For the past couple of days, the Horde and I have been walking around in our neighborhood, running errands. Thankfully, we don't need the van to complete these errands, so it saves on gas, which saves money, and the Horde gets out and has some exercise. On Tuesday, we went to the Horde's new school. Come to find out all 3 of the older ones will be enrolled in the same hallowed halls of academia. Well, that certainly makes that a little easier. We walked there, taking the busy road, which they will not be allowed to walk on, even though there is a sidewalk. Katy I trust walking on the sidewalk and obeying traffic laws. I trust Jayden to an extent, after all, she is only a Kindgergartner. James I trust not at all. I love the boy dearly, but he tries to break rules that HE makes.
We go in and I give the secretary the girls' paperwork. James' stuff is still at the Admin building. I had called over there and was told that as the girls' school would have the resources to meet James' needs, that he would enroll there as well. I need to call the school tomorrow to ensure that yes, they have received James' info, along with the stuff from all three of their old schools.
There is a HUGE playground in front of the school. I constantly hear "can we play?" the ENTIRE time we are at the school, from the point they spot the playground a block away, until we leave the grounds and cross the street and go in to the store. The Horde wants to know which teachers they will have and where their classrooms will be and yada yada yada. Well, I don't know any of this. I call the school later that day and find out that teachers aren't assigned until NEXT week, the week before school starts, when we will have to once again walk down there to find out who has which teacher. Izzy spends the entire trip trying to climb out of the stroller. I add the shoulder straps to his harness and that just frustrates the poor guy to no end, as he was pretty close to getting out of just the lap belt.
On the way to and from the school, Katy is trying to memorize the way there and back. It's not hard, however she does ask me to draw her a map for the first few days of school. I told her that I would walk with the kids the first few days (I'm thinking the first week, tops) until I know they know the way. Katy will be walking with James and Jayden to school, and just James on the way home, if Jayden is attending morning class, which I hope that she is, which I need to mention to the school when I call tomorrow to verify receipt of said papers from before. I will be walking there to get Jayden from class in the middle of the day, and doing a check up on James at the same time.
Realizing that the Horde will be walking back and forth to school means that they are going to need so many more things for school than I had planned on. They will be walking in fair and foul weather alike. No rides from me for them as Jason leaves for work very early in the morning, long before we will even be awake most likely. I am not going to get everyone up super early to keep the van on the chance that it might rain to be able to drive the kids to school. I walked when I was a kid, so can they. They are going to need umbrellas and raincoats, and probably some kind of rain boot. For winter they will be outfitted to the gills as well with scarves, mittens, hats, coats, boots, and snowpants.
We leave the school and cross the street where the crossing guard will be standing come the school year. Katy is talking to herself about how that is where the crossing guard will be and wants to know why they HAVE to cross there and not down the block at the light. I tell her because people get tickets for running red lights, but go to jail for going through a crossing guard. I'm not quite sure this is true, however it is sufficient of an answer for her.
We go in to the store. I want to pick up something for myself for lunch, and something for the Horde (including the youngest) if possible. I have just over $13 to use. We pass the Little Debbie display. MMMMM.....chocolate chip cremes...much like the oatmeal cremes. Yes, definately a box of those, Jason will like them for work as well. Over to frozen foods. Yeah, they have the Buffalo Wings that I like. 2 boxes of those. The 2 boxes of wings is about $7. The cookies are just over $1. Ooooh, pizza rolls would be perfect for the Horde for lunch. The bag is almost $4. At this point, my brain forgets how to do basic math, thankfully, I have an almost 5th grader along with me.
"Katy, how much is 7 plus 4?"
"Are you sure? It's not 12?"
"Um, no, it's 11"
"Uh yeah. 6 plus 4 is 10 and 7 is 1 more than 6 so you add 1 to 10 and you have 11"
"OK, I'm trusting you, but I swear it's 12"
We get to the check out. I hold back the cookies, as I think I won't be able to get them, but I still want them and I want to see what my total is. It was just over $11. Hey, they really did teach Katy stuff in school! Moral of the story there is to always have a 5th grader with you when you need to do math.
We leave the store and walk to the house in the way that I want the Horde to walk back and forth to school. It's a very simple way to go. It is a little longer, but not enough to make much difference, and there is little to no traffic, so it's MUCH safer, especially with the child who can't follow his own rules along for the walk. This is when Katy asks for a map. She can remember what 7 plus 4 is but can't remember how to get home from school?
On Wednesday we have 2 errands to run. We need to go to the Dept. of Water to have it transferred in to my name and go to Dollar General to pick up some basic school supplies for Katy, as she is the only one that still needs a back pack and that kind of thing. Both of these places are also a relatively short walk from our house, in the opposite direction of the school.
Once again, Izzy goes in to the stroller, however starting off with the shoulder straps on, which he promptly becomes upset with. It stormed the night before, so his stroller was a bit wet, so we put a blanket in his seat so he doesn't become soaked on our journey. It is much warmer than the day before, so everyone is in shorts and tees where the day before they were in jeans and sweatshirts. Izzy goes barefoot, his preferred state it seems.
We walk the 1/2 mile or so to the Water Dept. Building. We all go inside. I fill out the application to have the water put in my name. The Horde sits on the long couch while I do this. Izzy tries to climb out of his stroller and gets very upset that he can't manage it. James calls to him like a puppy, by making kissy sounds and saying "here baby baby baby", even after being told to stop. Jayden is annoying Katy by rubbing her head (which was shaved on Tuesday evening, a story all of it's own) and touching her, and it's hot and sticky outside so I am getting annoyed with them all. It takes 10 minutes for them to put my name in the computer and for us to pay the deposit and leave.
A block away is Dollar General. James and Jayden begin talking about all the things that they want to get for school. I promptly inform them that they don't need anything like I am buying and they aren't getting a thing. Jayden begins to cry a little and James definately pouts. Katy giggles.
We buy folders, pencils, mechanical pencils, a couple of decorative pens, some notebooks, memo pads, a note pad shaped like a K, a dictionary/thesaraus, and a back pack for katy. James and Jayden each get a goofy pen and a small note pad. And we pick up mini pizzas for lunch. All told, we spent less than $50.
As we walk home, I begin to hear the many complaints about how hot it is (and it was) and how they all want a drink of water when we get home, and then they begin to argue over who gets to have a drink first. And all the while I am thinking to myself "I have to work tonight". For Thursday, we aren't doing anything. We are staying home. Jason put the a/c units back in to the downstairs windows (we took them out while it was super cold out) and we are vegging out. In the evening, I am meeting a friend at the mall to have a girls' night out, though it won't be a late night. Just some time with a grown up and I'm not running errands by myself or going to work or doing anything with the kids. Sounds like heaven, doesn't it?