We're two weeks into the school year and it's been nothing but high fives and happy thoughts around my house, about sending the youngest to kindergarten.

And I've got three reasons why all moms should be celebrating with me.

Of course we all love our babies very much.  We have big hugs waiting for them when we send them off in the morning and when we bring them home, and life is more rewarding because of them.  But a lil "me time" is good for a mom!

Here are five big reasons why moms are celebrating the beginning of school, and that goes double if the youngest child has gone off to kindergarten.

1.  Free time!  If your situation is anything like mine, this is the first time in about nine years that you've had the entire block of time between 8am and 3pm all to yourself. With the last one off to kindergarten, there's no one around needing help with glue and glitter during the day, and we don't have to stop what we're doing to change batteries in dead toys.  And this will be the case, tomorrow too.  And the next day.  Score.

2.  Errands!  Mama can make a trip to the dentist and actually read a magazine or scroll through the phone without being pulled away to wipe someone's nose or answer a question about what's up with the drilling sound.  Grocery store trips are quicker, and there's time to sit down with an event planner and actually plan something.  We can focus.

3.  Work!  Your colleagues might suddenly notice the absence of Disney music in the background on conference calls, and they might get faster responses to emails.  Did I tell you about the time I was on the phone with a high profile government official, trying to do a serious interview, when my potty-training toddler screamed all sing songy, "Mamaaaaaaa!  I'm duh-uhnnnn.  Come wipe my buuuuutt!"  I thanked him for his time and wrapped it up quick.  Now that school is on, we can get more done at home and at the office too, with fewer butt references.

It helps when they're excited to start school.  My youngest had watched her two older sisters enjoy elementary school long enough, and she was totally up for the challenge of starting her own adventure.  She loves to learn, she's helpful, and she has a really curious spirit that will benefit her no matter what grade she's in.  That makes it easy to send her off, and look forward to going through the backpack together when she comes home.

When I was 5, I was the kid that cried about going to school and my mom had to push me onto the bus while the driver pulled.  THAT would have been hard.  Sorry mom!  She might have celebrated my starting kindergarten on a whole 'nother level.

I guess this is the key.  The kids are going to go to school regardless, so the best moms will live in the moment and make the most of it, whether the kids are at home or away, right?  Free time is refreshing, and it helps us get ready for whatever comes our way after school.  As long as we have chocolate.  Lots and lots of chocolate.

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