1.  Ah, basketball, thou art our life. Bear kicked off her (official) birthday bright and early with an 8:00 game on Saturday. That doesn’t sound so bad, right? Except the coach wanted them there by 7:30. Except it was an hour from our house. Except breakfast was 15 minutes out of the way. All that “except” adds up to a Saturday alarm at FIVE TWENTY IN THE MORNING. Holy hellacious hour, Batman.

2.  The 8:00 game was…intense. Accusations were flung. Animosity ensued. There came a moment when I seriously wondered if there was extra security on the premises, maybe for me, maybe for the officials, I don’t know. Let’s just say the players weren’t the only ones who burned calories during that game.

3.  And then came The Schedule. First game at 8:00am, second one at – wait for it – 4:40pm. We live an hour away (1 hour, 5 minutes to be precise) and there was no way I was driving 65 minutes home just to turn around and head back a couple of hours later. Bear said it burns too much gas, which I agreed was environmentally irresponsible. Me? I just can’t take the idea of that much time in the car.

4.  So what’s a girl to do with seven hours to kill in a big city? Hit the mall, of course.

reader’s note: Anyone who knows me is squinting at their screen right about now, wondering what sort of alternate universe this is. I’ll repeat: it’s Bear’s birthday. Some birthdays are filled with chilling out at the lake; others involve trolling food courts and emphasizing the merits of window shopping.

5.  Bear didn’t make out too bad, though. In Raleigh all day for a tournament? Sure you can have Cinnabon for birthday cake. Still have four more hours to kill before your next game? Sure you can have Starbucks for your birthday. Want to check out the virtual reality machine with your teammates? Sure you can have some money. Thank goodness she’d cashed in her birthday chips before reaching the Pandora store.

6.  BrightSide returned triumphant from his golf trip, Chic-fil-a in hand to feed the (now starving) girl. I was glad he caught the second game, if only so he could appreciate firsthand the utter nonsense passing for officials. Come on, ref, HOW CAN YOU NOT CALL THAT FOUL?!?

7.  Bear’s confirmation was on Sunday – man, she had a banner weekend – so church was kind of a big deal. We were lucky that the grandparents could be there to celebrate with us.

8.  After the reception we had the youth group’s end of year party. The threat of rain pushed us indoors – boo! – but there were still tasty hot dogs and hamburgers – yay! Plus there was a gentleman from Sunset Slush scooping Italian ice and oh.my.gosh IT WAS SO GOOD. BrightSide just found out there’s a shop in town so I guess I know where we’re going for treats. Gluten free, dairy free, fat free deliciousness? Yes, please.

9.  And just in case we hadn’t had enough basketball, we rolled back over to Raleigh for one more game. I hate to sound crabby but these last two refs weren’t any better than the first four so I’m kinda losing hope for sports officials in that particular area. Sheesh.

10.  Anyone else counting down the school days? I’ve got a post-it stuck to the fridge with a big fat number written in Sharpie. We’re at 14 and counting. Hallelujah, pass the pudding, bring on summer.