It is ironic to me that Drue is the child who resembles me the most outwardly, but is more like David in personality. And the opposite holds true for Reese. Looks like David, acts like me. Tate is a mixture all around.
I'm a saver. A sentimental item saver. Birthday cards, movie ticket stubs, sweet little notes scribbled on scraps of paper.
I knew from the time Reese started preschool, however, that I wasn't going to be able to save everything made by little hands that was brought home from school. Without renting a storage unit, anyway. I do save some select items. Probably far too many select items.
I was becoming quite proud of myself for being able to part with certain creations/papers Reese brought home from preschool, Kindergarten, 1st grade, etc. It gets easier. Starting in Kindergarten, a lot of what is brought home is examples of their daily writing work.
Then 1st grade hit. Six & seven year olds are apparently fascinated with construction paper. And when Reese and her little friends were finished with their work or had indoor recess, they were allowed to let their creativity flow. Reese's take home folder was beginning to come home filled with the finished products of these creative times. And she didn't just bring home her artwork. She and her friends would make things as gifts for each other.
She brought home huge construction paper kites, paper hearts, paper computers, paper jewelry. Scraps of torn paper with a message scribbled in marker, "You r mi best frend" etc.
Any tiny little scraps of construction paper would get thrown out by me. Later that evening, I would find Reese frantically searching her backpack for the "earrings" that Sally made her out of paper. Oops.
Most of the time I went through her folder while she was otherwise occupied and disposed of any non-essential paper items. She did discover some in the trash, however, one day. She pulled each piece out one by one and was sure they had made their way in there by accident. She was shocked to find out otherwise.
After that, I had to secretly throw stuff away, and make sure no piece of it was peeking out for her little eye to spy.
Towards the middle of the year last year, she finally consented (although a bit grudgingly) that we indeed couldn't keep every piece of paper she brought home. We compromised a bit and she would pick out just a few special ones to stow away in her room. She learned to go through her folder with me. And she would make sure I knew which items were to be kept for sure.
This year we began the process with Drue's Kindergarten papers. She is very excited to show them to me when she gets home and read to me her little paper booklets they put together each day. The other day she went on and on about a coyote puppet she made in Spanish class out of a paper bag. It was a brown paper lunch sack with the face of a coyote glued to it that she had colored.
He hung around on the dining room table for a few days. Then he ventured into the kitchen and sat on the counter for a few more days. Finally, I worked up the nerve to break the news to sweet Druebie that we wouldn't be able to keep all her papers she brought home from school.
I held him for her to see as she came through the kitchen. "Drue," I started sweetly. "We're not going to be able to keep this forever."
She looked at him. Then looked at me. And said, "Ok."
"That means I'm going to have to throw him away soon," I continued.
This was going much easier than I'd anticipated.
"Like right now, probably," I explained.
She just looked up at me.
"You might want to look away," I said dramatically as I headed to the trash can.
"Why?," she asked confused. "Here, I'll throw him away. I didn't really like him that much anyway."
And she flung him up into the trash without even taking a second glance.