We made it through the first week and a couple days into the second week of the new school year. Of course, there was drama. There was drama because I have kids. And there was drama because one of those kids is a teenage girl. And she has teenage girlfriends. If I said nothing else, you would completely understand. But I can’t leave it here…
Monkey Boy called out from the family room, “Momma, I didn’t get my daily Pop Tart.”
“Daily Pop Tart?” I questioned. “Since when is that a thing?”
“Since you bought Pop Tarts at the store. So, can I have my daily Pop Tart?”
Okay, okay, I did buy Pop Tarts at the store the other day. It was unusual. It was most likely both a hero and villain move on my part. The Girl had agreed to go grocery shopping with me for veggies and fruit so that I could make this amazing summer salad to take to a friend’s house that evening for dinner. When we were heading to the check stand, the Girl commented that she was hungry. I stopped in the aisle just in front of the check stand and spread my arms wide, “What do you want?”
Today was the last day I needed to pack lunches for the Girl and Monkey Boy. I can’t believe that our insulated lunch bags and bento lunch boxes made it through the entire school year, even though I wasn't so sure that I had anything in the house to pack in them for their lunches. I was cutting it kind of close with meal planning. I have fruit aplenty and some carrots and a cucumber. In the pantry, I have a lot of nuts and some dried fruit and protein bars. I also have a cabinet full of spices. You can just imagine the conversation in the cafeteria, “I got some wasabi almonds, dried apricots, half a cuke, and a jar of fennel. Anyone wanna trade?”
Monkey Boy also needs a costume, for which we are happy to provide. He needs a pig mask/nose/ears, and he need to wear either pink or peach for the play. Monkey Boy requested to wear pink, because according to him, "Peach is not my color."
Conversations with Monkey Boy often confuse me. This evening, I sat with him at the table to make sure he was staying on task with his spelling words. We came to the word, "black," and Monkey Boy said, "Seriously?"
In the car, Ren was going through his Halloween goodies bag from school when he found a pair of fake vampire teeth. He was busy eating snacks from the goodies bag so Ash said, “Here. Let me show you how they work.” She took the teeth and put them in her mouth. Then she took them out and handed them to Ren who promptly put them in his mouth.
On our staycation, we decided to take one night at a hotel and visit Knoebels Amusement Park in central Pennsylvania as part of Ren’s 6th Birthday Celebration...
Ash—the child who has never, ever brought home anything less than a perfect report card with perfect grades and notes like, “Ash is a joy to have in class”—kinda, sorta got in trouble at school today.
Ren was taking much too much time getting ready for school one morning last week. Instead of getting his clothes on, he was lying on the floor playing with his toys. I stepped into room, opened his drawers and pulled out clothes for him to wear.
Last week was a tough week. Two phone calls from two different teachers in regard to Ren’s behavior. A chat with the bus driver, and a note send home from Ren’s substitute.
Last Thursday morning, Monkey Boy was very adamant about not going to school. He stripped off his pajamas and squatted on the top step of the stairs, “I am not going to stupid school today! I hate school.”
“I’ll tell you what, Ren, let’s make a deal,” I said.
We made it one day into the new school year before we getting a phone call from the principal’s office. Monkey Boy got into a fist fight in school. It took a while to get the whole story from him, but as it turns out, he was the aggressor not because this other little boy took Spider Man’s name in vain, as he originally told us, but because he wanted to fight, sorta.
Ren gets homework—four nights a week—in kindergarten. It’s not that we are opposed to homework at such a young age, it’s just surprising. Ash didn’t start getting homework until First Grade, and then it was all reading homework. She had to keep a journal of all the books or magazines she actually read. So we would read out loud to each other. She read 75 books that year. They were simple and short, but still that is quite impressive that she tripled what was required. Ren’s homework consists of letters, numbers and counting, most often a page or two. B has taken on the task of homework manager.
The first day, they both got chicken and cheese cubes, chocolate raspberry greek yogurt, raisins, and for snack (because they both get a lunch period and a snack period) carrots and pretzels with hummus. When they came home that day, Ash raved about her lunch and said, “I loved it. You can send me the same thing every day.” Just like her Dad, the same thing every day for lunch my self- satisfaction and congratulation was short lived, “I didn’t like the yogurt,” Ren said. “I don’t want that again. And I couldn’t open the hummus container.” I showed him how to open the plastic container.
I was walking Ren to his classroom this morning when we past one of his classmates.
“Hi Ren,” she said with a smile and a wave.
“Hi Jillian,” Ren said, smiling back at her. Then Ren turns to me and said, ‘They all know my name here.”
Today was the coldest day. Literally the coldest day. Temperatures hovered around 0F, and with the wind chill factor, the real feel temperature was as low as -20F. Ash had a two-hour delayed start at school, at which time the real feel temperature was a balmy -9F.
This morning Ren’s school was having their Halloween party, and all the kids were invited to dress as something from the ocean to follow this year’s theme. We don’t have any oceana costumes…Spider Man, Power Rangers x2, Batman, Superman, Ninja, Dog, Dragon, Frog, and lots of princess costumes left over from Ashlyn’s preschool days.
With just a few days left until summer vacation, we are finding it harder and harder to stay in our regular routine such as early bedtimes. Last night was late, really late, later than weekend late nights. This morning, for the first time this school year, I overslept.
Ash and I like to walk to her preschool when we can. It's exactly one mile door to door.
This morning after a brief discussion on finding sneakers and getting them on to feet as quickly as possible:
A cool and drizzly Wednesday morning. Purple Day at preschool. I walk into the girl’s room, as cheerfully as possible, flip on the light and announce, “Ash, time to get up.”
“Don’t. I’m sleeping.”