Tuesday, June 17, 2008

First Day of Preschool

Wow... she's off and running! Our girl was very happy to be starting school today. It seems like no one in our house could sleep last night with all of the excitement and anticipation. Right at 7 AM, Harper and Daddy got up and showered together while I made the coffee and changed little Jackie's diaper. I laid out two outfit options (her new school clothes) and two options for underwear. When she came into her room wrapped in a towel, she chose the Dora panties ("Because she's a preschool girl") and the striped seersucker shirt with green shorts and sparkly silver sandals. I slipped one of my homemade clips in her hair (a pink one to match the stripe and because it stays in well). After dressing, she had her milk and part of a cartoon while I showered and dressed and Daddy packed her lunch: a PB & J sandwich, fruit snacks, a ziplock of nectarine slices, and an ice water, made complete with an "I love you Harper! Heart Dada" note.

I called her to my room while dressing and sprayed her little wrist with some of my "Eternity" by Calvin Klein perfume. I told her that some of my perfumes I wear every day and some of them I save for only the most special days. This was one of my special ones, the same scent I had worn on the day I married Daddy, the day she was born, and the day Jack Jack was born. Now I would wear it today and she would too... if she ever missed Mama, she could smell her little wrists and know that I love her very much and will see her soon. She was delighted to be treated to something so special and grown up, and I saw her smelling her wrists from time to time all morning long.

Next, she said goodbye to Daddy and sat down for her breakfast of Golden Grahams cereal (without her shirt so it would stay clean) while I fed Jack in the highchair and tried to slip in a few bites of granola and yogurt for myself. During breakfast, the girl had to go do her poos and I changed Jackie again. I was relieved that she had pooed at home and wouldn't have to ask a teacher for help wiping! I also added a note in her lunchbox, saying, "Mama loves you very much. Jack sends love, too. Hugs and kisses, Mama"

When breakfast was done, we quickly took a picture of the school girl outside in the bright morning sunlight, next to our sunflowers. Here it is.

Then we headed off to school. Here's Harper arriving.

On our way in, we found the list of classroom assignments, along with the schedule for the day. (Click to see larger and read the plan for her first day).

(Photo removed by request of another student's family.)

Harper was happy to see Mrs. Sigmund (Grandma's friend) and Mrs. Souza because she's met them before when we've come to visit, turn in paperwork, etc.

We found her cubby hole and parked her backpack in there.

Harper felt free to explore the room, stopping to check out a puzzle, a toy, going over to make a tea party.

One girl, Vivian, was clearly upset when her Daddy said goodbye and Mrs. Sigmund had comforted her to help her stop crying. Harper introduced herself to this girl, but she was too upset to engage a new friend. After Harper had set up the tea party, she said she'd made a place for me to have tea with her but I told her, "Actually, Mommy's going to be leaving soon, so maybe that should be for a buddy. Why don't we invite a friend to have tea with you?" She looked over at Vivian, who was now standing on a chair and looking out the window, hoping to see her Dad returning to rescue her. I encouraged Harper to ask Vivian to join us and Harper walked over and tapped her leg very gently. She said, "I would like to invite you to my tea party." Vivian just looked at her with a sad face and then turned back to the window. I walked over and introduced myself to her and said, "I'm Harper's Mommy, Ruth. Harper made a tea party over there and would like you to play with her. Do you want to come?" She shook her head yes, so I said, "Cool! Let's go girls!" and Vivian hopped off her chair and made her way over to the table Harper had prepared. Harper showed her which cup was hers and poured pretend tea for them both.

I gave Harper a kiss then and reminded her that Daddy would be back to pick her up after lunch. She was engaged in her party and it was a seamless goodbye. I am now home with Jack Jack napping, and I do miss the girl. I am (of course) wondering what she's doing at every moment, how she is feeling. Can't wait to hear the stories!


Danielle said...

Now I'm crying at work! Seriously, there are multiple tears. What a special mom and dad and daughter day! LOVE YOU GUYS

Rachel said...

awww. that was a sweet entry. the perfume idea is so great! it made me think of a lovely picture book called "The Kissing Hand." its about being away from momma, but she leaves a kiss in your hand. my kinders loved it, Harper might too!

Stephen said...

So how did it go?

Danielle said...

Yeah, what were the stories?

Ethan said...

A few quick stories...
They sang the Name Song, and clapped along...they went for a walk and saw bugs, snails, and worms...they painted a picture using their thumbprint...Harper made a friend (whose name she can't remember) with a girl who helped her find the sink in the bathroom (she can read books, but apparently still struggles with sink-finding)...she said when Daddy came to pick her up, a boy said, "I see a father" and she said "Daddy!" and later told Ru that everyone got to see her Daddy because her Daddy was first...she is excited to go back on Thursday.
We'll update with any more cute stories.

Ruthie said...

I just dropped Harper off for day two and she was super happy about it. Before we left, she asked if she could go by herself to preschool because "I'm a big girl now, Mama." By this she meant take herself-- walk, presumably?-- to the actual school. I guess that means the separation isn't an issue, huh? Mrs. Sigmund said she never once asked for Mama, never gave any grief whatsoever, transitioned to various activities with ease and comfort, was an all around joy. I'm so happy.

Ruthie said...

i went with ru to pick up harper today. she is so happy at school - (my friend) teacher andi said "i just love her" - i, of course, said, "yes, she's so smart." "its not just that - she's so independent and knows just who she is and what she wants."
thats our girl! right now she's on the sofa "pushing out" her baby, with appropriate grunts, and "swaddling" her baby, and also teaching me chinese words for pull and for bye bye and hello, for 1-3 and slippers. never misses a thing!
not too proud am i?

Ruthie said...

that wasn't ru - that was grandma who knows lots of things but not how to use her computer properly!