On Friday, Amelia’s burst of homework diligence the day before paid off in that she didn’t have very much left to do for the week. She mainly had to do some reading, which is mostly delivered through an online learning service that awards stars for different books read and quizzes completed.

In my job, I often have to deliver courses to architects and engineers, who also are then incentivized to complete quizzes. Except instead of stars, they get the continuing education credits necessary to keep designing buildings. Pretty much the same, though.

Anyway, Amelia loves getting those stars and was very proud of the fact that the day’s work raised her total to 1,625 stars. I have no idea what the scale is or what that means, but she was really proud of it, so I think it’s awesome. And she was actually asking us to do more homework, which was the opposite of our experience the day before. Stars are powerful things indeed.

Beyond that, the day was somewhat uneventful. Let’s face it, one of us getting 1,625 stars is hard to top. But we decided to have a pizza and movie night, and the kids got to make their own pizza.

They had lots of fun doing it, and the result was fantastic. They scarfed it down and felt extra proud about the fact that they made it together. And since they both like cheese pizza, fortunately there were no disagreements over toppings.

For the movie, we decided to check out the new Scooby-Doo movie, Scoob. Amelia has really gotten into Scooby-Doo on Netflix lately, so she’s been counting down the day to this movie’s release. I was also a huge Scooby-Doo fan as a kid, and being a cranky old curmudgeon now, I was skeptical of this “NEW” Scooby-Doo. Why can’t we just watch old episodes where the Harlem Globetrotters or Jonathan Winters helped the gang solve mysteries?

But I have to say, a few minutes in my doubts melted away. The movie was delightful, and we were all laughing out quite a bit. It’s fun and funny for kids, and it is gushing with references to old Hanna-Barbera cartoons. Dick Dastardly is the villain, it has a funny take on Blue Falcon and Dynomutt, and the casting of Tracy Morgan as Captain Caveman was pure genius.

So it was a fun family night, and we all enjoyed the movie. It has me still humming the Scooby-Doo theme song. Though the idea of ripping off peoples’ masks doesn’t seem as appropriate or appealing at the moment.

After the kids were in bed, I sat out front and had a nice cigar, enjoying the evening air by polluting it. When I was finishing up, I slid a ring off the end and it lit up in the ashtray.

I watched it for a little while to make sure it didn’t reveal an inscription in the language of Mordor, which I will not utter here. Thankfully it didn’t. The arrival of the Ring of Doom is the last thing we need right now. Also this would be terrible timing for a quest, what with all the travel restrictions.