Yesterday was Clara's second first day of preschool. Last year we did a preschool coop that was more like homeschooling with four other moms and kids from church. This year we are in another coop preschool but it is much larger with 24 kids in her class, 3 full-time teachers and a classroom and everything. The parents are required to work there two days at a time about once a month, so there are always 3 parents there in addition to the 3 teachers. It is also super convenient for us because it is just around the corner from our house so we can just walk there every day.
We visited the school late last spring when we found out we were on the waitlist and Clara has been talking about "her new school" ever since. A few weeks ago we made a countdown chain together so that she could tear off rings and see how close we were getting to her first day. She even took the last chain to bed with her the night before school started. Paul also gave her a father's blessing and she was very reverent while receiving it and as soon as she stood up Rose jumped off my lap and climbed into the place Clara had just vacated and indicated that she was ready for hers too.
Clara's first day went great - no tears or fears or anything. She went right in and joined the other kids and just had a wonderful time. If anybody had a hard time, it was Rose, who cried when we left Clara (although it could easily have been because she wanted to play with the preschool toys as much as not wanting to leave big sister behind).
She reported that they ate Star Wars crackers and she got to pour her own juice, played on swings, tricycles and with dress ups, sang songs, and did an art project. On the walk home she told me that she thought her teachers were very nice and she played with two little girls named Alanna and Indiana.
She took me to the arts & crafts area where we found her painting still drying. I'm impressed how Clara knows to look at the name tags to try to identify names start with "C" to see if she can find her own. She jumps the gun at "Cassidy" or "Christopher" until she is reminded or remembers to look for the next letter in her name, but she has got the idea in her mind about how to identify her project by her name rather than by what the project looked like. Oh, and incidentally, those white hair clips that Clara is wearing? She puts them in herself and is so proud that she can do her own hair now. I straighten it for her to clean up the ends a bit and part it, but then she wants to brush it and changes her clips in and out all day long switching between her favorite colors and trying to match her outfits.
We just can't believe what a beautiful, confident, fun little girl Clara is growing up to be. She has a great imagination and a sweet heart and is just so willing and eager to be helpful. We are so proud of her. I took her measurements this morning for the record and she is just short of 42" tall and weighs 35 1/2 pounds. I wasn't planning on school shopping for clothes for her, but as we have started to feel just the tiniest shift in temperature I went through her closet and realized that Clara doesn't have much cold weather attire that will fit her anymore. So when we were at the store the other day I mentioned getting her an outfit for the first day of school and oh man, was she thrilled about that idea. So she has a few new pair of leggings, shirts, cardigans, and dresses to wear and has been pleased as punch to get to cut the tags off and wear something new each day. We did a few photos at a park in another one of her school outfits before school began and the poses were all her own.