Back to School Night

In between diaper changes and Disney cartoons, we've been counting down the days until Miss Ava starts Kindergarten!  So many emotions for this Mom to handle this summer and ready or not a big change is here.  The first day of school for us is next week but tonight we got to attend a Back to School Open House at her new school.  
 A few weeks ago Ava and I had a little date at Target to pick out school supplies. I'm honestly not sure who was more excited about it, Ava or me?  I LOVE school shopping and always have.  I have so many fun memories of picking out my school stuff and I always loved organizing it all and getting it ready for the first day.  I have a feeling I am raising a mini-me when it comes to our love for supplies! 
 Ava's been showing everyone who comes over her new backpack (that lights up, ha!) and all of her supplies.  She is SO thrilled about school starting and we are very thankful.  Last year we (I) spent a lot of time worrying and pondering what this Fall would bring.  Where we should send her, who her teacher would be, what kind of kids would be in her many choices! 
 This is obviously our first go-round with all things school related and we are feeling like first time parents probably do.  We have lots of nerves for Ava's sake and yet we know the Lord has already gone before her and has plans for her that are His.  We do have a peace about the school she's attending and we feel like we have a new responsibility and opportunity to be a blessing there and to shine a light for Jesus' name and fame.  We are in new territory and on new ground but we know He will faithfully lead us through this school year as we shepherd and prepare our girl for what we can't see.  
 Today she and I sat down together and labeled her supplies and talked a little bit about how she's feeling about all this.  I told her I clearly remember my Mom writing my name on all of my school stuff when I was younger.  I remember being in school and studying the way my Mom wrote my name.  I always loved her handwriting and I loved the way my name looked in her script.  To see her writing made me feel like she was a little closer to me during the day because I thought about her every time I saw my name in her handwriting.  I can still see a particular folder from second grade, it was light blue with a hawaiian floral print all over it and she wrote my name in the upper right corner.  The way that she wrote it was so beautiful to me, I LOVED that folder because of it!  I think maybe that was a sign that I would go on to love design and all things artistic if I got that much out of a labeled folder, ha ha!  
Anyway, it was very surreal to be labeling my own daughter's supplies.  
I hope she thinks of me too while she's sitting in her class! 
It always cracks me up to see how big backpacks are on little ones!  I know by the end of the year this won't seem so huge anymore however.  I had high hopes of talking Ava into a sweet, monogrammed backpack but as soon as she saw glitter and lights and princess sophia, she was sold and wanted nothing else!  I always said (before I had kids) that I wouldn't be that Mom who put her kids in "character" clothes and accessories, I always thought that stuff was so tacky.  So now here I am, all these years later and of course I'm now doing exactly that!  What I didn't know then is that your heart can't say no to the things your child loves!  Whatever brings her joy, brings me joy too and in this case, a princess sophia backpack it is.  
 Trav came home from work for a little bit to meet us and walk to the school for their back to school open house.  I love that we are able to walk to her school!  I look forward to that option with all three of them when the weather is nice, I'm hoping it inspires me to keep walking and get some good exercise in each day too.  Fingers crossed :) 
We ran into a friend from Church right away and got this sweet picture before we went into Ava's classroom.
We found her little frog and she was so excited to check it all out!
 At this point she was telling me, "Mom!  I want to go in now!!"  I was determined to take pictures tonight so the pressure is off next week when she really goes to school and when I'm likely to be holding back tears  :) 
In front of her little classroom locker, ha ha!!  She has a locker!!
And with her sweet teacher!  We just had a few minutes to chat with her but we all agreed she was so nice and very excited to greet all of her new students.  Ava was at ease right away talking to her and I couldn't help but thank the Lord for a sweet, warm teacher to start this journey.  I asked Ava tonight at bedtime what she thought and she said, "I really like her Mom, she was so nice!"  And then Carter chimed in and said, "I liked that she was so nice to me too!"  Ha!  We are even more excited about the school year now that we know who will be teaching our girl and after we got to say hello to some of her cute classmates.  It's going to be a fun year!!  

It's a big week for our family!  We have a few more days together and then we start a brand new chapter.  I swear I only blinked and now here we are, but I am so grateful that the Lord has given us a peace about Ava's future and that no matter what we do or don't do, He's in control of her life and He has a plan that far exceeds our own.  She's a big girl now!  I love it and I hate it all at once.  
Good thing I've got two busy boys at home to keep me distracted  :)  
Look out Kindergarten, here she comes!!  

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