It begins on the first day of school. You send your child off with bulging backpack and extra bags. Sometimes you even need to take a few things in yourself to make sure everything on THE LIST makes it to school safely.
After that it becomes a trickle. Small, perhaps even unnoticed at first. More and more things go to school and fewer and fewer things come home.
(Except hundreds of dead trees. I love my children's art and appreciate being kept informed, but the sheer volume of paper I push on a daily basis is exhausting--and completely off topic.)
Every major school event is accompanied by the bursting "Lost and Found" box in the hallway, waiting for parents to lay claim to items that the students deny ever having seen before in their lives.
Up until this point the Princess has managed to only lose one pair of mittens. One pair in 2 years--I can live with that (though I DID scour the Lost and Found box, and they weren't there). We have a very strict no toys at school policy, with no plans to ever, EVER change it. It really works for us.
But this year the migration is off with a bang. Last week the Princess came home without her raincoat. It went unnoticed at first--it had been rainy and cool in the morning and was sunny and warm in the afternoon. I ASSUMED it was in her backpack.
It wasn't. I asked her what the deal was and she just shrugged. I told her to please find her coat and bring it home.
The next day, Friday, I was clearer: It's going to rain all weekend. Find. That. Coat. TODAY.
Yesterday it was pouring rain. I do have one spare coat in the upstairs closet. It's too heavy to call a jacket, too light to call a winter coat, and not waterproof enough to use in heavy rain. But it's all I had left. I sent her in the coat with a stern lecture and a note for the teacher, asking that she be given time to look for her coat.
Apparently time is not enough.
Really, NO coat. She didn't even bring home the spare coat. ARRRRRRGGGGHHHH!
I asked her what happened. "Madam saw that I had a coat so we didn't look for another one."
When asked why we were now missing TWO coats, she just shrugged. "I don't know. They just disappear. I can just wear a sweater you know."
Yes, the great school migration has begun.
It's going to be a looooooooooooong winter.
I thought about calling the school today but the open house is on Thursday. I'll find the coats and talk to the teacher all at the same time. Maybe together we can slow the migration.