Love’s tied up in the laces

By Mir
August 7, 2008

It’s incredibly hard to type while you’re dancing. Especially when you’re doing a little jig. And believe you me, I am doing a jig right now. I’m busting a move the way only a woman in an empty house can, because today is THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL.

(Dun dun dun!)

There’s absolutely nothing else like the first day of a new school year. The excitement; the inability to sleep the night before (them AND me); the carefully thought-out lunches (unlike the ones I’ll throw together in a hurry, later this year); the planned outfits; and—of course—the new shoes.

First day of school = new sneakers. I’m pretty sure that’s in the Bible.

Look; I’m not a “back to school wardrobe” kind of person. I don’t go out and buy the kids new stuff just because school is starting. But after a summer of sandals and sprouting up, new sneakers are a necessity to head back into the Land of Learning.

And there is little in this world I love more than some squeaky new sneakers on nervously dancing feet as I’m urged to Come on, COME ON, MOM, WE NEED TO GO.

They suffered through the obligatory First Day of School photos before we took them in, and Chickadee scowled at the camera until I started singing Supercalifragilisticexpialadocious, substituting in lyrics that suggested that if she failed to pony up with a smile I would be singing this in her classroom at top volume. She cracked, and we snapped our shots, and then we were off.

As for the love being in the laces, well, yes, I realize that Chickadee’s shoes don’t have laces. Maybe that’s a bit of a metaphor. Maybe it’s a fitting one, too, as Monkey’s love is easier to apply and more on display than his sister’s. There’s love all through those shoes, though— enough to take them through the first day and plenty to spare.

Happy Love Thursday, everyone. Here’s to the love that puts a spring in someone else’s step.


  1. Amy

    Reminds me that I have still yet to get them new shoes…and that I still have 10 more days to go!!

    Woo-hoo for you though – I’m be doing the jib soon enough (I hope!)

  2. Holly

    I want me some of those tennies like Chickadee’s!

    I’m actually NOT looking all that forward to school starting – the repeated wakings to get them out of bed, the repeated hollars to get them dressed/eating/moving/gathering stuff/whatever they aren’t doing that they should be doing. Ugh.

    Summer is nice – the announcement to their sleeping bodies that I’m leaving for work. The mumbles from under the blankets ‘uh huh’, or ‘love you’, or ‘k’ and I walk out the door. SO much easier……

  3. All Adither

    Enjoy your new hours of freedom. This was a really sweet post.

  4. Leandra

    Squeaky new sneakers is really hard to say!

    I have to say that I was not doing a jig this morning, just a discreet tear wipe. My bay-bay, my first born is in kindergarten! Sniff!

  5. Jenny

    Have you seen that commercial where the woman’s husband is traveling, and she’s basically partying down in the empty house, with a quick cut to her telling him on the phone “Yeah, I guess I’m hanging in there (sigh)” and then going right back to cackling in her bubble bath with the giant banana split? That’s what I’m picturing.

  6. Megan

    New-school-tennis-shoes (red or blue – and my sister ALWAYS bagsied the blue) are nearly as important and exciting as crisp new notebooks, pristine boxes of crayons (and oh how I longed for the 64 box with built-in-sharpener) and packets of pencils. Now my Children are huge and old and only need a pack of college ruled and a gel pen. That’s okay though. I think I need some back-to-school-supplies. I just might spend the afternoon surreptitiously sniffing the new-backpack smell in the special section of Target…

  7. Burgh Baby

    Thanks to SOMEONE *ahem*, I spent a whole bunch of time on Amazon the other day buying all kinds of Fall/Next-Size-Up-Because-Oh-My-Hell-She-Won’t-Quit-Growing shoes. Just thinking about how excited the kid is going to be when she sees five new pairs of shoes (under $60 for the whole group, might I add) makes me want to dance the Back to School Jig right there with you.

  8. Holly

    Must be a wonderful morning! Do you hear that? no? Exactly!! Hang in there, Leandra! I don’t know what you’re going through but I will in about two years. I won’t be wiping away a subtle tear, I’ll be sobbing.

  9. B

    School starts on the 20th here, and I’m already singing my favorite back to school song to my kids: It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! Taken straight from an old Staples, back-to-school commercial! This year, I have one in the elem school, one at the jr high, one at the high school, one entering college, and will send my professor dh off to “school” as well, so I’ll get the entire house to myself!!LOL I can’t wait!!

  10. Jamie AZ

    Yeah for school starting! Mine started on 7/14 (year ’round school calendar) and within a couple weeks my oldest was fiddling around with his NEW tennies and kicked one of them up on top of they gym! UGH! They’ve put in a work order to have someone get it down, but that hasn’t happened yet. And it’s been raining here a few days/week since it’s monsoon season, so I’m not sure it will be suitable for wearing once it comes down. Dang kids!

  11. Jenni

    Exactly one week until the first day of school. I don’t understand why the first day has to be a half day on a Thursday, but whatever floats their boat. My work will be happy because I’ll actually start getting to work earlier. Because Red has to be at school by 8:15 which means I’m actually on my way to work by 8:15 instead of my summer schedule of “oh look, it’s 8:15, I should really get out of bed now.”

  12. Desiree

    Congratulations on surviving the summer!

  13. Jess

    Wow, school starts early in your neck of the woods! I think it’s the 25th here. (We homeschool, so it’s not as big a concern for me. I should still get my kid new shoes, though, heh.)

  14. Aimee

    Happy first day of school! And yay to new sneakers — with or without laces.

  15. Deb

    Me too, I want Chickadees shoes too!

    Happy Love Thursday!

  16. MomCat

    As strung out as your life has been, it’s good to see you sneakin’ in some happy. Enjoy!

  17. KD @ A Bit Squirrelly

    Wow school already? LUCKY YOU!! I love their new kicks..adorable!

  18. Rosie

    Woohoo!! There’s nothing like the first day of school, and not just for the kids!

  19. dad

    What ever happened to school starting the Wednesday after Labor Day? That’s September!
    It’s all a plot, like Daylight Saving Time, to confuse us all so we don’t know what time it is or what season is scheduled.
    I don’t know if I should take a nap or go skiing.
    But I do love Thursdays.

  20. SoMo

    Even though I can’t see their faces, I think this is the best first school photo, ever.

    Well, since we are still waiting for our first day of school, I have decide to make things better we will go to Arby’s. I haven’t gotten it out of my head since you wrote about it. I. Must. Get. In. On. That. Deal. Now, what to choose. Feeding 3 for $6, woo hoo!

  21. Juliematt

    I love Chickie’s shoes. Where did you get them?

  22. Liza

    I want Chickadee’s shoes too!

    Congratulations on everyone surviving the summer. I hope the school year is emotionally easier.

  23. Deputy's Wife

    Chickadee’s shoes are too cute!

    Oh, I envy you. Home. Alone. No kids. Ahhh…

  24. Flea

    No Mir! Tell me I don’t have to go shoe shopping before next week! NOOOOO!


    Oh, alright. Happy Love Thursday.

  25. mamalang

    We offer a new outfit for the first day of school. Usually it’s stuff that’s on clearance since it’s the end of summer. And new sneakers, even though they won’t necessarily wear them the first day. The rest of the clothes come for their fall birthdays.

  26. Anissa@Hope4Peyton

    The only thing better than watching my two little girls hop giddly through the aisles and aisles of shiny, sparkly shoes is my son’s moaning, persecuted heart of the martyr act while being forced to wait. “Just pick the ones that fit and let’s go!”

  27. The Other Leanne

    My yang to y’all’s ying: here I sit in my little house on the street with the elementary school, dreading the day the little hoodlums return…the candy wrappers on the lawn, the bicycle tracks through the gravel, the bus fumes wafting through the window. :)

  28. Jackie@agsoccermom

    I am jealous, mine don’t start till the 25th…..

  29. Cele

    Love the shoes, much better picture than the ones my mom use to take of the obligatory new hair style curled way too tight. Ah, aren’t we glad the early sixties are far far behind us?

  30. Scottsdale Girl

    The HARDEST part of new school clothes for me was the WAITING to wear them. Here it is HOTTER THAN HELL until oh NOVEMBER and back to school clothes meant SWEATERS and CORDUROYS and BOOTS. All lovely items begging me to wear them but suffer a horrible death if I did it too soon.

    Yeah tortured life here. :)

  31. Caroline in MA

    Yeah, I think you have to tell us where you got Chickie’s shoes… I *big puffy heart* them too!

    Hope you’re enjoying what’s left of your quiet day! =)

  32. Linda

    School already? Sheesh! Up here in Michigan, we do not start until after Labor Day (state law). So, kids will return on Sept. 2. I, being a teacher, dread the first day of school; as much as my students do. Bleh.

    Mir, I was sure I could hear you cheering this morning here in Michigan, on this first day of school! heh heh

  33. Katie in MA

    Ahhhh – peace and quiet. I’m so jealous!

    On the other hand, now there’s no one to blame for your distractions!

  34. Chewie

    _I_ can answer the question of the ages…those shoes are from the GREAT CLEARANCE SALE that Mir posted over on her want not site a month or two ago…Children’s Place, baybee. I got some sitting there waiting for my little one to grow another half size…*grin*

  35. jen

    Eleven days. Just eleven days left. I can make it through eleven more days. ;) I hope. LOL!

  36. Angela Klocke

    You just have such a great way with words :)

  37. Shan

    Is anyone else totally shocked that school would be starting somewhere already? I’m so confused! Here in Minnesota it always starts the day after Labor Day. That’s almost a full month away still! To me, it seems like summer has a long ways to go and it’s just disorienting to hear talk of kids in school. Am I the only one?

  38. Danielle-lee

    Awwww! I always loved getting school supplies and new shoes when school would start. I still love to get both, but not necessarily for me, or for school. :)

  39. D

    See, and that’s one of the things my son’ll miss about not going to “regular school” [we’re homeschooling]. No “first day of school” photos, especially since we school year round here. ;-) Ah, well, I think he’ll live. :-) And, yes, Shan, I thought Mir’s kids going to school was early [so did my hubby]. I never started the school year ’til after Labour Day [Wed after], but we once got out the 30th of June, silly snow days! :-) Hubby always started school in late August … Different regions do different things, I guess. :-)

  40. D

    Oh, Mir – I figure you’d’ve mentioned it, but I’m assuming that Otto is still with his Mum and you’re still managing to hold it together enough???

  41. Sue

    JesusGodInHeaven I have til August 26th. I cannot stand a single day more of Mom..Mom…Mom?…Mom!!! Mom….. Mom! Mom? Somebody help me.

  42. Vane

    Is it wrong for me to say that I find it odd that your school year starts on a Thursday?

    Anyway, glad you enjoyed yourself today :)

  43. Walking In My Sleep

    OMG! You just reminded me that I need to get Little Bug new sneakers for the start of school. He has the most narrow feet given to a child in the history of the Universe, so no quick trip to just any shoe store for us. Nope, it’s a get-in-the-car, drive-to-the-closest-full-service-shoe-store (45 miles away), and spend-a-hundred-dollars affair. Of course, they’re closed on Sunday and Monday, and by 6 p.m. every day they’re open. So love the thought of all of this.

  44. The Commenter Formerly Known as Sophie

    SO GLAD to hear about Monkey, Chick, hope for the school year, and a NE house that sold! WooHoo!

    The Parent Open House at our school is titled “Boo Hoo or Yahoo!” I’m still in the Boo Hoo stage.

  45. Dawn

    Fab sneakers! That first day of peace and quiet is sooooo wonderful.

  46. Astrogirl426

    How funny, growing up I never thought about the first day of school being exciting for anyone besides me. Little did I know my mom must have been doing a happy dance to get the quiet house back.

    Bunker Monkey has been in preschool for the past two years, so I didn’t think this autumn (when he enters Kindergarten) would be a big deal (well, except for him – he gets to start “Big Kid School”!), but it’s turning out to look like it will be. I’ll join Leandra and wipe away a subtle tear myself (right before I crawl back into bed for some more sleep – I think I’m going to like the start of school!).

  47. David

    Ah, New Shoes for School. That brings back fond memories. I’m glad to see at least some traditions are still going strong. ;-)

  48. Catherine P

    My step kid’s went back to school yesterday (Wednesday) and I was so incredably happy to ship them off. I work from home as well and I always have to play devils advocate all day long and I hear MOM can I have…or Cathy can I have or I’m bored. Can we go to the pool etc etc….So finally they are back to school and all day today the house was quiet…and I kind of missed it………..Just kind of :)

  49. Daisy

    :) Must smile, because I just bought new sneakers for the teen boy, and the college senior girl owns so many that she doesn’t need to stop at the Converse outlet store any more (but we did anyway last month).

  50. Charlene

    Love your stories about the kids, but I think I love your dad more!

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