Salty Contacts – I Hope You Dance…

It’s the month of June, and so much is happening – life changing things that are making me fussy! Well, not really life changing, stay with me, but changes non the less.. On the eve of my youngest graduating from grade 8, I felt it was time to do a little blogging … it’s good for the soul!  fussy

I have 3 boys, all of which have attended the same school since JK.  (Well, the eldest started in Grade 1 – details, details).  All in all, we have spent 17 wonderful years at this “Little School with the Big Heart.”

I moved here in 1998 and didn’t have a single friend.  I sat in our local Starbucks putting paper to pen, to share my thoughts with my mom. (no texting yet…the iPhone wasn’t even on the shelves ~ Seems strange I know)!

On January 9, 2007 Steve Jobs announced the iPhone at the Macworld convention, receiving substantial media attention, and that it would be released later that year. On June 29, 2007 the first iPhone was released.”

Boy, I was lonely. I would see many ladies come in for a coffee, all laughing and making plans for the weekend with their “besties.”  I thought I would never meet anybody…but then, alas, the first day of school and things changed forever.

I have always said that school is the best remedy for people to meet others in your neighbourhood.  It happened to me.  It started with a pre-first day of school “popsicle party” and by Monday, we already had some familiar faces to connect with.  I sound like such a child, but this was big for all of us.  My kids didn’t have friends, nor did I.  I wanted someone to have a coffee with.

Day one, I met a woman who soon discovered we had boys in common.  Next thing you know, I’m at her house, meeting other ladies, and within no time, I’m hosting the dinner club hanging chiffon from my ceiling for my Indian Feast!  🙂

These were the best of times.  I created a bond with these women, who all like me, now have children done University and making their own way in the world.  It was all due in part to the many bonding school field trips we volunteered to go on –  to apple farms, pioneer village, butterfly sanctuaries, museums, art schools, Christmas concerts, school work displays, Camp Tanamakoon, Quebec City, the list goes on.

I have LOVED this school and I guess it does make me a bit fussy knowing it’s coming to an end. Perhaps because this is my baby graduating, which in turn, makes me feel old!

I, like so many others, have been involved with this school since day one, volunteering for everything from flipping flapjacks, to creating craft nights. I have sat on the ‘school council’ for years, and listened to many a debate over our back field, recess restrictions, and where our money would be well spent for the good of the children.  I have driven my boys to school in my jammies more times than I wish to share (and yes, some days sans the bra), all the while dodging the teacher that thinks it’s ok to come to your car (open your car door)… and start chatting….they’re  all,  “Hey, good morning”, and I’m all, “Back off, I haven’t brushed my teeth yet!”

I have shed many a tear over silly little things, but at the time, seemed like such big things.  I have seen teachers come and go, good friends leave our school, chased many school buses down the road after our ‘tardy’ morning’s, seen principals come and go, seen our school expand with the addition of portables, and spent a worrisome year hoping that they were not going to close our school due to low attendance.  I have wandered the hall ‘illegally’ without a pass, sat on teeny tiny ill fitting jk chairs, painted crafts, bent hangers, glued gunned anything and everything, and wiped a few snotty noses along the way!

Tomorrow night, my youngest is graduating and moving onto high school.  This means so many things ~ a bigger school, more peer pressure, more cliques, but also new friendships and more opportunities.. They will split up, go their own way, meet new friends, and embrace all that high school has to offer.

I’m feeling very nostalgic and I don’t think my boy really understands. Nor should he, he’s only 14.   He was fortunate for what he was given; the love and attention by so many of the teachers, the staff, other families, and even the weekly visit from his Grandma for his Wednesday special lunch!  All this will now change.  They are big boys.  I’m actually finding it hard to explain to people the impact this school had on me, on us as a family, and how lucky I feel to have had the opportunity for all my boys to be blessed with such a great experience.

The bonds our family has formed with the families at this school are solid.  We will never lose touch, and because of this, we know our boys will always be friends.  (This may involve a lot of socialising on our parts, but I’m good with that…Cheers, Clink!!).

I was talking with one of the moms who said she tried to read our final newsletter, but the salt was building up inside her contacts, so she couldn’t finish.  I so get that.  This morning I stood in my washroom trying to put on my makeup when the song “Time of your Life” by Greenday started.  This, as most of you know,  is the song that most elementary and high schools play during those adorable “through the years” slideshows.  Always a good one to get the perimenopause mommy’s wailing!

The graduates will get their diplomas, and we will shut the door on another little moment of time. I will admit, I am envious of those still with little ones at this school, who won’t, like me, really ‘get’ how much it means and how fortunate they are to be creating their own memories, until this day.

Tears will be flowing, but they will be tears of joy as we all celebrate their graduation and remember fondly all the good times together as friends, families, buddies, and mommy’s. .

Happy Graduation my son, it’s been a wild ride..  grad

p.s.  If you dare, two of my fav’s   My Wish – Rascal Flatts and I Hope You Dance – Leann Womack

21 thoughts on “Salty Contacts – I Hope You Dance…

  1. Anonymous

    O Leslie! I love your blogs. Seeing the pics of all the St Vincent festivities this past week made me feel so happy for all of you mommy alumni ! ( the few of you Iv had the pleasure to meet are are ALL amazing people). Memories that will always be with you. Will be thinking of you tomorrow! Be proud….and pack Lotsa tissue!


  2. Karen Smith

    Well done Leslie. Such a very special school and a big moment for all of us…especially our babies. Don’t forget your kleenex xx


  3. Anonymous

    Salty keyboard keys over here. Amen to everything you wrote. Your best post ever I think. We too are leaving our school after 17 or 18 years… I have lost count…the youngest is heading over to the bigger school for gr. 7 and 8 and then high school. Stuck in my head is Diana Ross’s “Reach Out and Touch…and make this world a better place”… which school life provided so many connection experiences for our kids ( and us Moms too) . Meeting new school friends and families in our school communities, learning to help others in our community and afar…school life is the best place!!!! Here is to the next phase of life and all of the wonderfulness that it holds! xox


  4. ourtownO.

    Salty keyboard keys over here. Amen to everything you wrote. Your best post ever. We too are leaving our school after 17 or 18 years have lost count…the youngest is heading over for gr. 7 and 8 and then high school. Stuck in my head is Diana Ross ” Reach Out and Touch…and make this world a better place…” which school life provided so many opportunities for teaching our kids. Learning to help others in our community here and afar. Meeting new school friends and families in our school communities…school life is the best place!!!! Here is to next phase of life and all of the wonderfulness that it holds! xox


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