My kids went back to school today. When they were younger this day was always kind of a relief after a long summer of swimming lessons, supervised playdates, mommy-and-me classes, and long outdoor activities in the hot sun. But the last few years, since they're older, I really miss them when they go back to school. I enjoy the time we spend together in the summer going to lunch, watching PG movies, shopping with my daughter, or hanging out at the beach with my son.
I'm not going to get all sentimental here about how "it was only yesterday that they left for their first day of Kindergarten," but I am going to write about the first day of school. In Europe. Cuz that's what this blog's about.
The photo above is one of my cousins in Germany on his first day of Kindergarten. He is holding a Schultüte, oddly named because Tüte means "bag" and it's really more of a school cone than a school bag. It's filled with chocolate and sweets, pencils and erasers, and other good stuff. It's a German and Austrian tradition that every child receives one from his or her parents on the first day of school. And I don't think there's a German child in the last 50 years that doesn't have a photo of himself or herself holding one.