The Night Before Kindergarten

Dear Lainey,

Well, here we are–the night before kindergarten. You are already asleep, not very far from me. In fact, after you fell asleep tonight, I laid next to you, molding your hand around my finger to grasp it just like you did when you were small.

You’re still small.


Today was special. We spent the day together–just you and me–and because I know that things are changing a bit tomorrow, I couldn’t help but think a lot today about how we’ve had so many of these special days–and yes, we’ll have so many more. But I wish I could rewind and feel a few of those baby days again. Maybe even if we only had ten rewinds in our entire lifetime, and we had to choose carefully when we could use one. Well, today I would have bought a vowel. I would have cashed in one rewind and cherished every second of its replay. I would have held you tighter, read one more book, kissed one more cheek, snuggled you in that rocking chair one more minute before I laid you in your crib.


This isn’t the way it works though. Hindsight builds with time which means, baby, I’ll be the best grandma ever to your kids. But this week I’ll forget again. I might get frustrated or tired or a little impatient when you take fifteen minutes to buckle your babydoll’s carseat in the back seat when I’m trying to get out of the driveway to make it somewhere on time.

Let me tell you something though. This feeling I’m feeling right now the night before kindergarten? It’s going to come again and again and again. In between the days that parenting is challenging, through the exhaustion, even after teenage arguments. My heart will always hurt loving you.


I can tell you’re nervous. I am too. And I have replayed in my mind so many times what tomorrow will look like. I want you to be happy. I want you to run into that classroom and feel the opportunity that exists between those walls, in those books, through those friends. You might not feel it right away, and that’s hard for me. Because I won’t be there to hold your hand when you’re feeling a little bit insecure, reminding you of your strengths and the happiness that exists around you. And I have been there the past five years.

But I’m here in a different way (Girl, I am always here…you can’t get rid of me). Thinking of you at home. Looking forward to your stories. Knowing that we’re both stretching and growing together.


The parts about my character and my own story that I am most proud of? They came with uncomfortable moments when sometimes I had to step out on my own and recognize that I am strong, I am capable and I am full of potential. It exists inside every one of us, and I know you’re going to discover so much of it this year.



I let you choose one of my necklaces to wear tomorrow–a little piece of home you’ll have all day. And I think I might wear one of yours tomorrow too.

I am sad that you won’t be here every day with me, but mostly I am so excited to watch you soar. It won’t be long before you’ll be running to the car, excitedly rattling off the days events, who you met, what you made. You’ll pull projects from your backpack, and we’ll proudly hang them on our walls. You’ll correct us when we call your friends by the wrong name, and soon you won’t need to hold our hands through the school hallways because you will own them.

Maybe not tomorrow…but soon.

Lainey, the world awaits. Go paint your colors. xo




Grace Adele Independent Consultant, Amy Jackson joins ETST in sponsorship this month, offering an extensive collection of handbags and accessories from large totes in butter-soft leather to stylish clutches, scarves and jewerly.

Laney Leather Bag (perfect name, if you ask me), Rae Clutch and Envelope Wallet

My favorite?

The super soft studded Rae Clutch, the perfect size for me. It comes with a long chain strap (optional), is easy to grab on the go and holds lipstick, cell phone, keys, a small coin purse with cards, a bottle of essential oil (nausea), and I can even fit a diaper in there.

Eh, you like my marker stains? So I did a little coloring today with Lainey.

Check out the other great products Amy offers with Adele Grace.


Leave a Comment
  1. Precious :) <3 Good luck Lainey!

  2. Beautiful. And bittersweet, this growing up business. Your Lainey will do wonderful tomorrow. Can’t wait to hear how it goes!

  3. Lainey Love–can hardly wait for all the adventures in this new chapter :)

  4. I am sure she’ll love it!!! She’s going to do great :)

  5. Just perfect. I know how you’re feeling. Good luck, sweet Lainey.

  6. Kelle you had me balling like a baby. My oldest is starting First grade at a new school and I am feeling the same way you are! I hope Lainey has an awesome first day!

  7. Aw, your post made me all teary-eyed. I hope Lainey has a wonderful day tomorrow!

  8. Made me cry. BEAUTIFUL!!!

    It will be awesome! I promise!!!

  9. Such a sweet post! She’ll look back on this some day with tears in her eyes :) I love the picture of the lunch box and your note in it too :)

  10. She’ll be wonderful. How exciting!

  11. Beautiful… savor every moment, I know you will…

  12. Just beautiful, Kelle. Good luck, pretty Lainey! We’ll be heading off on our own kindergarten adventure in just a few days…and I just know you girls are going to have a blast! Hang in there, Mama. 😉

  13. Love the idea of letting her wear your necklace.
    I’m stealing that.

  14. I cried reading this. I cried for another girl who made that walk from our home into the world years ago. I too looked for the rewind button. I still do. “Do-overs” that’s what I would ask for. Life is too fast, and holding it is like grasping sand. Tomorrow has been on it’s way from the time someone said “it’s a girl!”. And all those other big tomorrows are aligning for future days. You have prepared her well. She won’t be far away…your hearts are bound with strong cables of love. Sleep well…it is a sweet tomorrow you will embrace in the morning.

  15. I can’t wait for the update on how her first day went!! This post brought me to tears, even though I still have one more year before my daughter goes off to kindergarten. With a lot of my friends kids starting this year it has been on my mind a lot. She is so excited and wanted to go this year! But I am very happy that I have just a little longer with my baby girl. Good luck dropping her off!*hugs*

  16. Isn’t it crazy Kelle that as teachers we never really understood what it was like for parents to send their children to school each day … until we had our own children. Being a Mom has made me a much better teacher:

    Someone told me when I had my first daughter that becoming a parent is like being an eagle – as parents we teach them what we can and hope when they fall out of the nest that we have taught them enough for them to soar on their own … it doesn’t mean it’s easy though …

    The experiences, lessons, values, morals that you have taught and exposed Lainey to have given her such an open mind that she is going to soar in school.

    Take Care –

    This is one of those times I am thankful for the united world of motherhood that the internet has brought us, that we can connect in shared experiences and know that this is but one stepping stone in this journey.


  17. This made me tear up! Good luck tomorrow!

  18. Awww. Lump in my throat.

    Good luck … to both of you … tomorrow.

    I remember how it broke my heart to see tears in the kids’ eyes when their mamas left at school, but after a hug and good story, they were always fine and ready to explore, learn, grow.

    And so it will be with Lainey.

    Excited for y’all and all the new things you have to experience!

  19. Oh, how I love this. I started my senior year of college this week, and I just got a letter, very similar to this one, from my Mommy. This will be cherished for so long. Beautiful.

  20. Kelle,
    Remembering these days with my girls. Crying right there with you. Be brave. This is one of my favorite pieces you have ever written…and I LOVE them all.
    Best wishes for your girl, and Nella tomorrow. And of course, to you, too. Don’t forget your tissues. You will need them.

  21. My oldest was in kindergarten last year and I felt all the feelings you described too. He had the best year and I LOVED being a kindergarten parent and watching him learn and grow. Girls are better at talking about their days, so enjoy that. It’s hard to get more out of him than what he had for snack! One question we asked him was “what was the nicest thing someone said or did for you today?” And I always got the best answers! I didn’t cry much his first day because I was so excited for the adventure he was embarking on. I did cry the last day of Kindergarten because I never wanted it to end for him. It’s a magical time. Savor it with Lainey!

  22. What a beautiful letter!! Tomorrow will be very emotional but wonderful. She is going to make you proud. Good luck! Wishing Lainey an awesome 1st day of school!!

  23. What an awesome thing to do for your daughter. I wish I knew what my mom was thinking the night before I went to kindergarten. It makes you have gratitude for each and every second. Thanks for sharing!

  24. You made me cry! My girl starts kindergarten this year too, so your words hit very close to home.

  25. Tears. I’m sitting here filling out paperwork for my middle child to begin preschool Monday, and I’m finding myself just as emotional as I did when my oldest began school. I nearly lost it when I saw his name on his cubby and locker at the school tonight. They grow so fast.

    I’m sure Lainey will have the time of her life!

  26. Oh…I just swallowed a big, hard swallow. Thank you for sharing these moments. I know so well that mixture of uncertainty and pride. Missing your first baby’s laughter in the house during the day, but getting to enjoy joining her for the occasional school lunch and videotaping her concerts. Such conflicting emotions. Your letter to Lainey is beautiful. Best wishes to you both tomorrow.

  27. Oh Kelle — been there, felt that. Read “The Kissing Hand.” And remember, you have given Lainey the tools to make friends, to learn, to soar. And she will be home before you know it. When my son started preschool, I cried my eyes out, careful that he didn’t see my tears. My husband, who totally didn’t get it, asked what he could do. I said, “Turn back time!” Now that my son is starting his junior year of high school, I still feel that way, but I am also so grateful and proud of the young man he has become, and the memories we’ve made along the way. Be gentle with yourself tomorrow. I know you will have lots of people thinking of you and Lainey. It is a good thing, even though it hurts like hell. Growing pains are called pains for a reason.

  28. I don’t often comment, but this post had tears rolling down my cheeks. My oldest (of 3) son just turned four a few months ago, and lately we’ve been having too many bad days. Grumpy Mummy makes grumpy kids days. It feels like school is just around the corner for him and I feel like I’m running out of time to mould and shape him before he heads off into the big wide world of school and life. Thanks for helping me see that we still have a whole year of days – one day at a time – to spend together and love on each other. And that school is just another adventure for both of us, that the moulding and shaping doesn’t stop when he steps into the classroom away from me.

  29. I often wonder how I’ll deal with my Zayn entering school. Definitely thinking of you tonight and tomorrow! I’m so excited for Lainey! I love her backpack! xx

  30. I just graduated from high school last May and I am moving in to my dorm on Friday. I feel like this letter could easily be written to me from my own parents. I am so thankful you published this.

  31. Awe Kelle! I come here and cry sweet tears of memories of my first going to kindergarten 2 years ago, and now I am looking forward to sending my next off in one year…
    Good Luck Lainey! You will do great!!
    Hugs Kelle, a bittersweet week for sure xo

  32. Trace your hand and Lainey’s hand this way if she feels unsure she can visit the handprint of yours and if you begin to feel weepy pull out that little hand and hold it close. I had the kids and parents do that when I ran my day home

  33. Ivy chose that Hello Kitty water bottle, too- it’s actually in her pic today! Oh, it’s going to be so good. The letting go does get easier but in a good way, not in a “getting used to it way” … it starts to feel right and good. :)


  34. Tears!!! Just Beautiful Kelle!
    So many different emotions.
    No doubt Lainey is going to love it!
    Will be thinking of you!

  35. Sobs. Big girl snotty sobs over here. Sigh. (as in chest-heaving sigh). I was exactly where you are now, one year ago. And it sucked. Much like the first time I dropped him off for daycare, but worse – because he was leaving my “bubble”. I knew he would learn awesome things, and he would learn not-so-awesome things about life. Tonight we met his 1st grade teacher (he starts next week), and we talked about his peanut allergies…what to do when friends bring in snacks from home, and he can’t have them. We talked about how smart he is…but is challenged by sitting still all day. And in a course of 15 minutes I spewed everything I could think of so this woman could properly assist in the raising and caring for my child when all I want to really do is keep him home, in our bubble where I know he is always safe. Lainey is gonna rock this – because she’s a little you. She may be shy at first like ballet was..but she’ll come out of her shell soon – and have new bff’s…and giggle about boys. I can’t wait to see her first day pic, she’s gonna be beautiful!

  36. Oh I forgot one thing we do in our house — a “back to school” cake with candles for whatever year they are in (my son actually asked for one last year with 10 candles on it when I thought for sure he had “outgrown” the tradition). We sing “Happy first day of (insert whatever grade) to you!” Feel free to steal this. Cake takes the edge of of the whole bittersweet “back to school” thing for us!


  37. Beautifully, beautifully said…I’m a mess reading it. :) We can all relate to these words, whether our birds are leaving the nest (okay, for just 6 hours a day…) or not.

    Beautiful :)


  38. Swollen heart! I double puffy heart love this. Not gonna lie…I cried but it was beautiful. Thank you for sharing. She will own this and you will rock this, you already did with the wickedest lunch.

    Now I can’t wait to read a post next week about how wonderful Lainey is doing and how you and Nella are enjoying your own special time (like you once did with Lainey) before the Hamptons become multiply again.

  39. My daughter, my first-born starts Kindergarten on Friday. I’ve always related so much to your stories about Lainey because our girls are so close in age. Tomorrow night I just know I will be sitting in front of my computer, crying my eyes out and typing my own letter. No matter how much you treasure each moment, it still seems that 5 years pass with the wave of a wand, and here we are grasping for those moments. Thank goodness for pictures! Good luck to you & Lainey tomorrow!

  40. Crying here!! I have one Lainey’s age. But I also have a 4th grader and a jr in highschool this year and boy does it go by fast!! Seems like yesterday that I was sending my oldest off to kindergarten! I can still see his school and his classroom vividly in my mind!

  41. Tears rolling down my face…my little went to Kindergarten last year. I feel every emotion you wrote. The days…they take so long but go so fast. Reminds me of a poem I gave my parents in 5th grade at Elementary Graduation(didn’t understand then why it made my mom cry).

    Children are like Kites.
    You spend a lifetime trying to get them off the ground.
    You run with them until you’re both breathless.
    They crash.
    They hit the rooftop.
    You patch and comfort, adjust and teach them.
    Finally they are airborne…
    They need more string and you keep letting it out.
    But with each twist of the ball of twine,
    there is a sadness that goes with joy.
    The kite becomes more distant,
    and you know it won’t be long
    before that beautiful creature will snap the lifeline that binds you two together
    and will soar as it is meant to soar, free and alone.
    Only then do you know that you did your job.

  42. I just bawled my eyes out while reading this. I don’t have children yet, but I remember what it was like from Lainey’s point of view. That big wide, unknowing world and having to rely on the things mommy has taught you, wondering what she’s doing at home. I have a little brother and I’d wonder what he was doing and if he missed me. It’s such a monumental moment on both ends and it’s just … this post was so beautifully bittersweet to read.


  43. Aww Mama, this is a big moment. You are so smart to write a letter to little Lainey! She will soar. You and your husband have given her all the tools to soar.

  44. It made me cry too, as I contemplate doing this next year for my 4th and final start to school.
    My baby will be one of the youngest, which pulls at my heart strings even more.
    I bet Lainey has an amazing day! You will be thinking of her on and off all day wondering what she is doing.
    I love the note. I always do that for my kids at the start of each new year and term and sometimes just because.
    They love it!!

  45. Crying!!!!!!!!!! It is my boy’s first week in and I am all over your feelings girl! I just can’t figure out why this week has taken an ETERNITY and why I can’t shake my sadness. I miss my boy and my little world that I have had to myself for the last 5 years. Thank you for your words.

  46. :*) tears while reading that beautiful letter. I have one more year at home with my oldest before he starts school and I want time to stand still. My mama heart isn’t ready for that yet…
    I’ll be thinking of both of you tomorrow – she will do awesome! She doesn’t have a choice – she’s been raised to be an awesome little girl by some really great parents :)

  47. That was one of the most beautiful things I’ve had the privilege to read. Thank you for sharing. So excited for you both!

  48. You had me crying with your first sentance. I am still 2 years away from school but I know how fast the last 3 have gone and we will be there before we know it. Good luck Kelle and Lainey! Enjoy some 1:1 time with Nella before #3 comes around.

  49. Do you have the book “The Kissing Hand” Lainey might not need it but you will.

  50. Such a sweet letter! Best of luck to the both of you!

  51. I remember my first day of school so well. I remember the homemade potato soup my Mom packed in the thermos in my Cabbage patch kid lunchbox. I remember the love that sent me out the door that day, and though I was a shy little “only” child, I made it through the ups and downs. The additional perspective I have to share is what a great relationship I have with my folks now that I’m 32. I talk to my Mom on the phone every day on my way to work. She keeps encouraging me. We talk about our gardens, the books we’re reading, things that inspire us, our goals and aspirations… We spend weekends together and my husband is close to my parents too. He golfs with my Dad, he even teases my Mom. He’s been granted keys to our speedboat. It goes on forever. Yes, those brief moments of littleness are precious, but motherhood is special from the day it starts and onward. You’re doing it right, and that means your kids are going to share their futures with you. This is a wonderful, bittersweet step. I congratulate you for giving your daughter a chance to learn not only from home, but the ups and downs of the world. She will always come home to you!

  52. I cried reading this. I cried for you and me. My daughter starts school in 12 days and as much as I am excited for her, I am sad for me. My daughter is my youngest and with her starting school, I feel a huge chapter in my life closing. I know that there is many more page turning chapters in my life, but I will miss the chapters of my children being babies. I will hold a special thought for you tomorrow.

  53. Your words described my exact feelings so perfectly! My firstborn started kindergarten today and after a few tears, she loved everything about the day! Good luck tomorrow Mama!

  54. Totally tearing up. I can’t imagine when my nephew goes to school, let alone my own children. Good luck tomorrow, Lainey (AND Kelle!)

  55. Beautiful, sincere, and heart felt….and what life is all about!!! Thanks for sharing your experience… you are such an inspiration!!!

  56. I don’t even have a kid but this is making my heart hurt. I pray that tomorrow is fun for her and you!

  57. oh stop. i already had to go through this with stellers … and cora is coming up way.too.soon. (we still have 2 weeks).
    AND on top of it all … i’m on vacation (away from the kids) until sunday.
    in other words?
    emotional mess.
    good luck mama. she’ll do fabulously. and so will you.

  58. Blessings to you and Lainey. I remember bringing my own sweet girls, my constant companions, to kindergarten, and just how much I knew I’d miss having them all to myself…every day.

    I clearly remember my own first day of kindergarten.

    When I taught kindergarten and preschool, I knew how important it was for all the mamas to know that I would tend to and guide their precious little ones closely and with caring.

    I teach 2nd grade now, but I still look at my students through a mother’s eyes, as well as a teacher’s eyes.

    Happy first day of kindergarte! I bet Nella will miss her big sister.

    primary practice

  59. Tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat. I so wish I could write such beautiful letters to my babes!

  60. We are all crying apparently reading this! I am too pregnant for this post. Kidding (sort-of).

    Amazing mama. Amazing girl. Have a great day tomorrow, the both of you.

  61. You’re such a great mom and she’s so lucky to have you! My first day of kindergarten? My mom literally dropped me off in front of the school and said “Second door on your left.” True story.

    She’ll do great….and so will you!

  62. Beautiful. So many exciting adventures to come! I have loved watching my eldest son blossom at ‘kindy’ this year (over here, most kindergarten programs are 4-5 days a fortnight, then ‘prep’ is ‘big school’, 5 days a week), but I’m so not ready for school yet. Thanks for sharing your journey and your mama strength with us x

  63. She’s going to be a rock star in Kindergarten!

    You summed up so many feelings I’ve been feeling the last week. I can’t out them in to words like you can.
    My oldest “baby” started middle school on Monday.
    My youngest started K.

    Talk about having your heart hurt from love and happiness all in one!

    Thank you for this. I’ll probably come back and read it over and over again. ♥

  64. Tears here too. How beautiful–I <3 the lunchbox note photo. She’s going to be amazing–she *is* amazing. What a treat you’ll have picking her up in the afternoon :)

  65. My eyes are brimming with tears. My oldest will start Kindergarten next year, so I am trying to enjoy every single minute that I have with him this last year.

  66. Tears!! My baby girl is just 4 months old but I can put myself in your shoes and imagine her first day of school. Oh my, my heart aches just thinking of it!

    Have a great first day Lainey and Kelle.

  67. Tears!! I have a 1st Grader and pre-schooler, oh man it’s so tough to let them go! Not sure if you have already, but read the poem by Dan Valentine “I Trust You’ll Treat Her Well” It is so sweet! Good luck tomorrow!


  68. Love, love, love this. And guess what Kelle? You’re going to feel this way every year. I just sent my Bella off to first grade this week and it still hurts so good!!

  69. Thank you so much for perfectly putting into words the looking forward and looking back that we mommas go through with each new step. I’ve linked your blog to my post this evening . . . thanks again for dazzling me with your words, your pictures, your insight and your sweetness. Congrats on this big milestone in your life!

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  71. Beautiful letter. I’ll let you in on a little secret I still get emotional about the first day of school and “my baby” is going into grade 5! I’m nervous and there’s still almost two weeks until my girls go back!

    Have a great first day Lainey!

  72. Oh my, this just flashes me back one year ago… You have got a lot going on but when I was going through it, I adored reading people in the same boat. If you need that, here’s the link to my old blog where September posts are pretty much all about my big girl headed to Kindergarten. The joys and fears, surprises and tears, mommy daughter dates and grumpy tired afternoon adjustments…

  73. Reading this made me remember the first time I walked my son up to his Kindergarten class so many years ago. And that feeling you described came rushing back. Lots of luck to Lainey and all of you!!! Hope she has a wonderful first day.

  74. This post makes my stomach feel…busy? (for lack of a better word)! My oldest is only 2 1/2 and I am soaking up every moment I can with her because I know that our babies grow oh so quickly! I swear yesterday she was all new baby stretches and “o” faced and now she is saying sentences like, “Can you open this for me please mommy?” and pointing to the old women in the locker room after swim class saying “boobies mommy, big ones”! (This totally happened tonight-I’m sure the 1st of many more times I will turn bright red from something one of my children says!

    And by soaking up every moment, I totally mean it! I am constantly inspired by you to live this one wild and precious life to the fullest and for me that meant quitting my teaching job and opening my own in-home daycare to do what I know best! Snuggle babies, sing silly songs,and spread happiness with the bonus of being in my own home with my own girly whirlies!

    I’ll be thinking about you tomorrow, imagining what that might feel like, and basking in the hindsight you so kindly deliver! P.S. I have no doubt you will be the coolest grandma ever!

  75. Oh, I hope she has a great day tomorrow!!! You’ve set her up to do well and hopefully, she’ll have a wonderful time! Enjoy it and smile!

  76. Absolutely beautiful…..I can’t wait to hear about Lainey’s first day.


  77. Ah, you got my tears streaming with this post! I sent my own 5 year old to kindergarten last week, and the stretching and growing has happened here as well… I am so happy and excited for him, but it’s hard to know I’m not there with him the way I have been for the last 5 years. It’s so cliche but yet so true – they grow up so fast. Happy first day to Lainey. She will be a WONDERFUL kindergartner!

  78. Perfection Kelle… :”’)
    Happy 1st day and always Lainey!!

  79. What a sweet letter!! It made me teary eyed! She will do great tomorrow, as will you! I can’t wait to read about her first day. Good luck to both of you tomorrow!! : )

  80. Oh Kelle, from following your blog over the last couple of years and reading the posts before this, I know how much you must be feeling this! And Lainey too. But I also know how much you love her and want the best for her, and this is a chance for her to grow.

    I love how you spent your day together. I wouldn’t beat yourself up too much about missed opportunities to have showered yet more love on her, cause I know that out of your many talents there’s one thing you’re absolutely tops at is loving those blessed children of yours. They could not possibly doubt your love and care.

    I smiled thinking of Lainey and Nella reading your blog when they are older. I’m sure just like you they will smile and cry and laugh at all that you have captured so beautifully here at etst.

    I will be thinking of you and Lainey tomorrow, and Nella and Brett. So many exciting life changes to come in the next while for your family.

    Hugs xxx

  81. Good luck, sweet little Lainey! Good luck, loving Mom, Kelle. You will both be just fine tomorrow……but, oh(!) the stretching that the heart-strings will undergo!

    Like so many others, I’ll be anxiously awaiting an update……….Rosemary

  82. Ahhh, my eyes are brimming with tears. Time goes so quicky, and I can only imagine with pregnancy hormones how you are feeling. It is all good. Lainey will soar. She has you to help her up! Savor it, hug her, enjoy.

  83. What a beautiful letter thanks for sharing! My girl starts kindergarten Monday. Needless to say this made me cry. Best of luck to both of you tomorrow. You will be in my thoughts.

  84. Tears! Congratulations to you for being a strong mama and for being ready and willing to let your child “go” and soar and learn and grow, even though I’m sure its mixed feelings for you- excited for her, yet sad you won’t be with her everyday. From what I know on your blog, you have given her such an enriched and fulfilled life, that I am sure it will all go great. I am the one who commented on your last post, eager to hear how it goes, because like you, my son is not attending preschool or vpk before he goes to kindergarten next year. So I’m eager to see how Lainey does without preschool experience (but with an enriched home life) because that will be mine next year. Thanks for sharing. Internet and blogs are a nice thing for us mamas.

  85. My little Mimi became a Kindergartener as of 2 weeks ago. Which may explain why I read your whole post through blurry, tear filled eyes. Thank you for sharing this beautiful letter. It’s perfect. (Hope you and your sweet bundle-to-be are happy and healthy. So excited for your new addition!)

  86. so sweet ♥

    “You’re off to Great Places!
    Today is your day!
    Your mountain is waiting,
    So… get on your way!”
    ― Dr. Seuss

  87. Written like a true teacher Mama! Beautiful! Seize the day Lainey! You are gonna love it!

  88. Oh my…tears are streaming down my face. I should be in bed, but I saw this update and had to read it. Good luck tomorrow, Lainey…and good luck to you too, Mama. You’ll both be great :)

  89. tears- what a special time… good luck!!!

  90. As a mama who will be sending off my Kindgergarten girl in 2 weeks, I was in major tears! What a sweet letter!

  91. my oldest just started kindergarten too. love the note, i sent one as well. always loved when my mom sent me a little surprise. i’m sure she’s rocking it :-)

  92. I remember the first day of preschool for my daughter…21years ago! All the kids lining up in their lines where their teacher’s names were written in chalk on the blacktop! All of them saying the pledge of allegiance, and, me holding a baby and crying! I couldn’t believe that day was happening!

    Now, she is almost 25 and an amazing woman!

  93. August 23 is going to be a great day, I can feel it. I’m preggers with our first baby and tomorrow is our due date.
    My mind cant fast forward that far to think about his first day of kindergarten…Yikes! Good luck to Lainey and your family as you start this new adventure. What a big day tomorrow will be.

  94. August 23 is going to be a great day, I can feel it. I’m preggers with our first baby and tomorrow is our due date.
    My mind cant fast forward that far to think about his first day of kindergarten…Yikes! Good luck to Lainey and your family as you start this new adventure. What a big day tomorrow will be.

  95. Dearest Lainey, you are gonna rock it. Love pours out of you so beautifully, I just know that you are going to be a dear friend to someone who needs a friend more than ever tomorrow.

  96. Oh Kelle, I feel your nervousness. Reading your letter to Lainey had me in tears. It brought back the Mummy pain I had when my girl started school. She started two weeks later than all her classmates because we were moving interstate at the time. I remember walking her to her classroom(that she’d never been to before) and handing her over to her lovely teacher. She went in and sat on the floor with the other kids. She didn’t know anyone, and neither did I. I stood and looked through the window in the door for a minute or two. Then the tears came and I couldn’t get out of the school quick enough. I had to leave my baby, alone, in a place she hadn’t been before, with people who didn’t know her. It’s hard driving when your bawling.

    Motherhood is the most painful thing ever.

    After awhile, I didn’t walk her into school anymore. I would just do the kiss and drop outside the gates and then watch as she ran into the school to play with her friends.

    Two and half years later and I still watch her, every day, RUN through the school gates to play with her friends. Now I smile as I drive home.

    Lainey will do just fine, and so will you. This new phase in life is so fun. The stories they tell. The fun stuff they do at school. The dress up days. Helping her with her reading. All of it, except the homework. I don’t like the homework!

    Thinking of you x

    ps, writing really is great therapy. Sorry.

  97. You always have a way with words that hit me right in the heart. Today I’m venturing away from my kids for a few days with my mamma and we are going to your home state of Florida. It is a long journey from Norway, and my mamma heart is aching a little leaving my littles at home. They will have a great time with their pappa, but mamma will miss them. Thank you for sharing this letter, for reminding me that only through growth will we stretch and become more. Have a wonderful first day of kindergarden with Lainey.


  98. tears…

  99. My son is going to school, too!
    have mixed emotions.

    By the way, good luck Lainey!

  100. This made me cry too. My kids are getting so big and I am sad but excited for them. Good luck tomorrow.

  101. This post made me sob like a baby! I home school my kids, but every new year brings about the sadness to see another year gone and total excitement in seeing the new year beginning. This is such a golden, beautiful time of life. I want to bottle it up and keep it forever.

  102. Beautiful! *wiping tears*

  103. Oh, Kelle, I am a hot mess thinking about Lainey starting Kindergarten. I can only imagine how it feels for you. This makes me want to run into Arya’s room, scoop her up and hold her before it’s too late and she’s a big girl all of a sudden. Good luck letting go tomorrow! I’m so excited for your whole family. I love the necklace idea, btw. I’ll have to remember that one. I can’t wait to hear all about Lainey’s first day of school!! Soak up every second of it. :)

  104. Oh my goodness……what a valuable letter this will be!

    And yes, good decision to go with a piece of jewelry over a palm squid 😉

    Much love to you tonight & tomorrow!

  105. Good luck to both of you, you sending a wonderful young girl into the world to spread her goodness.

    This post made me cry, so beautiful.

    Big hugs to both of you xx

  106. this made me cry and i am not even close of having a baby of my own… im sure Lainey will enjoy her first day of school!!

  107. I cried while reading this. And as I read it, I imagined Lainey much older, reading it and finding herself realizing that she has the best mom the world has to offer.

    You are her perfect mom and she is your perfect daughter. No school walls, teenage years to come, or teacher can ever replace that special bond that you two share.

    I’ll be thinking of you both tomorrow! xo

    Lots of love and hugs to you both!

  108. This made me remember sending our children off to school – and it’s kind of the same every year. A heart full of love and excitement and a heart wanting to protect and save them – tough stuff for mamas. I hope Lainey and you can grow to enjoy this new chapter in her life. I’m cheering for both of you :)

  109. Precious, throat-lump inducing, heart-touching goodness. You are an amazing momma. You may never actually see my posts amongst the thousands you get daily, but I have said it before, and I’ll say it again (and prolly again and again)
    You inspire me. Finding your blog changed my life.

    P.S. That is one badass graffiti backpack.

  110. Beautifully written Kelle. I held onto each word as it brought back memories of our night before pre-school, before kindergarten, before hockey evaluations, before 5 nights away from home at camp…as you said, this feeling, it’s going to come again and again and again. Our Mama hearts will always hurt loving them. And oh how I would cash in on one of those rewinds-to hold & cherish just a little longer…
    You are an amazing Mama. I wish you and Lainey all the best tomo. Her heart will guide her at a pace that is just right for her.

    God Bless

  111. Reading that letter gave me goosebumps.. My little guy starts nursery in 19 days and I could have written this myself!

    Good luck Lainey!!!!! xx

  112. tearjerker!

  113. Beautiful!
    And I do know how you feel.
    Good luck to both of you =]

  114. you’re just great……lovely letter!

  115. another sobbing mum here with my 4 year old starting Reception (UK) in a couple of weeks…this post has totally put how I’m feeling into words. Terrified, excited, happy, sad, nervous and full of expectation all at the same time. Mostly it’s hitting me how much I’ll miss by boy! He’s getting nervous too, being stoic about it but he’s cuddling “Monkey” a little bit closer and needing a few more Mummy cuddles than usual…obviously they’re free flowing :o)

    Best of luck Lainey Love….we’re all cheering you on!!!


  116. I’m all in tears over here and she isn’t even mine. Good luck Lainey! You will do great.

  117. Congratulations!
    Today is your day.
    You’re off to Great Places!
    You’re off and away!

    You have brains in your head.
    You have feet in your shoes.
    You can steer yourself
    any direction you choose.
    You’re on your own. And you know what you know.
    And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.

    Kid, you’ll move mountains xxx

  118. I knew this would make me cry, and it did. I homeschool my children now, but my daughter did go to public school for a couple of years. I remember Kindergarten, and all of the feelings that came with it. It truly is such a great school year, and I wish Lainey the best! I love the lunch notes, I sent them with my daughter most days of the week <3

  119. Kelle, this was so so beautifully written. As I sit here with tears in my eyes, I can’t help but get excited for the day that little Lainey is old enough to read this post and truly understand and appreciate how deep your love is for her. It’s so beautiful and I’m unbelievably appreciative that you share it with all of us so often. I can’t wait to do the same with my own children someday. :)

    Have a fantastic 1st day of Kindergarten, Lainey!

  120. Ah! OK, I read this AFTER I replied to your email.

    You rock this, Mama. Lainey will do great.

  121. Thinking of you today Kelle. I well remember the first day of Kindergarten-both my oldest boys attended. I remember counting the hours until it would be time to go sit in that car rider line and watch for them to come walking out. Then trying not to show how desperately I missed them, asking as calmly as I could how the day was. And those boys, they would hardly tell me a thing! I hope Lainey has a fantastic year, I’m sure. Kindergarten is so very fun.

  122. Have a great first day! I know she is going to do well!

  123. Crying right now. Isn’t being a Mommy the best? I just want to bottle up these years and never let them go. My son won’t be 5 until October and we wrestled back and forth with starting him in Kindergarten this year finally opting with a young 5s. I know next year I will be going through all of these same emotions. I just want to freeze time. Wishing Lainey the BEST first day of Kindergarten ever! I know she will rock. it. out.


  124. It’s such a big day for all of your family! One to celebrate, yet one that brings so much new-ness that it will be scary. I love the letter to Lainey. You are so wonderfully investing into your girls…how can they be nothing but confident, beautiful women?

    Can’t wait to hear how everything went for Lainey, you and Nella today. I know it’s just the start of new wonderful adventures.

  125. Aaahhh YOU MADE ME CRY!!!

    Every night – every single night – I have one thought as I fall asleep. A wish that I could rewind time and hold my children as babies again. And a wish that this time I’m enjoying with them right at the age and stage they’re at right now, could go on forever. Well, except for those days when the munchkins are driving me up the wall and I just wanna go running down the road screaming. But you know, asides from that…

    Anyway, I hope Lainey had an amazing day. :)

  126. Lainey-wishing you a wonderful first day at kindergarten and in all your adventures that follow.

  127. Nothing like a good cry before I go get my own sleeping beauties up for the day. My oldest also starts Kindergarten this Sept. and I can’t tell you how many times I just sit and stare at her or grab her for an extra hug or kiss. Man, this is hard!
    Beautiful letter to your daughter, she is going to have a wonderful year ahead! Best of luck mama!

  128. I was number nine for my mom and yet, after all the waving goodbye she did for the eight before me, on my first day of kindergarten, she wept like a baby.
    I guess it never gets easy watching your baby turn into a little girl….and become independent.
    Good luck Kelle. You’re clearly in everyone’s thoughts!

  129. Good luck, Lainey!

  130. Whew, talk about Hallmark moments. Next sponsor, Kleenex! An absolutely moving letter your first-born will cherish all her life.

  131. I hope she loves it.

  132. Go Lainey – have fun and spread those wings! But, oh, the release can be bittersweet. She’s lucky to have such a sentimental and nurturing mama, and it will be amazing as all of you learn to fly a little differently through this experience. Thanks so much for sharing – I can’t wait to see it all unfold. Prayers for you all today. :)

  133. It’s hard to imagine that we have children in kindergarten! It is such a bittersweet moment. It’s finally the day we as parents have been thinking about since our babies were placed in our arms. (I don’t know about you, but life the first five years were timed around kindergarten…”well he still has 3 more years until kindergarten…”)
    And like a David Copperfield magic trick–suddenly, 5 years vanish and we are facing a huge school door with a building full of learning and opportunity. As amazing as giving our children that amazing gift of knowledge is–it’s bitter because we know it isn’t coming directly from us. That once they open those big doors, hang up their packs and settle into their sweet, little, teeny chairs, their independence widens between the space that we as parents were so close to for so long.
    Once a routine falls and time creates hindsight…we’ll be able to see how this one little puzzle piece fits in with the rest of the puzzle. Until then–tissues will kept close and thoughts of “What is he doing right now?” “Is he making friends?” “I hope he is having a great time” will intrude our brain without warning…and that’s completely okay.
    Thank you for sharing your letter with lainey–I don’t feel alone in my thoughts–what an amazing blessing you are!

  134. I cried reading this. You have summed it perfectly how I feel as my first born approaches school in January. You said it all perfectly Kelle.
    Lainey is such a lucky little lady. And yes, she will soar!

  135. It’s the first step for both of you. High fives and big hugs. Love you girl. Wish I could come over and take you out for lunch…keep you busy:) Can’t wait to hear about the day.

  136. Well this made me cry, but it is so sweet. I can say though, it was probably not the best thing to read my second day back to work after maternity leave. It is the first day of many new journies you both will take along the way! Good luck to you both, and Happy First Day to sweet Lainey :)

  137. Awe, this is fabulous. Thinking of Lainey Love right this minute from Montana. Look forward to hearing all about her day (and yours!).

    with love,
    Nici and your Montana pals

  138. Go get ’em, Lainey!!! Another benefit of living in Michigan…..SNOW DAYS!!!!!

  139. Your letter made me cry – beautiful, and so poignant. I can’t believe it’s already time for precious little Lainey to go to school! I know that she will do well and learn to love it. But my heart breaks a tiny bit for you as she starts the process of spreading her wings to leave the nest. Be strong, Kelle! This will be a whole new and wonderful chapter in your life. Different, but just as sweet!

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  141. wow.. had to read this post in bits and pieces to avoid an emotional breakdown while making breakfast. I’ve always had difficulty accepting the passage of time. Even as a child I avoided looking at my baby pictures because it reminded me of time that would never happen again. I’ve found this quote that helps me so much. It’s from the brilliant Dr. Suess:
    “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

  142. This was so, so beautiful. Happy tears for you both!

  143. Hope she has a great first day and that you and Nella have a good one too! It’s hard because you’re so excited for their new adventures but at the same time you wouldn’t mind them staying home. Hugs to you. Every day will get better.

  144. What a beautiful post! She’ll have a blast :-) And you’ll relive these moments with her and remember what it was like to be a kid.

  145. My baby, my last baby who is at home with me all day is starting school next week too. I am so torn, I want to keep him with me but I know, from having two other boys who went to school, how much he will enjoy it and he will flourish. When they are so tiny this day seems so far away but it comes around so so quick. Enjoy every precious second.

  146. my boys are 2 and 1/2yrs and 3mo and I was already tearing up about thinking about when they will go off to school. praying today goes great for the both of you (with just a few tears). :)

  147. Big old tears rolled down my cheeks as I read about Lainey’s first kindergarten day.
    Neighbors never understood that I felt sad when the children went back to school.
    When we dropped our daughter off at college her freshman year I heaved and cried all the way home. Which was only 45 minutes away. But I wanted her back so bad. I felt liked I didn’t get enough time.
    It wasn’t easier with the boys.
    And now they are grown. And we have 4 grandchildren. And some days it still makes me sad that the bathroom stays clean for days. And there are no bare spots in the yard from first base and home plate.

  148. Ah so sweet. I wrote a letter to my daughter last year on her first day.

  149. What a beautiful post. It made me cry, and I don’t even have kids yet! Good luck, Lainey! And good luck, Mama!

  150. Beautiful :) ♥ Have you read Let me hold you longer by Karen Kingsbury? If not go get it and read it!!!!!!!

  151. You are such an amazing mama, and such an inspiration to all of us mothers! Good luck Lainey! She will do great!

  152. Happy first day of school Lainey! This is a great day ( my birthday) so I know it will be fantastic I am thinking of both of you since I will be doing the same in a few weeks – tear today as I read and I know there will be tears on my little girls first day too. I know she will do well – so will Lainey.

  153. Another chapter in your life begins today Lainey! I hope you are going to have a fantastic first day at school.

    This time next year it will be the turn of my twin boys.

    Kelle…enjoy the massive cuddles and stories when she comes home x

  154. Good luck today Lainey, and good luck to you too mama! You are raising a wonderful little girl, and soar is exactly what she will do with you as the wind beneath her wings. Have a GREAT first day Lainey!

  155. My heart is with you today as you let your little fly. This won’t be the first time she flies; in fact, there will be so many more moments when your heart hurts as its explodes with love, pride, joy, and that little hint of sadness. First day of middle school, high school, college, prom, her first date to the movies, when she gets her driver’s license, when she says, “I do,” and when she makes you a grandma. These moments await you, but Kelle, I know you will take them like a champ and write the most beautiful letter to Lainey letting her know how you feel. I teared up reading this. I thank you for your honesty and openness. I work in a school and saw all the littles come in today holding their momma and daddy’s hands. I know those moments are so precious to those parents. Hang in there, Kelle! There is so much more greatness to come and I look forward to reading about it :)

  156. this post made me burst into tears at work!

    i never feel like i take the time to recognize all the sweet moments of my 3-year-old daughter’s life with me. i’m a single mama and so much of our time is spent just surviving (working, driving to and from daycare, making meals and cleaning up after them, etc.) i know the next 2 years are going to fly so swiftly by, i am going to blink and next thing i know, i will be walking her up the street to kindergarten!

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  158. So beautiful. It’s my first day of my senior year of college, and I wouldn’t have gotten here without my parents. I remember all too well the notes my mom used to write to me on my napkins in elementary school. And how she would secretly sign up to do Tuesday folders so she could surprise me by coming into school and having lunch with me.

    Good luck Lainey, you will do beautifully.

  159. I loved every word of this post. I felt the emotion as if it were mine (and it will be…my daughter starts preschool in just week). This is beautiful and I feel for you. I can’t wait to share in Lainey’s New Adventures!

  160. Happy first day of school, Lainey! Can’t wait for your Mama to tell us all about it, kiddo!

  161. Oh dear god, you made me choke up like three times. My little girl is 4 and started preschool this week. I can SO relate to all your feelings. Can’t wait to hear how little Lainey did.

    P.S. I’m partial to her name. Mine is Lainie (same pronunciation).

  162. this was a beautiful post.
    i hope lainey has a great time at school, and that you and nella enjoy your new extended time together.

  163. As my husband, son and I prepare to move half way around the world, away from our families and our friends, I couldn’t help but tear up reading your post, knowing that growth comes from the decisions that are hardest, the moves that are toughest, and challenges that seem daunting and beyond our ability.

    Our challenges may be different, but I can certainly empathize with you as you say goodbye, even if just for a few hours a day, to your precious daughter. And I second your comment, that we are made all the more strong by going through these changes, embracing them and seeing how we soar – we can all soar!

  164. This was just beautiful! You have such a gift with words and your children are so incredibly blessed to have such an amazing mother. I’ve said this before, but it’s worth repeating… you are a fantastic role model to me and so many others. And now I’m sure co-workers are wondering why I’m in tears on my lunch break :)

  165. totally tearing up…my daughters been in playgroup but nervous for her to start “real school” this year. ah the life of a mom. im sure she did fabulous!

  166. That was very special…had me in tears. This is the first school year all 3 of my kids will be in school now and I’m heartbroken. No more babies or toddlers at home with me. People think I’m crazy for being sad, but it’s a period in my life that is over and it makes me sad. I miss my babies! I try to think about all of our new upcoming adventures we will have, but they just grow up way too fast!

  167. Oh my…..My oldest is just about to turn two and yet this post just about breaks my heart. It breaks for you Kelle and your littles, it breaks for the thought of my baby starting off on his own first day. Yes it’s at least a couple of years in the future, but the last two went by in a heartbeat, so what’s going to stop the next!! I want so big for my babies to grow, become their own little people and go out into the world, yet I can’t bear the thought of it all! I want to scoop them up and hold them tight forever….
    Stay strong. Your words are so inspiring to me. I hope that everything works out the way you and big sis need them to. I will be waiting for your next post, I can’t wait to hear how it all went and your take on it all. Maybe your words will inspire me to let go and
    try not to die of heartache thinking of my own littles branching out into the “real” world…

  168. I didn’t think I’d be in tears reading this since I was holding my 5 month old and school is still so far away but it made me realize how fast it will go and I held him a little tighter and a little longer before work today. You have such a beautiful heart and an amazing way with words. Thanks for all you do.
    Much love from Colorado,

  169. This letter is exactly how I feel about my daughter who just started COLLEGE!!!

  170. LOVE IT!!!!

  171. I have been reading your blog for so long, yet this is the first time I am writing. My son is 19 months old and I already dread the first day of *anywhere* I will not be to help, reassure, or just hold him when he is feeling nervous or scared. I just burst into tears reading this post – Lainey will be GREAT, she will love her school and you for making the decision to trust her strength and give her the opportunity to soar. Much luck! Jen C.

  172. what a fantastic letter to your daughter.
    you are a great mom and a wonderful example to me.

  173. Such an emotional thing – all the way around. What a great letter to your baby girl!

  174. Kelle,
    Congrats on this special day! I’ve been a reader since around 2009, but I haven’t commented much if at all. I find you so inspiring, you are my favorite “celebrity” that I’d like to meet someday. Watching you with you girls made me so excited to have kids. I now have a 5-month-old and thought of you often before and during my pregnancy, as I have a syndrome that has a 50% chance of being passed on to my children. Thankfully, my daughter did not get it, but I know my chances are high if I have more. Your example of embracing Nella’s differences gives me so much strength. Thank you for that! I could write all day long… but, I just want to say “thank you”.

    I saw this on Pinterest today and thought of you. Hope it helps. :)

    *40 ways to entertain your kids while lying down*


  175. Sorry, looks like you’ll have to copy & paste it!

  176. I am sobbing in my cubicle at work reading this. It must be a Mama thing, because I tried explaining to a younger co-worker why I was so choked up and she didn’t get it. Life goes by in the blink of an eye, and I think having little people in your life only makes that point more clear. I truly hope Lainey enjoys every second of her big girl day – and that you’re able to get an extra snuggle in with her and Nella tonight.

  177. So beautiful! I hope Lainey had a wonderful first day of kindergarten. It will be so exciting to hear all her stories of the day :)

  178. Such a sweet letter! I’ve been feeling similar emotions recently as we’ve welcomed Baby #2 into our lives–and my oldest is only 2, but oh how time flies! Hope you and Lainey are having a wonderful day today!

  179. Oh, this made me tear up. Especially the last line. Such a loving mama bear you are… I can only hope to be as awesome as you with my little man

  180. Oh my – like so many others, I cried reading this! Plus I am in a sandwich shoppe and I think all the workers think I’m a bit nutty crying, looking at my phone. :) beautiful and helps me to put in perspective my 5 year old baby who will start school in less then 2 weeks. Thank you kelle, as always for your delightfully sweet, honest, and heart warming inspiration!

  181. I just bought this book for my son – thought you might like to get it for Lainey – it echos your letter to her.

  182. Happy 1st Day of Kindergarten. I hope you don’t mind but I put a link to your blog in my post. Check it out if you want and thank you for the great letter idea and the inspiring blog I love reading your posts they bring me back to earth.

  183. Tears, as I can relate to this right now. My oldest started her Senior year in college (her plans are to most likely re-locate out of State after getting her degree)which I’m so happy, excited and very proud of her. Of course, as mothers we want them to spread their wings and live to their highest potential. Still so hard to let go. Also, my youngest just started Preschool. It’s funny I was so worried about him, but of course (which I’m glad)he’s taking it so much better then me. Needless to say after saying good-bye to the kids in the morning (don’t want them to see me upset I’m so proud of them both)this has been a very difficult and weepy week for me. Oh, those darn growing pains. So thanks for posting this, love how you made it a letter to Lainey. Hope her 1st, day goes well, can’t wait to hear all about!

  184. yes indeed, tears for me too, the good kind! I can’t wait to hear about her big day!

  185. Why are you always making my mascara run, Kelle? :)

    She’ll do great. You’ve done a wonderful job. Just remember that.

    Landon will start when he’s 6 so I still have 2 years left but I still wonder what that day will be like.

  186. Just thinking of you Mama.


  187. Your mama’s heart shone through brightly as usual. It’s amazing to have to watch them soar sometimes when all you want to do is keep them close.

  188. You are doing great! And Laney will too …..just had to add , i did the same with my black and white backpack! Its awesome you encourage such creativity :) Any child would be lucky to have you for a mom!

  189. Today will be the worst day (for you) I am sure you have been thinking and worrying about her al
    Day, but it will get better :)

  190. Once again, I have no children but I teared up reading this! You have such a way with words and almost rid me of my anxiety about having children :) Lainey is going to do GREAT!

  191. I’ll bet you dollars to donuts that Lainey had THE COOLEST backpack of all the other kidergarteners, just sayin’… And, such a sweet letter to Lainey – so what if I was crying while I read it… xoxo

  192. That choked me up as my oldest is starting Kindergarten, too, in a few weeks. I understand so much of what you’re feeling!

  193. Moved to tears, remembering my son’s first day of kindergarten….his younger sister never looked back as I stood at the doorway on her first day, but on his first day, he did and I smiled and waved to him, pretending that I wasn’t going to home and cry in a melted Popsicle kind of way. He starts his senior year of high school in two weeks….it’s funny, I’m pretty sure I’m going to do the pretending not to cry thing again!

  194. Sitting here at the salon with my colour on and trying not to let tears roll down my face! Ha! You write so beautifully Kelle! What a wonderful note and keepsake for your girl. I can only imagine those difficult but exciting moments for my one year old baby girl and I know they will come so quickly! In honour of your lovely note I am going to give one more kiss on her sweet chubby cheek and a few more minutes of snuggling just because! Have a wonderful weekend with your sweeties!

  195. I cried reading this because I am going through the exact same thing next week. My little boy is going to kindergarten and I am an emotional pregnant lady. Hope her day went great. Can’t wait to hear about it.

  196. Count me in as somebody who shed more than a few tears when I read this! (this morning… before work… so eye makeup was a no go!!!)

    You put into words so many things I feel as my Sarah’s first day approaches on 8/27. But absolutely totally the rewind thing. Moments of her infant and toddler years are flying through my mind as we prepare for this big day.

  197. Oh my goodness, you have me in tears. My daughter doesn’t start school until after Labor Day. I have been very grateful for the extra weeks, but seeing all these tearful good-byes of others is increasing my anxiety. My little one insists she’s not going either..that I’m teaching her at home like her little brother (I’ll be doing preschool since he misses the cutoff). So bittersweet!

  198. ahhh tears. This is by far one of my favorite posts! As a teacher, this makes makes my heart beam! This is such a special and exciting time for you both and while it will be a big change, you are so right in knowing that it will all be for the good! Lainey is going to be a rockstar kindergartner! :)

    Delightfully Dunn

  199. Such a sweet post. Hoping you both made it through with flying colors (and lots of stories to share!). Hang in there, Kelle! :)

  200. Oh. My. Heck. This is sweet and just how I feel. Thank you for articulating it so well. Gorgeous pictures too!

  201. You made me want to squeeze my littles just a tiny bit tighter. Time is slipping through my fingers much too quickly.

  202. I could not have expressed these feelings any better than you have written. My first born, Dominick, is starting pre-school next week and i tear up when i think about those moments that i wish i could save in a bottle……its all of them! Good luck to Lainey, and to you :)

  203. What a beautiful letter, it brought tears to my eyes, also I felt a mix of fear and excitement for when this day comes for us (baby is only 20 months) its really a whole new chapter on their and our lives and its when we start to let go little by little. It hurts to think about it, but its part of the circle of life. xoxo Kelle you are so inspiring!

  204. this post was water to my soul. just kissed my 10 month old 50 extra times. love your amazing mother bear heart so much!!!

  205. So beautiful!

  206. Tearing up with this post. Thanks for the reminder of how fast time flies and what’s important in life.

  207. Once again, your writing inspires and amazes me. I got goose bumps. Lovely, just lovely.

  208. Makes me tear up reading this… I sent my son off to college the other day. Seriously – it seems like just yesterday that I was going through the same emotions as you, preparing to take him to kindergarten. Life goes by too fast sometimes… I miss the little boy he once was, but at the same time, am so immensely proud of the young man he has become. I hope Lainey had a FANTASTIC day :)

  209. We did a lot of special things last week. This week is going to be filled with so many changes as JDaniel starts school.

    I would love for you to link this post up to my Back to School Traditions link up!

  210. And they grow so fast, love so quickly, and leave so soon. Enjoy every second Mama! =)

  211. Awww, this made me cry. I hadn’t been able to read your blog last week as it was also my oldest’s first week of kindergarten. But reading this today made me revisit all those emotions again. You depicted exactly how I was feeling last week. THANK YOU!!!!

  212. My mistake was reading this while I’m at work… You have me fighting back the tears! My daughter started kindergarten last week too. I was SO nervous and excited for her, just like you. My husband doesn’t get it. I think men see things in such a different light. I’m glad to see someone else who feels the same way as me. I even got emotional packing her first lunch and took a picture just like you did. I hope your Lainey had a great first week of school. My Zoe sure did. She started crying on her first day as I left her classroom, and then I started crying! haha But the little boy sitting next to her started to try to make her feel better by telling her “You don’t have to cry, look at me I’m not crying. You’re going to be ok. Kindergarten is going to be fun.” That made me feel better that I was leaving her with such a caring little boy next to her. Her teacher said she only cried for a couple minutes after I left and then she was fine. When I picked her up she couldn’t stop telling me about all of the new friends she made and all of the cool things she got to do. I am so happy for her, and excited about all of the new things she is going to learn. Great job on your blog, thanks for sharing!!

  213. Ha! My little one just went off to Kindergarten as well & she almost bought that exact backpack. She opted for the hot pink Jansport instead :) Hope Lainey is enjoying big school!

  214. Amazing Post! So poignant! I can’t believe that I will be at this point sooner than I know.

    In the meanwhile, check out my adventures with my incredible toddler at:

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