Zach had his preschool graduation last night. The kids have been practicing the songs for this program for quite some time, and we were not disappointed. I tried to get some video but I don't suspect any of it is very good. First of all, we weren't really all that close to the front. Mike's parents got to the church at 6:20 (graduation started at 7:15), and the closest seats they could get were about 8-10 rows back. Thank goodness they got there when they did, or we would have not seen anything at all (we weren't as early as we wanted to be). So maybe later I'll look at the video and post something if it's good, but I kind of doubt any of it is really blog-worthy. But, there are plenty of decent photos, so I'll leave you with those.
The first two songs had to do with chickens, so the kids wore these cute chicken hats they made. I think this song was "The Shaky Egg." Obviously Zach is having a pretty good time up there.
The second song was actually the chicken dance that we've probably all watched/participated in at somebody's wedding. It was cute to watch Zach do this song because he often seemed to be a split second behind the majority of the group. You can even see that in this picture as you notice most of the kids have started over with the hands opening and closing like a chicken beak while Zach is finishing out the clapping from the last round.
I don't know what song this was, but I just thought Zach looked kind of cute.
After performing a bunch of songs the kids all left and the director of the preschool gave a little speech about raising the kids, shared some funny quotes from the kids from the year, and showed us a slide show of the kids. It was all really neat and touching.
When the slide show was done, the pianist started playing "Pomp and Circumstance" and the kids started filing back in in their little caps and gowns. I was instantly reminded of a time before one of my sisters' or my own graduations, when that song came on and my mom teared up immediately. I guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, because the song came on and the kids started walking in, and my eyes welled up with tears. Zach's class was the last class to come in, and he was towards the end of the line, but when I finally caught a glimpse of him, so handsome and happy in his cap and gown, I couldn't help but mentally flash-forward 13 years to his high school graduation. Will he look pretty much the same? I wondered. Then it was like my mind flew back about 5 years to when he was born, and I thought, "How did we get here so quickly?" and I pictured his whole childhood just flying by.
The kids all took their seats and the director read their names as they hugged their respective teachers and took their place on the risers. Here's Zach hugging Mrs. Graen, who he definitely loved this year.
It was probably good that the last part of the program was a fun rap version of "The Wheels on the Bus," because I think a lot of the parents and family members in the crowd needed the silliness. The kids put on their glasses and it was like instant attitude. So cute.
Afterward we snapped a few more pictures. First, just Zach.
Drew had spent the whole time in the church nursery, because it was "strongly encouraged" that younger siblings be cared for in the nursery. I was glad we did that, because he'd been a pill all day (except when I got in the car that night and he said, "Awesome green pants, Mom!" That was pretty sweet and even made up for him calling me a penis-head earlier.) and I didn't want to have to entertain him and miss the program. I did walk by once just before the program started, though, and saw him sitting on a nursery attendant's lap and just rocking, which made me know he was upset in there, and that had me worried. So I was definitely ready to get him right away. Anyway, he seemed to have had an ok time in there but was definitely happy to see all of us. I think somebody took a family picture of us (maybe?), but it wasn't with our camera, which is kind of a bummer. I wish I had a picture of Mike and me with our little graduate. Anyway, here's Drew and Zach together. On the way home, Drew kept saying, "Cool blue hat, Zach!" Zach definitely agreed, as he wore the cap and gown most of the morning today.
Here's Zach with 2 of his buddies, Caleb and Logan.
By the time we got home, it was almost 9 o'clock. The boys were wired and I was wiped out. Thankfully they went right to sleep!
Today was the last official preschool function, the class picnic. Here's the whole class (though it seems like there is one girl missing, maybe) with the teachers.
Zach with his teachers, Mrs. Rich and Mrs. Graen.
All the boys in the class. Zach's best buddies are Ben, who is in the back row on the right, and Caleb, who is in the blue hat. He's also good buddies with Sam, who is in the front row on the right. The little boy in the red shirt in the back middle will be in Zach's kindergarten class next year.
And here is Zach with one of his favorite girls from preschool, Sydney. Sydney was in Zach's class last year, too, and he's always been pretty smitten with her. I actually know her aunt and uncle from college, which is kind of funny.
It's hard to believe that this chapter of our lives is over. I think Zach is ready to move on to kindergarten, but I definitely will miss the security of preschool and being at a place where he's so comfortable and so happy. I know he'll get that way at kindergarten, too, but it's just harder to imagine that really warm, fuzzy feeling at a big public school than it is at a small, private preschool. It's also hard to think that these kids, who are Zach's best buds right now, probably won't be his best friends in a few months. I guess you never know, though. I'm still friends with some of the kids I went to preschool with, and look at how old I am!