Seven months. That’s how long it has been since all three of my biggest kids went to school. As in, physically went to their place of learning for the day.
Two weeks ago, kindergarten through second grade began their return to school, two days per week. That meant Alden got to finally begin his full-day kindergarten classes. The girls and I were still tethered to the house, logging them on and off all day for virtual learning. It’s amazing how much quieter the house is without Alden, though.
Today, they all three finally returned and we were all overjoyed about it. Yes, we worry about coronavirus still. Yes, we know it’s likely the schools may end up closed again (and soon if Idaho’s numbers continue their current trend). But for this one beautiful day we enjoyed the kids seeing their friends, interacting with their teachers face to face (okay, mask to mask), and just getting out of our house and interacting with humans outside our family for awhile.
For our part, Dinah and I were finally able to run errands and get boatloads of things done. I am a creature of comfort, who really doesn’t mind staying at home a lot of the time. What I do mind is feeling like I don’t have a choice in the matter. Since I didn’t have to sit with Alden through virtual kindergarten (a truly mind-numbing experience), or try to keep a two year old quiet while her siblings “attended” school (without the aid of TV because it turns out we have just exactly enough bandwidth for three zoom meetings and not so much as a quick email check more), or attend to the mind-boggling eleven different alarms on my phone each day to remind me when each kid needs to log back in (and for what)…well, without having to do all that, today was an amazingly relaxed and productive day! Before lunchtime, Dinah and I managed to get the three big kids to school, get dinner in the crock pot, do yoga together, get the oil changed on the van, drop off a bunch of donations at Goodwill, do a quick grocery store run, pick up a hold at the library, and do the week’s laundry (okay the laundry was all at least in the washer or dryer before lunch). It felt so good for my mental health to be able to get so many tangible things done.
The kids will continue to go to school two days a week for the next four weeks (assuming the schools don’t have to close again). Then, if everything is still going well, they’ll finally start back to five days a week in November (just before all the holiday breaks, of course). I’m looking forward to two days a week of being able to relax or run errands, and hopefully some time on the other days to spend outside enjoying Boise’s beautiful fall with the kids.
Let’s all just please wear masks and take precautions so it can all happen.