Thursday, August 26, 2010

Sister Day

Today was so great that the only thing that would have made it better would have been the Lord's glorious return. I am surely longing for that.

Jackson had his first day of his last year of preschool. Did you follow that? Eek! That means the next time I take him to a new class it will be for kindergarten. That is craziness, I tell you! Pre-K is less about me getting a little break and more about him learning and becoming prepared for the school years. He loves going and I am excited to see how he will grow this year.

Annabeth got to go to mother's day out for the first time today. It was February when I registered her for this fall and she seemed too small and sweet to go. I couldn't imagine being ready to drop her off for 5 hours, twice a week. But I remembered Jackson at this age and thought I would probably regret not signing her up. And, wow, if you have an 18-month-old you can probably relate to my current feelings of readiness!

I didn't get too worked up about the whole thing. There were no tears. I'm saving those for next year. The most emotion I felt was the (minor) regret of Annabeth's brown, red, and yellow nap mat and blue, pink, and green backpack clashing. Also, my mom tried to shame me for using a paper lunch sack instead of a real lunch kit but, hello, it doesn't have to be cleaned out and it weighs less! The amount of stuff I will be hauling to and from the car while carrying one child and holding the other's hand is truly amazing. The paper sack is a survival technique and I HAVE NO SHAME!

I attempted to take some adorable pictures of the kids before leaving. Annabeth must have understood where she was about to go because when I got the camera out, she began clinging to my leg and whining. All I could do was take some of Jackson and hope she would get jealous of the attention and join him. I gave her her backpack and she ended up dragging it over to the door, sitting down on her bedroll, putting her arm on Jackson and smiling for the camera. I could not believe it. Of course, I missed the half-second that they remained in that pose.

Drop off was pretty painless. I was wishing I looked cuter, but a major benefit of all this is to be able to beautify oneself in peace. So I dressed in clothes that at least made it look like I'd worked out or was going to work out. Doesn't that excuse the morning uglies? I think so. I showered in complete privacy for once and got ready to take my sister to lunch.

I was running late and assumed Melissa was too, so I went to my parents' house without my makeup on. I would just do it there in the company of my two favorite women. Mom was about to get picked up to go to the airport, but we would have a few minutes together. I was fishing around in Melissa's makeup bag for something and that turned into her doing my makeup. We've tried this before and I've always felt like Elvira, but today I liked it. I did, however, get rebuked for not wearing earrings after all the work she'd done on my face. Horror of horrors! She fetched me some of her own and there was reconciliation.

Melissa wanted to go to Ruggles Green at the City Center (AKA the trendy graveyard of Town and Country Mall). I was a little apprehensive, given that I typically scoff at hippie food because it's bizarre, small, and doesn't taste good. But we went for it and I have to say that I've never had a better grilled chicken sandwich in my life. We even got some pink velvet cake to go. It was pink because they don't use all the dyes to make it truly red. Or something eco-friendly and organic like that. I don't know. I'm just a Texan who was raised by a father who doesn't trust vegetarians. And whose greatest fear is that I won't allow my son to hunt deer when he's old enough. Don't tell my dad that Melissa ordered a veggie burger.

After lunch we walked across the street to Anthropologie. All the beautiful fall clothes were out and we were both drooling. At this point we were really missing our mom. Our husbands are very lucky that we had to pick up the kids because we did not have time to do much damage.

We trekked back to the kids' school and I was grateful to have Aunt Melissa there to help me get everyone and everything to the car. It's a law of nature that some sort of shenanigan has to happen at the start of school and lucky for me, my sister got to witness it! We went to Annabeth's class and I quickly found out that I had not packed enough food in her lunch. Yes, just take that in for a moment. They had to give her goldfish borrowed from the snack reserves. Her lunch had a turkey and cheese sandwich, a baggie of quartered grapes and some milk. I started to put a cheese stick in there or some Wheat Thins, but I thought surely she would not eat all that! I was wrong. So very wrong. Melissa and I couldn't stop giggling about my humiliation all the way to the car. Next time I will do better, Annabeth! Despite having a mother who needs food service tutoring, I was told that Abey did great today. Jackson seemed to have a great day, too. Both of his teachers seem wonderful, as do Annabeth's!

We made a beeline for the Dairy Queen and got Jackson a little Blizzard. Then we headed to my parents' house just to hang out. I made some tea, Melissa made some coffee, and we dug into our pink velvet cake. Lis spoke Jackson's love language of playing hide and seek. We could have stayed all day but the kids were exhausted. Jackson fell asleep two minutes after we got in the car.

I never know whether my sister being around my kids is going to help or hinder my chances of having nieces and nephews on my side of the family. She sees everything from the chaos and the frustrations to the absurdities (her favorite) and the awesome moments. Like when Annabeth pointed at my bridal portrait today and said "Mommy!" Thank God I'm recognizable, right? Ha!

Whether or not I ever get to be an auntie to some sweet little Fitzpatrick babies, my kids have a fantastic aunt in Melissa. They have only begun to realize how fun she is. We love you, Lissy! Thanks for such a great day!

The Sir posing solo.



Aber hauling her little backpack to the front door to join him.



Independence is her love language.



This lovely picture is the closest I got to that dreamy moment of sibling affection. See AB's arm outstretched? And doesn't Jackson's expression sum up the family photography experience?



My two loves.

44 comments:

Kristen @ Moms Sharpening Moms said...

How precious is that little backpack? Your babies are too stinkin' cute!

My "babies" are 10 and 7 now, but I used to do M.D.O. when they were young, too. What a great opportunity to get a little Mommy break (those toddler/preschool years are exhausting!) and get some things done (errands, etc.) that they don't particularly enjoy.

Have a wonderful weekend, sweet Amanda!

Ashley N said...

I love this post for so many reasons. I just sent my 4yr old back to her last year of preschool, and can relate a lot to your feelings. And I have a sister. And I'm raising sisters. Sisters are a special, special thing...glad you got to spend time with yours today.

Tara G. said...

Darling. And I love it that you had time with your sister- truly, it makes me tear up. What a blessing!

Beth said...

Oh, that is just more joy than I can bear!!!! And on about a dozen levels. PS. The other day when I was shopping with Amy for maternity and baby clothes, I gazed longingly at lunch kits.

Kelli said...

1. They are adorable.
2. Happy Day for you with your sister.
3. Made me smile SO big and pray that this baby cooks long enough that I get to have a day like that with my sister once she is FINALLY how from Ireland!

Lindsey said...

Omgosh Amanda... those pics are absolutely adorable.. she definitely was going to drag that backpack herself!

ThirtysomethingMom said...

Totally Awesome!!! Love the pics!!!
Have a blessed day!

Lauren said...

Just wanted to tell you that as I was reading this post, Noah pointed at the pictures and wanted to know Jackson and Annabeth's names. Then he said, "Noah go play Jackson." I think we need to have that play date sometime soon! :)

Sarah said...

How fun. Love that "bubble" on AB. They are both getting so big. Glad you could spend time with your sister. :) Have a good weekend.

Marla Taviano said...

This post is a GRINNER. Loved every bit of it. I don't know if you realize how awesome you are.

spiritmom said...

Loved your post, but loved the first sentence the most! I long for that day so much...

MEGAN said...

Maybe your sister is waiting for you to have a 3rd before she makes her decision on kids, or goes for it :) Love little Annabeth's outfit!!!!!!!!!

CAROL LIVIN FOR GOD said...

Oh those pictures were so sweet I loved the picture of Annabeth carrying her backpack that was to sweet. Glad you had some alone time with Melissa that always means so much to be alone with your sister.
Carol

Lauren said...

Sounds like a fabulous day with you sister, Amanda!!! And adorable pictures of the kids!!! :)

Sunni said...

I felt the same way on my little one's first day of preschool last Monday. It was just a great, great day! I'm so glad you are getting sister time. There's nothing quite like it!

Barbara Head said...

They are absolutely adorable. Enjoy you mommie alone time. Believe me it is few and far between. I love hearing about your kiddos!! What a great mommie you are.

Kiki said...

Love this post! I am so with you in the eating department! And I'm totally wishing I had signed Levi up for MDO!

Barr Family said...

They are getting so big! Isn't it crazy how fast they grow up and start preschool and Kindergarten. Gracie started Kindergarten this year and actually has your sister-in-law for a teacher! Gracie loves her and loves school so that has made the transition easier, but I had to wear my sunglasses into the classroom on the first day to hide my tears! :) I felt a little better when I saw some other moms with their sunglasses on indoors.... Glad you got to have some fun time with your sister...there is no better friend than a sister... Have a blessed day!

Kristie said...

Love AB's nap mat...My MIL just made a top for my daughter out of that same fabric (I was hoping for a cute pillowcase dress, but I'll be thankful that I got something that didn't require any sewing skills from me!) :)

Joyce said...

I loved your sister story.

A friend of mine's daughter looked at her wedding picture one day and said, "Who is that lady with Daddy?' She didn't know if she should laugh or cry.

Kim Safina said...

Amanda,

Be still my heart!!!!

I absolutely LOVED the photos. Thank you for allowing me to remember the days of my little guys dragging their backpacks behind them!

(((HUGS))))
with love,
Kim

Lindsey said...

Great pictures! They look so adorable with their little backpacks.

Heather said...

What cuties! So glad you had a great day! I miss my sisters--they both live in Texas with you!!! :) My Connor will start Kindergarten next year, too, so I will be right there with you. Sigh. It happens so fast. Have a great weekend!

The Hulens said...

Amanda,
I love reading your blog...have never commented on it, but I read it often. You are so funny and a beautiful writer. Also, I feel like we live parallel lives, as I have a 3-year-old son and a 2-year-old daughter. On another note, I teach in the Parent's Day Out program at my church, and I just love seeing cute little kiddos walking in with adorable bookbags. Have a lovely weekend!
Lyndsey

His Jules said...

so precious!!! I loved reading about your precious little ones and all of their adventures!! Makes me long for the days when mine were those ages again,....but only for a few sweet moments..LOL

Enjoy your weekend!

annalee said...

as someone who is slightly obsessed with first day of school posts and outfits, i feel the need to say you succeeded beautifully!

Jesse and Lacey said...

Amanda,
This comment is unrelated to this post and doesn't even need to be published, but I wanted to tell you that I just read your LPM post about your difficult decision to change your work situation for this year. I know you have tons of real life friends that to talk about these things to, but this post just touched my heart so I had to comment. I stopped working in June as well, to stay home with my Annabelle (16 months) and it has been the biggest blessing that I prayed for for such a long time. Even then, it is so difficult to battle the thoughts that I am not longer important/needed. Thank you for sharing your struggle with this as well. I hope you have a wonderful year with your sweet kids!

willblogforshoes said...

So sweet!

Lindsee Lou said...

Jackson looks like a little man. And I'm loving Annabeth dragging her backpack over for the photo-opp. Hilarious! It was meet the teacher at our pre-school today and I could have watched those mamas and babes walk in and out all day. They were so adorable.

Also, I paid my visit to Anthropologie on Wednesday and walked out empty handed. It was tough.

Kendra said...

That little blue romper is to die for - I wish I could find more rompers for Hannah (16mo. old) ...they're so sweet! I hope you enjoy getting back in touch w/ having some just you time.
Kendra T in the Middle East

Bobbie said...

Your kiddos looked adorable on their first day of school! I love AB's outfit--it's so cute! Jackson looks like such a little man-you nailed it with 'the sir'! You're doing a great job journaling for them!

I'm so glad you and Melissa got a whole day together-sounds fun! "I'm just a Texan who was raised by a father who doesn't trust vegetarians"! I can so identify with this, I try really hard to enjoy vegetables besides green beans.

Enjoy your weekend!

Missy said...

What a fun day! Glad you enjoyed your first day sans kiddos and the fact you got to spend it with your sister is extra fun.

Jackson and AB are way too cute in their little school outfits!

Kristin said...

So darling,Amanda! Love reading about your adventures and relationship with Melissa. I am in the same place here in Virginia with little ones and a newly wed little sister. Your mom showed us your last pic of J & AB in Richmond this weekend. Could you hear her loving on her family from where you are? May the Lord bless you over and over today, darling lady!

Karen said...

When my son was in 1st grade, we were supposed to send our kids to school with a snack. Every day, I'd send along a healthy snack of some sort. I found out that he'd tell the teacher that I hadn't packed him one, so that he could get the 'better' snack of Goldfish that the teacher kept on hand! I was so embarrassed!

Alana said...

They are so precious Amanda. Can't beleive how fast they grow up!

Hupoclo said...

Precious, too precious!!! Where does the time go??? Thanks for sharing these special moments with us.

Ashley said...

What a great post about your first day! The pictures of your kiddos are precious; I can't believe how quickly your Jackson is growing! I've been wanting to try the Ruggles Green place but didn't know if my hubby would like it; I think we might give it a shot... I'll mention that they have cake! ;)

Missy @ It's Almost Naptime said...

Shep lost his lunchbox around March of last year and I was just too lazy/cheap to buy another so he did the paper sack thing. It was awesome - UNTIL. One morning I realized we were out, and he had to take his lunch in a plastic Kroger bag.

I was, indeed, kind of mortified. I can only imagine what your mom would say about *that.*

gillian said...

where'd you get that cute backpack for Annabeth? My daughter is the same age as Annabeth, and we're still toting around her huge diaper bag!

Amanda said...

We got both of their little backpacks from Pottery Barn kids last Christmas. They're a great size!

Dionna said...

Amanda -
I just wanted to leave you a quick note and let you know that I mentioned you on my blog today. Thank you for encouraging my heart and inspiring me on so many occasions through your posts. God is using you. :)

Siesta OC said...

OH.MY.GOODNESS!!!!!! First off, why does AB dragging her backpack look like another petite blond pulling her carry-on behind her in an airport! I'm just saying!

What fun and thanks for the pics, they are adorable!

balmingilead said...

I can totally identify with leaving your family and worrying about not being able to control everything they do. I am right there with my 4 and 2 year old too. I think it's probably normal with mommies and our protective nest issues. I hope.
Love the polka dot backpack!

The Buckley Family said...

My best friend pointed me to your blog a few days ago. I think it is so funny that I read it tonight. Tomorrow morning my kids will be going to Mother's Morning Out, and I have been overwhelmed by guilt. I have a 3 yr. old, a 2 yr. old and a 5 month old. My older two are going to MMO, and the baby will stay with me. I know the Lord has called me to stay at home with them, and I really do enjoy it. I guess the guilt part is just feeling guilty about needing a break from the children I love so much. Do you know what I mean? Is this just a mom guilt moment for me? (We are so good at putting so much guilt on ourselves) :)