Welcome To The Busyness That Is May

Do y’all know the cartoon, Paw Patrol?

I figured not, and that’s okay.  Because, before I was the proud owner of the most recent toddler living in our house… neither did I.  But then we ended up with this very busy baby, who grew to be a very busy toddler, and, regardless of my strong opinions that young kids really don’t need to watch TV, and LOOK AT WHAT A GOOD PARENT I AM, BECAUSE THE BOY DIDN’T EVEN REALIZE WE OWNED A TELEVISION SET UNTIL HE WAS FOUR-AND-A-HALF YEARS OLD, I suddenly found myself encouraging Thing 2 to just sit for ten minutes here and let’s see what the TV has to offer us.

Which is how we came to know the pups on Paw Patrol, as well as Peppa Pig and Diego and the Bubble Guppies.

Honestly, I don’t know how I’m not fluent in Spanish, what with all the times Diego has tried to get me to pronounce some animal’s name correctly.  Sadly, my strong alliance to my American accent causes Diego to shake his head in concern that I’m completely hopeless at ever mastering a foreign language, and… well… YES.  He’s pretty much right.

I don’t know how we really got on the subject that I’ll never be able to ask directions to the nearest bathroom when I’m in Mexico, even though I took an entire year of Spanish in high school and periodically yell at Dora for being entirely too bossy, but today, while I was out shopping, I found some miniature pups from Paw Patrol.  They’re basically sixty-cents worth of useless plastic that cost me thirteen American dollars, but when I gave them to Thing 2 this afternoon, he was so smitten… I had an entire fifty minutes of free time, while he was engrossed in having the pups save different tractors from a variety of farming accidents in our living room.

It was the best-spent $13 in our entire budget this year.

Plus, the cleaning lady that I can’t really afford came first thing this morning, while Thing 2 was at preschool, so that fifty minutes’ worth of free time was ENTIRELY FREE.  As in, there was zero-point-zero guilt, because MY BATHROOMS WERE ALREADY SPOTLESS.

I could get used to living in the luxury that I experienced for almost an hour today.

Anyway, I mentioned last night that May has been a month full of ALL THE BUSY, and I wasn’t kidding.  It’s one of the drawbacks of teaching, because suddenly there’s all this stuff that still needs to be accomplished, and you’re staring at the last day of school, which is a matter of days away.  So naturally… I thought that having a rodeo in my 4th grade PE class was a brilliant idea.

11262324_775603262538671_1952871944560401535_nWe’ve been having all kinds of rodeo-style events with my 4th graders, where kids ride horses around the barrels and ride the bulls and participate in horse racing, exactly like the real cowboys on the professional rodeo circuit do.  The only difference is that our rodeo animals don’t need any long-term care, since our barrel horses are hockey sticks and our bulls are scooters.  (It’s the drawback of a poor, private school, where the budget for Physical Education is three dollars.)

(And really?  You haven’t truly laughed until you’ve witnessed the biggest 4th grade jock in your class ride a hockey stick like a stick horse around three chairs that are set up as barrels, while you hold the stopwatch… and then boom!  He trips and falls off his horse and rolls into one of the bulls sitting nearby.  My abs don’t need any extra work for bikini season, after falling to the gym floor to hyena-howl like I did.)

(Don’t worry; he wasn’t hurt.  I only laugh when kids survive their spectacular crashes.  Otherwise, I sympathize with them greatly and use my Blood-Borne Pathogens training to clean up the mess.)

I’ve been spending my evenings lately, getting ready for the next day’s rodeo events, and now I’ve got to get the gold, silver and bronze medals ready, which is going to involve some metal washers and a few cans of spray paint.  Next year, this rodeo is going to be a WINTER event, because our nights have also been filled with spring concerts and soccer, and the people in my house still expect supper.

Last week, Hubs and I went to the boy’s spring band concert.  We have no idea how our son became so musical, because neither Hubs nor I harbor a single, fugitive, musical cell anywhere in our bodies.  I’m the only person on the planet who can admit to playing the violin for six years… and still having no idea how a sharp or a flat needed to be worked into the song.  But… that older boy of ours can rock the piano and the clarinet, and he did just that last Thursday evening.

IMG_3225 IMG_3227IMG_3228Because this is 8th grade and not my first band rodeo (which happened in 6th grade), I now know to quickly snap pictures of the boy when he first walks onto the stage.  Otherwise, that music stand is going to hide his face for the rest of the concert, and every picture I take from then on out will look like this one:

IMG_3234I recognize those knees, though!

Hubs and I sat with our friends, Chris and Becki, because their daughter, Mallory, was playing in the concert, too.  Becki and I quickly learned that we really shouldn’t be allowed to sit together at such events, because of the TALKING FACTOR.

Namely, we both chatted away and animatedly used our hands to talk nonstop, even when songs were being played and Hubs and Chris raised their eyebrows at us, in concern that their wives would be ejected from a concert for a too-loud whisper conversation.

But look!  There’s Mallory, walking onto the stage!

IMG_3215 IMG_3221 IMG_3223And then, as if rodeos and band concerts weren’t enough, we’ve had forty-eleven soccer games this month, too.  They’ve been really fun to go to.  The boy’s soccer team is rocking things this season, as they are winning like crazy.

IMG_3268 IMG_3271 IMG_3275Of course, it’s always fun to sit on the sidelines with Thing 2, where we have to explain to him over and over AND OVER AGAIN that he really DOESN’T have a case for a discrimination lawsuit, since three-year-olds aren’t allowed on the junior high team.  There are always some tears about I WANT OUT THERE TO PLAY, TOO.

And… preschool is still in full swing, too.  I managed to snap these pictures this morning, right before I took Thing 2 to school.

IMG_3283 IMG_3284 IMG_3285 IMG_3296 IMG_3299I have no idea what he was eating, that was dripping down his chin.  Thing 2 is NOT a clean child.  Hubs and I are convinced that Charles M. Schulz created his character, Pigpen, after our younger son, as Thing 2 usually walks around with a cloud of dirt hovering near him.

Anyway, I think you’re all caught up now on everything that’s been going on at the Jedi Manor.

Y’all have a merry weekend.

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