Slow Down, World. You’re Moving Too Fast For Mommy.

I have not slept well at all for the last month and I’ve been more jittery than usual during the day. (No, it isn’t from alcohol withdrawal due to my being pregnant! LOL.) It’s because I don’t deal very well with change and everything is changing at a pace I’m not comfortable with.

First, the end of summer vacation. It hasn’t been much of a vacation as our weather did not cooperate this year, but still. In about two weeks, my first-born baby is headed to kindergarten and my second-born baby will be in preschool each day. This means that for the first time since I actually held a “real” job (eleven years ago), I will be getting up at 6 a.m. each day to get us all ready for the long day ahead. Five days a week, every week, for the next nine months.

It’s not that I can’t get up early; it’s more that I like the freedom of taking our mornings nice and easy, choosing our pace and deciding how to spend the day. We’ve always had some obligation (Jazzercise, Eva’s preschool) but nothing we were absolutely compelled to do or for which we required permission to miss.

A few months ago, when our school district went to all-day, every day kindergarten, we balked. We started looking into private kindergartens and did a lot of research. In the end, we opted for public school as Eva was set to attend a very small, reputable, nearby, historic 1920s elementary kindergarten in our neighborhood. In addition, her best friend was attending the same school which thrilled Eva. We toured the school, met the kindergarten teachers, saw the cafeteria, met the librarian, and turned in all her paperwork.

Last week, I got a call notifying me that there had been a mistake and in fact, after all that, Eva was not actually attending that school!

As it turns out, our house is literally on the border between two schools and we are supposed to go to the other one. (If we lived in our neighbor’s house, we’d be at the first school.)

I started tossing and turning all night, wondering whether to transfer Eva to the school we thought we were going to or simply have her attend the school she’s supposed to. I made calls to each school and the district and decided it would not be worth the hassle to have her transfer. I’d have to renew the transfer every year in March and wait months to see if it was approved, so we’d never know until August each year where she was going to school. There would also be no guarantee she’d stay at the school throughout her elementary years or that Vincent would go with her to the same school next year or in years to come.

Way too much of a pain.

So, Eva’s going to the school she’s supposed to attend. What I like about the “new” school is that it is even smaller than the original one! It’s a tiny, even more historic (1904) old schoolhouse atop a hill just four streets over from the first school. Her kindergarten teacher is a gal I even know who is just a few years older than me. She was actually a teaching assistant in one of my college classes while she was getting her Master’s and I was getting my Bachelor’s.

In addition, her husband is a commercial fisherman and they have three daughters, making them a fishing family like us. I was even on the same salmon seine crew with her husband years ago on my dad’s boat up in Southeast Alaska!

I feel comfortable knowing Eva will be in the hands of someone I know personally and who understands our lifestyle and Daddy’s comings and goings. Between G’s rigorous fishing schedule and the impending arrival of a new baby in January, Eva has a big year ahead and I like that I won’t have to keep explaining  to someone  exactly the way we operate.

So, I’m filling out Eva’s kindergarten paperwork and assessment information, Vincent’s preschool paperwork, getting the kids to the doctor for appointments and vaccinations, and trying not to feel anxious about Wednesday September 7, when we find out if this new baby is a girl or a boy.

Oh, and did I mention I’m also trying to get used to the idea of selling my fun little Infiniti G 35x? That’s right. Eva, Vincent and I currently cruise all over town in my sporty car, but it will be too tight with three kids/carseats and a momma.

Bye bye, little car.

George and I have researched several seven-passenger SUVs, crossovers, and mini vans for the kids and me. We’ve looked at, test driven, and considered the Toyota Sequoia, Highlander, and Sienna, the Honda Odyssey and Pilot, the Acura MDX, the three-row Volvo, and the Ford Flex.

The good news right now is we are escaping town and my Mom’s Plan-It desk calendar for a week before the madness begins. We’re going to bunker in at the coast where we don’t have Internet or cell coverage. Hello to my parent’s beach house, my books, bacon and sourdough toast for breakfast, and wearing jammies all day. Can’t wait! :)

Here are a few pictures from the last month or two; as usual, the picture quality isn’t very good because my iPhone is a couple years old. The iPhone 5 is supposedly coming out in October so I’m still holding out for that version, as it comes with an 8 mega pixel camera and flash.

Eva with the map of Puget Sound she created at art camp.

Eva's map featured the Strait of Georgia, which we told her helped Daddy find his way home from Alaska! :)

My little pirates at our friend Danielle's pirate birthday party in July.

The scariest face painting I've seen in a while, courtesy of the farmer's market at the Village Green.

Bike helmets and jammies on a summer morning. What could be more fun?

Vincent's little John Deere 4th birthday party in July.


  1. Hi Jen! Change is hard. I am not good with it either! Just wanted to let you know that we got a new minivan last week (due to car problems with our Explorer, not another baby on the way!). We got a Sienna and it is really nice. There is a lot of room and Addy loves the automatic sliding side door. It was a tough transition for Tobin. Not as manly as our old car, but I really wanted one. Anyway, just thought I would tell you. Hope you are feeling better and that everything goes well for Eva’s first day of kindergarten! Katie

    • Katie, wow! Cool surprise. Thanks for leaving your comment! Change is hard. I’m glad you are loving the minivan. The Sienna made the top of our list over the Odyssey because of the AWD. That is critical around here, especially when G is gone and I’m driving around still in yucky weather. Plus, trips to Whistler and what not.

      But speaking of baby on the way…wasn’t this supposed to be Jill, foremost, and maybe you? Unless Jill has a secret I don’t know about, you guys better get to work. :)

      I meant to tell you the other week that you and Tobin were in one of my dreams one night. Then I woke up and went back to sleep, and you were still in it! Ha ha!

      As for feeling better, I’m not sick 21 hours a day anymore but it comes every couple of hours and I’m exhausted all the time. I get up to do like two things and then have to rest. Then I get up and do two more things and then rest. Lame! :)

  2. Jen, take comfort knowing you are not alone in your angst about the upcoming school year. I think most of us mothers of firsts headed off to school are wondering how it will all shake out. Probably by the time our youngest hit kindergarten it will be cause for the Hallelujah Chorus, but right now, these are some bittersweet days as the full impact of just how quickly our first-borns are growing up becomes more and more apparent.

    It sounds like the ‘new’ school just may turn out to be a perfect fit for Eva. I’m sorry you had to go on that roller coaster of emotions and decisions before arriving there, though. It will be great to have a teacher who understands from firsthand experience what life is like for children of a commercial fishing family.

    We LOVE our Sequoia! I am sad that you have to give up your sporty, beautiful car, but can wholeheartedly recommend the Sequoia as a fab replacement.

    I hope you have a rejuvenating trip to the beach! We sure do miss you guys!

    • We miss you all!! I have been meaning to sit down and write you an e-mail explaining the birthday weekend and general catching up. I haven’t been on FB much because I run out of energy so fast but I wanted you to know I think of you guys all the time and fully intend still on getting down there.

      You made me laugh when you said we’d likely be singing the Hallelujah Chorus by the time our youngest hit kindergarten. My plan for the last few years was to start working on an MFA once Vincent was in kindergarten, but now those plans will either be on hold or forgotten about for at least another five years.

      I remembered how much you love the Sequoia and made sure to look into that first. I was just watching the news this morning and I see all the commercials for the 2012 BMWs and Passats and Jettas, ah. G says “You’ll have another car someday, don’t worry.” Yeah, when I’m 55! :)

      But between three kids here and a large dog or two, we definitely want to be able to bring friends along, not to mention my niece, so we need the space.

      I’ll be back in touch about all the loose ends and plans to see you either here or there!! :)

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