But there is also that beginning anticipation and excitement of a new school year ahead, new students to expect, and all the plans to be made.
Only this year, as August 1st rolled around there was a new feeling: the realization that at the end of this month my big guy will officially be a kindergartner. And as soon as I think about that, I just want to slow summer down as much as possible.
When people ask me how our summer is going, I feel like I can honestly answer that while it's been busy, it's been good. We've been enjoying our Summer Bucket List, Simple Summer Themes, and our attempts to Plan to Unplan. We've spent time with friends and on our own, we've created and played, we've explored and just hung out too.
And through out all these activities there have been these eye opening moments where I realize just how quickly Big Brother is moving beyond being a little kid into an official big kid.
I saw it when he rode his bike for the first time without training wheels. I see it in his confidence swimming and his resistance to leave the water. He'd stay in forever if we'd let him, snorkeling in his own world. And when he's not swimming, there are long spells of swinging, pushing himself as high as he can go and finding new (not always safe) ways to take off. I see it in the homemade posters written in primary handwriting all around the house and his first few words officially read aloud from books in surprise. There's imaginative games and thoughtful conversations. There's the magnetic pull to other big kids and the desire to be more independent. (And I won't even go into all the big kid "sassy" ways he's changed that remind me he's not so little anymore.)
As I watch him this summer I know he's quickly changing and preparing himself for his new world. And from what I hear from parents with slightly older children, it will only feel faster once kindergarten actually begins.
Just like with anticipating the new school year, there are these amazing things I know we have ahead of us: new friends, reading his first whole book, the initial excitement of math homework, sampling school lunches, soccer games, school plays, . . . the list goes on.
I know it because I've lived that school world for so long as a teacher just never as a parent. And this time, it makes August feel very different.
So for now, for these last few weeks I just want to slow summer down. I love the moments when I realize that he's still being a little kid, enjoying classic kid things like picnics, swimming, sandboxes, and hikes in the woods. I want to put as much of these things into our remaining summer days as I can. I want to take summer slow, the way childhood was meant to be.
While I know next summer these things will still be there for us to enjoy, I know that this summer will always be his one and only summer before kindergarten. My last chance to hold onto that little kid just a little bit longer.
Don't forget to follow us on Instagram, where I often capture our monthly goals in action. This month I'll be using the hashtag #slowsummerdown as much as I can. And also take a moment to check out these other fantastic bloggers and their monthly goals.
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