Summer lasts a little longer here than in many states -- thanks to the tourism lobby, Wisconsin public schools cannot start till September 1 or after Labor Day, whichever comes first. So our first day is September 1. This is bigger news than usual, because it'll be Joy's first day of kindergarten!
We've never been sure how much Joy "gets" things that are coming in the future. It may start to feel more real when she gets a sneak-preview school visit next Tuesday. Rose, however, is a great anticipator. She's all excited to learn for sure at registration this evening who her 3rd-grade teacher will be (it should be the same one that she had for 2nd grade, but it isn't guaranteed).
She's also mighty excited that her little sister will be joining her at the elementary school in two weeks.
We talked about it in the car yesterday morning, after dropping Joy off at her daycare.
Rose is particularly pleased that the 3rd graders and the kindergarteners share lunch hour and recess. Joy's presence benefits her for lunches especially; we've been making Rose take her chances with the hot lunches, which she usually doesn't much care for but she knows that it's her own choice and if she doesn't eat, she'll just be hungry. With Joy, we can't ask that of her, nor can we inflict the consequences of a cranky-hungry Joy on her afternoon staff! So I'm going to make sack-lunches for Joy unless they have something awesome like pizza on the menu. Which means that Rose gets to carry her lunch too, because that would be just too unfair otherwise. Woohoo for little sisters!
We also imagined together a little bit about what recess will be like. Rose reflected that she usually comes out of the building together with several close friends, whom she named. But, she assured me, the first thing she'd do is go over and greet her sister, and make sure that her friends did so too.
Then she thought a bit... "I usually play foursquare and Joy won't do that so I might not play with her so much." I mentioned that one of the things Joy loves to do is swing on the tire swing, and that maybe they could start recess by swinging together. The tire swing is a highly desirable piece of equipment, and kids line up to take turns both riding and pushing. Rose mentioned that maybe she could line up and push when it was Joy's turn to ride. I countered that it might be nicer just at first if she'd be willing to help Joy stand in line and ride with her.
"Well, I do love Joy," she said. "So I'll do whatever."
You and me both, sweetheart. Whatever it takes.