The Last Playdate

After months of agonizing about school — no-to-preschool, yes-to-preschool, crap-where’s-the-application-preschool — Boo finally starts at the local co-op nursery school on Monday. I’m full of that same excited-yet-anxious feeling I got before my first day at a new school. I know that a new chapter begins just a couple of days from now, but I’m not sure yet if it’s going to be a horror story or a family comedy. (Or a soap opera, for that matter — maybe Boo’s evil twin will return from plastic surgery in Barbados and take over the family business.)

Claudia-in-jacket

The Blueberry, for her part, is pretty excited that Boo is going to school. (Photo by Mike.)

I’m actually a little emotional to write this: today was the last day of the last unstructured week I’ll be spending with Boo for many months. I shouldn’t be melodramatic: Nursery school only runs half of three days a week, and I know we have plenty of excursions in our future. And, for that matter, preschool doesn’t have an attendance requirement: we can ditch if we really feel like hiking the Bay Trail.

Like today, for example: we went over to the local granola outdoorsy museum with Emmeline. It’s one of those free-form places that our girls go nuts for. Today they focused on a bunch of branches that had been pruned off an invasive plant and then just left in piles for the kids to play with. Brilliant!

Hit tree with branch. Make pile of branches. Give branch to friend. Build nest. Sweep woodchips with branch.

Call me crazy, but that kind of play is so per-frikkin’-fect that it makes me teary. Great day.

So great, in fact, that now I can’t shake that I-can’t-believe-school-starts-Monday feeling. Even though I’m sure school will be just as much an adventure in different ways, and also that my little Blueberry sure deserves some solo outings of her own, my excitement is tempered by just a little touch of melancholy: the big girl and I are coming to the end of our free-form excursion era.