And just like that, summer is gone

Our summer flew by – considering our summer vacation time was July and August.  Even as we still had suitcases to be unpacked, and sandy wet suits flung in the downstairs bath, it was already time to get ready for school – uniforms, book lists, and all that.

Here in Ireland, you the parent buy the school books.  You go to a school book store, stand in line with all the other parents, and pay too much for books they’ll use 1-2 years. Then you go to uniform stores, stand in line, pay not-too-much for the school specific uniform parts.  Then you stand in stationary store lines, spend a normal amount on school supplies after asking a store worker “What is an A4 folder?”  (it’s a binder), and stand in another long line. Then you go to Marks and Spencers for all the generic uniform bits, digging through a wall of packaged shirts to find the right size/style/sleeve length of blue school blouses, white knee socks, and what the heck, new underwear.  Then you go to the shoe store, wait your turn because it’s busy, and come out with an expensive pair of black shoes that you don’t mind spending that much on because you know they’ll be worn for the next nine months.

Then, you go to the Gap, because you know they had sparkly back packs, and Maura had her eye on Mim’s from last year.  And you nearly weep for joy when you find them half off, only 12 euro.  They’re the cheapest thing you’ve bought all week.

This year’s catch was Sean’s maths book.  (Not math, maths.  They do so much math, they must make it plural here or something.)  Two and a half weeks of going from one store to the next, to hear “It’s out of stock”, “We’ll get some next week.”  “It’s out of print, you won’t find it anywhere.”  Sheer persistence won out with that one – I went to the book store to ask them if they could tell me if this book existed or not.  There I was told nope, definitely out of print…but we have a used copy – well, not really used, it was a brand new return.  I nearly kissed the girl behind the counter, and in my head, I ran out of the store waiving my prize while doing a happy dance.  (In reality, I just walked out.)

The kids trickled back to school.  First the boys, then one girl, finally today, Maura got to go too.  In her new uniform and sparkly back pack and hair in pig tails.  Mim scootered off with her sparkly messenger bag.  The boys just walked normally, Collin decked out in his new uniform, which is even more Harry Potter-like than his old one.  Tonight starts camogie practice again for Mim, who is also signed up for ballet and a performing arts group.

But at least the hours between 9 am and 2:30 pm will be all mine again.  Where I can get back to things like blogging and writing and polishing my toe nails and puppy wrangling.

Because, oh yes, our life isn’t crazy enough. We had to add to it.  In the form of a very small Yorkshire Terrier puppy.  Mim’s 12th birthday present.  She named the puppy Sky “Stormageddon Dark Lord of All” Holmes.  (It’s a Doctor Who thing, Stormageddon.)

Yes, once again, my life is back to it’s chaotic organization.

And now – pictures!

Collin in all his Harry Potter glory


Maura in all her 1st day of school happiness


You can be a tiny girl dog and still be Dark Lord of All. Bow to her! BOW!