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First Day, First Grade

She did it.first day of school photo frame

She started first grade.

In a whole new school. Making all new friends. With an all new (to her) teacher.

The old Princess Cupcake would have been a clingy, worried mess. We would have had a melt-down the evening before and nightmares to boot. For days.

Not this Princess Cupcake. This one woke up with a smile a mile wide and couldn’t wait to get going.

Seems it was only me who was worried. I’ve been worried about this day since the moment we signed the contract to build our house! The decision to leave the warm comfort of our private Christian school — where we’ve been for SIX YEARS — to go to our neighborhood STEM school that wasn’t even built yet, was EPIC.

Sometimes making parenting decisions are hard, but the hubs and I agreed, with the urging of my life-long academic scientist parents, that this was a great educational opportunity not to be missed. My greatest concern wasn’t whether she’d make friends or if the curriculum would be too hard, (that remains to be seen), it was taking God out of her classroom. I keep telling myself that while I can’t teach her new math, at least that’s something we can influence at home and at church.

As I reflect on the past 12 months, I can see a pattern developing.

Our difficult Kindergarten year was for the best. It allowed us to make the separation easier – and by the time her days were up, the Princess Cupcake had zero, I mean zero, regret leaving. She was all, “Peace out, homies.” Me on the other hand… totally different story.

Building our home was extremely easy so we never doubted the move to the new location, although I did hate the hour ++ drive each way to her old school in the interim. Can I just tell you how happy I was with the 5 minute round-trip commute today??? This is life changing, I tell you.

My instinct to get on the PTA board was purely enlightened because it allowed me and the Cupcake the privilege to help out behind the scenes with the school opening. So let’s be real, she feels like she owns it. She could probably give tours at this point.

By the luck of the draw, we were blessed with a wildly popular teacher who the Cupcake bonded with from the second they laid eyes on each other. Actually, I’ve never, ever, ever, I mean ever, seen her take to a new person as fast as she did with her new teacher. And what are we up to now, major blessing number four?

When we left the house this sunny morning, the Cupcake said, “Mommy. There’s something in our yard.” And pointed to the street.

chalked driveway first day of school

Our sweet neighbors had chalked the driveway with a brightly colored good luck message for her about the first day of school. And as we approached the school, the sea of families walking, golf-carting, and driving in was exciting. As commuters, we never had that same sense of community on the first day of school. It was like a holiday parade! We joined the crowd and walked down the block on even more chalk covered sidewalks decorated with rainbows and flowers and minions and encouraging words for the new year.

stem rocks

Their affirmations led all the way up to the front of the building.

prestwick stem academy

As we were ushered inside I realized that while I was so worried about taking God out of her classroom, I didn’t see that he was guiding us down the right path all along.

Happy back to school from me and the Princess Cupcake! I hope yours is filled with loads of blessings.


  1. Love your post! I’m having an internal debate already about private Christian school or public and our little guy is still kicking inside of me! Love how God confirmed your decision every step of the way. He is so awesome like that. Now, I just need to stop worry for the next 5 years.

    • Tammy – it’s sooooo hard! Parenting is hard! I wouldn’t change how we did it, and our plan is to put her back in private Christian when she gets hormones. 🙂 Or before if it doesn’t work out. The cool thing is, they’re so much more resilient about making new friends than grown ups are. I have to keep reminding myself of that!

  2. Wonderful blog!!!! So happy our little princess had a great experience and even happier to see your faith in action. Love you and your family.


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