Rugrat's last day of school is today. The end of third grade!
He's been really impressing me lately. First of all, he hasn't lost his housekey yet. He's been working hard on his goals - remembering to bring all his stuff home from school, taking care of his responsibilities at home (homework, cleaning his lizard's cage at Babydaddy's house, etc). He's walked to school several times by himself (Babydaddy followed him the first couple of times just to be sure). And....he finally learned how to ride his bike.
I've tried a few times to teach him to ride his bike, but he was very resistant to even trying. However, I made this a prerequisite to him being able to be a latchkey kid next school year; I'd rather have him be able to ride his bike to/from school than just walk. So a few weeks ago, Mr Wonderful took him out in our court and taught him how to ride. It took him less than 20 minutes before Rugrat was riding his bike completely solo (including starting off and stopping without falling over). I was absolutely flabbergasted. It helps that Mr Wonderful is a lot stronger than I am, and that learning to ride the bike felt more secure and less wobbly while he was holding the back of the seat. But I think Rugrat was finally just ready to learn. Now, of course, he LOVES riding his bike. He couldn't see what the big deal was before, but once he learned how to do it, he couldn't believe how fun it was. And I had nearly given up on him ever learning to ride a bike, so when I saw him take off for the first time, completely on his own, I almost started crying. My little munchkin is growing up!
This is such a golden age of childhood, and it makes me especially excited about our upcoming camping trip. I've taken Rugrat camping before, but only once, for a single night, and it was a few years ago. I think this is going to be one of those vacations that he remembers for the rest of his life. We'll have three adjoining campsites: my sister & her family, my cousin & her son, and Mr Wonderful, Rugrat and I (unfortunately, Tomboy is not able to join us this time). It'll be five days of getting dirty, hiking, swimming in a river, fishing, and playing with his two cousins that are just about the same age as him. I've gotten a separate tent just for the boys to sleep in, and I really think they're going to have a blast. S'mores around the campfire at night, hot cocoa with marshmallows in the mornings, and long summer days playing in the woods and the river with his favorite cousins. What could be better for a nine-year-old boy?