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Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Drive to SA

Victoria qualified for an enrichment class called Bookworms for reading through a standardized test last fall.  In the winter she qualified for the next class called Inchworms for math.  She excelled at both.  She enjoyed both.  Through that class the teacher invites a couple of the top academic and responsible students to Summer Academy (SA).  Victoria got invited.  She got invited about a month before Brecken was born.  I looked into it.  Everything I read about the rigor I loved.  I thought she's love it too.  The cost was $400 for 13 days.  It began just after school got out.  The school it takes place it is 18 miles away.  It goes from 8am - noon with two extended days for field trips.  Mark and I discussed it.  I said I was only going to sign her up if we REALLY wanted her to do it.  Since it would be such an inconvenience for the boys and me.  We decided, yes, it would be really good for her to be with other smart kids.  Sometimes she thinks she's the smartest kid.  I will admit, often she is, but I want to keep her seven year old ego in check and more importantly I want her to learn to push herself.  Generally, school is easy for her.  So it's great to be in an environment where she is naturally challenged.  

Summer Academy started on Tuesday.  Mark drove the whole family there last weekend so I was sure I knew how to get there.  It seemed not a problem.  We were there in 20 minutes.  He reminded me there would be morning rush hour so I should leave 45 minutes to get there.

Tuesday morning came.  We left the house at 7:20am.  That's a ridiculous time to get two kids and a baby ready and out the door to go and sit in traffic.  The traffic and construction were horrible.  However, not as horrible as the scene in the monstrous parking LOTS.  Imagine 1,200+ students getting dropped simultaneously.  Holy shit balls!  What a mess!!!  

I parked with 1 minute until class time.  Grabbed the baby in my arms (no way in holy hell was I going to carry the carseat and didn't want to drag the stroller out since her class was on the second floor and didn't want to waste time looking for an elevator) and Christian and Victoria quickly followed me as we weaved through cars police escorts to cross through the large school yard, up a flight of stairs, down a hallway, finally to room 210.  Good grief, I was exhausted.  

I used to teach with Victoria's teacher (what are the odds?) so I knew she was in good hands and Christian, Brecken and headed out.  Finally got to the minivan and couldn't even back out of the parking spot for SEVEN minutes because hundreds of cars were driving past.  I am not exaggerating.  It was pandemonium!!  It was another 30 minute drive home in traffic.

Once home it was only 2.5 hours until we left again to do it all over!  Just so you know, that's just about enough time to pee, change a diaper, nurse a baby and make a PB&J for Christian.  That's it.

Besides the time and my sanity, the drive there is 18 miles, then back home, then back to get her and then back home again... NEARLY 80 miles!  

For the girl who only works four miles from home and plans her day around not driving in traffic, this is straight up madness!

I did that for 1.5 days then I looked into if she could still get on the bus.  Originally I didn't like the idea of her on a bus for 45 minutes in the morning and afternoon and was worried she be nervous or too hot and it costs another $100.

1. It's actually less time if she takes the bus because the bus can pull right up to the door.
2. The kid over prepares and is rarely nervous.  Plus, experiences builds character, right?
3. It's by no means hot in MN.
4. The gas over the next 11 days would be more than $100.

I got that bus pass yesterday while she was at SA.  I actually kissed it in front of the secretary.

Yes, it's seriously that bad!

Therefore, I just had to pick her up one last time.

In the pouring rain.  I actually thought a tornado may touch down it was so terrible.  Liv actually looked it up and assured me we were "just in a severe thunderstorm watch" exactly where we were.  

I dropped her off this morning at an elementary school just 3 miles away.  She happily pulled out her little yellow bus pass to show the driver.  She had her chapter book tucked in her backpack to keep her busy.  Her class is going on a picnic hike today to find patterns in nature.  

Hoping she enjoys the bus ride!

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