Sending your kids off to school can bring mixed emotions. While part of you is happy to send them on their way, another part of you may be sad to realize that they’re growing up so quickly.
But having a tradition in place to commemorate the start of each school year can be a fun way to ease the transition — and make some long-lasting memories. That’s why Carina Cansino, a mom from Dallas, Texas, decided to start this adorable back-to-school tradition with her son, Gus.
Every year, she has Gus put his painted handprint on the back of a shirt to display the size of his hand on that year’s first day of school. The shirt has spaces for Gus to add handprints all the way through 12th grade, so he and his mom will be able to see how far he’s come!
In 2019, the mom posted a photo of Gus smiling in his shirt on X, formerly known as Twitter, complete with his two handprints (one for pre-K and one for his first day of kindergarten), and he couldn’t look more adorable if he tried:
Let’s begin the first year of elementary pic.twitter.com/PZCBQKZb8v
— Carina (@carinawitha_C) August 19, 2019
Others seem to love this sweet little tradition, as the tweet received tons of likes and retweets.
X user @imkentheman loved this idea so much, they want to start it with their kids. It’s never too late to start a new family tradition!
Omg I wanna start this but I already missed two grades lol
— Daddy Ken (@imkentheman) August 20, 2019
If you’d like to try this out with your kids, you can purchase a similar shirt through Etsy.
The OliviaBelleDesignsUS shop, for example, has one nearly identical to the one Gus wore, and it can be customized with your child’s name and year of graduation, of course.
Buy the Class of Handprint shirt on Etsy for $25.95.
If you’d like to support the mom who first brought this idea to your attention, Cansino announced on X in 2019 that she was going to start making and selling these shirts.
She wrote that anyone interested in buying should send her a direct message:
Dm me with inquiries if you’re interested!
— Carina (@carinawitha_C) August 20, 2019
For her, this was all about creating special memories.
“I wanted something that my son and I could enjoy not just now, but when he becomes an adult,” she told Insider. “I know one day we’ll both look back at all the photos and cherish all the great memories. It’s the best part of being a mom.”
Hopefully this inspires you to make some special memories with your little ones as they head off to school this year!