Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Blue & Gold, Pancakes, and Singing for days.

We've had a pretty busy start to the year as far as kid activities, and I'm hoping some of this kind of settles down because I'd like to have a weekend free again. I don't understand these families who have kids in things that require them to be at a game or competition, or traveling, or whatever huge chunks of the year. This is nuts. It's absolutely nuts.

But alas, here's what's been happening.

First up, Jackson had his Blue & Gold Banquet for Boy Scouts. Last year was his first one and all I remembered was how disorganized it was but most importantly, how unnecessarily long it was. With that in mind, we decided that I would take him while Matt, Olivia, and Penelope would just stay home. It didn't seem to make a difference to Jackson either way. It was a cowboy theme so he got to wear his cowboy hat with his uniform, so he was pretty pleased with that.
I said it last year, and I say it again this year, they really need to figure out a better way to do this. Currently it's eat dinner, play games, and then awards. There are so many people who just wanted their award and left, some who left in the middle of awards, and some who gave up and decided they'd just get their stuff at the next meeting. Which is kind of sad. It really needs to be organized so there is a clear uniform inspection area, eat dinner, awards, and then games. That way if people have to duck out early, they are leaving during the games and not during awards which is just over the top rude. We stuck it out until the end but good god, it was awful. Plus the games weren't organized well so Jackson gave up after two (there were four, we think) and so it was us sitting at the table for over an hour waiting for awards.
But it was still nice to have some one on one with Jackson. He's my kid who really needs that and I feel like he sometimes gets lost in the shuffle. He doesn't have the friend sleepovers and hang outs like Olivia does, he doesn't have dance like Olivia does, so really, the only "us" time we have is his nightly reading for school. So it was nice just to hang out with him and hear him talk about stuff that's happening at school.
Plus seeing him on stage (can't miss my little guy in his hat) is always adorable. He was so excited to earn another belt loop but was pretty disappointed that was it. Other kids got bags of stuff, which is weird because we haven't missed a meeting and have done everything those kids have but who knows. It seems kind of disorganized and we never really know what's going on.

So then the next thing we had coming up was the Lake Superior Youth Choir for Olivia. She was chosen (and I say this as if it was a big deal, but it's not really because every fourth grader from her school was, but not everyone turned in their form on time) to participate in a one day singing camp and it would end with a concert of sorts for us to all come see.
I will say that despite the pretty sketchy communication before hand, the day of the camp was extremely organized. I say sketchy communication because it's only open to the first 100 kids who sign up in the Duluth/Superior area (and that's a lot of kids) so we had no idea if she made it or not until two days before when we got an email saying she had to memorize these four songs before Saturday. Which... no way. Literally no way. She got maybe two of them, but if they expect kids to come in knowing all of this, more than two days is needed.
It was kind of nice to see she made the front row since she's so short. I always have a hard time finding her, but her purple shoes and being in the front was helpful!  Pretty much all of our family came to see her sing and she was pretty happy about that.
They all sang and I was so impressed with how well they did as a group considering they were all new to each other, had zero experience in a choral setting, and the performance was excellent. I was most impressed that the kids got on and off the stage seamlessly, they can't even do that at school. So the teachers of this group are just stellar. I was disappointed I couldn't afford to sign her up for the extended sessions so they perform over the spring and summer. Maybe next year I'll have money.

The morning of Olivia's singing thing, Jackson (and Matt) were volunteering at the Boy Scout pancake breakfast event. We bought tickets last year and ended up not going because I didn't feel well.
Then I learned he gets some credit towards a summer camp if he helps out for an hour, and since money is tight, I'll take any discount I can get, so I signed him up to help out. It was so nice to have literally all of our family and my friend Tammy and her daughter Kennedy come during his shift to support him. He didn't do a whole lot except bring us food and refill our drinks, but he did a good job nonetheless. That and he is impossibly cute and he said I can't kiss him in front of the other kids.

So that's a bit of what we've been doing which explains my slack in blogging. Tomorrow I will have even more cool kid pictures I've been hoarding.

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