The tradition continues

I really do love traditions, and taking pictures of the kids getting off the bus every year on the first and last day of school is one of my faves.


New school, new bus, new bus stop friends…it’s all new this year.  Our new bus driver has some big shoes to fill because I pretty much think that our old bus driver, Mr. James, was the best bus driver in the world.  I’m sure our new one is a nice lady, but she’s going to be hard pressed to fill Mr. James’ shoes!


You’ll notice Logan’s hands going up.  He spotted me.  He’s such a little booger about the camera lately!  But sweet Camryn…she had a great first day.  So happy that she loved school.

first-day-bus-3_webYup, Logan wins the dirtbag award for bus pictures.  Oh well.  Like I always say to my kids, it is what it is.

first-day-bus-4_webConnor looks like he’s about to plow over that poor girl there.  His attitude was definitely better this afternoon than it had been in the morning.

first-day-bus-5_webYes, he’s running away from me.  Because he saw the camera.  Plus he had to get home and play outside.  That’s one of the things I love about the school year.  They all got home and wanted to play, play, play.


The other thing I love (well, besides to ability to complete a thought during the day, take care of piddly errands that I’ve put off for months, and actually keep the kitchen picked up for longer than 5 minutes) are the early bedtimes.  Camryn pouted off to bed during story time, and when I went in to tuck her in, she was out cold.  It was 7:25.  Oh, the bliss of school bed times!

They all had a great first day.  All three came home talking about a few kids they met.  I know they will make friends in no time, but the boys were worried about that.  It’s hard to go from a school where you know everyone to knowing no one!

We planned to ride the bus this morning, so I looked up the pick up time online, just be be sure we didn’t miss it.  7:29.  Perfect.  We’ll walk out the door at 7:25.  So imagine our surprise when we walked out the door and immediately heard the bus.  It’s not like it’s super far to the bus stop, but it’s probably 7 or 8 houses.  They all took off running, with me following as quickly as I could while holding a wiggly Sullivan.  Poor Camryn…she was running so hard, trying to catch the boys and the bus.  I can only imagine how panicked her face must have looked.  Thankfully, the driver waited for them, and I got there with just enough time to wave as the bus pulled away.  But nothing makes you feel like a good mom like having your 5 year old have to run to the bus on her very first morning ride.  Mom of the year, right here.  Note to self: the bus actually arrives at 7:27, and perhaps allowing a few extra minutes to actually get to the bus stop would be wise.  I’ll do better tomorrow (assuming that Camryn doesn’t arrive home traumatized by her morning run.)

first day=happy day/sad day

Don’t mistake my title for mixed emotions on my part.  The happy day is how I feel about it, and sad is a little more how the boys feel about it.  That’s how it always goes for us.  I love, love, love my kids.  But oh my word, by the end of summer, I am beyond ready for some routine and some space.  We all need a break from each other!  We had a great summer (and maybe one of these days I’ll blog about some of it.)  But today, I’m going to write about the first day of school because I haven’t missed blogging a first day of school since 2006.  That’s eight years of first days, which honestly makes me feel a little old.

First up, Connor, the big 5th grader.  Can’t believe that this is his last year of elementary school.  We moved this summer (need to post about that, too!), and even though it’s only about 10 minutes away from our old house, it’s a new city and new schools.


As you can see, he’s absolutely thrilled.  This is what I get pretty much every year from him.  Case and point: first day of kindergarten, 2008:

I love that boy, pouty lip and all.  He’s always had a hard time with transitions, and the first day of school is no exception.  In a few days (weeks?) it will all be good again.

Next up, my third grader.  Third grade always seems like a big jump to me.  All of the sudden, he’s in Big Kid territory.  He’s more than halfway done with elementary school.


And, my baby girl who is most definitely not a baby now that she’s a kindergartner.  I went back and forth and back and forth about sending her this year.  But, at the end of the day, I know she’s ready.  She’s so excited to go to school with the boys.



This will be the only year they all three go to the same school.


We were only running a few minutes later than planned, which I will count firmly as a win.  There was crazy first day of school traffic this morning!  Tomorrow they will start to ride the bus.  At their new school, they only give parents a free pass to walk to class for the first day.  They jump right into their regular year, which I definitely appreciate!


first-day-7_webFirst up in the drop off was Logan (simply because we passed by his classroom first.)  He walked right in, and even though I know he is nervous about starting a new school, I also know that Logan is one of the most likeable kids ever and he will make new friends in no time.


Connor didn’t want us to walk him to class this year, which made me a tiny bit sad, and I really thought about following him anyway.  But, I decided that this was one of those letting go moments.  He really is growing up, and this was one small way he wanted to exert his independence.  This was the only picture I could get of him as he walked away.  Big kid.


And finally, the big moment.  All through preschool Camryn had a bit of a hard time with the initial drop off/walking in part, but she did great today!


I could tell she was nervous and unsure of herself–where does my backpack go?  What about my lunchbox?  I assured her that Mrs. K would help her out with everything, and all she needed to do was sit at her desk and color.


She was all smiles (albeit, slightly nervous smiles…)  and I also like how her hair is already falling out of her side pony.  Can’t wait to see how it looks at the end of the day!


Derek isn’t always able to come with us on the first day of school, but this year he was able to.  I know Camryn loved that, and I loved catching this sweet moment as he gave her good-bye hugs.



So there you have it, the first day of what’s going to be a great year!

(I’ll have to blog again tomorrow to share the first bus pictures like I have for the past 5 years.)

Consider me slayed {Galveston Beach Photographer}

I’m really loving all my trips down to Galveston this summer! I honestly get a little giddy each and every time. I feel so blessed that I get to meet the kindest, cutest, most fun families.  I love my job!  This sweet family kept me on my toes with a two and a three year old, but truth be told, those are two of my very favorite ages to photograph, so I was in heaven with this crew!



Sweet big sister had the best beach hair, the cutest little smile, and such a sweet personality.


I love watching how different kids act at the beach.  Some run full speed ahead into the waves.  Some only want to stay where it’s dry and quiet.  Some love to play with me, and some love to explore and get lost in their own little world.  Miss H was an explorer, and I loved capturing her doing her favorite things at the beach.  Sometimes my favorite pictures from beach sessions end up being the ones where no one is looking at me.



Mr. J was in full-fledged toddler mode the entire time, which makes me so incredibly happy.  But even with the busiest of boys, I can usually get them to pause for a split second.  He slays me!


I mean, for real, he slays me!  Look at that smile!  I’m pretty sure that I said I wanted to take him home at the end of the session, which I quickly followed with an explanation that I’m not so much a kidnapper as I am a lover of a smiley, happy, busy two year old.


Thanks so much for the fun night, C family!