Sunday, May 10, 2009

Charlee Ann and the Stupid Smelly Bus

Charlee has a new favorite book… Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus. At night, she tells me that we need to read Junie B. so she can learn how to be a kindergartener. I have quickly learned that we do not need to check out another Junie B book. We have heard words like stupid, dumb, and other phrases not spoken at our home. Needless to say, we won’t be reading any more of them.

This week was our first bite into kindergarten. Due to my involvement in orientation, Big Daddy (that’s what Katie and I call Steven) had to attend with Charlee. The last thing I said to Sleeping Steven before I left was “I am not exactly sure what time it starts but I’d be there around 8:30 or a little after.” Truthfully, this was my ploy to get Steven to spend his money on Charlee some books at the book fair instead of me.

I arrived at work much earlier than normal. I went to the library checked in with Marsha and headed to my office to read emails and make the materials I needed for the orientation.

Clearly, in my mind thinking this shing-ding started at 9. At 8:45 the phone rings…the secretary on the other end says where are you? You are supposed to be at the lunchroom. Get over here NOW. I immediately gathered my junk and ran to the lunchroom. I thought maybe I could sneak in, but those dang loud fly blowers alerted everyone that I had finally made it to the meeting. The crowd then focused their attention on the reading coach, who may know a little about reading but apparently nothing about telling time. I scanned the room frantically looking for Big Daddy and the Princess. They were no where in site. I tried to tiptoe as quietly as my clonking heels would let me to the back of the group. Still wondering where they were. Wendy, the Director of Elem, came over and explained that the principal had already introduced me and that she would redo the intro and then I could speak to the crowd.

It was my time to address the anxious parents and children. I scrambled for words while everyone in the room, listened as offered my future services to them. Okay I lied …I explained that like them, I too had a child starting kindergarten and another that would be a senior next year. I know some of the folks were wondering what drugs I was taking and if their kids would be safe around a lunatic reading coach. As fast as an auctioneer, I said what had to be said and sat down.

It was dang near 9 and Steven and Charlee still had not arrived. At first, I kinda thought maybe they were browsing the book fair. I slipped into the teacher’s lounge and called Marsha –no sign of them. I am on the other side worried…like near panic. I know the booger that Charlee is in the morning, so maybe she just threw a fit and Steven just said forget it.

The group was dismissed for the BIG bus ride; I knew this would be Charlee’s favorite part. I called Steven’s cell again. This time he answers. He is in the front office. I tell him to just meet us at the end of the bus loop so Charlee would not miss the bus ride. I explain to the ever so very nice bus driver that my husband and child needed special treatment, would she mind if we picked them up at the other end. Thank the Lord I work for the school. She agreed.

Finally, I can see Steven and Charlee strutting down the sidewalk like a momma hen with her little chick following closely behind. The bus approached the end of the walk--- no Steven. When the bus rolled to a stop, I crawled off the bus almost beyond the point of humiliation. I noticed Steven and Charlee were headed back to office. The gate was locked and he had turned around. I hollered to come down to the other end of the prison gates that encircles our school. By the time I was reunited with my honey, I noticed a slight sign of disgust in his normally twinkling eyes. However, I wasn’t sure why on such a stress free day he could be aggravated. He whispered “You didn’t tell me that I need my licenses”. I didn’t think anything about it but thought to myself this is just a normal every day adventure for me.

We found seats in the very back of the bus and assumed we were going on a nice bus ride, when the bus driver turned off the bus. Immediately, I thought gosh now what. She gave the young unconcerned bus riders a quick bus etiquette lesson. Then she restarted the bus and off we went. The little girls in the back of the bus giggled and had a great time. Charlee sat motionless the entire bus ride.

Back at the school, we toured all the seven kindergarten classes. Although, I have walked through these doors hundreds of times, it seemed as though it was the first. Charlee’s eyes danced with excitement, but held a look of uncertainty as she peeked into her future at the BIG school. She examined artwork,

climbed into reading loft with Ms Jean,

talked with Annie the puppet in Mrs. Perryman’s class and looked at the plethora of books in her library,

and she reunited with old friends in Mrs. Smithers and Mrs. Welbers' rooms .

After the room tours, it was time to say good bye to all the great teachers we had meet.
We meandered over to the book fair. Of course, Charlee wanted everything. She had a Junie B. book, Wow Wow Wuzzybe, Beginning reader books, you name it, Charlee clutched it tight in her arms. Dad said one book. Charlee returned all of the books but 3 properly on the correct shelf. Determined to increase her library at home, she was adamant on all of them. Dad was just as adamant…. she walked away with the Wow Wow Wuzzybe. (Little does dad know, that we have a stack of books stashed away to purchase later). As we were talking in the library Charlee noticed an old friend walking by. She rushed to the door and hollered RONDA …..RONDA. Unfortunately, her dear friend was on her cell and did not hear her little buddy. However, later on Charlee had the chance to join up with Mrs. Parrish at the teacher appreciation luncheon. Charlee embraced her and talked to her as though they were old playground friends. I apologized for Charlee calling her by her first name but Ronda quickly stated that they were pals and it was okay.

Later in the day, I walked through the front office when the school secretary stopped me. Mrs. Coates asked me to please give her apologizes to Steven. I gave her a funny look and questioned why. She retold about the morning episode that occurred as Steven tried to enter our campus (note close to 8:30). She explained that she knew that he was my husband, but according to our new policy, all visitors must have their driver’s license scanned to determine if they are a risk to our students. When she scanned his license, the screen signaled that Steven maybe a potential threat or sexual offender. She had to verify that he wasn’t a predator and that he was indeed safe to be near small children. I know what some of you might be thinking to yourself….yeah small children aren’t safe around him.
Long story short, we survived the orientation and Steven’s name has been cleared. I hope the other 180 aren't as adventurous as the orientation. If so, I may need meds.


  1. Well, if I had known about Steven's questionable character, I wouldn't have left my boys in his care!! LOL!! Just kidding! Once again, you've had me laughing through this entire post!

  2. Too funny! I feel for Steven, being quite familiar with the schools' "new policy"...hmmm is all I will say about that. Charliee is so cute sitting up on the big bus! I can't wait to hear her school stories come August!

  3. Oh my... poor Steven. & Poor you! I am sure he was NOT a happy camper, and if he's anything like my Daddy or Devin, well, it just probably wasnt good! Ha... Charlee is too much. I am thinking your going to have lots to blog about when she starts Kindergarten!

  4. Now maybe Steven can get a feel for just what we deal with each and every day. Hey, we are dealing with children. You just have to love what we do!!!!!!!!!!!!! And on a second note, I glad I deals with moms at the book fair. If I had all dads (especially like Steven) my book fair profits would not be soooo profitable. Best post yet!

  5. Ha ha ha ha....I can just see poor Steven's face!! A sex offender huh?! Got to love computers and the legal system...what a mess!!! What a great accounting of Charlee's special day though! She is so cute and I know she had a grand time. You could see it by the smile on her face!


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