The phone rang early this morning. I glanced at the caller ID, but did not recognize the number. "Hello?" I answered.
A tiny voice on the other end of the phone started talking panicked, "I'm sooooo hungry!"
Confused and still groggy from the morning, I blinked, frantically racking my brain, "What?"
The voice continued, suddenly becoming familiar, "Mom! I'm sooooo hungry! I'm starving!"
I half-laughed. April Fool's was yesterday. Still confused, not knowing how to respond, I dumbly asked, "Brady? Is that you?"
Frustrated, he tried again, "Yes, mom! I'm sooooo hungry! Can I pleeeeeese pleeeeeese pleeeeeese get some breakfast?"
Realization finally dawned.
Just then his teacher picked up the phone, "Hello. Brady was watching the other kids eat breakfast and seemed very hungry. I asked him if he had eaten this morning, and he said he just ate a banana, so I told him to go and get something from the cafeteria. He was pretty adamant that he could not unless he had money in his hand. I assured him that you could just send in money tomorrow, but he said that his Mommy said he had to have money in his hand to buy breakfast...."
I laughed, "Yes....I tried to get him to eat more than a banana this morning....
...And…the reason he will not go and get anything without money in his hand is because….”
Back in August at the beginning of the school year, I wrote this....
The many adventures of Ramona and Batman…Volume 2
My niece, Cassidy, and Brady are the best of friends.
Cassidy is the oldest, by 3 whole months. I call her Ramona. Because she is just simply that. Red rain boots and all.
Brady is Batman. Black cape and cowboy boots. Ready to save the world.
The two of them together brighten my day.
Well, most of the time.
They both just started Kindergarten.
My sister-in-law, April, called me last week, “Brooke, I cannot make Cassidy understand that you have to actually pay for breakfast and lunch and ice-cream at school. She is convinced that they will just give it to you for being good.”
She sighed, “Every day, Brooke. Every day. She argues with me every day that the food in her new school is free.”
Today, I received another phone call. It was April. Half annoyed. Half amused.
“Have you set up Brady’s meal pay account, yet?”
I responded, “No, he has only eaten lunch one time. I just gave him lunch money. ”
She mused, ‘Well, you may want to look into that soon. I set up Cassidy’s account today, and as soon as I logged in, I was shocked. Negative $13. It showed she has eaten breakfast for 13 out of 15 days of school! She has a negative $13 balance! How does that even happen!?”
I laughed, “She did what?”
April continued in disbelief, “Yeah! She’s been getting off the bus, and getting herself breakfast every morning. So when she told me that they will just give her breakfast, she was right. They have been!”
I asked, “Has she been eating at home too?”
April laughed, “Yes. She‘s been eating pancakes at home before school too. You may want to make sure Brady has not been following her in there.”
I sighed, “I sure hope not…”
Batman arrived home. I helped him untie his shoes, and I asked, “Hey Buddy, has Cassidy been eating breakfast in the morning at school?”
He looked like a deer in headlights, “How did you know that?”
The blood left my face, “Brady? Have you been eating breakfast with Cassidy?”
He stood there frozen; not answering.
I asked again, “Brady. Have you been eating breakfast at school?”
He nodded, “But, Mom, Cassidy said they will just give it to you when you get off the bus. She said you don't need any money. They do, mom! They give it to you!”
Before the difficult task of explaining how it actually works, I asked curious, “What have you been eating?”
He smiled, “They have sausages, and biscuits, and pancakes and all kinds of good things to eat at school. It’s soooooo yummy, Mom!”
According to Ramona, they are called “Breakfast hamburgers.”
Miss Ramona is the size of an average 3rd grader. She is not much smaller than my 4th grader. My best guess is that Miss Independent just walked off the bus, went straight into the breakfast line and got herself a breakfast. Why would they need to stop a '3rd grader' that clearly knows what she’s doing? Especially when she is obviously showing her “little kindergarten brother” the ropes…
Ramona and Batman…Strike again…