The House Hunt

Miss Skye will go to kindergarten next year (say WHA–?!), which means I have been obsessively researching schools and options in the Los Angeles area.  And by “obsessively,” I mean spending pretty much every waking second on it.  I no longer have time for mundane tasks such as feeding my children and acknowledging my family’s presence — LEAVE MOMMY ALONE, SHE HAS TO GOOGLE “WHAT THE HELL IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MAGNET AND A CHARTER SCHOOL AND WHY IS THIS ALL SO FREAKING HARD WHEN ALL I HAD TO DO AS A KID WAS WALK TO THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL DOWN THE STREET?!?!?!”  To which Google responds, “Lay off the Caps Lock, woman.  You’re giving me a headache.”

Yeah, well, I’ll tell you what a headache is — navigating the L.A. school system.  We’re not fortunate enough to be assigned to one of the better elementary schools, so I’ve been wading through private school brochures, dozens of sites explaining the district’s point system (you need a Ph.D in Mathematics to understand it, true story), inter-district applications, intra-district applications, and charter and magnet school reviews.  After my endless research and hand-wringing, Mr. Candy and I arrived at a very thoughtful conclusion:

Screw it.  We’re moving to a good school district.

So we’re movin’ on down…to the beach side.  We’ve been in the process of looking at houses down there — a process that means very little to a two-year-old (Drew is just irritated that it takes precious time away from playing outside) and getting your hopes repeatedly raised and crushed to a four-year-old.  Every time we go to an open house, it goes like this:

Every.  Single.  Time.  It also raises the hopes of the realtors showing the houses, who can’t help but notice Skye’s excitement and coo:  “Awww.  I think SHE’S ready to move in right now!”  I’m sure this tactic is in the Selling Houses for Dummies book — “If your potential buyers are parents, note that their weak spot is their children:  POUNCE!” — but when the child declares she wants to buy every house she steps foot in, said parents become decidedly less moved by the child’s enthusiasm.

“Yeah, she acts that way at all the open houses,” I say and roll my eyes, much to the realtor’s chagrin.  But it’s true.  Even if we went to, say, a trash dump, I’m confident it would go like this:

(Actually, we have seen places like this that have sold for seven figures.  Welcome to L.A.!)  And when I explained to Skye that it was a DUMP…?  A literal dump?  Her answer invariably would be:

*Sigh*  Poor kid.