Saturday, September 29, 2007

Big Transitions

Earlier this month, Debbie's church voted to close the Noah's Landing Childcare that it operates and where Parker has attended for the last year. Dwindling enrollment and rising costs meant it just wasn't able to sustain itself anymore. Lots of tears were shed over the decision to close - it was hard letting the staff go and disappointing families whose children love the center (some families had been with us the whole 4.5 years Noah's was open). And Debbie has interacted with the kids on an almost daily basis, led them twice a month in chapel and taught them music at VBS. Noah's last day is set for October 5th.

We dreaded telling Parker because he loves to go to Noah's so much. At home, he's always talking about his friends and his teachers, especially Miss Fran. In fact, often after dinner and a bike ride around the neighborhood, he asks to go back to school. Once we had to drive him there at night to convince him that his "brown daycare" was closed (the outside door is painted brown) and that no one was there having fun without him! And on weekends, we get the pouty face when we tell him it's not a school day.

We went to visit another center this past Thursday as a family. On the way there, we explained to Parker where we were going and that he would have to be attending another school soon because his would be closing. "Are they going to lock the doors at my brown daycare?" he asked. "Yes, buddy, they are" was our sad reply. Fortunately, he seemed excited at the idea of visiting someplace else. We drove to First United Methodist Church in Hudson, which is just about 8 miles from our house. We met Miss Holly the preschool director and took a tour. Mommy and Daddy were impressed with their safety measures, cleanliness, organization, staff, etc. They use the same Christian curriculum as Noah's did and also have chapel. In addition, they have a special physical fitness program called Stretch and Grow that comes in once a week to work with the kids on nutrition and structured, very active play. But the most important thing is that Parker liked it - he asked if he could stay and play with the kids! Apparently it looked like fun to him. We have decided that this is where Parker will attend. Debbie is friends with the pastor and we know Parker will be in good hands. So October 8th is Parker's first day at God's Little Angels Enrichment Center.

When we got back in the car to leave, Parker told us that we had to go back to his brown daycare to pickup his sleeping mat, blanket and Pooh bear so he could go to Angels with Miss Holly. And he told us we needed to go to the store to get him a lunchbox - a Cars lunchbox of course with Lightning McQueen! (This will be the only big difference between Noah's and Angels for Mommy and Daddy besides the longer drive - a hot lunch used to be provided and now we have to pack one.) Thing seemed to make a big impression on him and he definitely understood some of the next steps!

Back at our church later in the day, the teachers have started working with kids talking about moving to new schools and making new friends. So when Parker and Daddy came to pick Mommy up from work, Parker informed Mommy's secretary Miss Jinny that - "my brown daycare is going to be locked up and I'm going to be going to Angels now" and also "I'm going to get a Cars lunchbox!" Bittersweet to hear, but we're glad to know he seems to be able to focus on what's ahead.

We know that it may be hard on Parker to settle in once he realizes all his teachers and friends won't be at Angels. But we hope and pray that the transition is easy for him and all the other beloved children at Noah's.

1 comment:

Doug and Terrye said...

What an incredible job you have both done parenting Parker!!! Making him a part of chosing his new school will help immensely.