This crazy month of March is coming to an end. A new month is merely hours away. April Fools Day, just around the corner. That means searching the web for pranks and plotting devious plans. I have to prank my family good this year. The only time I’ve ever pranked my dad was in first grade. Every day after school he asked how our day was. I answered, “Awful.” When he asked why, I shouted, “April Fools!” This prank was my pride and joy. Looking back on the prank, I realize it wasn’t anything spectacular, but that didn’t matter then.
This year my goal will be to prank my whole family. Not anything to drastic, but memorable.
Michigan’s weather is…Unique. Just one or two months ago we experienced teMperatures below freezing so today’s 55 degree weather feels like the tropics. The sun is out and the sky is blue, it’s a perfect day. It’s also insane. Why? Well let’s talk about the weather yesterday. Snow. And I mean huge flakes of snow falling to the earth. Then the snow turned to hail and powerful wind cast itself over the land. So today’s beautiful weather is a complete surprise. But trust me, I’m not complaining!
Today my irish dance troupe performed at a retirement home for elderly men. Now our troupe consists of nearly 50 girls so the turn up today was insane. We had a grand total of eight girls. Crazy right? But it is a Sunday so who could blame? Anyways, altogether my troupe has 10 dances that we perform. Because of the lack of dancers we danced 5. In my troupe there are five different “rankings.” The Sprites are the little girls, some as young as three years old. Then you have intermediate 1, 2, and 3. I’m in intermediate 3, the best intermediate group. Above my group is the advanced group. These girls are all in high school.
First the intermediates performed our first dance. This dance went well as well as the next dance. Then the Sprites went on and performed what we call The Haymakers Jig. Overall they did pretty well, considering the fact that they are no older than 6. Then the intermediate 2 performed Skidoo. This is normally performed in hard shoes but today they just danced in soft shoes so that we didn’t damage the floor. The two intermediate 2’s that showed up did Wel on that dance.
Next was Cotton Eye Joe. This dance was especially nerve wracking today. This is because in the first half of the song the intermediate 2’s perform a soft shoe part. Then the intermediate 3′ and advanced girls go on and perform an incredibly fast hard shoe part. There were only two girls doing this part today. My partner and I. Even though we were performing in soft shoes, I was really nervous that we were going to get off beat. Luckily we did great and even went out for ice cream afterwards. I’m so greatful to be able to irish dance and hope to continue as long as I can.
The day of music. A day a crafts, food, and you guessed it…Music.
Many peole come to the day of music to sell nifty crafts. All around the high school, the location of the day of music, are little booths selling all types of crafts. In the cafateria the middle schoolers serve food to hungry guests. Then you get to the auditorium. 1st through 5th grade takes turns going on stage to sing a number of songs. The middle school and high school band, plus the choir, also perform. This year there was an addition. My irish dance troupe performed 10 dances. Between my bamd performance and dancing, I had a very busy day.
“There’s sour cream in my milk!” My brother, Cadin, cried out during breakfast this morning.
I looked up from my cereal in confusion. “Oh my gosh! I hope the milk didn’t go bad!” I thought, looking down at my half eaten bowl of cereal. “How could it have gone bad? I literally just opened it!”
My dad interrupted my thoughts. “What are you talking about?” He asked my brother.
“There is sour cream in my milk!” He repeated, as if it was obvious. But it wasn’t obvious. The milk tasted fine so why was my brother telling us that there was sour cream in his milk.
“Well bring it over!” Dad instructed, obviously confused as well. Cadin walked over to the counter where dad was standing and showed him the milk. After checking then milk out, dad came to a conclusion. “It’s not sour cream,” he said. “It’s just the fat from the milk.” It makes sense since we buy whole milk. Everyone in our house in stick thin.
The news made me feel much better, knowing that I didn’t eat half a bowl of expired milk. Cadin continued talking about how much “sour cream” was in his cup. Eventually I just tuned him out and finished my cereal in peace.
I sit in my favorite chair ever, the one where you sit on a bunch of bungee cords, and try to think of something to write my slice about. Ideas come but once the first sentence is written, I scrap the idea. I can imagine crumpled up paper scattered around the room, just like in the movies. Thousands of starts but none good enough. I bounce in chair, wondering if anything happened that’s worth writing about. Some kids played the piano in band today. They were really good and I consider writing about it but then tossed the idea out the window. I could write about the calligraphy project we are doing in art, but we only practiced with the pens today. In this period of writers block, I don’t think I could pull I story out of drawing lines with ink. My mind searches for a solution, a cure for this awful case of writers block, but in the depths of the night there is no solution except to sit in my bungee chair, bouncing.
Should I raise my hand? Just do it Amber. But what if I mess up? You won’t, you know what your doing.
“Would anyone else like to play they’re chromatic scale?” My band teacher calls out, interrupting my debate. In band we are required to memorize a number of scales then to play them in front of the class when we are ready. The chromatic scale is just one of the few we need to play.
Raise your hand, Amber. It won’t be that bad. I try to work of the nerve to raise my hand. My heart races at the mere thought of playing in front of the class. The flute in my lap almost seems daunting, willing me to play the scale.
Before I know it, the chance slips away. We move on to the B flat scale. After the class goes up and down the scale together, the band director asks if anyone would like to play. You have to do this Amber. This is the easy one!
I turn to the other flutes in my section, Maddy and Sophie. They seem to be having the same inner debate. “I’ll do it if you do,” I offer. With a hesitant look Maddy agrees, then the Sophie.
Only a few kids have played the scale, each doing fine. “You first!” I tell Sophie with a smile. She slowly raises her hand and gets called on. Notes fill the air, playing up then down with only a few falters. Maddy and I exchange a nervous smile before raising our hands. Someone else is called on instead and another shaky glance is passed. Then our hands are in the air again. Maddy gets called on. She raises her flute to her mouth and plays the scale. I’m next.
Ok Amber, you’ll do fine. You play this all the time. I slowly raise my flute up to my face and blow softly, moving my fingers across the keys. The scale was slightly out of tune but I didn’t slip up on any notes. I let out a shaky breath, thankful to have gotten that out of the way. For the rest of class we at other scales. Each time we play a new scale I try to muster up the courage to play, but each time I fail. I will get them eventually but today just wasn’t the day.
I step off of the bus and crisp air meets my skin. The deceiving blue sky would make you think it’s sweltering hot summer day, but the cool breeze blowing my hair begs to differ. It’s just the beginning of spring. I cross the street then begin the long treck home. My driveway is quater of a mile so I have a little bit of a walk. As I walk the birds chirp in the trees. Ahead of me a robin takes flight from its perch on a branch. I smile to myself, knowing that spring is here.
My yellow labroador retriever, Cassi, jumped up and down, tail wagging faster than imaginable. “You wanna play?!” I exclaimed in a ‘talking to your dog’ voice. Her tail flew back and forth even faster, if that’s even possible. Dropping down on my hands and knees, I continued talking to her, getting her hyped up. We then proceed to playfully head-butt each other. Neither of us are playing hard enough to hurt each other, this is just how we play. Cassi’s a pretty big dog, probably weighs as much as I do, so we tend to wrestle a lot. She never bites either so when we wrestle there is never the danger of getting bitten. In the worst case you might get a small scrape from the cracked pads on the bottom of her paws, but she really wouldn’t hurt a fly
I continue playing with the gentle giant until we’re both tired out. Cassi lies down onto the floor with a plop. For a while I just rub her belly, creating satisfaction for my dog. After a while I give her a last pat to the stomach before getting up for a snack. I love my dog and all of her energy.
I’ve had a pretty long break from school but tomorrow I return. I don’t know whether I should be happy or sad. I’m excited to be able to see all of my friends again but the burden of school is back on my shoulders. Between the expected everyday work and now my make up work, I’ve got the weight piled on. Hopefully I don’t get too stressed out and I make it through the week in one piece.