Consider Us Orientated

‘Tis the season for kindergarten orientation. Piper and I went last week. I brought along the 312 pieces of paperwork required for admission into the public schools in Montgomery County. Piper’s doctor, dentist, and therapist (okay, that’s a joke, she doesn’t have a therapist…yet) signed off on her readiness. Piper has been looking forward to orientation for months. She can’t wait to go to the same school as Sissy and walk together every morning.

When we arrived, they gave Piper a name tag and took her picture. Then they separated the parents from the kids. Some of the kids weren’t so thrilled about this, but Piper skipped off down the hallway leading the pack and called “Bye, Mom!” over her shoulder.

The kids were taken to do “fun” activities, which looked a little like “testing” to me. Piper aced the name writing and pattern part.

She impressed them equally by debating whether her art was more like Van Gogh or Monet. Hmmm.

I can’t say that the parents had as much fun. There weren’t any art projects. We weren’t allowed to eat the snack. We watched videos on how to properly drive through the “kiss and ride” lane and why backpacks on wheels are destroying civilization.  Then, we were told to quit our day jobs so that we could spend the summer doing skill and drill in hopes of possibly preparing our kindergartners for the first day. Piper is supposed to be reading at Level Four by the first day, whatever that means. Here is some of our summer homework:

Once Piper and I were reunited, she declared, “Mommy! Kindergarten is so much fun! Can we do it again tomorrow?” Looks like we’ll be doing it for most of the summer anyway. Rather than cancel our summer vacation so we can attend the Summer Academy for Parents, Piper put on her tiara and we went out for cupcakes.

She chose a peanut butter chocolate one because it started with P. That may not be Level Four, but it’s yummy enough for me.

Moving at a Cupcake’s Pace

It can take a Piper upwards of 45 minutes to put on her shoes before school. The stalling is excrutiating. Eating broccoli can be an hour long affair. Writing her name requires multiple bathroom breaks. As frustrating as it can be to get a Piper to do anything she doesn’t want to do, you have to admire her commitment to non-violent resistance. She’s a master. It’s sheer will.  But this afternoon when I asked, “Piper, do you want to go with Sissy and her friends for cupcakes?” all I saw was a blur of light I assume was my child speeding out the door.  Her shoes were on. Her coat was on. And zipped. She was halfway to the car. Clearly, it’s the cupcakes.

Our local cupcakery won Food Network’s Cupcake Wars shortly after we moved to town. We don’t flatter ourselves to think the two events we’re related, but we’re happy to share in the benefits.  It’s become our pilgrimage. When we celebrate, we go to Cake Dreams. When we’ve had bad days, we go to Cake Dreams. When the Dancing Queens perform in their school’s talent show, we go to Cake Dreams.

It never takes Piper long to make her cupcake selection. It’s always the one with the sprinkles. She knows exactly what she wants.

A Piper might fall asleep in a bowl of pasta a vegetables before she finishes it. Yet, this…

…was gone in ten seconds flat.

Cupcake time must have its own clock.