The school-wide spelling bee was last Thursday and since Rachel was participating I figured we should go support her. Usually I go to things during the day because I'm the stay-at-home parent; Andrew has commitments all day, like writing and research and meetings and stuff. I have commitments, too, like diaper changing and nursing and child-wrangling but my commitments are a lot more mobile.
Still, getting my commitments up and fed and clothed and out the door in time to drop the kids off at school (7:45 in the morning!) and then making my commitments behave (sit quietly!) through the entire spelling bee seemed like a huge burden. I mean, huuuuuuuge.
"You're going to help me get the kids ready to go before you leave, though, right?" I asked Andrew the night before.
"Yeah, I can do that." He paused to think. "Wait a minute. What if I go to the spelling bee?"
"Like, just you go to the spelling bee or, like, you go to the spelling be as well?"
"I'll just go. You stay home with Benjamin and Zoë and I'll go to the spelling bee to cheer Rachel on and then I'll go to work."
"That...makes sense," I said. "I can't really imagine Benjamin and Zoë sitting still through this sort of thing anyway."
So that's what we did. And it turns out that leaving the little ones at home was a wise choice because the teachers were flipping out about noise levels all the time, apparently (and I totally believe it because (and I don't know if it's just a southern thing but...) the kids aren't allowed to talk at school, like, ever; not during class, not during lunch, quiet, quiet, quiet—I guess their 15–20 minute recess lets them chat a bit, but I seriously don't remember being shushed so much when I was in elementary school (except, perhaps, at Alice M. Curtis in Calgary)).
Rachel made it to the fourth round before getting nervous and misspelling vacation (which is a relatively easy word for her—you should have heard her spell the words we were practicing). She spelled it V-A-C-T-I-O-N.