Way back at the start of the school year, Leif met a girl.
She is a cute little blonde who wears great shoes, plays the cello and loves little kids. And she is a FOURTH grader!
It all started innocently enough. Leif was nervous to ride the bus, he never had before. I was nervous to have him ride the bus - because what if the bus dropped him at the wrong school... or left him on a street corner... or decided to drive to Texas or something? You just never know these days...
But the cute little blonde at the bus stop (with cute boots) promised me to help Leif out.
And for a few weeks she diligently rode the bus with him next to her.
And AB and I worried when we saw stars setting in Leif's eyes upon gazing at her.
"What if she wants to sit with her friends?" we started asking him.
"She doesn't want to," Leif assured us.
Gone was the crush on the girls his age... now he had his eyes set on an OLDER girl! And he would blush when her name would come up. And he would blush when he would see her at school holding the door. And he would hide from her when her class left the gym and his arrived...
Then just a few short days later Leif complained that she keeps trying to sit in other spots. And he was trying to come up with tricks to force her to sit with him. There started a war at the bus stop whereby she was trying to make him get on the bus first so that she could select her seat afterwards. And Leif tried to make her get on the bus so that he could sit next to her.
And even when she would take a seat with somebody else, Leif would squish in and make it three in the row!
AB and I tried to take the tactic of reasoning with Leif, "you know, she is older and has friends and maybe doesn't want a first grader hanging around all the time?" To which Leif would reply, "she does, she just pretends she doesn't."
Poor, poor oblivious little boy.
Then AB and I took the opposite tactic. Don't mention her at all and hopefully the heart throbbing would subside. I reluctantly followed this path. Reluctantly because to me it seemed akin to sticking my head in the sand.
Then last week the little miss sealed her own fate unknowingly.
"Leif," she said, "if you can answer a math problem that I make up, then you can sit with me for the rest of the year. BUT, if you get it wrong, then you can't sit with me the rest of the year. Ok?"
"What is 44 x 10?" she asked.
"That's easy!" replied Leif, "440!"
And so Leif has a spot saved for him on the bus for the remainder of the year.