Milestone | Overstuffed Overstuffed

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Milestone

The final bell at the elementary school rings at 3:30 pm.

I have a new vocal student scheduled for Fridays at 3:00 pm at my house. This means that while the lesson will be officially over at 3:30 pm, it won't be totally finished until around 3:35 pm.

Therefore, yesterday was the first day that Bria and Chloe walked home alone.

I've been preparing them for it all week long: Letting them walk ahead of me so I could watch their street crossing skills, leaving a little later to pick them up each day so they would be forced to meet me outside instead of at their classrooms, and constantly reminding them that Friday was the big day to walk home all by themselves.

Now, I may be making a bigger issue of it than I should since the school is less than two blocks away and I can see it perfectly from my front yard. But, they still have to cross two streets and I am a mom, so naturally, I worried about it.

There was no way I was going to just sit in the house and hope they made it home in one piece, so after my voice lesson left, Sophie and I went outside and waited (yes, her diaper is leaking!):
The first thing we saw when we came out was our little next door neighbor girl, who is in Chloe's Kindergarten class. She proudly announced to me that she had walked home alone. When I asked her if her mommy knew that she was walking home alone she said, "No. I'll just tell her....it'll be a surprise!"

Yikes.

She must have been super fast because my other neighbor who was supposed to have picked her up frantically drove up about 5 minutes later and we were still waiting (although now we could see Bria and Chloe coming):
Sophie was thrilled to see her big sisters, and the feeling was definitely mutual (you can also see in this picture how ridiculously close we live to the elementary school):
The schoolgirls who made it home safely:
Now I just need to decide if I'm going to let them do this every day, or only Fridays. What do you think?

16 comments :

  1. For whatever my opinion counts, just Fridays, it is always so good to go for a walk to pick up those beauties! But I bet it will increase, because they are becoming independant! Yay!

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  2. I think Fridays for a bit -- maybe each month as school goes on you can add another day -- til' you're up to 3 -- but I think it's fun that you pick them up -- and I'm sure you learn a lot on the walk home that you might not lean otherwise. :)

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  3. Look at those beautiful mountains. I miss that place. Your girls are so cute too.

    I would probably gradually let them walk home every day but not at first.

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  4. I know how hard it is to let them do that, but it helps them to feel more confident about things that they can do without you. I would probably let my kids do it once a week for a couple of weeks and then get up to twice and see how it goes. Kids love to feel all grown up.

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  5. What about meeting them halfway? Walk up a block - you'll be able to see them walk the whole time - and then accompany them on the way home.

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  6. I agree with Vicki, I love the mountains in the background. They are beautiful and I miss them too!

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  7. I too love the pictures of the mountains that I miss so much. Thanks for sharing. About the walking home... If you enjoy going to pick them up then keep it to Friday's only... or just start adding an extra day of walking home every couple weeks or so until they are doing it everyday. My kids enjoyed doing it all by themselves at a very young age, and while I missed it, it made it so I had more time to take care of other things. Do what you think is best for you and the kids. Take care!

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  8. I would probably keep it at just Friday. But I am a little over protective. I take my 1st grader to school (don't want her to be on the bus for 45 minutes). Then when she comes home the bus drops her off right in front of my house. (I still go out to get her. Yep, it is hard for me to even send her off to school. :o)

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  9. Wow, that is scary.. I won't even let my kids ride the bus, and they are 10 and 12. I guess it's time to let go, huh?

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  10. Your are a brave woman. I think I need to cut the cord with my so. I think you should see how it goes.

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  11. WOW! Good for the girls. The black tights makes me laugh because it is still so stinking hot here!!!!

    I think maybe just on Fridays for now, but I am super paranoid. Ellie walks to the car with a huge group of kids and it KILLS ME!

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  12. I guess I will go against everyone else and say that I totally think you should let them do it themselves from now on. I would. They are old enough and you live SO close. They've shown you they can do it, and do it safely, so I think letting them have that independence will boost their confidence.

    I'm NOT saying this about you, but I do think way too many parents helicopter over their kids every move which basically sends them the message that "you can't do this".

    If it makes you feel better, I think you and Chloe meeting them outside your house is a good tradition (and you can keep an eye on them if you are nervous). I still remember coming home off the bus in elementary school and my younger siblings and mom would be waiting on the porch for me. It just made me feel welcomed and happy to be home.

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  13. Sorry, I meant you and Sophie meeting them, not Chloe. :-)

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  14. This is one thing where you have to follow your own gut.

    Do what you FEEL is right.

    My kids walk to the bus stop, and home every day. But. They also walk with other children... we have about 15-20 kids that walk in the neighborhood. Safety in numbers....

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  15. Hehe. I don't think you're any different from most moms. I think it's hard for most moms to start letting go of their kids, especially if you're overly paranoid like me.

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  16. I'm so glad you captured all of that.

    I'm not sure what I would do, but growing up we always walked or rode our bikes to school without parental help (and our school was 1/2 a mile or more away).

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