10 months and 2 days ago, we arrived in Stuarts Draft. It almost feels like 10 years so much has happened.
Yesterday was the last day of school and we had McKinley's (late) birthday party at a local pool. The whole evening I kept watching her and being amazed. 10 months ago she didn't know a soul here, and yet there they were - 7 kids (most of whom I met for the first time yesterday) showed up to celebrate my girl. They ran and jumped and splashed and gave each other scores for who made the biggest splash when they leaped off the high dive. They ate pizza and played freeze tag and football. They gave my kid sweet gifts, friendship bracelets and notes that said, "you're a great friend!" and "I'm glad you moved here!" So simple, but so big in my heart.
Today Kennedy will head to the school one last time for the year to board the bus with the rest of the band to go and play for the high school graduation. Last night, half way through the birthday party, Nic went to get the pizza and dropped her off at the theater to see a movie with a friend. She has been to homecoming, prom, Disney! She has passed every test she needed to and is set to begin the fall as a senior, taking a dual enrollment comp class and will graduate in one short year with an advanced diploma.
Reagan. Brand new studio with wonderful opportunities and GREAT people. I will admit, I was worried about her adjusting to a new "dance world" because it's not always a friendly place. I could have saved those fears. This studio is full of the most welcoming people and she fit right into the advanced class seamlessly. She took on her freshman year of high school like a champ, passed everything and was even recommended to honors English.
Carter will soon sign up to play football. He has a group of friends who act just like 10 year old boys. :) They run and jump and laugh and call each other "dude." They play Madden and eat junk food and fall asleep in their clothes on my basement floor. They get one more year of elementary school together and then they will be ready to take on the middle school.
Pierce was scared 10 months ago when school started. We battled tears every morning. Yesterday, he hopped out of the car waving goodbye like an afterthought and calling out hellos to other kids headed into the building. He's had friends over, gone to birthday parties and is now talking to me about who he hopes he has in his classroom next year and which 2nd grade teacher he hopes he gets.
Nic and I have met so many wonderful people, I was surprised by a job that is a perfect fit for me now that the kids are all in school. We have a great church. We have almost conquered the algae in our pool. ;)
Life is not perfect (is it ever??), but I am overwhelmed with gratitude for this place and this new season in our lives.
God bless you all, dear friends. I hope this is the best summer you've ever had. :)