Posts in SCHOOL
PANTS AND SOCKS AND SHOES, OH MY

It’s that time of year—getting ready for back to school. When I looked at the calendar and saw that there are only two weeks left until school, I think I actually “eeked” a little. There was no way we were ready for school…clothes, shoes, supplies and other incidentals. I loudly proclaimed, “We need to get ready for back to school,” and then I marched into Monkey Boy’s room.

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PANTYHOSE AND THE MIDDLE SCHOOL DANCE

When the school announced the date and theme of the dance in mid-January, they also announced that the dress code would be semi-formal, in that no jeans or casual wear were allowed. They asked students to wear something that they might wear to church. The Girl scoffed out loud, and when she told me, we laughed hard. Obviously they did not know what I let my kids wear to church: ripped jeans, sports pants, shorts, flip flops, and/or T-shirts and hoodies. And hats, not fancy Southern, church-lady hats but knit caps, beanies, snapbacks. “We gotta find you something to wear,” I said.

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IT'S ALL ABOUT LOVE...ER, CANDY...

Last week was Valentine’s Day. And this year we—and by we, I mean me and perhaps the Girl—were going to hand make all our Valentine’s Day cards for Monkey Boy. We had a plan, too. We were going to pick 30 small, colorful and interesting rocks from our garden (we’ve got thousands) and make pet rocks with googly eyes, an alternative to candy. The Girl said she had a bunch of googly eyes in her craft box and plenty of hot glue sticks to glue on the eyes. I had plenty of small clear plastic bags for the pet rocks and lots of cardstock for the “You Rock” Valentine’s Day cards. Perfect. Except it didn’t turn out that way.

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DANCE WITH ME

Last spring Monkey Boy bounced into the kitchen wearing brown and white shorts, a too-small greyish brown tee with a dinosaur crossing Abbey Road on it, a brightly colored green sock and a blue striped sock, and his new-ish sneakers. I did a double take. He then put on his yellow Monster stocking cap with purple ear covers. His outfit surprised me. Not one bit of it matched. And just as I was about to comment on his outfit, as non-judgy as possible, he did dress himself for school, after all, Monkey Boy said, “Hey guys, I want to show you some dance steps.”

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ARTIST OF THE WEEK

You know how each class picks one kid to be the Star, Or Superhero or Artist of the week? Monkey Boy is the “Artist of the Week” this week in his class for no other reason than where his last name falls in the alphabet. He also got to choose a storybook to read aloud to his class and put together a sharing sack that contained 3 special items from home…He decided on his Spider-Man mask to represent his interest in all things Marvel. He also chose his soccer ball. Finally, Monkey Boy chose to take a family photo. He said, “I want to tell people about my family.”

“Oh yeah? What are you going to tell them about daddy?”

“He’s a pastor, and he plays music.”

That’s cool,” I said. Then I asked, “What are you going to tell them about me? What do I do?”

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AND THAT WAS THE FIRST WEEK OF SCHOOL

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. So I am going to start with the easy one…

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LAST PACKED SCHOOL LUNCH DAY

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. I really wanted to just grab a handful of whatever and throw it in a bag, pat some heads, and push them out the door. 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?”

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HOW WAS YOUR WEEKEND?

Ren’s February writing journal came home. He’s required to write every morning at school at least five sentences on any given prompt. As read I read through his journal, most days it was clear what the prompt was, such as, “What Did You Do Last Weekend?” or “Will the Groundhog See His Shadow?” We’ve always known that he’s quite a storyteller. He weaves a good tale, and now it seems as though his strong opinions and storytelling skills are crossing genres from oral to written. His first journal entry was a rather interesting op-ed piece on Groundhog’s Day, a complex commentary with multifaceted possibilities woven through the piece along with an somewhat predictable segue at the end.

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