My plan for today was very simple, homeschooling. We have a lot to get done. The Ag Fair deadline is quickly approaching and we have loads to get done. Add Princess O's Brownies and Mr. M's baseball to the mix, and OMG, it's getting a little crazy.
Mr. M had a game and Princess O had a nature hike today, 50 miles apart, at the same time. Hmm. Okay, I'm thinking. Dh can pick her up on his way home if I drop her off for the hike and rush back to get Mr. M to his game. No problem. Right? Ha ha ha.
I got an email this morning with a list of who is going on the nature hike with the Brownies troop, what patrol each mom would have, all that good stuff. Waaait a second. Is that MY name on there as patrol leader? Oh snap. I totally forgot, blanked out, blocked it from my memory. Yes. I had to actually go on the hike, no dropping off. This I realized three hours before the hike, 50 miles away, and I had the boys with me who could NOT go. I laughed a little, like a maniacal, I'm-losing-it laugh.
Forget homeschool. That plan I had to spend time with each kid separately and do math, nah. That wasn't going to happen. I had exactly 30 minutes to get everyone in the van. I had to drive 40 miles to drop off the boys with dh at his work, in some ridiculous traffic, AND I got lost for a few minutes, which resulted in a panicked call to dh, "WHERE am I?!" I sent the boys into the office for an hour with dh. We've never done that before. They each had a clipboard of schoolwork to do, and it went well. I'll have to remember this for future emergencies, like when I need some Me Time or I find a yarn sale I must attend.
I left the boys, zipped through a fast food place for lunch (blech), and went 30 miles in a different direction to get to the location of the wilderness hike. We made it with 10 minutes to spare. Whew!
I assembled my patrol (the Killer Coyotes) and headed out to the trail. I love being outside. I love walking around looking at things and listening quietly. Birds are one of my passions. So this nature hike was a great time, for me. We had a list of things to check off, like squirrels, flowers, broken rocks, spider webs. It was fun! Most of the girls got into it.
There was one worrier who was constantly asking where the other groups were (about 5 minutes ahead of us), how much longer (I don't know), and if I really saw a coyote there once (yes, although I guess I shouldn't have told them that, oops). Another girl was the story-teller. If you told her we needed to find a chipmunk, she would immediately point (at nothing) and say, "I just saw one right there, but it's gone now!" She wasn't joking, unfortunately, because that would have been funny. (I thought of doing that once, but decided it would be mean and might scare them, especially if I said I saw a coyote, which I was planning to do). We made it through the 1-mile trail with everything checked off except a worm, which the story-teller claimed was "right there!"
I had my pedometer going while we walked, so when my phone vibrated a couple times toward the end of the walk, I ignored it. Hmm. Maybe that wasn't such a good idea. The troop leader was calling me. Looking for us. Worried. We were gone a LOT longer than the other groups! I don't know how that's possible except that those other moms probably dragged those girls through the hike with no mercy! Probably pointing out animals and spider webs, "There! There! See it? No? Oh, well! Keep moving! Schnell! Schnell!" My group stopped to smell the flowers, literally, and we saw mushrooms, which no other group saw. Excellent.
Of course, when we finally caught up, the troop leader was looking at me with great concern asking if we got lost. "Did you take the 2-mile trail by mistake?" Uuh, no. I may not be able to read a map, but I can read a freakin' sign! I stayed on the 1-mile trail. I told her, "I really enjoy hikes like this so I made sure we took our time and saw everything."
She gave me a polite smile and a nod, then herded the girls into waiting vans and off they went. I looked at my pretty princess and shrugged. I asked her if she was worried about me, since she was in a different patrol, and she said no. So all's well that ends well.
We have the official camp-out next weekend. I can't wait to see what we get to do then! I'm sure I will get a schedule of time allotted for each event from now on.
Princess O and I headed home, so tired, but happy. And then we hit traffic. Ninety minutes later, we were home. The drive usually takes 45 minutes, tops. It was miserable. And then we did math. Fractions and decimals and word problems, more misery. And then we did science, I swear I don't want to see another chicken or egg for at least a year. And then the kids went to bed. Aahh.
A crazy day, no doubt.