Monday (Mad’s First Day of School) and Tuesday (Coupon Mission)

*I told you “August” was a dirty word. Yesterday was Madison’s first day of pre-school, as opposed to what she did last year, which was pre-pre-school, apparently. Mad’s first day of school is the kind of event that qualifies as “kind of a big deal” in our house, as verified by the fact that I woke up before 7. See that pic on the left? That’s my pre-pre-game face. Don’t worry, it’ll get back to where it needs to be to wake up at 4:30 by next week. I mean damn it, it has to be.

I know that Madison knew she’d be going to Cornerstone as opposed to Kama’aina Kids, but I don’t know that she really understood that it meant she wouldn’t know anyone there. The reason she’s smiling is because she’s wearing socks – a novelty that she enjoys, once she gets them on, she doesn’t want to take them off – and her light-up Disney Princess shoes. I know it feels like aliens are the new thing since they’re hanging out with cowboys, battling for Los Angeles, and cruising with Noah Wyle on TNT, but an alien invasion does not bother me. If the aliens do come, I assume there would be little I could do about it, and the silver lining would be that my debt would be wiped out, you know, should I survive. No, I’m more concerned with the Disney Princesses/Heroic Female Characters who have invaded our home. They are unavoidable. Thanks again, Lynnette, for purchasing not one, but two (!) Disney Sing Along videos that ushered in this era. Aside: One of the videos is set up like a tea party where each of the Disney characters gets a place setting and a treat that has something to do with their stories (Cinderella gets pumpkin bread, or something). Before a song from each of their movies plays, they show a photo of each character, and one of them is Maid Marian, from Robin Hood. She’s a Fox. Literally. Mad didn’t understand it, either. After seeing Ariel, Mulan, and Cinderella, she was confused by the picture of Maid Marian. “Where the princess? What’s that puppy sad?” I kept trying to tell her that the puppy WAS the princess, but she wasn’t having it.

When we arrived at Mad’s school, she ditched us. She saw all the kids playing and all the toys and she took off. Well, she had Honey, of course.

Lynnette and I signed Mad in, placed her belongings in her classroom, talked with teachers, and found Mad again. She was exploring her new surroundings. She was great until we told her that we would be leaving. Perhaps this story could be best illustrated by the picture on the left. We hugged and kissed her, said our good-byes. When I got to the gate, I turned. She was standing in the same place wearing the same face, staring right at us. She didn’t cry, but that somehow made the scene more sad.

I teared up when we got into the car because, well, I’m mushy in that way. I still hadn’t recovered completely when Lynnette and I hit up the McDonald’s down the street for breakfast. I ordered our food with my sunglasses on because I didn’t want other customers and the employees to think that breakfast foods make me emotional. I attempted to salvage the morsels of my tattered dignity by devouring my McGriddle. Coca-Cola at 7:30 in the morning helped. I spent the rest of the day doing laundry and rolling around the house engaging in such sure-fire activities like “watching the various incarnations of Law and Order,” “checking my fantasy baseball team,” “cursing at the Mets,” “eating junk food,” and resisting the urge to look up spoilers for Raw.”

As soon as Lynnette got home, we (Abby included) walked down to Cornerstone to pick Mad up from school. She was in the playground. Lynnette and I just watched her from a distance, trying to catch some “candid Mad action.” We saw her saunter over to hear teachers, sigh, and say “I miss my mom.” One of Mad’s teachers (who had already seen us) said, “Perfect timing!” Mad didn’t know what the hell she was talking about. That’s when I broke out our special whistle. I didn’t invent it, it’s the tune that Daryl Hannah whistled in Kill Bill. For whatever reason, I started whistling it to her when she was a baby. When I used it yesterday, I saw her tilt her head and scrunch up her face. “Then she shouted “I think I hear something!” When she finally saw Lynnette and I, she ran to the gate. Sure, it was more for Lynnette than me, but it was still awesome. Mad was so stoked to see us that she didn’t even complain about walking home.

*While I was at my softball game last night (we got annihilated), Lynnette did some research and clipped out a bunch of coupons for me. She made lists of items she wanted me to shop around for. That’s what I did this morning.

I opened the garage door and it was raining pretty hard. I swore (obviously I wasn’t the only thing spitting hot fire), walked back upstairs, put on a sweater, and walked back down. As soon as I got to the H1/H2 merge, the clouds were gone, there were no signs of wetness at all, and it was sunny as hell. To add insult to injury, I left my sunglasses at home because of the gray sky.

I would like to take this time to personally thank my friend Mariel for introducing me to the “Summer Songs of the 90’s” station on Pandora. The distance between Mililani and Kapolei seemed much shorter since I was able to sing along to such immortal tunes as “Barely Breathing,” “Under the Bridge,” and Sister Hazel’s “All For You.” Many of these songs are those I know by heart, but don’t love enough to put on my iPod. It was a welcomed change. The highlight of my Pandora listening came on the way home. I believe I did an admirable job of singing all the parts (simultaneously) of Seal’s “Kissed by a Rose.”

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