What was that book, "All I Ever Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten"?
Today, on our kindergarten trip to the zoo, I learned:
*The quickest way from point A to point B is a straight line. And to a kindie, a straight line includes a lot of detours...to look at what's in the water, to walk on the curbing, to dash across the path to the exhibit on the other side, to run up ahead to try to catch another of their friends...you know, a straight line.
*"We need to hurry" is a cue to walk in as many straight lines as possible.
*"When's lunch? I'm hungry." will be the first words out of their lips the second you set foot inside the zoo, before even asking to see the lions, tigers, and bears (oh my!). (You really didn't think I'd pass that one up, did you? ;p )
*You will be grateful for the other adults that volunteered to come along, and especially grateful to the other Mom in your group for not glaring at you as you bring up the rear. (She lead, I got the stragglers to follow--teamwork!)
*Your trip is well planned, by your teacher (bless her, now, and often). However, as many schools as possible with other well-planned trips will be there at the zoo on this very day too. Kids, kids, and more kids--everywhere. AND they are all pretty much the same size. Why didn't I think of matching colored shirts early enough to tell the teacher when she passed out permission slips?
*Put one of the three adults in your group in charge of the two yr old tag-along you brought with you...before she nearly follows another group into a tunnelled exhibit and you look up in time to see her floral dress making the turn with them, losing years off your life in the process as you sprint faster than you ever have, making promises to yourself to look into that kiddie leash thing the next time you are in Target. OY!
*You will not have enough time to see anything but the highlights, but the kids will have picked animals located the furthest distance from each other in the place to do their zoo report on, so you'll be forced to march them from one end to the other as quickly as possible, (see "hurry" and "straight line" above) while they want to stop at every exhibit in between.
*Lunch will be a nice break. And they'll still be hungry after they eat it.
*The line to the women's restroom will be longer than the line at the last concert you attended. You will contemplate asking your husband to take all the kids (yes, the girls too) into the mens' room just to get 'em in and out of there quickly so you can make it to the bus departure in time. And you will contemplate going in there too, before you reach the breaking point and run behind the highest bush (4 pregnancies= weak bladder = desperate times, desperate measures. Oh, not to worry, I held it, and tried not to laugh or sneeze the rest of the time we were there. Can we say Kegel, ladies?)
*You will have a really good time in spite of it all. Especially when you get your husband and his colleague--who was there with his daughter's class from another school, small world--to pose goofily so you can waste the last exposures on your roll. (This is where I learned not to say "I dare you" to a cop, ROFL. I was giggling so hard, and trying not to, I think those will come out blurry.)
*Toddler will knock out on the drive back, but wake up the second Daddy exits the car and cry all the way back to the school. Crankyville, cured by Barbie DVDs and snacks. (She's on "Princess and the Pauper" now, where are my earplugs, I'm about to sing along, omg--)
We had a great time, especially so after we put Mr W in charge of Audrey and my heart rate returned to normal. The kids, while all over the place, were really good. I even managed to run into my brother, who was there with my nephew. His school had an overnight zoo field trip, how cool is that? The kids got to bring home a zoo animal they stuffed themselves, and everyone is happy.
I didn't mess up the lunches this morning (running low on chips doesn't count as my fault), zipped my pants, was relatively on time, brought along the camera...
And I remembered where we parked the van.