Thomas is leaving at the end of June! Although I've been "doing daycare" for over ten years now, I still heave a sigh at the departure of certain children. Thomas is one of them. He's been so much fun: articulate and funny, stubborn, creative in his mischief. I love the feisty ones! Now, I am gaining more patience with the ones who start out meek, weepy, and clingy, because experience has taught me that with love and support, the odd challenge, and steadily increasing expectations, they generally evolve into delightful, thoughtful, calm and happy children. Their shaky beginning is well worth the outcome. Still, I have to admit that my heart prefers the in-yer-face and up-yer-nose ones with lots of spirit and bravado. The ones who start with me roaring their displeasure. It's so much satisfaction to roll up my sleeves and meet them head to head, and come to a state of mutual respect. He's one of that band, for sure! Yes, I'll miss him. (He's also very loud, and so is his mother... I won't miss that at all! It's really the only downside I can think of, though. Not such a small one for me, though, because my tolerance for noise is low. A strange quirk of character for someone in this biz, I know, but it does mean that my home is generally very peaceful, despite the mobs of children in it!) I need to plan a goodbye party for Thomas! Today, we were visited by a new child, a three-year-old boy who will start the middle of next week. I think he'll be fun. He spent a good two hours with us at the Park by the River, and meshed very well with the boys. I'm looking forward to it! Alice's mother has told me she's expecting baby number two. This doesn't always change the status of the elder child, but in this case, Alice will be at home with mom as of the end of December. Lots of time to find a replacement, though, and a good time to be looking. The two surges in people looking for care occur in September and January. George's younger brother, Dwayne, starts in September. He'll be a year old by then. They come in, they become part of the family, they roll on out again. My fluid daycare family. Such fun!