Because I’m a total dork, I signed up to receive newsflashes from my town hall.  (Dork!)  One such newsflash came across today while the entire family was on the way home from parent/teacher conferences.  Serendipitously enough, it was about “Local Youth Invited to Join 4-H!”  because really, what better time to be alerted about 4-H enrollment than on the way home from parent/teacher conferences with the entire family in the car!  Am I right, or am I right??  (I’m right.  I’m always right.  It always goes down much easier if you get on board with me always being right.  And no, I’m not joking.  In fact, it’s no joking matter.  Being right all the time is a terrible, terrible burden and it’s not something to joke about.  It’s serious business.)

After some general conversation about where we may have encountered 4-H (the County Fair we attend every year to see the 4-H exhibit and all the blue ribbon winning entries – Dork!) we shifted into a discussion about what exactly 4-H is (home economics projects, how to raise animals etc.).

Sonny immediately chimed in with, “I’ll do anything with monkeys!”

Me: “Uh….No.  There’s not even anything ABOUT monkeys!  4-H is more about baking cakes and how to raise livestock and stuff like that.”

Sissy (the girl who wants to be a veterinarian): “Oooh.  I’ll do livestock!  Can I sign up for livestock?”

Me: “Actually, Sweetie…I think ‘livestock’ is more along the lines of raising a calf all the way through butchering it and selling its meat.”

Sissy: “THAT’S LIVESTOCK?!?!  Then no, I don’t want to do THAT!”

Since this conversation is going nowhere fast, I decided to READ them the list of classes on offer, rather than us MAKING UP OUR OWN.  Some of the more intriguing options were:  Beef Breeding (this may be what they’re calling Livestock nowadays so as to set expectations right up front about the ‘butchering’ component), Dogs, Horseless Horse (this must be for Headless Horsemen…or for city kids who like horses but don’t have any??  It didn’t say anything about all the work being done on sawhorses…but I expect this might be the case – total yawn), Model Rocketry, Orienteering, Rabbit Breeding, Robotics, Veterinary Science.

Sissy:  “Ok, I want to do Dogs, Rabbit Breeding and Veterinary stuff.”  (Sense a theme here, anyone?  This girl basically just wants to spend her entire day hugging and kissing furry animals.)

Me: “Well…I’m not sure about the Rabbit Breeding thing, Honey.  If it requires us to build our own hutch in the back yard to raise specialty rabbits and eventually sell their furs, then we’re out.  If we can just go VISIT someone ELSE’S hutch?  Then we could consider it.”  (As a side note, I do not know why I have to constantly beat Sissy’s choices down with a death stick.  At least I have NEVER mentioned that part about euthanizing animals when she brings up her Veterinarian Dream.  I’m not THAT mean even though I feel like I could win a blue ribbon for Hard-hearted Mothering at the County Fair EVERY YEAR!)

Sonny: “If there’s nothing with monkeys, then I want to do Robots and Adventuring.”

Me: “Adventuring is more like Orienteering, I think, Buddy.  Like reading maps and using a compass to determine direction.  Is that what you want?”

Sonny: “No.  Then just robots.  Can you read some more about the robots?”

Hubby – who has remained the mute driver this entire time and has seen me go under THREE TIMES now in the course of this cockamamie conversation – finally pipes in with: “Sonny wants the class where you can drive by the 4-H office, pick up a robot and bring it home.  That’s actually the class that Sonny wants.”

Sonny: “Yeah!  That’s the class!  That way you guys don’t have to do any more dishes!!”

Yeah.  Good plan about the dishes.  So yes…let’s sign you up for robot class.  ‘Cause Heaven knows I could use some help with the dishes.  Well, and the laundry.  And really, the mothering in general – especially that part about enrolling in 4-H classes!

P.S.  I’m awarding bonus points if you can tell me what the 4-H’s in 4-H stand for.  Anyone?  Anyone??  And just as a fun fact, I’ll tell you that the 4-H slogan is “Learn by Doing.”  But if I were in charge, I’d change the slogan to “Learn by doing what I tell you to do, when I tell you to do it.”

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