Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Fall Parties!

My heart is SO filled with thankfulness that I am even able to sit down and write this post today. Sometimes in life it really is the little things that bring the most joy. I shared last Friday that our schedules are pretty crazy this week. There are school things and kids going on fall break mid-week, but the biggest catalyst is Blueprint - Stifel's huge annual conference. Eric has a few pretty major roles in the conference this year, and he is super busy. It's likely he won't even be staying home by the end of the week but just sleeping in St. Louis...so close yet so far away, haha.

Yesterday was a special day at the the girls' school, a day that they had been looking forward to for weeks. It was the costume parade and fall party day, where all of the younger elementary school kids parade around for the big kids in their halloween costumes and then get to spend the afternoon having fun. All parents are invited to this day, and I'll tell you what just about all the parents show up, too. There was special parking roped off in the grass and people outside directing traffic - for classroom parties! I've never seen such a thing. :) Anyway, it was really looking like neither Eric nor I were going to get to go. You would think as a stay at home mom I would be the first in line to come to school events, but that really isn't so when you consider that I have more kids still at home than I do skipping off to school each day. If Eric can't arrange to be here, I can't be there.

And it's Blueprint week and all. The girls were pretty bummed that their parents weren't going to be able to make it.

But...Eric is a pretty swell guy, and he went to work yesterday morning and rearranged his entire afternoon schedule so that he could work from home and let me surprise the girls at their parties. Neither of them had any idea I would be there...I didn't know I would be there! But I'm so glad that I was able to go.

I stopped into Gracie's classroom first! There she was, playing games, proud as a peacock in her shiny peacock costume that she just had to have this year!

I got instant smiles and hugs when she turned to see that I was there. And then...it was back to playing games. There were prizes to be won. :) Each of the girls' rooms were set up similarly. There were a couple of games stations, a snack station, and a craft station in each one. And there were just about as many parents there as there were kids.

It was crowded chaos, and those kiddos were loving every minute of it. Grace made it a point to tell me how the big kids LOVED her costume and gave her high-fives as she walked down the hallway in the parade earlier. And one of the moms who showed up early told me that she stood and spun like a beauty pageant contestant when they introduced her...haha! That's Gracie. She adores the spotlight.

I was dividing my time, so soon I made my way to Evelyn's classroom. She was busy enjoying her party mix snack and didn't even notice I was standing near her until I said her name. It took her a second to realize that I was actually there, and then it was more hugs for me! Just fill my mom love bucket right up!

Evelyn decided to be Batgirl this year. It must have been a popular trend in her age group, because there were several other girl superheroes in her class. I think the costume suits her!

One of the great things about popping into school occasionally is to see your kid with the other kids. Evelyn enjoyed introducing me to her classmates. It occurred to me that Evelyn probably knows more people in our community now than I do! And there are some seriously sweet kiddos in her class - like Aubrey, who helped Evie find the slime in her goody bag. :) I like Aubrey. I think we shall have a playdate. Or I mean...the girls...they will have one. I keep telling Evelyn now to make sure she asks Aubrey to play at recess, haha.

She found her slime!

By the time I was hugging Evelyn goodbye I was feeling pretty darn good about the day. As much as I enjoy this stuff, it wasn't about me of course but wanting to be there for my kids. Sometimes one of the hardest things about being a parent isn't the things we have to do but the things we can't always do. The disappointments. The times we just can't be there. I remember how important and exciting it was to me when my parents could show up, and that's why I am so thankful for that one hour I had yesterday to make my girls happy.

Really I have Eric to thank for that. He cancelled meetings and went out of his way so that I could go make some memories with my oldest children. So thank you, dear! I'm glad you're my partner. :)

Tonight it's parent-teacher conferences and tomorrow is not only the start of fall break, it's also one special little guy's 4th birthday. We are definitely not running out of things to do! Now let's see if my sanity holds up while I have all five kids here and Eric is gone for a couple of days. I think some grandparent time might be in order. Ha! I suppose the sentimental part of parenting drops out somewhere between one-on-one time and mass chaos. Sentimental turns into survival.

One day at a time. :) Love!


Stefanie said...

Such sweet memories! The things we miss and the balance there is hard. I'm with you there. It's a blessing to get to surprise them for the little-big things in their lives too! I think Lucy may know more people at her school than I do too!!

Adrien said...

I can always count on you to get it, Stef! :)


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