Time for an update on previous blog posts, especially in light of the “archived” post just published on Mamapedia:
My youngest has decided to play an instrument in 6th grade band…and the instrument is…drumroll please (how appropriate)…drums! Well, actually “percussion”. Which means xylophone, several different kinds of drums, tambourine, castanets, gong, washboards… —anything to fill out that “wall of sound”. Our exchange student may want to run and hide with all the instruments being played in our house! Actually, the only part of percussion that my daughter has played at home so far is a practice drum, which is like a thick rubber pad on legs, so not too bad on the noise…although it does get on big sister’s nerves sometimes when little sis chooses to practice right in the center of the house…where the sound carries pretty well!
Speaking of our pending French exchange student, the AFS home visit went well. We all imagined that a stuffy older lady with a clipboard (a la Gladys Kravitz from “Bewitched”) was going to be showing up—but it wasn’t like that at all. Our visitor was a very friendly volunteer and fellow mom dressed in jeans and a T-shirt, whose family has hosted many exchange students. She put us all at ease immediately and was a wealth of information and great suggestions. I was so glad she asked the entire family to sit down and talk, after she checked out where the student would be sleeping, studying, etc. Again, another rare opportunity for a family “check-up” and to hear our daughters get in on the Q and A. The best line of the whole night was when the AFS volunteer was talking to us about how learning U.S. history in school would probably be new to the student, to which my younger daughter was amazed. “Well, think about it,” said the volunteer. “What do you know about French history?” Andy mentioned something about Napoleon, after which our tween’s face brightened and she blurted out proudly, “I know all about Napoleon! I learned about him in that movie, ‘Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure’!” (I was very glad at that moment that Gladys Kravitz was not our volunteer!)
Elsewhere in updates: I didn’t win a spot on Nickelodeon’s Parents Picks national nominations list this year…but it’s no big deal, I barely even voted for myself or did much promotion. They made it harder for people to vote this time and I didn’t want to push for readers to have to “sign up to become a member” in order to do so (not all my readers are parents), so…I will just have to rest on my 2009 laurels for now!
My Betty White Dodge ‘aravan’ is still hanging in there—no AC screeching at present, but since I last wrote, one of its shocks came loose while I was driving my oldest to a community theatre rehearsal last month and it started dragging on the ground (I think it rivaled the AC screeching in its intensity), so we had to pull into a nearby neighborhood and wait for Captain Car (er, Andy) to rescue us. Which Andy did, and I drove my daughter to the Granville Arts Centre in his car, while he worked under mine in front of a total stranger’s house. (Luckily it was a neighborhood where lots of people probably work on their own cars, so it was no big deal! ) Andy also recently learned, from the Internet, how to fix car ceilings and took the entire ceiling “shell” out, bought new fabric, re-covered it, and replaced it. So no more billowing fabric. (Just in time for the start of school…)
Which brings me to my last update. My teen’s high school drill team started practices this week, and she has been on time (and early) for everything so far (Yippee!). Today is photo day, and she wore the uniform for the first time. I cried when I saw her in it. It hit me like a ton of bricks, after she’s been watching the team and dreaming about being on it almost her whole life, to see her now as an official member. I hope I’m not a blathering emotional idiot when they’re out on the football field this fall…maybe I should just take a paper sack to put over my head…I’ll be the “Unknown Mom” then…with a hole cut in the front for my camera, of course!