Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Bus Stop Diaries

August 24, 2015
Dear Diary,

Welp, here it is. The first day of school. New clothes, bags packed full of supplies, reconnecting with friends. The bus should be here soon; I really hope we don't have the same problems of the substitute driver always being so late as we did last year. The bus is here, hooray! And then the bus left. Just blew right past our stop with many (many) kids and stopped at the other entrance to our neighborhood. Did...did they combine the stops this year? So we all picked up bags and sped-walked to the other stop just to watch the bus pull away. The other parents said another bus is coming but it's getting late. Maybe we should just drive to school since it is the first day and all. Yes, that's what we'll do. So we packed up back into the car and away we went. I'm sure that it's just first day bumps; it's not like this bus stop hasn't been right here for years. Oh, wait. It has. Well, I'm sure that tomorrow will be better....

August 25, 2015
Dear Diary,

Can you believe that Noah is SIX today?! I can't. He's really excited about his birthday and we're bringing cupcakes and small goody bags for all of his classmates. I hope that his new teacher doesn't mind; it's hard with his birthday being the second day of school and not knowing his teacher's rules and all. It will be so much easier for him carrying things today. The principal called the house last night to apologize for the bus snafu so I'm sure that it has been resolved and they did say there was to be an early bus and a late bus. The early bus came at the late bus's time and I started to get worried. With only five minutes before the bell was due to ring, I decided to drive them, muttering some not-so-nice things under my breath. I hope that the kids didn't hear me. At least the 'late' bus showed up! As we were getting into the car so we hopped back out and ran to catch it. I'm really not comfortable with how this is going diary; how are they supposed to transition to school without that critical time buffer? Oh well, back to school night is tonight so I'm sure we'll get some answers then.

August 26, 2015
Dear Diary,

Noah had a great birthday! He really liked all of his presents and I got to meet their teachers at Back to School night and had ice cream cake and chips and salsa for dinner. The principal certainly apologized for the bus issues but we don't know what's happening with them still. I really hoped that it wouldn't be late today - I've got a lot of work to do and need to get to the office. We decided to play it safe and waited at the 'early' bus stop - along with the rest of the neighborhood. Hee hee, I wonder what the 'late' bus driver thought when she arrived to an empty stop? When the 'early' bus pulled up at 9, the driver just about flipped out that she couldn't take all of the kids. (There was room for all of them. Our neighborhood is the last stop on the route. She took them all.) I'm confused diary; why would the school send two buses to the same small neighborhood and tell half of the kids that they can't ride one of them and have to wait for a bus that won't pick them up until just before classes start? In other news I finally finished going over my shelf life report. Man but do I have a lot of stuff to block! I wonder how far Noah has gotten in his Lego Batman game? I'm crossing my fingers that tomorrow the routes will be sorted out. Tonight I go grocery shopping for Noah's birthday party. I must remember to get booze. And lots of it.

To be continued....

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Six years ago today, a special little person was born. Well, maybe not so 'little' *cough10lbs7ozcough* but a wonderfully snuggly and squishy little boy.

And what a little boy you've become: all legs and gap-toothed smiles, wheeling wildly through this life. You feel so much; all the joys, all the sadness but through it all remain so kind and loving and empathetic. You still love climbing onto my lap when we're relaxing on weekend mornings, you doing your thing (usually playing Minecraft or watching videos about playing Minecraft) and me doing mine but we're close and together, my arms encircling you and you lean back against my chest, so I can kiss your head and snuffle your hair. In moments like those, the world slips away and we go back in time to when it was just the two of us; Daddy at work and Noelle at school. I know these moments will grow further apart so I hold onto them as tight as I can now.

You are so full of life, going full bore towards everything. There is no halfway with you. When you get frustrated, you throw down your pencil, your hands up, complaining you can't do it yet the moment my back is turned, you pick it right back up and do it. You are so, so capable my little man. You love to play with other people but I love watching you play by yourself. You are lost in your own little world of Legos and Minecraft, heroes and villains, ninjas and pirates. You look just like your daddy but you have my attitude. I'm really sorry about that.

You are becoming your own real person: joining Cub Scouts, learning how to swim, conquering kindergarten and now taking on first grade. You love Lego Batman and Minecraft and Mario. You cheer for the Orioles and the Ravens like a good Baltimorean but aren't defined by sports. You are the tallest in your class and the youngest but it will get easier, I promise. You love dark chocolate and jelly beans meaning that I have to share with you but I'm rewarded thousands of time over with giant hugs and sweet kisses. You are tough but still wrap yourself around Bla Bla every night and adore your big sister. I will miss Five but I'm so excited to meet Six.

I love you so, so much baby boy. Happy birthday!



Monday, August 24, 2015

They're going back! Maybe...

Today marked the first day of school for our county. I've got a third and a first grader this year; how in the world did that happen? Curse you Father Time and your slow but inexorable waltz towards entropy! We had the tools (supplies. So. Many. Supplies.), we had the talent (braaaaains), and we had the new outfits (natch.) We were so, so ready. (Fine, I; I was so, so ready for them to go back mostly so that they could sleep later.) Because we seem to live in a parallel universe, they sleep in during the school year as the bus doesn't pick up until 9 am (if we're lucky) for a 9:20 start. This has the effect of school mornings being rather enjoyable for pretty much everyone.

School! What fun! Wheeee!
 Since this isn't our first rodeo, we left the house at 8:45 to get up to the bus stop as the bus tends to arrive a tad early at the beginning of the year. We reconnected with friends, traded notes on who had what teacher, and of course, posed for pictures.

90 degrees and wearing a scarf. Like a boss.
Well, Noelle did. Someone else may have been a little grumpy about having to put down his Lego Minecraft get ready for school.

Just take the picture already, woman!
Just a bit after 9, the bus pulls up...and passes right on by. Wait, what?! While it stopped at the second neighborhood stop at the top of the street, the rest of us grabbed backpacks stuffed with supplies (so many supplies!) and hauled ass up the hill to the stop...where the bus pulls away.

What the actual fuck?!

Is there a second bus for our neighborhood? Did the driver really just blow off a group of 25 kids? Ours is not a new stop, not by a long shot. Kids are bewildered, parents are frantic so I called the school and asked politely - for me - what in the name of pants was happening. It turns out that there are two buses servicing our neighborhood now, an early one and a later one with the usual bus driver. However, the later bus was running late (no shit, Sherlock) due to an accident somewhere but was on its way. How very reassuring given that it was now 9:12 and they are expected to be in their classrooms by 9:15. And did no one in the administration think to inform anyone on the route as to the changes seeing as a bus LEFT A BUNCH OF KIDS AT A REGULAR BUS STOP.

Breathes heavily.

I had to get to work so we tossed everything into the car and took off for school, fully expecting to see the bus come barreling around the bend any second.

Nope. No bus.

Of course once on Main Street, there was traffic due to a closed lane. Did they not get the memo that schools were back in session as of today and maybe it would be a better idea to wait until, oh, 9:30 to start that shit? Clearly not.

Rolling to a stop, I pretty much barked 'Go! Go! Go!' to the kids, shouting out room numbers as they dashed into the building, dragging their supplies (so, so many supplies.)

I really, really hope that I got their room numbers right otherwise enjoy your day in whatever class I sent you to, guys.

Don't ever change, Baltimore County. Don't ever change.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Physics is hard, yo

Some days I think that I can be perfectly happy without touching booze again in my life...and some days send me straight for the bottle. I'll let you decide where this day falls.

Scene - The lab. My office.
Annnnnnd Action!

Co-worker: Did you take the samples up the street this morning?

Me: Huh?

CW: Did you take the samples up the street this morning?

Me: Oh...yeah.

CW: Why didn't you take the box?

The Box.
Me: Because it didn't fit in the bucket.

The Bucket.
CW: Does it have to fit in the bucket?

Me: For carrying samples? It helps.

Not fitting in the bucket.
If this wasn't a fitting end to the week then I don't know what is.