Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Last Week of Schooooooool!!!

Summer is in the air, interwebs.  This is Ethan's (and most of California's, I'm guessing) last week of school and the "let's spend 5 instructional days post-grade-hand-in playing UNO and having water balloon fights has commenced.  Bulletin boards lining the hallway that were just last week crammed with rainbow colored fish & 1st grade haikus about the four seasons are now stripped down naked and the hallway echoes just a little bit.  I spent yesterday afternoon dropping food coloring into various bowls of cake batter to make rainbow cupcakes for today's field trip to a local park.  In a few days, my baby will be a 2nd grader.

As sort of the big finale to their academic year, Ethan's class presented a theatrical production last Thursday called "Life Cycles," about biological phenomenon like adaption, food chain dynamics and metamorphosis--things I knew absolutely nothing about in 1st grade in the 70's.  Ethan & three of his friends were snakes, complete with hisssssing s's & slick sun glasses. They were, surprise surprise, the comic relief of the play, showing up when the hosts were trying to move things along, dropping one liners and being cheeky.  I'd post all eleventy billion videos I took during those 26 minutes, but considering there are 18 other kids in the videos, and I'd like to not end up on every other 1st grade parents' list of "people we loathe for putting pictures of our kid online without our permission," I'm not going to show you any.  Yeah, sorry about that. There'll probably be some on my Facebook page at some point and really only about 4 of you read this anyway, and you're my FB friends in the first place, so.  Fortunately, my iPhone took such horribly blurry pictures of the event, that I feel totally confident sharing a few of these pictures, as none of the children are really all that identifiable, including my own.

The cast party came complete with watermelon and juice boxes.  Just like Broadway.

Friday night, after dinner we went for a little walk in our 'hood. This tree?  Is massive.  Like three giant trunks all coming out of one tree massive.  I have to admit, a lot about why I fell in love with our house is because owning in this neighborhood meant I got to drive past this beast every day.  Nerd girl (um, me.) gets a little "ooooh, its like one of the Ents from Lord of the Rings"-y when she (I) drive/s by it. But if that tree's an Ent, that probably means the spiders I constantly find in our house--big, ugly brown things that come up through our drains and hang out in our showers and sinks (want to come for a visit?!) must be some sort of Shelob.  Ah, Mordor mountain living.

After that little adventure, we came home & roasted marshmallows in our little fire place.

Sir Persnickety von Fussypants prefers his marshmallows only the slightest bit toasted.  As in, wave them over the weakest flame of the lot for about 10 seconds, declare the whole process too complex and highly flammable, insist that you like them "this" way.  "This" way being not at all different from how they come out of the bag, except with a little puncture mark from the fork.  Apparently that puncture mark is where all the marshmallowy goodness is for him.

And that little 3-wick cintronella candle?  Is a joke.  Which meant that after about 3 marshmallows a piece (which really is quite enough, says my logical brain), we made the decision to head back indoors to avoid becoming a mosquito buffet.  But still--evening walks & roasting marshmallows! Yay summer!!

Saturday, Ethan went bowling and to Benihana's for lunch while I did exciting things like laundry and researching how to make your own cat food (a different post for a different day).  After that, we met friends at their pool club and stayed through dinner.  Note to self: you made the "never eat while in a bathing suit" rule last year for a reason.  Seriously.

As if all of that wasn't enough, on Sunday we got all rustic summer lovin' and joined friends at a honest to goodness, old-timey swimming hole in the mountains.  Like, a clearing in the trees and rocks, filled with running water, complete with rock cliffs for the I'm-wicked-invisible-and/or-wicked-stupid teenagers to take death-defying leaps into the waiting water below.

A quick Blue Steel pose before the frolicking begins...

so for those keeping score, that's one cliff to dive off of, one kick ass rope swing in the corner for soaring over the water and floats.  I'm afraid the pool pales in comparison. 

and look at all the pretty trees!

There was much floating aimlessly, like Sundays are meant to be. 

I didn't get in because the water felt like freezing cold needles jabbing at my ankles.  But this kid spent 2 hours floating in the just-barely-melted-icicles and pitched a pouty fit when it was time to get out.  Even though his lips were purple and his fingers were shriveled to tiny little pasty prunes.

Yesterday, Ethan woke up cranky & fake sick.  So I fake took his temperature and decided to go with it.  We ran errands....

cruising through the beer & wine aisle with a cart full of cake mix and frosting.  So very classy. 

Ethan helped me make the rainbow cupcakes.  Again--he's not sick.  So the breathing all over the cake batter?  Juuuuust fine.  He's an excellent stirrer.

will his cowlick ever go away?  I feel like it keeps getting bigger and crazier.  Like his hair is punishing us for hacking it off.

Really, these are more like tie-dye cupcakes than rainbow, but we can't all be Martha Stewart.

After the errands and the baking, I decided to start summer vacation reading a little early.  I haven't heard anything about required summer reading from E's school, but we're going to spend 30 minutes a day doing quiet reading during the weeks of summer break.  Ethan and I went out onto the porch with our books and two hours later, we were still reading.  Ethan read his Magic Treehouse book from cover to cover, announcing the completion of each chapter as he got to it. I got to finish my book, The Three Weismanns of Westport, which I loved.  And I got to watch Ethan throw himself completely into a book for the first time ever.  He's always loved being read to, and I'm pretty sure he's reading at grade level at this point, thanks to a teacher who didn't write him off two weeks into the year (but I'm not bitter or anything...).  But he's never just sat with a book and read 70 pages in one sitting.

He was pretty proud of himself, too.

This morning, I walked a much improved, especially considering he wasn't remotely close to sick to begin with, Ethan, and his classmates to the park for their end of year field trip.  After a quick run down of the rules from the teachers, the swarm of 1st graders descended on the play structures like a biblical, gleefully screamy plague of locusts.

How no one lost a finger on this contraption, I'll never know. So many kids crawling over each other to get to the top.

Seriously, is some catalogue photographer standing next to me tell him to strike these poses? 

When kick ball games and potato sack races collide...

all grownsed up.

I could hear my own hamstring tearing just watching him kick the ball...

No idea what was funny here, but omg, the cute!

Bring it, summer!!!

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