First Day of School.

Well, we made it through the first week of school.   I admit, I went into it kicking and screaming, but once it started, I have to say I’m glad to see the new school year begin.  While I hate the structure and early morning schedule, it is nice to have a somewhat predictable routine again.


With the beginning of the school year comes a lot of new things:  new teachers, new classmates, new books, new friends, etc. 


New shoes….



1st day of 5th 033 copy


It really is all very exciting!


And, my youngest offspring, while sad to see the summer end, was looking forward to being one of the top dogs in school.  (His grade level is the highest the school goes, so he and his classmates are the “big man on campus,” so to speak.)  


He’s in 5th grade.  Which, to be perfectly honest,  just does not seem right.  First of all, I’m sure that I am not nearly old enough for my youngest to be a 5th grader, much less to also have a Sophomore in high school….  (Where is the time going??!)  


I can remember both my boys toddling about, saying cute things like, “porpus” for school bus, “lellow” for yellow, and “I don’t matter” with the intended meaning of, “I don’t care” or “It doesn’t matter.” 


My bambino, as a toddler, found great joy in jumping on bubble wrap, beating on his older brother who would cry and never hit back and eating just about anything placed in front of him.  


He’s imaginative, chatty, creative, charming and funny.  He’s a chip off the old block.  


He’s my BoyWonder.



Benjamin as Robin from Teen Titans, Spring '05 copy



There’s no way that kid can already be a 5th grader.


Although, I will say, the wee one, who is actually freakishly tall for his age, smells like a 5th grader.  And, he talks like a 5th grader.  And, when the comparison is made to his older brother at this age, he also apparently acts like a 5th grader. 


So, I guess it’s true.  My baby has one last year in elementary before moving into intermediate school.  (They don’t call it junior high anymore.) 


One last year of naivete, of innocence.



Benjamin's buzz!  (May '06--7 yrs old) copy


God love it.  Can you stand it?!?!  Why can’t we keep them there?  Right there.  Forever.  Snaggle-toothed and unaware.


(One moment please….I need to wipe the tears and snot from my face…the computer’s keyboard is getting a little slick, as well.)


5th grade brings about other new things, like deodrant and the sudden public distaste for anything Disney Channel related. 


It also brings independence.   It’s the beginning of moving, slowly, away from mom and dad.  The reliance on us begins to wane and weaken, just a bit.


That morning, I heard the plea to ride his bike to school, with his friends.  He and the boys did not want to ride the school bus, nor did they want their mommas to drop them off.   The argument was that they are old enough, now.  They are big boys.  They can handle it.  They would be extra careful.  They promise.



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So, with that, my neighborhood mom-friends congregated at the corner, wearing pajamas, little-to-no makeup, and fake, excited grins, all the while whispering heart-felt prayers to God for protection over our baby boys who are growing up excedingly too fast.



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The boys patiently posed while we snapped the obligatory first day picture.  We told them we loved them.  We told them we were proud to be their moms.  Told them to be careful, to behave in school, to mind their manners, to not pick their noses in public.  


Then, we watched them ride off into the sunset.



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Wait.  It was more like the sunrise.  (I hadn’t had my coffee yet, so in my mind it could have easily been sunset.)  All I know is, it was early after a summer of lazy mornings.



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Bye, guys.  Have a great day!  Love you!  Look both ways before crossing the streets!!!   Please stop growing up!!!!


The new school year has begun.  


And so the process of letting go continues….





  1. Angela Martinez

    Isn’t it amazing how fast they grow? Not to make you feel any older or anything, but our second to youngest is also a 5th grader this year! Wasn’t Mark about the same age when y’all first met him? lol Time flies!

  2. Scott F.

    I’m proud of moms who can bring themselves to allow their little men to exercise independence. Riding my bike to school was a crucial step to accepting responsibility for my decisions. I’m sure it’s the same with your guys…
    You point them in the right direction knowing they can pedal, brake, and steer; but it’s up to them to focus on the objective and decide which to do when. I pray you celebrate the process as well as the accomplishment.
    BTW, E – Your blog ROCKS!

  3. Elizabeth Simmons

    Actually, Mark was in high school when we met. But, I still can’t believe y’all have a 5th grader, too!! And, yes, it does make me feel old, but that’s okay. I am old.
    I’ve seen your beautiful family and I have no doubt you and Mark are raising incredible kids!
    Thanks for stopping by!

    Why is there no way to stop the clocks? (We need to talk more in person, btw!!) 🙂

    Thanks for the comments/compliments. You rock, too, my friend!

  4. Bev

    Would that also be one of the big brothers offering escort so the mom’s would feel better?

    You’re braver than I was when I had a 5th grader!

  5. Tammie

    It is so nice to be able to view your wonderful photos and see how big your boys are.

    This year, as everyone before it, was hard. Andrew is a Jr., my Cameron is a Freshman, and boy does that one hurt! Kennedy Grace is in the 3rd grade, and my heart is breaking that my wonderful babies are growing up to be, with God’s grace, wonderful “not so babies”.

    Love the blog.

    Take care,

  6. Jamie

    Oh Girl love this blog!! You are so cute.

    Ok enjoy that 5th grade year for it goes way too fast.

    Oh by the way this was first time on here and so I don’t know if I am supposed to comment on other stories in a different spot but I know where you got that lemon cake idea. I too made a lemon cake after Beverly’s lemon drop cupcakes. Although could not find the lemon drops.

    Saw you on the field Friday night at the game too. Could not get your attention your were way too into your job. You looked so professional. YOU GO GIRL!!

    • Elizabeth Simmons

      Thanks, Jamie! I thought you might get a kick out of my silly little blog… And, yes!! I did get inspired to make the lemon cake after being at Beverly’s! Mine was no where near as tasty, though…. I’m sad I missed you Friday night! I’ll do better, next time, of seeking you out. (I’ll miss this week’s game, unfortunately, but will be back the next week.) Hope you have a super week! Hugs, E.

  7. Heather

    Every time I turn around these kids in the neighborhood keep getting bigger and bigger! Maybe if I stop turning around they will stop growing..hey it’s worth a try!

    By the way I added your blogs to my links. I hope you don’t mind.

    • Elizabeth Simmons

      Hey, Heather! I think it’s so funny that we are talking more via the computer than face to face!! 🙂 I’ll try to do better about that.

      I’m flattered that you’ve added the links! I’m hoping I can have enough to say to keep the blogs going, or worth reading!

      By the way, I apologize for the trillion cars on Sunday…. we will pare that down to a managable number, I promise. (I may have to have people park in the back, like the partiers used to do! 😉 With that, you and Jim and the girls are ALWAYS welcome to drop by on Sunday evenings for dinner. The door is always open. If you’re interested in the goings-on, just ask and I’ll fill you in. (We’re hoping to eventually get it to where it’s just neighbors who can walk over, and not have people having to drive….) Of course, as soon as I offer for you to join us, please know that we won’t be having folks over this Sunday.

      Cameron and I will be out of town Wed through Sunday. The boys are staying here, with Kyle–the young man who is living with us–until Friday. Then, the boys will go to friends houses for the weekend. But, they all may be in and out. Plus, I’ll be finding someone, if Kyle doesn’t stay through the weekend, to feed Bear and let him out while we’re gone. So, there will people in and out of the house, but if you see something odd, don’t hesitate to call me on my cell phone. 281-468-3002 Thanks!

      Okay. Off to pack and get my ducks in a row. Have a great week! E.

      P.S. I’ve been meaning to ask, how did you find my blog?! I’m so glad you did!

      • Heather

        Thanks for the open invite and don’t ever worry about the parking!
        I actually found your blog via FaceBook. Your photography link came up in my suggestion box on the sidebar.

      • Elizabeth Simmons

        well, now, isn’t that nifty?! I didn’t know the link would do that!! How exciting! E.

  8. Robin

    SO sweet. Holly will be a 5th grader next year, Mariama 4th….. and I really can’t wrap my mind around that. or that my niece is a 7th grader.. I just keep looking at Grace and saying stay little.. stay little..

    I hope I get to see you!!!



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