We'll we're off and running now. Sleepy, excited Eva came in to the kitchen first this morning followed by VERY sleepy crabby Eli that needed to begin his day with a long hug. I put the goods in their baskets, fed them strawberries, eggs and toast, tea and left them to eat while I got ready. We'd have to leave extra early today with all the goings-on at school. The team was dressed and ready to go at 7:30ish. We had our traditional photo session on the side walk that holds most of our holiday card images then loaded in to the Mazda. It was not a rushed morning and it felt pretty good to be heading across town to a familiar place.
As we found a parking space near Alta Plaza I saw Karen, Jackson and Ruby. Just the sight of them made me weepy as Karen in my fellow cryer at ceremony time. I passed this on to her as she passed and we gave a quick hug for fortification. We approached the school seeing so many familiar faces, smiles and greetings abound. Dagmar, Eli's teacher opened the door to the school with a wide smile on her face, I handed off the jar of grapefruit marmalade and her smile got wider. We barely got Eli settled in to class when I saw Eva heading off with Tomaso to her new classroom. I ran out to join her. It was odd walking in to this new classroom, full of desks. The children all sit at double desks, we look around and quickly found Eva's desk and guess what, Jackson was her desk partner. My fear came true, Eva is towards the back of the room but I understand they move the children around throughout the year according to their needs, talking etc. Eva settled in and I let her be just be for a while. I then went to her when she got a funny look on her face, she was overwhelmed how loud it was with all the student and parents in the small room. Perfectly timed, Art arrived and spend a quiet moment with her. We left her there and went back to join Eli and see all the new faces in his class which are quite a lot. It'll take while to get so meet all the new families. I looked out the window and saw the first graders heading to the ceremony site escorted by their parent so Art and I scooted to be with Eva. She wanted nothing to do with us as she was with her friend Beatrice. Leslie, Bea's mom and laughed at how independent our girls were. We found a place in the circle with our child on our lap. I held her and snuck my nose in her hair over and over. She was so big on my lap, heavy, limbs almost reaching my own extension. The teacher, Ms Fendell introduced the handwork, Spanish, music, and other teachers to us and the children. She then told a story about a child being born and how parents planted a tree a the same time, how the child first did things that were not always good like breaking things, needing help etc. and how the tree was always quiet and growing. It's funny but I so wanted to be in the moment that I lost the story line as I sat there with Eva on my lap. I tuned back in when Ms. Fendell told how the child grew and soon was helping without being asked, how the tree had deep roots that made it strong and the sun to help it grow and then some comparison to the child having the sun it it's heart. She told of the parent being the first teacher and how it was time for the child to grow and find a teacher that will help this sun in their heart grow. At this point she had the children stand take a red rose and give it to us to keep with us to remind us of our chilren. Then she had the chilren hold hands, parent hold hands and let the children know that all parents were their support at which time the children sang a song about an apple tree and spiraled out the door through a bridge made by two parents at the door. It may sound corny at this reading but my eyes were filled to brim many times throughout the 20 minutes together.
I then ran off to a meeting of the kingergarten gardening parents and then back to the rose ceremony. At this time the entire grade school welcomes the first graders. The class teachers tell a story that gives an image of what their grade will be learning for the year, examples include about St Francis of Assis and other do-gooders, Michelangelo, the story of Genisis and beginning of time, etc.....the ceremony ends with the each eighth grader giving a rose to an individual first grader and escorting them in to a circle. Eva was proud. When I asked Eva about it later she said that she did it instead of running out the door, which is what she wanted to do. She was embarassed to stand there in front of all the older students. I was secretly relieved when I found out the older kids were making rude remarks during the ceremony, alas there is reality in all of this preciousness.
When I got Eli he complained that he was still tired. I asked him what his favorite part of the day was, he confessed that it was seeing Eva in the yard during recess. I sensed that during the 1 1/2 hour wait for Eva's dismissal he is lonely for her in class. He said he does not know how to be a second year kindergartener yet. On the car ride home, Eva talked with Eli saying that she realized that he must miss her but that it'd be okay. Eli is not conviced of this yet, it'll take while to be on his own.
On the way home we picked up my 40 lbs of tomatoes for canning and elderberries for jam and peppers for roasting. I'm a bit tired but pleased with the day.