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This is the post that proves why I shouldn't be home with the kids.

When Bryce was a year old, his favorite toy was a Little Tykes school bus complete with passengers and a wheel chair. His favorite passengers were Chad and Jessica. Chad was a white bread blonde kid with a red shirt and no distinguishable facial features. Jessica was a white bread brunette with a sea-green dress and no distinguishable facial features. Among the other passengers were Book-Loving Betty, she wore a magenta shirt and disproportionally large black glasses, and carried two books under her arm; Dan the Bus Driver, wearing a white shirt and a green, authoritative-looking baseball cap; and finally, Saxophone Sam (thus named because he carried his instrument with him), the lone non-caucasian character, wearing a purple band uniform complete with hat from under which a tame "afro" peeked out.

In the early days, the school bus crew went on traditional, "normal" trips to and from school. Chad was always the last one on the bus in the mornings because Bryce preferred to hold Chad and walk around with him for as long as possible. Chad and Jessica often sat on Bryce's high chair tray patiently awaiting the end of breakfast so we could all carry on with the school bus agenda of getting to and from school. School varied from being the fire place to the coffee table to the couch to the front porch to the kitchen table.

These were the days when I was pregnant with Quinn and home with Bryce. I'm only human. I got bored with the same trips to and from school, so I started to liven things up a bit. First it was innocent - field trips to the zoo and the museum, etc. Then it moved to Dan the Bus Driver being sick and letting Book-Loving Betty take the wheel - the headlines on the Little Tykes Tribune read, "Honor Student Endangers Bus Passengers, Claims Coersion". Bryce seemed entertained by all this, so I took my victory and ran with it; I decided we needed a little Calvin & Hobbes flair to this school bus game, so I added some danger to the school bus route - more traffic, fewer available emergency vehicles, kids and a few dinosaurs from other school districts packing into the same bus, and an unfortunate detour that included a cliff highway with no guard rail.

One day, the favorite Chad and Jessica were missing. The Little Tykes school bus adventure crew had to make do without them. The little truants were found in between some couch cushions the next day; it starts younger with every generation, you know? After that scandal quietly ended, Dan the Bus Driver and Jessica went missing - this time for weeks. Every morning we searched high and low for them to no avail. An older dinosaur passenger from the other district had to take over the driving, and the rest of the students attended counseling sessions at school as the community dealt with the tragedy of these missing people. As it turned out, Dan the Bus Driver was a convicted criminal! He had lied on his application and spent months winning the passengers' confidence and secretly lured Jessica away with him after she showed her wild streak with the truancy stunt she'd pulled with Chad.

Oh, the Scandal! Oh, the Shame! Dan the Bus Driver and Jessica were found, months later. We don't need to go into the filthy details, but suffice it to say that Jessica required months of inpatient therapy for the trauma she'd endured, and Dan the Bus Driver is no longer a member of the Little Tykes community. His bus driving priveleges have been revoked and he is a pariah, forced to live in the misfit basket with some old happy meal toys. Shame on you, Dan the Bus Driver.

Shortly after this insanity, Bryce became interested in Toy Story and I didn't have to entertain myself with creating Little Tykes scandals every morning. The poor kid was probably thinking, "geez, I just want to play school bus, lady - why must everything be so dramatic?" Hey, I was pregnant and freshly laid off from a good job. Don't you deal with your stress by scandalizing your kids' toys?