The Interview

Today will be a very big day for Kevin.

A few months ago, I mentioned Kevin took an entrance exam for a really good prep high school back in March. Unsurprisingly, the boy did exceedingly well for a seventh grader. Today, he is scheduled for a thirty-minute interview with the school; twenty minutes alone, and ten minutes with Mrs. Earp.

Kevin jokes about the interview, but it doesn’t seem like he’s stressing over it. I assume he’ll head to the interview, talk to the interviewer, and simply be himself. I have already told him to just go to the interview, and if they want you, cool, and if not, that’s cool, too.

The boy has already suggested the school is entirely too much money – what thirteen year-old does that? – and maybe he should go somewhere else. I told him what I told Kyle when he went to the University of Dallas: “We’ll make it work.”

So, hopefully, Kevin will have a nice, stress-free interview, and I’ll remind Mrs. Earp to tell the interviewer I coached lacrosse at the school for four years. Can’t hurt to grease the wheels, right?

The Accolades Continue

So yesterday I was sitting at my desk entering jobs when Mrs. Earp sent me a text message. I looked at the message and was instantly thrilled. Erik made the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll!

Many athletes made the honor roll from Erik’s school, with a decent amount from the lacrosse team.

Sr. Maureen McDermott, IHM, PhD, Superintendent for Secondary Schools, Office of Catholic Education, has announced the 2021 Archdiocese of Philadelphia Spring Sports Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll, which recognizes the high school student-athletes of the Archdiocese who earned first or second academic honors in the third quarter marking period while competing in baseball, softball, lacrosse, outdoor track & field, boys’ tennis, crew, and boys’ volleyball or a fall sport that competed in the alternate spring season per PIAA guidelines.

The irony here is Erik missed First Honors this semester by one lousy point.

“AOP programs enjoyed great individual and team success in the Spring sports season,” said Sister Maureen. “To have such a significant number of students earn academic honors while competing in athletics speaks volumes about their commitment to the student-athlete experience.”

Erik, like Kyle, is a very good lacrosse player, and his grades have been pretty spectacular. In fact, Transylvania University in Kentucky sent him an email Tuesday offering him a priority application. The school has been looking at him for lacrosse, but his grades obviously made an impact.

As always, we’re very proud of him and his accomplishments.

Princess P, Dancing Queen

This year, Princess P decided to change her dance school. Her previous school wasn’t sure they would be open because of the Chinese Wuhan Virus, and since the owner of the new school (Dance Kidz) is friends with Mrs. Earp, it seemed like a good alternative.

Classes were an hour, once a week, and when I took Julia, she always asked to stop at the store to get her Gatorade and a snack. Since I’m a pushover, I always agreed. Julia joined the lyrical dance group, which appeared to be more like ballet than anything else.

Last night was the recital, and unlike other recitals, we were able to go home after Princess P’s dance was over. The recital began at 7pm, and considering the amount of classes, it likely went until almost 10pm. Mrs. Earp, my mother-in-law, Kevin, Erik, and I all went to see Princess P dance. (Kyle was home sick; fighting a cold the past two days.)

Obviously, I’m biased, but I think Julia performed magnificently. She told me afterward that she almost slipped at one point, and claimed she was “just okay.” I disagreed, but when Julia thinks she made a mistake, she carries it around for a day or two. I can only tell her what I saw, and I saw her dancing very well. As always, she made me very proud, and she liked her teacher enough that she is interested in taking a jazz class.

I cannot wait until I see her pulling out “jazz hands.”

Hello, Neumann!

So the other day Kevin came home from school with some paperwork. The paperwork was an application for the Newmann Scholars program.

The program identities students with outstanding grades and offers them the chance to take the test and submit an essay. The winners will receive a four-year scholarship to any one of seventeen Archdiocesan high schools.

Kevin’s grades have always been exceptional, and he destroyed the TerraNovas this year, which likely put him on the program’s radar. Now, I don’t necessarily expect him to be awarded the scholarship, but I absolutely believe he will do well on the test. I simply told him to do his best and we’ll see where it leads.

Kevin did very well on the test he took for the private school, but when he saw how much it cost, he told us he didn’t want to go because it would be too much of a financial burden on us. For my part, I told him if he wants to go there, we’ll make it happen. That said, a four-year ride would be a blessing, and with Kevin’s giant brain, maybe it’ll happen.

Band On The Run

So Julia has been a member of her school’s band for a few years, and every single time her recital comes up, I end up working nightwork. This year was different, because all the band instruction was held on Zoom. Like Erik, Julia plays the drums – Kyle played trombone – and she did one-on-one classes with her teacher every Thursday.

Thanks to the Chinese Wuhan Virus, everyone had to learn that way, which was not easy, but they got through it. Yesterday the virtual recital took place. Everyone played their songs alone, then they were combined for an amazing performance. It was nice seeing her play again, despite it was taped, and while she really likes band, she is also relieved this year is over. Thursday is also dance night, so she has to come home, do homework, have the band lesson, then jet out to dance.

I’m proud of how she’s working and juggling so many activities, but I’m sure she cannot wait until summer vacation…

Continue reading “Band On The Run”

How To Get Ahead In Business

Last night, the missus and I were invited to an academic awards ceremony being held by Erik’s high school. We were notified Erik would be receiving an academic award, but we wouldn’t know the specifics until he received it.

The venue was held in a local church, and there were dozens of students inside to receive their specific awards. Erik, for his part, thought he would be getting an English award, since he has maintained a 99 average the entire year. He was mistaken.

They called Erik up, took a photo with him and his teacher who nominated him, and when he came back, we realized he won the Certificate of Excellence for Outstanding Performance in the Study of Business Principles. Erik enjoys his business class, even though he shares the room with seniors. He was happy to have been nominated, and now he, like Kyle, each have a nice academic achievement.

Not too shabby. There is video of the event below the fold…

Continue reading “How To Get Ahead In Business”

A New Day Is Upon Us

With the recent posts about Erik, Kevin, and Princess P, you may be wondering what happened to Kyle, my oldest. After graduating high school, Kyle spent a year at the University of Dallas. He enjoyed the city, the people, and his friends, but the academics were brutal.

Kyle was always a smart, good student, and spent high school in honors classes. He took Latin in freshman year for crying out loud. Unfortunately, that didn’t seem to carry over in Dallas. We knew it was a very good school, but Kyle had trouble most of the year. After a certain religion class, he texted me, “I’ve had religion classes for ten years, and I never heard about anything this guy is teaching.”

Covid struck in March 2020, and the school closed for the rest of the year. I drove to Dallas to pick him up, and we drove home. During the trip, he finally said, “I don’t want to go back.” I told him to finish out the year and then we would accept his decision. When the year ended, he was adamant about not going back…

Continue reading “A New Day Is Upon Us”

Happy Birthday Kevin!

Today is Kevin’s 13th birthday, which means our Three Birthdays in Six Days Event is now over. It also means I’m getting old, and my youngest child will also be a teenager in ten months. How the hell did this happen?

Mrs. Earp sent me this photo yesterday. It popped up on her Facebook feed from when Kevin was in kindergarten. It propelled me to tell the story here, since I don’t think I mentioned it previously.

Kevin was having an allergy attack and the doctor prescribed him Flonase to stop the rampant sneezing. She took Kevin to school and that was that. Later in the day, Kevin’s teacher called, saying Kevin fell asleep at his desk and he wouldn’t wake up. Natch, Mrs. Earp sped to the school and took him to the hospital. We didn’t know what the problem was, but the teacher was manic when she called.

Kevin was breathing, but he couldn’t keep his eyes open. When they got to the hospital, the docs checked him out and asked a few questions. When Mrs. Earp mentioned the Flonase, the doctor’s understood. Apparently, Flonase knocks you out, especially with younger kids. There was nothing wrong with him, per se, but the meds sent him to la-la land.

The picture above is Kevin snoring in his hospital bed. He was released after a while when the docs realized Kevin was suffering from dehydration. With Kevin, it’s always something.

Kevin has grown up to be a very smart young man. He still loves Krav Maga, is continually earning good grades, and when he’s not running around like a weirdo, he’s a genuinely good kid.

Happy birthday, Kevin. You’re the best Valentine’s Day gift we could ask for. We love you.

Reclaim The Throne

Friday was the first time all week where the temperatures were relatively warm – just under 40 degrees – and we were blessed with sun and melting snow. After the kids finished their Zoom classes – a kid in 6th grade caught the Wuhan, so they’re home for a week – Kevin and Julia went outside. Julia tried to save her snowman, but the sun was too much, and the head fell off right before our eyes. So, with that, she and Kevin decided to make snow thrones.

Kevin’s empty throne (above) also has a footrest, because why make a throne if it’s not comfortable? Julia’s similar, but higher to compensate for her long legs.

If you click Julia’s photo, you can see the tools she used… a shovel and the mallet at the base of the throne. She doesn’t screw around when it comes to sculpting. It was a pretty good day.

Deer Diary…

So, I was sitting at my desk in work when Mrs. Earp called. She usually doesn’t call me while I’m working, so I figured something went wrong somewhere. Sadly, I was correct in that assumption.

Kyle was heading to his friend’s job to drive him home, because the friend’s car was in the shop. Kyle’s good like that. Anyway, while he was driving, a deer decided to run in front of my precious, antique Saturn VUE. Kyle struck the deer, and it damaged the front end, the hood, the lights, etc.

Thankfully Kyle was not hurt, and while the car doesn’t look as bad as I thought it would, the tow driver said he couldn’t tell if the car can be repaired or if it would be totaled. This annoys me because it’s a 2007 Saturn – which they don’t make anymore, thanks to Obama – and it is/was my favorite car.

We’ll see what the garage thinks. I sincerely hope it can be fixed, because Kyle really likes having a car. If not, then… not. If we decided to get another car, it would be a pre-owned one. I certainly cannot afford a new car, especially since Mrs. Earp’s Saturn Relay is nearly fifteen years old and if falling apart.