September 2010, the first day of 4th and 1st grade.  

June 2011.   End of 4th and 1st grade. 

I look at these two pictures taken nine months apart and see tremendous growth in my children.   Not only physically have they grown up, but they have made huge accomplishments this year.  

E, by recommendation from his teacher, explored different genres of books and actually (to his surprise) enjoyed some of the books that he read this year.    He also completed his commitment to the crossing patrol even in the middle of winter with the sub-zero wind chills, and has put his name in to be a patrol captain for next year.   With perfect attendance, E navigated the waters of friendship ups and downs, learning what makes good friends and deciding when someone was not a good influence in his life.   His teacher, along with Mom and Dad, saw the potential in him, challenged him, and he held up to the challenge.   He played flag football and master diving in swimming lessons.  I could not be more proud of my "little man" than I am today. 

Addy stepped into going to school all day without a hitch.   She loved being at school all day and the ability to eat lunch at school.   She made some new friends and worked through some of the difficult situations of playground happenings well.   Her attitude towards homework and reading were stellar this year and it shows in her improvement to a third grade reading level and as her teacher said to me last week, "a head for numbers."  Addy's handwriting is excellent and she even challenged herself to learn cursive even though according to E, "you don't even learn it until the end of 2nd grade."  In swimming lessons she greatly improved from being afraid to put her head under water to swimming in the deep in without a life jacket.  Addy is motivated and pushes herself to learn, I am so proud of her and what she has accomplished in nine months. 

Both of the kids have done well this year with my work schedules as it created changes in their lives too.   I was not as free to help at the school in their classrooms as I have been in the past.   I have missed a lot of the end of year activities and field trips, which is the first year that has happened.   With positive attitudes and understanding, they have been troopers through the year of transition for our family.   I am so thankful for them and cherish them.   They are great kids and becoming great friends. 

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