Yes, this blog is still running; it’s just that the parental units are a little slow, eh? Many new blogposts are in prep so please bear with us as we get back into the swing of things.
Anyway, today was a significant milestone because it was Liam Wallace’s first day at proto-school (aka daycare). He drew the Étoiles Group, which this year consists of two boys (him being one of the two) and three girls. Oy vey! All clustered birthday-wise so all more or less the same age. Interestingly enough, of the three other kids we’ve seen in his group, the Micro-Dragon is bigger than all of them in spite of being a preemie. So there is a serious possibility that he will be taller than his parentals.
After morning moo and an attempt at a breakfast of champions (additional milk that should have included cow for the amount that the carton cost, toast, cheese, Minigo, fruit) it was time for the obligatory first day of proto-school photo. Mom’s put up a very brave face, no? And Liam Wallace? “Gee Dad, it’s really no big deal.”
Notice the hair? Still blond with red highlights. There’s a lot of it too. Definitely from the Mom.
This next photo would be Micro-Dragon doing the obligatory kid fidget because the parental units are making a fuss over it being the first day of proto-school. Also known as “don’t you think that 26 photos and video in this pose are enough?” (answer: no).
Micro-D did actually cooperate long enough for the Mom to get his hair into some semblance of control and stayed still enough to be able to snap one photo. That would be this one.
Lots of packing in the car before we’re off. THREE changes of clothes with each item painstakingly labeled with his name using cloth iron-on labels. Diapers. Wipes. Hat. The data binder. All labeled. Tempra. Some other stuff in a bag bigger and heavier than kid. FWIW, Mom carried the bag.
There was a little bit of suspicion during the ride. Why so early? It couldn’t possibly be check-up again. Why is Mom driving west? And why is pater filming and feeding crunchy snacks? Louche…
After an uneventful drive, there was a lot of finger pointing as we arrived at the proto-school parking lot and we did manage to get a swell spot to park in. Hard to take photos of the initial minutes on arrival and entry but we were warmly greeted and everyone was excited to have him arrive.
And how did Liam Wallace react? Did he cry? Was he nervous? Shy? Stick to parents like glue?
Big hah? That would be no, no, no and nope. More along the lines of “what parents?” as when he arrived at the Étoiles room, the parental units may as well have been the extra-boring pieces of furniture and he went into overdrive to see what his new surroundings looked like.
No sign of the other members of the new posse, but this would be him exploring the new territory within the group room. Time on clock: 7:55a EST5EDT.
The space is equipped with a whole new swath of literary options to digest.
A bookcase with bins full of squishy rubber balls to pull out one by one.
And voices calling his name. That would be parental units. And this would be Liam Wallace going “I think I recognize those sounds but I’ll ignore them because I need to see what else is here.”
So what else was there? Would you believe an open door to scramble through into the corridor for more exploration of the facilities. Note: he’s gotten really fast and pater is definitely feeling his age (like dinosaur, and not the raptor side of that phylogenic tree).
The corridor exploration revealed the location of the outside door leading to the play courtyard and the giant tree with the built-in slide.
But wait – there was the crushing realization upon reaching the door that there’s a vertical challenge to surmount before accessing the push mechanism to open the door to get to the tree. Ugh! Where’s NeNe when you need her?
Backtracking through the corridor led to other discoveries like alternate means of transport. Here he is checking out the new wheels and thinking up how to hook up a parent to pull him and his swag around.
Mom finally catching up to him as he attempted to enter the administrative office. A little pep talk and check to see if everything’s going well. Seems to be.
More crawling through the corridors led to the gymnasium and the caterpillar Liam Wallace discovered at orientation meeting a week earlier. Time to step on some tongue and re-inspect the oral cavity.
If one enters in the mouth, one has to come out the back end… (perhaps pater spent too much time working in gastroenterology).
Additional back and forth through the caterpillar GI tract, seeing as it’s also a fun thing to do and just to be sure that the concepts of digestion were adequately demonstrated to the parentals. Going this direction would be regurgitation.
The gym is also equipped with a mobile stage to crawl around and put on a show.
And the discovery of a very convenient ramp.
Convenient how? No more careful backing up to come down from the stage, one can slide down or climb up the ramp with greater ease and less expenditure of energy. An additional demonstration of the convenience of those ramps just in case the parental units didn’t get it the first time around.
At this point, time on clock: 8:20a EST5EDT. A full 25 minutes of full-speed exploration and ramp climbing. Activities were going to get underway at 08:30a so it was time to show we aren’t the smothering parent type and to let him go join the new posse and start his formal education. We got the “see you later pieces of moving furniture that vaguely resemble parents”
It was agreed that we would return at 12:30p but that we would stay close by and come earlier if he was having difficulty integrating like one of the other kids had been the previous day. And did he have difficulty with his first morning?
Well, let’s just say that Mom was demonstrating some perseverative behaviour by the frequency she was checking the time. A phone call did come in a couple of hours in, but that was to say that no, Liam Wallace was doing fine and even sleeping soundly while all the other kids around him weren’t going down for their naps. Reassuring news! Which of course is why Mom looked at the clock even more frequently as time inched closer to 12:30p.
Were the parents anxious? No we weren’t anxious – we spent quality time shopping for peach-flavored crunchy snacks. Time selected to return to proto-school: 12:15p. Time needed to drive from standby location to proto-school: 3 minutes.
This was the greeting Liam Wallace gave his Mom when he spotted her in the doorway. We think he was happy.
So what was the report on how the morning went? Apart from that first-ever nap in the middle of a crowd, there was yet more exploration, two servings of pear at morning snack, demonstration of how fast he can stand up by using the other kids, the educators and the proto-school administrator (oy!) as climbing aids, and a first-ever lunch of chicken nuggets.
But even having done all of that, there was still time for a “I miss you too Mom.”
The Micro-D did take advantage of his hug to re-mark his territory by doing vampire bities on Mom just to make sure she remembered he was her kid. Less effort than the Jedi Mind Trick and also leaves a mark as a convenient reminder. And you can really see the similarities in hair color.
He did finally run out of energy in spite of all the pear and chicken nuggets. We guess those kilometres of crawling caught up with him.
So proto-school Day One was a success. We’ll see how the rest of the integration week goes but we aren’t worried because he was having fun and vampire bities ensure we’re going to come and bring him home at the end of the day.
Surprisingly enough, the Mom Unit wasn’t crying her eyes out at any point today. That was good, but then again, she got the waterworks out of her system at the orientation meetings.