Saturday, September 12, 2015

Dear William (73 months)

Dear William,
Today you are 73 months old!

We had a pool party for you on the weekend after your birthday.

Birthday party boy

Third and final birthday cake

You had asked me to make you a solar system cake, and so here is what I came up with:

Your party got cut a little bit short because a thunderstorm moved in and the lifeguards had to close the pool down.  I was very proud of you for not complaining.

After your party, we only had a few days left before the school year started.  We tried to make the most of them.  I took you on a hike to Well Gulch Trail in Lory State Park.  Normally you don't like hiking, or anything that takes you away from your Legos, but you did seem kind of charged about this one.  It was a self guided nature trail.  We took one of the pamphlets from the trailhead, and we learned a lot as we followed along.

We met a frog (toad?) and we sat and watched him (her?) for almost 10 minutes.  You told me, "This is the best day ever."  And it was.

The very next day, you wanted to go back and do the hike all over again, in hopes of seeing our frog/toad friend.  Sadly, we did not, but you remained in good spirits.

Just before school started, the USA Pro Challenge Bike Race came through Fort Collins.  There were a lot of festivities going on because of that.  Some of us (your father) were more excited than others.

NoCo USA Pro Challenge Festival

A couple days before school, they had an Ice Cream Social, where they served Flavor-Ice instead of ice cream. You got to meet your teacher, and apparently you were supposed to bring in all your school supplies, except the invitation we got had said nothing about that.  All the other parents seemed to know, although I'm not sure how.  Did they get a different invitation than us?  And that pretty much sums up the education system.

Figuring out the new playground at the non-ice cream social.

And thus, you started first grade.

1st day of 1st grade

When you got home that first day, you had not eaten or drank anything all day ("There wasn't time," you said) and you looked for all the world like a person at mile 93 of a 100 mile race.  When I finally got you rehydrated and refueled enough to speak, you told me that you liked first grade and that you thought your teacher would be nice to you the whole year.  "First grade is so much better than kindergarten," you said.

You ride the bus this year, which is a big change.  It makes things very easy for me; I just walk you up to the corner and you get whisked away, and then at the end of the day, I meet you there again. I love the convenience for me, but I miss the way I used to pick you up at school and then you would play on the playground while I talked with the other moms.  They became my friends, and now I don't see them anymore.  Now you sit on a bus for 20 minutes both before and after school instead of running and playing.  That makes me sad.

You seem to like riding the bus though, so I'm trying not to get too worked up about it.  And before the school year started, your bus driver called me to introduce himself and give me information about the bus route (such as what time you were to be at the bus stop and where it was located).  I liked that a lot; it was very helpful.  He seems to be the one person in the education system who can communicate effectively.

One of the most exciting events of your life (and my life too, actually) happened this month.  We discovered the Northern Colorado Astronomical Society, and on Labor Day weekend, we joined them for a stargazing night out at Bobcat Ridge.  Several astronomers were there with huge telescopes that you could look through and see Saturn-- your favorite planet.  

You wore your astronaut suit.  Everybody there loved it. I think you may have finally found your people.
It was really quite amazing.  Saturn looked like, well... Saturn.  It was yellow and we could see the rings and everything.  Okay, it kind of looked like some sort of 1980's computer graphic.  It was small.  Not like the large, colorful pictures in Seymour Simon's Our Solar System.  But still, it was fantastic.  To be standing here on Earth.  Looking at Saturn.  And seeing its rings.

Blurry photo of Saturn
Daddy took a picture  of Saturn, with his camera way zoomed in.  It looked a lot clearer through the powerful telescopes that the astronomers brought.  But I feel like this image may be similar to what Galileo first saw when he described a celestial object that looked like it had ears.

On Labor Day weekend, you also humored your dad with a brief game of tennis (your dad loves to play tennis).

And we took a trip to Denver, where we did a group trail run with Emelie Forsberg. Some of us (ahem, your mother) were more excited about that than others.

Then, it was back to school.

Off to school

You finished off the month today, with your first ever soccer game. I was so proud of you. You have always been so shy and scared of things. But you did so well. You were not super aggressive, but you participated, you kicked the ball in the correct direction (some of the other players had trouble remembering which way to go), you did not cry when the other team scored a goal, and you did not lie down on the field during the game (as I saw you do in practice). You did get tired at one point, and you walked off the field and told your coach you needed to rest and have a drink. I thought, good for you. It was close to 90 degrees out. You need to listen to your body. You took care of yourself and then felt better, and you went back in for the fourth quarter.

Will's first soccer game

They didn't exactly keep score during the game, and there was plenty of lemonade. It was about as low-key as an organized sporting event can get. I don't know if soccer is necessarily your thing, but near as I can tell, you don't think its half bad.

Will's first soccer game

Will's first soccer game

Will's first soccer game

Will, I want you to know that going to first grade, going to a new school and making new friends, all that you have done this month has been extraordinarily brave. You are braver than I could ever be. You are the bravest kid I know, and I am so, so proud of you.

You inspire me.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

WOW! You have had a very busy month!! Staring a new school year in a new ( to you) school, and meeting all' new friends is huge!! we are soooo proud of you!! PLUS. also starting soccer ⚽️ too!!! We LOVED seeing all your adventures in the pictures!! Thank you for sharing your exciting life!! Seeing SATURN is totally amazing, so glad you impressed everyone with your very own space suit!!! how cool is that!!! sending you a big,hug and lots of love!! 😘 pawpaw and grama nan