Posts tagged school
Summer Banner Printable: Endless Summer Projects

I can hardly believe it! It's that time of year again?! Bring on the Endless Summer Projects! Jen, Alexandra, Melissa, Amy, and I have been working for months to put together a fun, creative collection of projects. Well, it wasn't all work...there was a fair amount of laughter, sharing, and good old-fashioned sarcasm thrown around to get us to today.

Over these next 15 Wednesdays, stretching us long into August, we'll be sharing some fabulous ways to spend time with your children this summer and soak up all the sun-kissed joy of summer!

Most of us are not yet into the official summer schedule. We have 19 days left of school (but who's counting, right?), and I'm always looking for memorable ways to celebrate the close of another year. Our typical tradition includes stopping by teacher's classrooms to thank them for a good year and enjoying a lunch out all together, since the last day is typically a half day.

Jen of Classic Play has a great printable banner ready for all of us to celebrate! Imagine the joy of your children breaking through the streamers as they run out for the bus or into the car.

Click on over to Classic Play to get the downloadable pdf and get it ready for your end-of-the-year party. I want to put one on our minivan and maybe one on their bedroom doorframe the morning of the last day.

What are your year-end traditions?

xoxo, MJ

P.S. I'm hosting next Wednesday's project, thanks to our friends at Wayfair. Grab a large canvas and some washi tape...


Surprise Memory for the School Year's End

Today I'm doing one of my favorite end-of-the-school-year gestures. It's a present I'll give to my children in ten to twelve years. Pat on the back for early prep on this, right?

As a teacher, I found the last week of school such a roller coaster of highs and lows - wanting to keep the children I'd grown to cherish, wishing them success with new role models and guides, ready to bust open the doors to summer relaxation.

Looking to find some way to capture the emotion of the final days of school, I searched the interwebs to express the bittersweet experience for my children.

What I found (and loved!) was this sweet idea from MaryLea. Do you all know her? If not, take a peek at the hundreds of art projects she has going over at Pink and Green Mama.

I asked my children's teachers (and their aides) to write notes on the interior pages of a loved book. From here to there from there to here, I'm a big-big Dr. Seuss fan so I purchased three copies of "Oh, the Places You'll Go." I was happily delighted with the amount of time each teacher spent, thinking about what my daughters and son will be like as high school seniors. Each educator highlighted particular gifts that my children had shared and wished them a generous journey ahead.

These words will mean so much in years to come as the distance from preschool snack time and recess grows.

So, go buy a great book for the child in your life. Send it and a very thankful note in a sealed, discrete envelope (or drop it off at the school office) a week or two before the school year ends. Volunteer to come back to receive the signed book the second-to-last day of school. And then tuck the book away in a special place until next year when the message gets added.

*The key here: not forgetting that special place from year to year.

Sending you and yours warm wishes for the endings ahead.

xoxo, MJ

Happy Kiddos: Carrying love

Did you check out the new seasonal digs around here? Make yourself at home in the refreshed autumn makeover (and if you haven't had a chance to make your bucket list for fall, let me offer a few ideas).

Wednesdays around Pars Caeli will continue to be kid focused. During the summer I shared some of the fun we have with Mommy & Daddy School. But now, we're a full three weeks into the start of the school year, and I'm feeling a little melancholy about the end of another childhood summer.

This is the second full week of preschool, Kindergarten, and 2nd grade for our team, and so far everything is running smoothly.

For the first time in almost 8 years, our home is silent for two mornings a week, as even my youngest heads to morning preschool, and my hubby and I adjust our work schedules to accommodate more meeting time in the office.

It's the end of an era when we as a couple handled all childcare, homecare, and professional juggles together. As I look back now, I wonder how we managed to work from home and the office and to change diapers and adjust sleep schedules. A large part of me already misses the chaos, strange though it was; I thrive on it. I know that we have been richly blessed to be able to have time with our children and time in our professional worlds, and it has not come without certain (sleep) sacrifices...I have the wrinkles to prove it.

However, new beautiful buds are growing. And I celebrate those, too. My husband surprised me at work with a morning coffee date last week. That NEVER happens. On a typical morning, we are usually trying to maximize and squeeze every possible minute out of one role (be it work or home) before we have to transition to the other.

And for another, M, my 7 year old, is most at home when she's at school. That seems weird to even type, but I know it to be true. She loves learning and independence. She thrives on routine and structure. She wants the challenge and adores her friends. She's back in her rhythm.

C at 5 is finding new courage and new friends in her full-time school journey. L at 2 in his first time in a school environment is so proud of himself and his buddies.

My need now is to let them know that they are each on my mind even when we are apart. I know they know, but I still need to some way to show that.

One gesture I've started is a lunch box note routine, especially with M. She gets a joke a day that she can share with her friends as they munge on their bagels and pizza slices. So far it's a hit. If you're into ridiculous, simple humor, follow me on Instagram or Twitter (@parscaeli) and I'll be sharing the chuckles for you (and your children) with the hashtag #lunchboxnotes. If you have a corny joke, send it my way...please!