Okay, I finally got a chance to edit the picture I included with the original post last Friday and take out a few of the specific details. I honestly never meant to post a picture with my exact location and such in it – I had just put the image there as a placeholder with the intention of photoshopping it before posting, but life got busy and we left on vacation and the post was auto-scheduled, so… oops.
At any rate, those of you who got the post via email now have it forever. Please don’t share it. 😉 Also, if you want to come visit, just shoot me an email! I promise I’m not scary and I truly love to do bloggy-friend meetups. We can always make that happen!
Back to my original post….
Believe it or not, one month from today Stella will be starting her first day of school! She will be 3 years, 8 months, and 23 days old at her first day of pre-k. Eek! You can’t start kindergarten until you’re 5 here, so she will actually do 2 years of pre-k before starting regular school. It’s $500/month 5 days a week and goes from 8am-3:25pm (and they release 1 hour early on Wednesdays).
Here’s my question – she is incredibly excited at the prospect of riding the school bus. We live 4.5 blocks from the elementary school, and they originally told me she would be the last stop in the morning. Well, the bus got re-routed so now she would have to get on at 7:18am (about 1.5 blocks from our front door) and then ride for 23 minutes in the morning. No, that’s not a crazy long time (I always rode over an hour when I was a kid!), but that means I would have to have the kids up and dressed and out the door to walk to the bus stop with her at 7:10am. That sounds awful, especially when they just finally started sleeping in until 7-7:30 and the thought of getting them ready by then in the winter is not great.
The alternative is me bringing Stella to the school on my way to work (about 7:55am). The Nanny gets to my house at 7:50 after dropping her kid off at the high school, so there’s no leaving earlier. School starts at 8am though, and I’m worried that would be cutting it too close and not give her enough time to settle into her morning routine at the school. If she rode the bus, she would be there at 7:41, so she’d have time to eat breakfast there if she wanted to or just run around the gymnasium with the kids until class started at 8:00. Thoughts? What would you do?
After school I’m not too worried about. She will have a 45 minute bus ride, and the Nanny will get her from the bus stop at 4:10pm and watch her with Harvey and my BFF’s daughter until I’m off work at 5:30. My one big concern is that Stella still routinely takes a 1.5-2 hour nap in the afternoons from 1-3. I have no idea how this will go for her to suddenly not get that nap time.
When did she get so old?! I can’t believe I’m thinking about school bus routes for my baby!
ETA – a few thoughts based on the initial comments on the last post.
- I actually chose the full day program for Stella. The school used to offer a half day program, but dropped it because none of the parents wanted to go that route. I know for us that decision was two-fold; 1) we couldn’t afford half day school + the half day of childcare that would be needed since Charlie and I don’t get home until 5:30, and 2) I went to full day 5 day a week pre-k myself as a 3 year old and it wasn’t a big deal, so the length of the day honestly isn’t concerning to me. Stella used to be at daycare from 7:45-5:30, and yes, it’s different than pre-k, but pre-k is still a ton of play-based learning, not sitting in a chair all day. I am truly excited about all of the socialization skills Stella will be learning and practicing in this environment.
- A few of you mentioned that pre-k kids still get quiet time, which for some reason I had totally forgotten. I asked a friend of mine with a 5 year old who just did 2 years of pre-k, and she said they get quiet time after lunch, and it’s up to the parent how long they let the kids sleep. Her daughter was a big napper like Stella at age 3, so they’d let her nap up to 2 hours per the Mom’s request. She said they are amazing teachers in there – her daughter actually wants to stay in pre-k instead of going to kindergarten this year because she loves them so much, which makes me happy to hear!
- It doesn’t work for the Nanny to get Harvey at the school for a few reasons. She drives a lifted jeep for jeeping on the weekends (yes, people do a lot of jeeping over mountain passes here – it’s not that crazy!) and the time and PITA factor involved with switching his car seat back and forth makes that totally crazy. It would be faster to just drive back to my house and drop Harvey off, which I suppose is an option. I also don’t want to buy a 5th car seat and she wouldn’t want it in her car all the time anyway. Also, she will be watching my BFFs newborn, and she will also need to be dropped off at my house at 7:50 on her Mom’s way to work, so that just wouldn’t work. I am wondering if it would be possible for her to somehow motivate her 16 year old to get out the door 5 minutes earlier though so she could be at my house at 7:45 consistently. Then I could drop Stella off quickly in the morning (which is also what her Nana will be doing the 1 day each week that she has the kids) and then she could ride the bus home. Hm… decisions decisions! Thanks for all of the ideas!