first day of school.

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first day of school 2017-10

“samson, this is the sign you make if you want a drink of water…” she motioned with her hand while she walked beside him, their backpacks bouncing up and down hitting their backs with each stride they took. “…and this is the sign you make if you need to go potty…got it?” he mimicked her motions with the biggest smile on his face and i swear my mama heart was all sorts of bursting as i walked along side them watching and listening as eleanor gave samson the last run down on kindergarten while we walked to school yesterday morning on their first big day. “wait. what’s the sign for water again?” he asked. she stopped to show him and he laughed. “right! i almost forgot!”

sending my kids off to school is not easy for me and i’m still not ready. i wasn’t ready last year when eleanor took those brave first steps into her kindergarten classroom and 365 days later, i’m still not ready as i watched my babies hug my hips and leave my side yesterday morning to enter the classrooms that will home them for many long days ahead this coming year.

but if there’s one thing i’m grateful for, in the midst of all the emotion, is that they have each other. i know they are in different grades, but that sibling bond feels rather strong at the moment and as a mother, it’s everything i ever dreamed of.  knowing they’ll look out for one another and love on each other in such a sweet way; it eases the worry of watching them grow so quickly and enter into the big world around them.

yesterday, eleanor began first grade, and samson started kindergarten. their papa gave them blessings the night before to keep with tradition of what our own fathers did for josh and me when we were growing up. i sat there on the sofa looking at my beautiful big babies as he blessed them and all i could feel was such pride for getting to be their mama. they are so ready for this phase of life, and i can’t wait to watch them soar.

we had breakfast at home yesterday morning followed by a second breakfast on the walk to school, with just me and papa. we chatted, we hugged, we held hands and i took a few pictures. i cried only once, and i did my best to mask it through a smile. eleanor is brave. samson is brave. eleanor is kind. samson is kind. eleanor is smart. samson is smart. eleanor will conquer first grade, and samson will conquer kindergarten. with a million “one more time” hugs and kisses, i finally let go of their hands and walked away. smiling, too. because this is so very exciting. and they got this. they really do. and what’s greater, is they have each other. and that means everything to this worrier of a mother who doesn’t totally love the idea of her babies growing up. :)

a few photos from our morning…

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kindergarten, i hope you’re ready! because here comes my handsome mister samson!!! and he’s SO ready!

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second breakfast on a park bench!

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you see what i mean!? SO ready! he kept saying, “we don’t want to be late!” haha. bless him. also, please note he made sure to wear ALL his googly eye clothing at once yesterday (eyes on his shirt and also his pants “to match my backpack!”)

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this big girl who conquered kindergarten like it was nothing last year! i hope and pray first grade is just as good to her. i’m so excited to see all she learns and questions and explores this coming year!

first day of school 2017

the nicest papa for doing the majority of the backpacking lugging yesterday. all those back to school supplies are HEAVY.

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Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.”

— one of our favorite books we love to read at the start of each school year, oh, the places you’ll go by dr. seuss!


for those who want clothing sources: my RED RUFFLE SWEATER, DENIM JEANS, and BOOTIES (similar color boot HERE.). samson’s MONSTER SWEATER and SWEATPANTS and BLUE SNEAKERS. eleanor’s NYC T-SHIRT, KITTY CAT JEANS and SNEAKERS. eleanor’s backpack HERE and samson’s backpack no longer available but from target.

  1. Natali

    Awww little sweethearts! Best of luck to them at school!

  2. Rena

    All the best to him! I’m impressed he won’t to come late :) Time flies … 16 years passed since our son had his first day at school …
    xx Rena

  3. Lele

    Samson has my whole heart. Such a boy!

  4. Trisha F

    I love that although you always look so dressed up your kids are always dressed like real kids, not fashion models. Thank you for keeping them real!
    Also DYING to see the tour of the new place :)

    • josh

      Me too! :-)

    • TAZA

      i can’t wait to share more of the new space once we feel like we aren’t running around with like chickens with our heads cut off! haha! hopefully soon! thanks for the sweet words!

  5. Caitlin

    Oh gosh. My baby is only 14 months and I cried reading this. I remember like yesterday tiny baby Samson making his first appearance on the blog! Slow down, time!!

  6. Michelle

    As long-time readers, we all have watched your children grow up and followed their journey along side you and this makes me cry! I am so happy for Eleanor and Samson! You are raising them so well and must be so proud to see their progress. How lucky they are to be raised by such loving parents! Their first grade and kindergarten classes are SO LUCKY to have them in their classes! No doubt they will be positive examples, leaders and a light to all they come in contact with. I love how being close in age they are which will allow them to have one another to be able to look after one another in school! I just want to say, Good job on all your hard work and efforts in your parenting, you are doing an amazing job! Happy new school year!

    • TAZA

      michelle, thank you for these sweet words. it means so much. xoxo

  7. Violet

    Your kids have the most radiant smiles. You can just see the happiness beaming out of them like sunshine! I’m sending my best wishes to Eleanor and Samson for a great school year, but I’m with you: it looks like they’ve got this down!

  8. Adrienne

    Having siblings close in age is so great! My brother and I were a year apart in school and I feel like we were really lucky. My oldest 2 are like that as well…this year they are in 1st & 2nd grade and talk about how they play together at recess and sit by each other and their friends at lunch. I love that they love each other and have one another to rely on. It definitely makes me feel better sending them off each day. Hope your kiddos have a great year!

    • TAZA

      love hearing this. crossing my fingers it’s how it goes for my little ones as well as the grow through the grades together!!! good luck this year, mama!

  9. Rose J.

    Sweet Eleanor & that Samson has yoursmile, and he looks so much like you! Hope they have a great school year! xo

  10. Nadia

    Haha I almost got my son the same Star Wars backpack! 🎒 We ended up getting a BB8 backpack 🤓

  11. sarah

    You have the most adorable family! I love keeping up with y’all!:) It makes me so excited to have children one day!

  12. Remaliah Lacombe

    Such beautiful children in spirit on the inside and on the outside! You continue to inspire me in how you live as a family and how you parent. Yours is my current favourite space on this big wide web & I love what you celebrate about life and the beauty you capture. Your two little big people are sure to have a great fun year learning xxx

    • TAZA

      this comment means so much! thank you for taking the time to write it, remaliah! xoxo

  13. Ashley F.

    And now I’m crying…

  14. Tamara

    A beautiful post @taza, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. I will remember (and search your archives!!) if I have the chance to have children of my own one day.
    Thanks, Tamara

  15. so sweet, and I can’t imagine there’s a mama on the planet that doesn’t get emotional. I’ve had such a hard time with our twins starting kindergarten, but so thankful they have each other, as you are.

  16. Sarah Klingler

    They are so sweet:)

  17. Patricia

    I dont have children yet but these momments must be very emotional!! As I Always say, I would like to have a family like yours. Hope you can show us soon the new appartment. Regards from Spain (you have to come again one day!!)

  18. brittany

    oh gosh, how are they so big?!?! this brings me so many emotions!! my baby girl will start kindergarten next year and i’ll never be ready… it just happens so quickly! i have kept up with your fam for so long through your bloggy, and it is unreal how fast time seems to go… i remember your posts before eleanor was even born! and then… a precious new baby! and so on… oh, life!!! so crazy fast. but your family is as beautiful as can be, and i love all the good you guys are putting into the world. including your sweet babes off to school!!! hope the new place is going well. :) xoxo

  19. good luck to them both! they look super excited to go so i’m sure they’ll do great :)
    this did make me a little sad though as i just finished school and its finally sunk in that i’ll never get to go back. its so true though that you never know what you have until its gone, i hope all 3 of your kids enjoy every second! xx

  20. I am having a little tear too. They look ready, why cant we moms keep up. I think we need our children to help us keep moving forward. Much love and blessings for a great school year to you and your family!

  21. Lauren

    SO CUTE! they are such smart kids! I am trying to wrap my head around that I will be in school this year! In a whirlwind I got accepted to a Ucla screenwriting program and start in a few weeks! I haven’t been to school
    In 6+ years!! Eek!! Loved looking at these pictures of your sweet babes going off to school! You have prepared them well.

  22. Natalie Tran

    Reading about how close Eleanor and Samson are makes me so happy. It reminds me of my childhood with my sister and I being 11 months apart so we were almost always in the same school. I feel like their bond can get only stronger from now on.

  23. K'Bouter

    Good luck this year!

  24. Zuzana

    Dear Naomi, I would like to ask you about permision to use one of your beautiful photo with you and your kids.
    (from this post –
    It should be on a poster to motivate kids and adults to read and go to local library (in Czech Republic) in witch I work.
    I read your blog regularly for several years to improve my english and must say love your photos, articles, travel diaries…
    Would it be posibble?
    Have a nice day.

  25. That first picture is precious & priceless! What a memory that will conjure up in 10 years!

  26. Kelly

    Samson is in kindergarten now??? What? I remember when he was born! Ahh, that makes me feel old!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

  27. fefe

    Gosh, seeing these kiddos go off to school makes me feel so OLD. I’ve been reading this blog for so long! haha :)

  28. Taylor

    This is a quote I have in my classroom! I hope they had a wonderful first day of school!