Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Back to School '09

Another school year. I carefully chose first-day-back clothes and the children obliged this morning by actually donning my selections. Husband was home this morning and gamely made the chocolate chip pancakes I had promised yesterday. The kids were ready in record time and came downstairs and agreed to pose for photos, which, as I told them are THE MOST IMPORTANT PICTURES OF THE YEAR. It was all going a little too well.

One tiny problem was that Jackson needed a haircut and in lieu of a short cut this is how he chooses to style it and despite my surreptitious attempt to mess up his style and go for the messy-standy-uppy style popular :
I might have been willing to live with the nerdy look, but Sydney insisted on wearing a jacket which covers up the back-to-school outfit which is half the point of the pictures. She refused to take off the jacket even for 60 seconds, and then even refused to smile:
The trip to school wasn't much happier for the Girlie Goo:
After our 30 minutes at school in which I tried to tap into as much gossip as I could, we went to the public library: Imagine my surprise when they were both reading quietly (one more literally than the other) and, quite remarkably, they weren't loud or running around or disruptive. I had time to look up some books and we left with an armload each.
After a stop at home for some snacks we went to the mall for hair cuts:
The whole trip to the mall went well. Last June they sent a notice home from school that we need to buy a white T shirt for each child. I've had all summer to buy one and haven't so today, when the mall is crawling with high school kids, we traversed the mall in a fruitless search for simple white t shirts. I eventually aborted that mission, thinking we should get home before things deteriorate.

Because of the morning photo fiasco, I attempted to broker a deal that we would share some McDonald's french fries if they promised to pose and smile for photos when we got home. Sydney agreed. Jackson had been very busy terrorizing the mall with his new yo yo, a free gift from the haircut store.
He was angry at me because while he played with the yo yo he almost ran into a pillar in the mall. I had the audacity to say "JACKSON WATCH OUT!" in the hopes that trip to ER was not on our back-to-school list of things to do. If it wasn't bad enough that I had to say something to prevent brain swelling, the lady behind us making remarks like "were you too busy watching the girls?" and asking repeatedly "are you okay?" was really, from the J Boy's chair, piling on

The J Boy eventually agreed to my terms and, after partaking of french fries, we were in the car on the way home. Sydney wanted an explanation, which is frankly not easy to give, of why the teacher to which she was assigned for the next 3 days is not necessarily (but might be) her real grade 1 teacher. Jackson wanted to explain it to her but Sydney wanted Mommy to do the splaining. So the J Boy became a little uncivilized and then refused to pose for photos. So it became an uncivilized duel with my telling him that I would NEVER BUY HIM ANOTHER FRENCH FRY IN HIS LIFE. He told me I'd never remember that and would undoubtedly buy him more. I couldn't disagree.

Eventually, I decided that threats and uncivilized Mommy behaviour was not likely to help me achieve my photography goals. So I went with reading a library book with him on motorcycles, and after admiring the Hondas, the Harley Davidsons and the Kawasakis and after just a few pages of a book on space exploration, he relented and let me take my photos:This is my favourite, the kids came up with the pose and I obliged, hoping that it would grease the wheels to enable me to get the official shots (which I do the same every year). But this, it turns out is my favourite:

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