we've been ready to go with plenty of time to spare.

She says she having fun at school but isn't learning anything. I've tried to tell her that the teacher is still trying to get everyone comfortable and in the routine (some freaking kid Cynthia cries hysterically almost all day) and learning will start soon but she seems a little concerned.

I was sitting outside her class room today a few minutes before pick up time. I was looking at the playground when I heard Bella's voice in the opposite direction yell, "Hi Mommy!". She had gone to the bathroom and was on her way back to class with the aide. I must have looked startled because she said, "It's me, Bella. I'm at school." I wanted to say, "No shit, I'm here to pick you up" but the aide whisked her away too quickly for me to say anything.

She had her first homework assignment tonight...decorating a figure to look like her. I cut out the doll as instructed by the teacher and cut out the dress as instructed by Bella. I left her on her own to design "herself" and I think she did a great job.
Of course, Matea had to do her own version of the homework.
Bella's signature concentration tongue.
See, they look exactly alike. Notice, they're both wearing pink headbands. Nice touch, Bella.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

First Day Update

Steve and I were able to go together to pick up Bella from school. The teacher said, "Do you see your mom or dad anywhere?". Bella looked around smiling and looked right past us. I was doing a crazy lady wave and everything and she didn't see us. She finally ran over and we said, "Did you have a good day?" to which she replied, "I have to go potty."

After taking care of business, we were able to go back and chat with her teacher. Poor, poor girl. She (and her husband!) were laid off from different schools in the district when they did the 90 teacher layoff a few months ago. On Tuesday night, she got a phone call about the K-1st job at Oceano, signed her contract yesterday at 10:00am and had less than 24 hours to prepare for today. She's as nice as can be but is obviously totally overwhelmed and unprepared. She talked a lot with Steve and I and Bella seems to really like her so I think we'll all get along nicely.

Bella's excited to go back tomorrow and is already talking about her new friend, Ella. Hope things continue to go this well.

First Day of School

We got up early and I made Bella's breakfast request, pancakes, sausage, and cantaloupe. Got her lunch packed and all of us ready for school with plenty of time to spare.

We took some pictures out front and then headed to school.

She was really excited as we walked up.

We met up with Papa and walked to her classroom. Just yesterday, the school created a K-1st combo class and got a new teacher so the classroom is still looking a little sparse. Her teacher is really nice, but also pretty realistic about all of the unknowns right now. The district initially laid off 90 teachers but just hired back 30 so no one really knows what the final class sizes will look like yet. The K-1st combo class Bella's in has 24 students, so definitely more than the previous class size reduction numbers but not the 29 students we were told on Monday.

I didn't realize that we'd have to wait outside until the bell rang. We briefly met the teacher and then had 15 minutes of waiting outside watching hundreds of kids on the playground and activity everywhere. Prime nerves building time.

When the bell rang and we finally got to go in, Bella very reluctantly sat at her desk. I walked around to take this picture and this was the best smile she could give. And then tears starting flowing. I never expected her to cry. Never. She's so social and was really excited about school and never once showed any apprehension with preschool. I think all of the waiting outside just ended up being a recipe for disaster.

Anyway, I pick her up at 1:40 and will take her out to ice cream before I have to head to work tonight. I can't wait to hear all about her day and I really hope she quickly overcame her nerves.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


House is still for sale. It's been on the market for about a month and we've been getting consistent showings so we feel like we're priced right. Most of the people have given really good feedback about the house and we're still hoping that we can sell by the end of the year. We're keeping our eye on rentals in the neighborhood and price range we want, and don't think we'll have any trouble finding something that works for us. With our really good credit and home ownership record, I think we'll make dream tenants. Anyone wanna buy a little house and rent to us?

Matea gave up her paci almost a month ago and we're still having some rough moments. She's having troubling soothing herself to sleep at night and out of habit, touches her mouth a lot when she's tired or grumpy. I'm still questioning whether we took the paci away too early because I really think she still needed it for comfort. Anyway, totally out of the blue yesterday, she climbed up on the bathroom counter and found a paci in the medicine cabinet. I don't know how she even knew it was in there. After some bargaining, I agreed to let her hold it in her hand while she finished watching her movie. Then she told me she was going to hide it from me. I slyly watched where she hid it and then took it back.

Bella starts kindergarten tomorrow. Hoping we made the right decision to stick with our neighborhood school. Hoping that with 29 students now in the class, she'll get the attention she needs. Hoping Matea doesn't realize how boring life at home with just Mama will be.

Thursday, August 06, 2009