Friday, May 7, 2010

Motherhood and Mayhem, a List

1.  Did anyone else just realize that it is Mother's Day this weekend?  I am so out of it.  Current events clearly are not my thing.  Superkid had asked me just this week how long until Mother's Day, and my reply was, "Sometime in May, sweetie.  On a Sunday."  Guess it's May, huh?

2.  It was the gifts that came home from school this week that alerted me to the fact that it was Mother's Day.  Actually, I did teach the Cub Scouts to sew this week, in preparation for Mother's Day.   Somehow I thought we were being ultra savvy and getting things done in advance.....who lives like that, besides me?

3.  Justone couldn't save his Mother's Day gift until Sunday.  He was so excited.  It was a pink flower-topped pen, in a flower pot filled with beans.  I was honestly thrilled.  I see those pens all the time at doctor's offices--you know, where you sign in--and call me a geek, but I think they are cool!  I love that Justone made it himself. 

It was accompanied by a large card, also made by Justone, that opened to reveal an original poem.  Justone assured me that he had written it himself, without any help whatsoever.  It is written in purple crayon.

I love you.  I love you.
Yes I do.
You're the best.  You're the best
People treat you like a guest.
Your beauliful face could stop a clock
And keep it in a lock.

I am choosing to take my clock-stopping face as a compliment, the way it was obviously intended.  Apparently, Justone considers my beauty to be timeless.  Also, I'm guessing the fact that it must be kept under lock and key would indicate that I'm not just beautiful, I'm dangerously beautiful.  Or beauliful, which I'm guessing is French for dangerous, timeless, beauty. 

I definitely have to scan this card for posterity.  

4.  Speaking of compliments, Superkid paid me a nice one this week.  She and Endeavor were helping me with my sewing room re-do.  (Yep, it's really happening!  I hope I'll have some pictures up by the beginning of next week.)  Anyway, as we were making the bed with new, cute, marked-down-on-clearance-at-Target bedding, Superkid looked around the far-from-finished room and with a happy sigh said, "I hope when I'm a mommy someday I will be just like you and turn a room in my house into one just like this!  You are soooo good at makeovers, Mommy!"  

Then she asked me if we could go to Panda Express for dinner.  Coincidence?  Uh....probably not.  But you have to admit the child knows how to butter me up.

5.  Yesterday, I shared a Momementous Occaision with Endeavor.  It was our first experience together at her future middle school.  Gulp.  You read that correctly.  Endeavor will be going to middle school sometime in the very near future.  This fall, to be exact.  I know, I know, she can't possibly be old enough.  But she is--at least, technically, according to the school system's calculations.  According to mine, she is not.  I mean--hello!--I just barely got her potty trained, like, nine years ago.  

Anywho, our school district takes music education very, very seriously.  I'm so glad!  All sixth graders are required to select a music class:  band, orchestra, or choir.  In fact, we had to sign up for a time slot during which Endeavor would be "fitted" for a musical instrument by the middle school music department.  I'm not joking about the seriousness of the situation.  They took us into a big room full of instruments, chatted with Endeavor about her interests, and then gave her brief instruction on how to hold and produce sound from several of those instruments.  Then, the music instructors filled out an evaluation sheet for each instrument that Endeavor tried.  It was a fascinating process.  Now, being a former choir geek myself, I was a little surprised when Endeavor informed me ahead of time that the instruments she wanted to be "fitted" for were the flute and the cello.

I simply had to ask why.  "Because I love them," she said matter-of-factly.  "I love the sounds they make.  I want to play them.  Especially," she added with a dramatic pause, "the cello."  As if that wasn't reason enough, she went on to explain that, "Besides, I didn't get Bradford singing genes.  I sound more like Dad than you.  I think, when they hear me sing, they'll want me to be in band or orchestra.  I got Harding singing genes."  

Side note: Right now, the Bradfords reading this are laughing in their sleeves and the Hardings reading this are offended.  Bradfords are not known for their singing, so it was a surprise to everyone when they discovered I could hear pitch and belt out a tune or two.  Hardings, on the other hand, can all carry a tune and carry it right on to stage, if they wish.  Somehow Endeavor has it mixed up. 

Thank goodness for the aptly named middle school music fittings.  Endeavor had not realized that the cello was bigger than she was.  She had also not realized that you have to have lots of lip coordination to play the flute, and playing the flute with braces could be painful.  The kindly orchestra teacher that was working with us complimented Endeavor on the lovely tones she was producing from the cello that was threatening to crush her beneath it's awkward weight, and asked her if she wouldn't mind trying a violin, just for fun.  He placed the violin in her arms and I had to catch my breath.  Even I, who doesn't know a thing about stringed instruments, could tell that Endeavor was meant to play the violin.  (My dear friend Erica tried to point this out to me years ago--why didn't I listen?)  Not only did it look right, but when she drew the bow across the strings, there was no raspy squeaking.  Just rich, full sound.  Amazing.

Next, we went across the hall to the choir room.  The choir director led Endeavor away from me, into a little practice room.  I waited.  The choir director came out with Endeavor, beaming.  "I'd love to have Endeavor in our choir!"  she gushed.  "She has such range, such a nice tone quality, and I've only had one or two students with such an astounding pitch memory!"  

I tried to be nonchalant.  "Well, she does sing with our church choir," I said modestly.  ("Now that I know this, I am going to make you sing LOUDLY," I threatened Endeavor on our way home.)

"I'm so glad to hear it!" the choir director replied.  "I can see that she's musically gifted and--" she glanced down at the orchestra evaluation sheet--"you have a difficult decision to make.  I can tell from his evaluation that the orchestra director is as eager to work with Endeavor as I am." Then the choir director informed us that if Endeavor did choose orchestra for her sixth grade year music class, she would be willing to make special arrangements for Endeavor to participate in both choir and orchestra during seventh and eighth grades.  

Endeavor and I next met with the middle school music department head, who asked for her first, second, and third instrument choices.  (Like I said, they take this seriously.)  He explained that while they couldn't guarantee her first choice, he was confident--based on her evaluation--that she would get it.  Violin it is!  

As we left the music wing of the middle school, Endeavor asked, "Why are you smiling so much?  You are embarrassing me."  

I was just so pleased to be the mother of a musical genius, I couldn't help it.  And I'm recording this experience for posterity, so that when reality hits and I have to hear the squeaky violin version of "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" for the umpteenth time, I will remember why I whole-heartedly signed up my firstborn for middle school orchestra.  

Do you think they make every parent feel like their child is a musical genius at our middle school?  Or just the particularly gullible-looking ones?  Ahem, I mean, the particularly dangerously beauliful-looking ones?  


  1. Wow! That is great to here. If I have a musically gifted child, I have yet to discover it. We expose the kids to all sorts of musical art, but the budget cuts here are pretty bad. The school they are in still has music, but if this proposition doesn't pass, none of the other elementary schools will even have a music teacher!

  2. Yet again you have brought me to gut-aching-tear-streaming laughter at my computer. The poem by Justone is one of the most priceless things any kid has ever written about his mother. And just when I had myself under enough control to be able to actually see my screen again and keep reading, you had to put that bit about Harding singing in there, and I seriously became completely unmanageable. Thank you for posting...