My kids, with the help of their pretty awesome Dad, shared all the reasons they love me in this video. Apparently “Double-Bubble” was high on my son’s list.
You’re off to Kindergarten, and you’re quite well prepared.
Your Tinkerbell backpack is fully packed
With classroom donations of paper and paste,
And a shiny new lunchbox to hold every snack.
The princess’ new clothes are laid out with lace socks,
New shoes and a polka-dot frock
A headband with a bow is the final touch.
Kiss your dolly goodbye; you’re out the door with no muss.
Kindergarten is a doorway, beyond its threshold your classroom awaits
With chunky pencils, glue sticks, safety scissors, and crayons of every shade.
You will write, your will draw, you will cut and you will paste.
There will be learning centers to explore how things work,
From lego-built forts to clock hands to shoelaces and boots.
Just a few words of advice before you bolt through that door,
Stand neatly in line; don’t push and don’t shove.
Try something new, each day
Don’t give up, ‘til you’ve mastered the task.
Share your pencils and snacks
Ask questions – your friends might just be glad that you asked.
Be daring and bold, and unafraid to fail.
Stand up for yourself, and for your friends too.
You know right from wrong, remember that too.
Solve problems; don’t start them.
Be patient. Don’t whine, some things just take time.
Don’t forget – your teacher will teach, but the learning is up to you.
At the beginning of 2011, I began this blog, and joined the WordPress “Post A Week” Challenge. Nearly 14 months have come and gone, and now WordPress tells me that this is my 100th post!
Hmmm, how should I commemorate this important occasion?
Should I revive some of my more memorable posts (memorable for me, anyway)? I could bring back the one I wrote about my mother last Mother’s Day – 13 Things You Should Know About my Mom. Or I could remind you of the love story I told about my grandparents around Valentines Day – Step One: Get the Girl. I could even resurrect the blog post that somehow managed to hit the Freshly Pressed Radar, Mom, I Know Lots of Words, about my son learning to read. Dear God, I was gushing with pride then, I’m almost a little embarrassed by it now.
When I look back at my posts, I realize that there is a lot of variety in my blog. (Translation: I have no direction!) I’ve shared some sappy stories about my kids, and family, as well as one or two Bad Parenting Moments.
I’ve thrown in a few travel posts, mostly about my family vacation. I tried, once or twice, to give some advice on SMART goals, and business skills…as if I know! I’ve even shared a few recipes, like the one for my Kahlua Chocolate Chip muffins. Those things should be illegal!
Maybe I should use my 100th post to give you a list of my blogging resolutions, or some of my plans for upcoming posts (as if I have some).
However, what I should really do is come up with some fresh material.
Today, I had “just one of those mornings”, and really I have no one to blame but myself. Here’s how it went down.
“Thud!” That would be the sound of my feet hitting the floor 30 minutes later than they should have, also the sound of the first domino in the chain-reaction-disaster that was my morning.
- I beg and plead with my almost-7-year-old son, and my almost-5-year-old daughter to pretty-please hop out of bed and get themselves dressed in a flash. (The background here – my husband has been away for 2 weeks on an overseas trip, and I am playing the role of single-parent. This means dragging the kids out of bed at 5:30 a.m. during the week to shuffle them off to Grandma’s and school, so I can start my 90-minute commute to work. Fun times.)
- I hop in the shower. Just as I lather up my hair, my daughter walks in to argue with me about what she’s wearing. The weather forecast is for 84 degrees and she wants to wear her fleece pants, rather than the “weather-appropriate” outfit we picked out the night before. I am in no mood to argue, and a tantrum ensues.
- Still washing my hair, I give her some other clothing options just to get her out of the bathroom. The tantrum lingers, and I “sternly” tell her to go get dressed, and remind her that she is letting all of the steam out of the bathroom.
- BIG MISTAKE. My son hears the comment about the steam. NOT good. (More background – the kid has legitimate, real anxiety about fire drills, and steam from our shower has, on occasion set off our smoke alarm.) So now, my son is standing in his underwear, in my bathroom in a full-blown panic, sobbing and hyperventilating. He won’t leave because he thinks the smoke alarm will go off is he opens the door. I BEG him to leave the bathroom – promising him up and down that the smoke alarm will not go off. I won’t get out of the shower with him there, either. (I figure a smoke alarm going off would be much less traumatic than having him see is Mom in her birthday suit.)
- In the meantime, my daughter’s tantrum continues on. The next thing I hear is her little voice, through tears saying, “Mommy, I peed.” Of course she peed! She just woke up, has a full bladder, and is having a tantrum. So now I have both children in the bathroom with me, one with pee running down her leg. Me, I’m stuck in the shower trying to think of an escape plan.
- So I use the only tools I have: My Lungs. I stick my head out of the shower and YELL! (Thank goodness we don’t currently have tenants living in our upstairs apartment.) I order my son OUT of the bathroom! I manage to grab a towel, and begin to clean up my pee-coated daughter.
- I regain my composure, and ask my daughter if there are any pee-puddles I need to address. Just “a little bit in the hall” she tells me. So, once I’ve thrown on my clothes, I go to inspect. Yep, there’s a little one in the hallway by her bedroom, and six more little puddles running down the hallway to the bathroom.
So, my over-sleeping managed to turn a normal morning of getting the kids up, dressed, teeth brushed, attending to the dog, and out the door, into a thoroughly CRAPTASTIC morning – full of tantrums, panic attacks, and unexpected janitorial duties.
Thankfully my kids, for the most part, are rock stars. After all the stress of the morning, this evening could not have been better: not a single balk at doing homework; they cleaned their rooms without asking, and were just plain delightful. I also rewarded myself for getting through this day with a big ol’ dish of ice cream and chocolate sauce. (Yes, for those of you who follow this blog, the giving up chocolate for Lent thing went right out the window today!)
Dinner just isn’t the same when Daddy’s away. It’s hard to muster up the motivation to make a big “family dinner” for just me and the kids (especially when one of them takes the prize as a picky-eater).
Nevertheless, we still have to eat but the kids still must eat right? So, I try to keep it simple, easy, and kid-friendly. Tonight’s dinner was the perfect blend of their favorite foods – I call it Happy Turkey Taco-Pizza.
Here’s the super-simple recipe:
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1/2 jar of salsa
- small can of corn
- 8-10 flour tortillas (fajita size)
- 1 package of shredded Mexican cheese
- 12 grape tomatoes (cut in half)
- Salt & Pepper (a pinch of each)
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Brown the ground turkey with a bit of salt and pepper, and drain off any fat.
- Stir in the salsa and corn, and simmer until liquid evaporates. (No one wants a soupy pizza!)
- On a foil-lined cookie sheet, lay out 4-5 tortillas.
- Spoon a bit of the turkey salsa mixture onto each tortilla.
- Cover the mixture with cheese, and then top with tomato-halves (in the shape of smiley faces, of course!)
- Bake for about 10-12 minutes in the oven, or until cheese is thoroughly melted.
Voila! A happy dinner with the kids.
I love having more daylight in the evenings, but I sure do hate losing that hour of sleep. It’s jet lag without the upside of an exciting vacation. The time change throws me off for the whole day. So, I’ve decided to blame all of today’s mishaps on the clock:
First, I stubbed my toe first-thing this morning on the barely noticeable bump from our kitchen threshold. Ouch!
Next, I was baking brownies for a church dinner in my bleary-eyed state this morning. I accidentally replaced vegetable oil with olive oil. The brownies were surprisingly good. (Thank goodness!)
Of course, I was also late for Mass this morning, despite the fact that the kids and I were all up and dressed, with an hour to spare.
My car wouldn’t turn over this morning (leading to the late arrival at Mass). I guess my car doesn’t like Daylight Savings Time either.
I could not get the through the day without a mid-afternoon nap. Thank goodness my kids, were completely engrossed in “Puss ‘n Boots” and let me snooze on the couch for an hour.
My kids and I were generally cranky all day. There was plenty of bickering, toy-grabbing, whining and “she’s touching me!” complaints to last until we “fall back.”
The tough part about today, is that it takes a good few days to really physically work through the time change. I am gearing up for a couple of grumpy bears to greet me tomorrow morning when I pull them out of bed for school before the sun rises.
Here’s hoping we all catch up on our sleep by next weekend!
PS: At first I thought that adding olive oil to my brownie mix would be sinful, and barely edible. Not only did they taste pretty good, I’ve found that some people actually do this on purpose! I found a lovely recipe for chocolate, olive oil brownies over at the Cooking Madness blog. You should check it out.
Maybe my lack of sleep actually inspired genius! (I doubt it though)
This week and month (and especially TODAY!), preschools and elementary schools everywhere are celebrating Dr. Seuss.
How many of us mastered our reading skills to cheerful cadence of The Cat in the Hat? Or learned important life lessons from Horton Hears a Who? — “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”
How are you celebrating this day with your kids, or students?
In my house, Thing One checked out The Lorax from the school library, and drew a little tribute to his favorite characters.
Thing Two is reading Green Eggs and Ham with her preschool class, and her monthly “family project” is to recreate the cover of her favorite Dr. Seuss book using a cereal box and construction paper.
I might even make Green Eggs and Ham for our weekend family breakfast on Sunday.
What about you? Any creative ideas to celebrate this creative author?
This is not one of those blog posts where you’ll find “10 Ways to Keep Your Kids Safe” or other informative tips and tricks for raising children in the age of Facebook and Twitter. This post is an open question. I don’t know the answer, and I’m hoping someone else might.
I recently read a news article about high school students at a prestigious private school in the area who became victims of extortion over the Internet. You can find the full story here: “BC High Officials Warn Parents of Apparent Internet Scam” via Boston.com.
The gist of it is this: at least one teenage boy was duped into sharing personal information with someone whom he believed was a teenage girl. Unfortunately, this was no teenage girl. Casual online conversations turned criminal when this person attempted to extort the boy, threatening to post his very personal information publicly. The school has “urged parents to check their sons’ Facebook pages and have conversations about online safety.“
I feel for the parents and students. A scam like this could easily leave a young boy more than embarrassed, but with permanent damage to his reputation, online and off. Could it have ruined chances at getting accepted at the college of their choice? Maybe. Maybe worse. Inaccurate information, or personal Information posted about you online is difficult to bury. Employers peruse social media websites to help decide who to hire, and in some cases who to fire.
As a parent, I can’t help but believe that this didn’t have to happen. When they are young, we tell our kids: “Don’t talk to strangers!” “Don’t take a ride with someone you don’t know.” We tell them to run, not walk, away from people and situations that don’t seem right.
Then, we give them a laptop, a tablet, or a cell phone and an email account. Sometimes we forget to remind them that when they post a silly comment on Twitter, that it’s like shouting to a stadium full of onlookers.
The popularity of all things social media, from Facebook, to Twitter, to Pinterest, makes them comfortable with sharing just about anything with anyone. We forget to remind them that “stranger danger” exists online too. Or maybe we do remond them, even lecture the, but maybe it’s just not enough.
After all these students are pretty smart guys. They’d have to be to be accepted into this high school. They should know better, right? But then again, they should know not to smoke, not to drink, not to text while driving, and to always wear their seatbelt; but I bet many of them ignore those rules, too. Teenagers are the biggest risk takers out there, so I am pretty sure many of them think they are impervious to the crazy Internet stalkers, bullies and con-artists out there.
So, what’s a parent to do? Lock up the computer? Cancel our Internet accounts? Take away the cell phones? I doubt it. We are as bad as they are. How many of us have accidently updated our Facebook status with a less than prudent comment? Do you have more FB friends than you have on your Christmas card list? Do you have friends you’ve never met? I bet you do!
When was the last time you checked your Facebook Privacy settings?
Social Media ain’t going anywhere. I am just glad that my kids are too young to have email accounts and type IMs to their friends. I have a bit more time to figure this thing out.