The boys had their first interscholastic competition a few weeks ago. They’d heard about it at school for weeks. The boys are very concrete learners at this point, so they were scheduled to compete in the spelling competition. There isn’t a level for first graders, so they got to compete with second and third graders. Yay for leveling up!! A month before the meet, we looked at a few of their spelling words. Then, because I’m a slacker mom, we next looked at words the week of the competition. We got through about 10% of the words. There was a list of 600 words. They looked at some of the words in class too. I told Ed that I wanted them to do well, but not so well that they advanced to the next level. I’m a supportive mom like that. A few days before the competition, there was a parent teacher conference about the plans for the day of the competition. There was a carpool planned at the school which would leave promptly at 6:15 a.m. Yes, in the morning. No, I am not a morning person. I’m not even a remotely pleasant person in the morning. I need green tea first. Or really, just time. Leave me alone for the first two hours of my morning. I can be pleasant after that.
So on the morning of the competition, I told Ed that he could sleep in and take the day off and if the boys advanced to the state level, he could take kid duty. I got up at 5:30 a.m. (It’s a godawful time of day and I don’t wish it on anyone.) and then got the boys up at 5:50 a.m. so we could be at the school in time for the carpool. My biggest concern was finding the school where their competition was to take place. It was dark when we left the house. We arrived at the school and met the principal who said she would be leading the caravan.
The caravan left town promptly at 6:15 a.m. (I’m going to have to keep putting in that a.m. part. I am definitely not a morning person. I never have been. I never will be.) It was still dark. The boys had their hand held video games. I turned on the kids bop channel from my iPhone. I promised my ears that we would listen to regular music as soon as possible. The boys and I discussed caravans and how to spell it and the definition. We discussed sun rises and told them to look behind us for the sky to change color. While I am not a morning person, there was a certain magical quality to the palate of colors the sky chose to use as the sun rose that morning. We talked about cities and country and farms. As the sun slowly rose, we were able to make out verdant pastures and black cows in those pastures grazing on the green grass. Secretly I wished that we had been able to stop so I could take pictures of the sun rise and the pastures. Secretly, I also wished that I was still in my bed. I decided to not share either of those dreams with the boys. I didn’t want them to think I didn’t want to be with them (because I did) and I didn’t want them to try waking me up at 5:30 in the morning (because I don’t).
We finally arrived at the school where their competition was to take place. I knew we would be waiting for a while before the boys actually got to their competitions, but as I was unfamiliar with the school, I wanted plenty of time to get where we were going. As it turns out, we didn’t need four hours. Who knew?? The boys played their video games along with their friends. For a while, there was a table lined with similarly sized boys playing their own video games. Occasionally, each boy would look at the video game of the friend sitting next to them. Kids would be taken away at the hour and half hour depending on the competition in which they were scheduled to compete.
We arrived at the school around 7:15. The boys were scheduled for 11:30. I’m pretty sure that constitutes poor planning on my part.
I spent the morning chatting with one of my good friends who happens to have a boy in my boys class, so it was a morning well spent!
Finally, the boys went off for their competition. They are some really concrete little guys. Their section was spelling. They don’t do any of that drawing or poetry interpretation nonsense.
After they got back from their competition, I had to do my duty, which was grading another level of spelling tests. I had though it would take half an hour. It took two. I had left at 12:30 without eating lunch because I thought I would be back quickly. I had been wrong. I most definitely should have eaten. At 2:30 p.m., I left the grading room to find my children and the food. The boys had been snacking all day, so they didn’t want any lunch. I thought I was going to pass out. (Not that I’m melodramatic or anything.) I made a sandwich and ate it. I told the boys that we would not be staying until the end, that we would only stay to find out how they had done and then we would be going home. If they received ribbons, they could receive them at school. We checked their tests, said goodbye to some friends and made our way back to the suburban.
I made my way to the nearest convenience store and bought a large diet coke. The boys asked for all sorts of treats and got quite a few of them. I was beyond caring. As long as the snack wouldn’t make them intolerably hyper, they could have it. After the convenience store, we got back on the interstate to head home.
The many grazing, black cows we had seen turned out to be many different colors and species, like donkeys and horses and goats and brown and white cows.
Logan fell asleep on the drive home and I was really jealous. Trip stayed awake and we listened to the kids station the whole way home and talked about how well he did at the competition.
(Relax! I took this picture at home.)
We got home around 4:00 and I got the boys in the house and told Ed they had done very well and were now his responsibility and took myself upstairs for a two hour nap.
(The boys did do well in their very first competition, but not well enough to place for the state competition. This Momma is one proud Momma!)