Our summer of change, 2018, is officially over. The girls went back to school today. M begins her final year at St. P’s as an 8th grader,[1] C in 6th, L in 4th. The last time all three girls will ever be in the same school building. I think they were relatively excited to go back. M and C were up and dressed before my alarm went off, which was nice. I imagine next week I’ll be shaking them awake again.

Our commute to school is about half what it used to be, but the girls’ mental clocks were still on Carmel time apparently. At 7:25, the time we normally left the old house, they all trooped out and hopped in the car. I had to call them back in, reminding them we didn’t have to leave so early and that we still had to take pictures.

When we got to school, they all turned right as they are all in the same hallway. I said goodbye and turned left to the PTO welcome back coffee for an hour or so of socializing with parents.

Last school year got off to a weird start for me. Right when school began was when we began updating the girls’ bathroom. For six weeks I had to hang around the house most days letting people in and out. In a brand new house…nothing has changed. Today I had to get back to let an electrician in to do some work and wait for a furniture delivery. Tomorrow I’ll likely have a carpenter in the house and his work will stretch into next week. Fortunately these little projects should be done fairly soon.

How was this summer? It was certainly a momentous summer, moving into a new house. I think, though, from the girls’ perspectives it was kind of a bummer summer. Although there was a lot of excitement with buying a new house, getting lots of new furniture, etc., this whole process has dominated my time. I know we didn’t do as much cool stuff as we’ve done in past summers. We never even got around to making a summer To Do list. On top of that, we took the lake house out of the equation. There have been a few emotional moments from the girls about all the changes.

That’s the thing: as a kid you can’t appreciate how some short-term pain will make for a better future. The new house allows us a lot of new opportunities here. We can host friends a lot easier than we used to, for example. Losing the lake house means we can take more trips. I think in a few years when they look back they’ll see that this summer was a momentary lapse that set up more fun stuff down the road. But if you forced them to be honest, they would all likely curse us right now.

I mentioned in my post Monday that we went to a neighborhood gathering on Sunday. The folks across the street invited some of their favorite people from our area over to allow us all to get to know each other. It was a nice gathering. Most of the families were older than us. Two were younger. No one was right in our age range. There was only one kid L’s age, the rest were all younger. But we’ve met some families from further down the block that have older kids the girls will hopefully get to know eventually.

Our host decided to play a game of neighborhood trivia, which was a lot of fun even if we could only guess at most of the questions. We learned our neighborhood was first plotted out in the 1930s – our hosts’ home was built in 1889. We learned that way back, the property our home sits on was owned by a golf pro and he had a several holes laid out over the acres he owned. L thought that was pretty cool. We also learned that our “neighborhood” used to just go back about five or six houses beyond ours. The rest was farmland until the 1990s, when the street was extended and a larger neighborhood was built behind us. We wondered why our street was so narrow and lacked sidewalks and then suddenly got broader, added sidewalks, and the homes looked newer than the others on our street. There’s also a fellow native Kansan on our street. It’s good to know some names and faces for when folks walk or drive by.

  1. Her first day of kindergarten there was exactly nine years ago today.  ↩