(Apologies to Myla Goldberg.)
Nothing much happening here. Except the upper school musical. Preschool graduation. Random weekend trips to see giant squid and rocketships. An afternoon at the water steps, looking at too much of Pittsburgh humanity while Olivia figured out how to use her sister as a human dam. Chickensitting. Off-the-record Chinese class. An Olivia-and-Bea milestone.
We've managed to pack in a lot over the last 6 weeks. Too bad I've been too lazy to blog about it. Let's see if I can fix that.
File this under "I can't really believe it worked"
Olivia has been wanting to make some money. We have been wanting to escape the house without a four-year old barnacle and a slightly moody preteen and the capricious schedules of babysitters. When Olivia begged to babysit Bea, I thought "Sweet fancy moses, this can only end badly." But she persisted. And I relented.
We went around the block for a drink. We watched our phones. We marveled at the lack of a call and wondered if that meant all was well, or that the only one who knew how to use the phone was dead or maimed. We walked back to find Olivia reading every single library book to Bea, while Bea cozied up next to her. My jaw, it dropped. There was no crying. No yelling. No throwing of Itchy Frog or slamming of doors. You guys, I can taste freedom, and it tastes a lot like a $2 an hour babysitting rate.
Bea really likes her protein
It feels kind of... twisted to laugh at these two incidents. Yet I do.
- We agreed to chicken sit (okay, who am I kidding... I begged to do it) a gaggle of chicks. John retrieved Bea from school and told her they were going to pick up Miss Sarah's chickens. "YUM. I *like* chicken."
- Our hotel in DC provides a goldfish upon request. We requested. They delivered. I told Bea the goldfish was in our room. Her eyes lit up and she yelped, "Can I eat it?" We kept a very close eye on that fish for the rest of the weekend. I'm glad to report that we returned it in one -- uneaten -- piece.
The hills are alive... with the sound of music
To our surprise, Liv declared she wanted to audition for the upper school musical. She managed to get cast as Gretl, the youngest child in The Sound of Music. (I suspect in no small part because she is the tiniest person in the upper school. But to be fair, she was really good in the performance.)
We survived two months of daily play practice after school. We survived two months of random bursts of "So long, farewell..." and "Edelweiss." Most importantly, we survived three hours in the auditorium watching the upper school musical.
I'm super proud of Liv for wanting to do this, for putting a huge amount of effort into it, and for agreeing to wear that horrible curtain costume. I'm not sure I'd have that much chutzpah.
Nobody puts Baby in a corner
Speaking of being proud of Liv: She moved up to level 3 in ballet, and she rocked her spring performance at the Byham. She was waitlisted at CAPA for the dance program -- did I mention she spent a month with the Bodiography director choreographing and practicing an original dance for her audition? I'm not sure if I want her to get in (Yay, free public school with lots of arty cool people) or not (OMG, giant public school downtown with a lot of people I don't know). The decision is out of my hands; if there's a vacancy in the 7th grade dance program, she's in. If not... oh well.
Pink dresses aren't sad enough for breakups
Milestone: First middle school semi-formal dance.
Related milestone: First breakup with a boyfriend at a school dance.
Yeah. So. Olivia was dating (for definitions of dating that equal eating lunch together and holding hands at the school ice skating party) a boy, much to John's chagrin. (My argument of "this is what happened when *I* was in 6th grade didn't particularly sway him.) We'll call him Webster.
Before their first semi-formal, Liv decided she wanted to break up with him. Webster wasn't paying her enough attention, and he tried to squirm his way out of the dance.
Hope and I took Liv shopping for a beautiful dress and some strappy silver (but modestly low heeled!) sandals. She went to a friend's house to get ready, then went back to the friend's house to spend the night. When I picked her up the next morning, she had the pink dress and a black dress I'd never seen before.
"Mom, I tossed Webster to the curb. But the pink dress wasn't sad enough. So H. gave me a black dress. I changed into that, and told Webster that it seems like our feelings have changed and we should break up. Then, after I broke up with him, I put the pink dress back on and danced with all the 8th graders."