First day of School Photos

It has been tradition every year to take photos of my kids before the first day of school. I get up early …make them a big breakfast.

Usually, pancakes or waffles …their favorite.  Then I load them up in the car and drive them to their schools..and then take a picture of them in front of the signs.  The boys have always hated this…Jeri didn’t ever mind. Clarissa hates any attention drawn to her….so now I have no votes for yes.  So I gave in. Then the night before Cole asked if he could make breakfast for everyone. So I took their pictures at home after their first day of school.

I really wanted to say “no” that’s my job. But I didn’t. If he wants to give that gift to his brothers & sister than I should let him. After all I had it for many years. Pancakes is Cole’s specialty.  He makes them perfectly. He is also the kid that gets up early so he can have his own private time before school. I am the same way….I like to have some down time before my day starts..putting around in the quiet. He enjoys that time of day. Since he was going to be up early anyway..he might as well offer a service to his family.

Cole (9th) decided to forfeit football this year. He decided his grades were more important that football. He wasn’t sure how difficult high school would be..but he did see that Jeri, Bryce and Carl had a hard transition into high school and their grades suffered. He has maintained perfect grades and that is really important to him. I applaud him for that.  I feel that sports aren’t as important as grades. I think that to much emphasis has been put on my boys for that. Cole is always one of the best on his I know this was a difficult choice for him.  Rob is not taking this news well. (none of the boys are playing) I think it has made the transition this year quite easy..and I like it. I like the kids being home every day.   IMG_6292


Clarissa goes to a school at the edge of town…’s a few miles away. She needs to take the bus home. But she didn’t want to ask anyone which bus she needs to take. She likes routine and she doesn’t like change. Transition is really difficult for her and Carl. They both have social anxieties. Carl has Aspergers…( just like Rob) and I think Clarissa is just so used  to relying on all of us. So she and I are having some issues because I am making her stand on her own two feet. She called me to rescue her and pick her up…..I have always done this. But she is in the 5th longer a baby. She needs to ask for help and suffer the consequences if she doesn’t. So she waited for the buses to leave before calling me. I made her walk home.  It was hot and she had a heavy back water bottle. I felt bad. But I knew is she had to suffer that walk….she would ask for help the next day. She did. So this photo shows her hot & sweaty after that walk. She also refused to smile because she was mad at me. I hope this isn’t a sign of times to come this year. LOL

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Carl…..Good ole Carl. He is a 10th grader this year.  He messed up his hair for the photo on purpose. He’s the photo copy of his father and likes to ruffle my feathers…on purpose! Carl doesn’t transition well….but he knows he has to he suffers through it all. I think he’s handling it all well. He is getting better each year. It’s just hard to know what is going on all of the time…..until he has a melt down and then we have to talk him through it. I seriously wonder sometimes if he will ever be social enough to find a mate….but I have to leave that in God’s hands. I know he has a lot to offer someone..and I know he will be faithful to a fault.   He just needs to understand and know all of his own good qualities and not get wrapped up in his anxieties.   He and I have never really had a bad time of anything…..but recently the whole driving/stress/ thing has gotten us in a weird place. He and I don’t communicate the same way….(well if I am honest Carl & Rob have the same communication issues..and they aren’t like anyone else….and I still have to learn to navigate all of them. That only helps my relationship with them…because I am not sure I could ever teach them or tell them how they come off to others. We had a perfect family situation a few years ago. Rob was talking at the dinner table..he was upset because whatever he was saying was perceived by Bryce in a different  way….than how Rob meant it. Problem was that everyone else at the table perceived it the same way Bryce did. That was a big painful lesson in communication )   So when we are driving together and I get stressed…the things that come out of my mouth as directives..are foreign to him..and I am not calm enough to change my vocabulary and think through what I am saying….so I can make it understandable for him. So he has to drive with Rob who handles him in those stress situations better. I can talk him out of the other stress situations…but not when I am stressed myself..and worried about our safety. I just feel bad because I am home more so I can offer him more drive time. So I spend a lot of time with Bryce in the drivers seat and it doesn’t seem fair.But Carl is so sweet I don’t think he will hold it against me. IMG_6293

Then there is Bryce. He’s in 11th grade this year. He is in the stage of not really recognizing what he can and cannot handle. He is in drivers ed….which is early in the morning before school..and he wanted to do football as well.  All parents said No. ( although Rob’s was squishy..he would have let him) Landon & I both agree that Bryce can’t handle that much responsibility without grades suffering….Bryce doesn’t care about Grades much. He just wants to get by…which drives me bonkers! Bryce wants to be a teacher…so I can’t wait until he has a kid like him in his class. Then he will see wasted potential! LOL Bryce is coming into his own otherwise. Seriously…I didn’t know if we would make it through his rageful hormones….this was a good summer…and the longest he has been able to maintain his attitude & mouth. I think we are coming out the other side and that is a good feeling. He has a big heart…but his defense mechanism when he feels insecure is to  obliterate every one around him…and that’s not a good thing to do and live a good life. So I think by me sticking it out with him and not abandoning him ( when he gets like that) he is realizing that he is loved.  I hope that he start using his gifts for good. He can see through people and find their strengths and weaknesses….. I know he can go far in the kingdom with that skill. IMG_6295

Last but not least Preston. He is in 8th grade. I think this picture is the epitome of 8th grade. LOL He looks a bit immature..wearing his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle T-shirt, his Faux Hawk and  funny pose. This is the 8th grade. For sure! I don’t mind this stage honestly. I think it’s cute. I don’t like the stage after this with raging testosterone hormones…and insecurities about EVERYTHING. But I think we will make it through. He is going to be like Bryce…..and I have to admit that I want to hold my breath to get through all of it. But I know if I am faithful to them they will be great leaders. So I will stick with him through it all rather than running for the hills like my heart tells me too. LOL The only issue I am a bit scared about with him is his natural love for women. Good Grief! he never went through a stage of “hating” girls or thinking they had cooties. From the time he started daycare..he LOVED the Ladies. Most of my other boys use a little discretion…Preston. No. He’s so cute..I think that’s a problem. So I have to watch him like a hawk..especially if any girls are around.
Preston is also a star athlete and super student. It comes naturally to him. IMG_6294


So this is is the start of this school year for us…. 2013-2014. Another new chapter.



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