Turning over new leaves

As we near the end of September, (I’m scared to say this out loud but) I think we’re settling into an easier year all around. Some days we go wake up the fam and they’re already dressed and ready to go get brekkie started. (It feels miraculous – I’m not gonna lie.) The kids are adjusting to their new grades and schools, homework is less of a battle, we have kids who can read the chore chart, I’m settling in at work, and we’ve hit a routine at home that we can sustain until our next au pair arrives.

For the first time, the kids are asking for jack o lantern carving. Can’t wait! And can’t wait to show them home roasted pumpkin seeds either. As we describe our fall and winter to new Au Pair Katherine (Brazilian and has never seen snow!), the kids are charging their own enthusiasm for everything that’s coming: snowmen, sledding, cozy days by the fire as the wind howls outside, Thanksgiving and Christmas, and fun outside with friends.

The beauty of toddler magic relies upon everything being new. As the kids grow up, the new magic is anticipating favorites throughout the seasons, planning new adventures based on what they observe elsewhere, and moving into the napless era when we suddenly gain many hours in our weekend. At every age, I wonder how the next can compete with the fun we’re having – but multiple people tell me that 7-12 is one of their favorite age windows.

So it’s not just the leaves that are turning. We’re turning to the kids for input, and the kids are turning into more responsible beings. And as the season shifts, we’re moving into sweaters and S’mores, cuddling by fires and stomping through piles of leaves; at least the kids are learning to rake them up themselves for better effect!