SUMMER: Changing Pace!

Nehemiah’s last day of school was June 6. Of course, the week leading up to the last day was Spirit week where I gave him 2 haircuts (including a huge mohawk), he had 2 costumes, awards night/graduation, and a field trip to Chuck E Cheese for his end of school party. Spirit week is designed to make parents happy that school is out through utter exhaustion while we marvel at these creatures of wonder and mystery: teachers.

This is the first year since he has been at Veritas that I have been able to attend the awards night/potluck/graduation. The past two years I was too fatigued to endure that many people in the evening after spirit week. This year we stayed through most of the 4-8th grade awards and graduation. It was very important to Nehemiah to see his 8th grade friends graduate. The little kids get assigned to a middle school kid to do devotions with them and the older kids serve the younger by helping with recess. So, Nehemiah actually knows the big kids and most have made a big impression with him. This is something I love about Veritas- the older kids pouring into the little kids.

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Nehemiah’s 1st grade class and teacher.

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After school was out, I was able to write and finish my grant with him home with me provided he gets out for a few hours a day. Now that summer is here, I am taking lots of time off and working from home and we are going through a list of things we wanted to do, but with me working full-time and him at school haven’t been able to do yet. We hosted a play date with a friend from school, visited a park in Boston that we drive by on the esplanade, and are trying to visit every MA Audubon site around us. We are members and can visit for free. At some point I realized that I would rather visit various MA Audubon places instead of Boston’s array of museums geared towards kids as I enjoy it so much more and I haven’t encountered any screaming temper tantrums yet at Audubon locations.

Nehemiah is at a really fun age where he is becoming more independent and helping out around the house, but still is very into imaginative play and still has plenty of “whacky”. Several times a day I bust out laughing at something he says! He is a very fun hiking buddy and is game for anything that involves leaving the house. 🙂

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Under the Longfellow Bridge, which is under major renovation. Some day all of the bridges over the Charles may be open at the same time… some day…..

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This is possibly the coolest playground in Boston- under the Authur Fielder Bridge.

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Habitat in Belmont, MA- it has a few miles of hiking trails behind an English style home and garden.

 

My slugger

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Every kid has a knack for something. My nephew, Micah, is a detail and fact person. Not only does he remember what he bought his cousin for Christmas 3 months ago, he remembers to keep it a secret. Nehemiah can’t keep secrets, but it’s OK because he doesn’t remember enough facts to divulge secrets. My niece, Hannah, is teaching herself to read at age 4 and I am sure she will surpass Nehemiah’s reading ability within the next 6 months. He is 7. My kid’s particular knack is gross motor control and coordination. He learned to walk at age 1 as normal, started running a week later, and was climbing stuff at 18 months. When at a playground parents seem to hover anxiously glancing at me in concern that he is about to fall off a piece of playground equipment, but I know that he. just. does. not. fall. He had a balance bike at age 2 and taught himself to ride a bike at age 3 without training wheels refusing to let me help.

Of course we play around and he is always busy doing something, but it seems like every sport there’s a pattern. At kindergarten soccer league, we show up and Nehemiah scores half the points and dominates the game. Parents asked me if I have been playing with him, coaching him, what other leagues he has been in. I assure them that other than kicking the ball around with friends, we have not. This is just what he does. He is coordinated beyond his years. We show up to rookie baseball- the league above t ball. I wasn’t organized enough to get him into the t-ball league last spring. He plays baseball with the neighborhood kids, I think we’ve played catch a few times, but he shows up, has a swing like he’s in the MLB and hits into the outfield every. single. time. Parents gasp. The other 7 year olds back up when he goes up to hit. Coaches warn the kids to stay alert.

I have to say it is fun to watch. It also scares me. Our culture is obsessed with sports. It’s what’s cool in school- football will always trump math club. Though we pay professional sports players ridiculous amounts of money, 98% of people will be employed doing the tasks that are not cool in school. There are plenty of parents who are drilling their kids, forcing them into repetitive tasks too early in their development, thinking they are going to be the next Tiger Woods. I also don’t know if this ability of his is just normal physical development on an abbreviated pace. I’m already starting to prepare him that he may have great ability now, but this may all even out by high school. What I don’t want is sports to be the focus of his life and that will be no easy challenge. Unlike most of the toddlers at his daycare and pre-school classmates, I didn’t have him signed up for activities outside of school. It was easy to opt out of activities when he was oblivious. I am now allowing him to do one spring sport and one fall sport. Limitations will harder as he gets older. In the mean time, it’s his God-given ability and it’s fun!