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“Holly Antoinette”

Here we go! Not sure that the math is correct here, it seems to me that if I have 3 children going to school, I should have less than 2 at home... but I guess it does add up because I really do have 5 kiddos. Whew! I think and hope that having the older three at school will free up some of my life a bit, but the first day all three were at school, there was dirt all over my living room (my poor house plants) and toys everywhere. So am I winning? I think I just need to buy more toys, haha. Or an heirloom play kitchen, right Conor?!

Here's Greta on her first day! She's in sixth grade this year, her last year in Elementary school, although you could say she's a middle schooler because she's doing a middle school curriculum. I really hope Greta has a good year. She has some pretty great friends and she's going to try some new things (basketball, an instrument) this year while continuing with activities she knows and loves (cross country, soccer). How is it possible that she's already this old??

And my Holly girl! Holly is in eighth grade, her last year of middle school. Next year, we won't use numbered grades, instead she'll be a freshman! Okay but let's stay present in this moment. This girl has a heart of gold and I'm really proud of her. She's a hard worker and I'm so grateful she has an awesome friend group at school! I can't imagine Holly having anything other than a good year. Crossing my fingers because those middle school years have the potential to be hard.

And oh my little baby off to kindergarten. I joke that her teacher is going to correct all of our parenting failures, but am I actually joking?! Maeve is very excited about kindergarten. Greta helped her pick out her outfit and did her hair too. When Conor told Maeve he would miss her, Maeve told him that she was going to come back. And then when we were all walking with her to school, she asked us why we were coming. She's just so eager to be a big girl walking to school with Greta and the neighbors. When we were within sight of the school and she could see the quantity of children, Maeve became nervous. And so then I think she was glad her parents were with her! I walked Maeve into her classroom and she was definitely nervous, but she had a great day! Next week she goes every day, full days! I think she's going to be so tired and grumpy, but we'll get through it! She can do it!

And now I'm trying to not think too much of next year when I have 3 children, in 3 different schools and maybe Enoch in preschool? I don't need that anticipatory anxiety!

Holly's birthday party was delightful. She wanted Texas sheet cake and a water balloon fight. Check, check! Almost all her friends were able to come (a summer miracle!) and the couple who couldn't had her over for lunch which was so thoughtful. I'm so grateful that Holly has the friends she has. They're great. Holly herself is a very loyal and kind friend and I'm proud of the girl she is!

My sweet baby girl is a teenager! What on earth?! Holly is such an easy to please, easy going kiddo and I'm so glad she's in my family. She's a real sweetheart and her friends refer to her as their "friend mom," because that oldest kiddo gig plays out into her relationships with her friends. We gave Holly and cozy sweater and a couple of graphic novels she had asked for. We went for a family bike ride, ate cake and just generally enjoyed the day! Happy birthday darling girl!

I'm so proud of my girl, Holly, for really getting involved with school sports this year! She loved it! This past week was her last Track and Field Meet and Holly threw javelin and ran 400m. She's steadily improved and grown throughout the season. And I've proved to myself that I can be the mom with 3 small children in the rain and still doing it! Holly had 3 practices a week, 1 meet a week, and one of the practices started at 7am. She worked really hard!

I guess we're at that phase where not everyone is home (or awake) for the family activity. This year only Maeve and Holly carved pumpkins. Maeve drew out her design on a piece of paper and then I did my best to replicate it on the pumpkin. Maeve and I also did a couple of crafts. I love the expressions she drew on her pumpkin. I told her I wanted to do some crafts with her one afternoon and her response was, "I already did a craft at preschool." I did so many crafts with Holly and Greta. What they say is true, every child is born into a different family. I'm glad I carved out some time to do a couple little crafts.

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