This fall, Palmer reached the age at church where he transitions from nursery childcare on Sunday mornings to "real" Sunday School with Bible stories, etc.
A few friends and I got suckered into teaching Palmer's class once a month.
Some tales from our fearless first Sunday of teaching...
1. Girls and boys are very different.
See these sweet angels coloring?
Now see the boys opting for a "biblical" wrestling match? Let's act like they were reenacting Jacob wrestling with an angel. Mmkay?
2. The worst of the kids were our own. I think the other kids were scared of us teachers. Meanwhile, my son went to time out. More than once. The other teacher's son was similarly "enthusiastic".
3. But, more importantly: I love our community at the church. Sunday School seemed to be the turning point for the community we've been building for Palmer over the last two years. Our class was filled with mostly kids from Palmer's playgroup and we saw a bunch of kids from Palmer's weekday classes. I love that we are already building a network for Palmer to grow within. It takes a village and I have come to love so many of the parents and children that will shape Palmer during his formative years.
No, calm down. I didn't get a two-year-old an iPhone. But, it's so funny to observe how this new generation is completely accustomed to having answers and photos at their fingertips.
What am I talking about?
Lately, Palmer has been using his imaginary iPhone as a way to tell me a story. For example, one night Palmer recounted a car accident we saw on the way to school about three days before. Then he held up his pretend phone and said, "Look, Mommy. See the ambulance? Look, right here."
And another day, Palmer wanted me to take him to the car wash (a very typical request). I told him it wasn't open right now. Again, he pulled out his imaginary phone and "looked" at it and said, "No, it says it's open right now."
Oh boy. This kid is getting kinda smart. I'm so in for it.
I took Palmer to the movies over the summer and we saw The Lorax. For those of you that haven't seen the movie, it's a pretty cute movie with a good message: don't cut the trees down or the keeper of the forest, the Lorax, will be sad/angry.
Well, this message has stuck with Palmer for weeks now. I can tell The Lorax is on his mind often because he regularly tells me, "we don't cut trees down or the Lorax will be sad."
But, Palmer doesn't always want to do the right thing and just as often, I find him doing this:
That's right. He's trying to cut the tree down.
This poor tree has a lot of bark damage at the moment:
Rick and I will ask him what he's doing and he'll proudly exclaim, "I cut the tree down!" So, the other day Rick told Palmer the Lorax was in the kitchen, needed to talk to Palmer, and wasn't happy. Palmer was so scared as he peered around the kitchen corner to confess to his actions. ha!
And earlier this week, I previewed the new Children's Garden at the Arboretum (which is fab, btw!). In an attempt to lure Palmer to the next stop on the garden tour, I told him, "Let's go see where the Lorax lives (aka the tree house)"
I thought Palmer would be thrilled to see the Lorax's home, but instead I've never seen Palmer more concerned as when he went up to the tree house. (Let's remember, this is not a timid child.)
Poor Jordan had to hold both Palmer and William's hands as they cautiously entered the tree.
See, Palmer. Having an inner conscience can be hard.
For the summer, I transformed the upstairs chalkboard into a Summer Bucket List.
How did we do?
I would say, we did pretty well. And special thanks to my budding resident artist for the "art" below the list.
One of my favorite list items was a visit to the Culinary Institute of America's (CIA) new Southwest campus in San Antonio.
I read a great book years ago called The Making of a Chef, where the culinary education of budding chefs was documented at the CIA in New York. When the school opened its Texas campus, I knew a visit was necessary.
Unfortunately, the culinary school was closed for the summer so the student-run restaurant and tours weren't available. But, we did get to visit the little cafe with pastries that were almost too beautiful to eat. Almost.
This is my second-cousin Hailey, who will always be known as my little flower girl. My own child may not look like me, but people always say that Hailey and I favor each other. Ironically, Hailey's mom is blonde and blue-eyed. ha!
I definitely want to plan a trip during the school year to get a complete tour of the inner-workings of America's future and brightest chefs (I know, I'm a nerd).