The left is Jackson walking with Austin on his last day of kindergarten, and on the right is Austin walking with Harrison on one of his last days of preschool. It's such an ordinary, simple picture: my boys walking down the hall at school holding hands. But these are the moments I won't forget. These are the moments embedded in my heart that I will remember the rest of my life. They'll be grown men, but my memory will recall these simple images of my tiny babies walking together, holding hands in the hall. The big one dragging the little one along.
Be still my heart.
Today, was Jackson's last day of second grade! It's kind of an elementary milestone as he will move over to the "big kid" side of his elementary next year. The front of their school is grades K-2 and the back part of their school is grades 3-5. He's in senior elementary next year!
...if there were such a thing.
I helped scoop shaved ice for all the littles, so I didn't get many pictures of Jackson's party.
This was a stellar year for Jackson! He had some behavioral issues, he discovered the attention the class clown receives, both the negative and positive attention, but academically he was a star as always. I've mentioned that he blew away the other 2nd graders in the UIL math competition. He was also awarded the LISD Scholar award for excellent achievement in math exam scores during the entire course of the year. He was on the honor role all year long and he was awarded math and reading excellence for the year. He's definitely a little smarty pants and I am so so proud of him. I get teary every time I think about who he is becoming.
Austin- this boy surprised me so much this year! We very very (very) reluctantly put him into an all day preschool this year. I couldn't even talk about putting him into a full day preschool class without crying. I remember having breakfast with some dear friends months before school was supposed to start for Austin, and I cried just explaining my struggles with Austin and school. I thought I would be working more hours than I actually did work, so we thought full day preschool was our only option, but it turned out AMAZINGLY!
I was talking to Austin's teacher, Mrs. Martinez, earlier today about the anxiety I had putting Austin into her preschool class and she just looked at me with understanding eyes and said, "And look what he's become. He inspires me. Truly. I think, if I had been as smart as he is at this young age...".
Austin graduated preschool today. I've talked before about how silly I think these elementary graduations are (though I cry at each one), but he's so proud of himself. And so am I! Austin is such a good reader! He LOVES books! He LOVES reading! I tried all summer before his preschool year to teach him to read and he wasn't grasping it (because I wasn't teaching him the way he learns, I was teaching him the way Jackson and I learn), but Mrs. Martinez had him reading within the first 6 weeks of school. She said she rarely sees a 4 year old learn to read so quickly in the school year. The boy reads the King James version of the bible every night! He is amazing!
Austin was a star student academically and behaviorally. He received awards for reading to other classrooms, for being a stellar reader, and for being a math wiz (which I hadn't heard he excelled in until I saw the award).
And then there's this little guy...
He wants to be just like his big brothers. He does EVERYTHING they do. Everything. He's so independent and lacks any kind of fear. A quality I admire, and fear as his mother. Today, I lost him for a couple minutes. It was terrifying! I was leading Austin out of the room and looking around for Harrison and he was nowhere to be found. Nowhere. I asked Austin's teachers and the other parents if they'd seen him, and then I realized he had probably walked out of the classroom door. Mrs. Lee told me to check the fish tank because Harrison has to see the fishies every morning after we drop off Austin, but he wasn't there. I was starting to panic. The halls were filled with people- big and small. I ran up one way and down the other, and then I saw Jackson's 1st grade teacher who was desperately looking for me while watching Harrison (and her own class). She saw Harrison at the front doors of the school just standing there while people rushed in and out of the doors. Then I saw my sweet baby, who looked at me with his innocent big blue eyes, as he said, "Bye bye, mama? Bye bye?". I scooped that baby up so fast and smothered him with kisses while thanking Heavenly Father in my heart for helping me find my baby. I then realized all the moms who were watching Harrison for me, and patting my back as we walked passed them, letting me know that it was ok to breathe again. How grateful I am to the moms that guarded my baby today when I lost him for a few minutes. They are absolute angels! Literal guardian angels for Harrison and for me today.
Ever since Jackson's first nightmare of a teacher in kindergarten, I pray (and worry) about the teachers my boys will get in public school. Thankfully, they're at a wonderful school now, and I don't fear getting another bad teacher as much anymore. The boys' teachers this year were GREAT! They all welcomed my constant inquiries and concerns about the boys. My concerns were their concerns, and they always made sure that I knew I could come to them at any time. The boys have excellent auxiliary teachers as well. I know their music teacher from college, so I know they're in good hands with her, and Jackson's UIL teacher was so wonderful! She was almost more proud of and excited for Jackson than I was about his UIL accomplishments. She's a kindergarten teacher so I dropped several hints and I'm hoping Austin will be in her class next year. ;)
This school year was a HUGE success for my boys!
I'm so grateful for their elementary and for the teachers that love my children.