Sunday, September 20, 2015

I drive all day

We made it through another week. That deserves a high five or a cookie or something. Because that's where I'm living right now. Just trying to make it through the week. The children's activities are slowly killing me. I realize it's my fault that they even have activities so I guess I am slowly killing myself. Between dance, gymnastics, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts and play dates I feel like their dance cards are pretty full.

Jake is on the men's gymnastics team now. He is a level 4 which is the bottom level but he gets to go to competitions this year. He is only level 4 because we are bad parents that are holding him back. He could do level 5 and maybe even level 6 but those require more money and more gym time so we said "you know Jake, we think level 4 is good enough!." As it is, my parents are supplementing our gymnastics fund and Jake is spending four hours a week in the gym instead of the one hour he did for the last two years.

I used to listen to parents complaining about being chauffeur's to their kids and thought "oh poor you!" You get to drive around all day listening to good music in the car and talking to your kids while you take them from here to there. That sounded wonderful to me! Because before we had kids I used to love to drive, listen to music and hear the cute things that kids said. But now, on my chauffeuring rounds, I deal with people who want to kill us in traffic and I can't hear the music playing because our cute children are either arguing or asking me which Pokemon character I think would win in a battle. I always end up picking the wrong one because I don't know a dad gum thing about Pokemon.

Anyhow, at his last gymnastics class Jake came home with a hurt pinkie toe. Although he didn't tell his dad anything about it on the ride home (yes, Mike did chauffeur duty!) apparently his little toe was severely injured because as soon as he saw me he started complaining/fake crying. So I looked at the toe, couldn't see anything different about it and his other little toe, and told him he was ok and to just get in the shower already and go to bed because the next day was picture day at school and time? It was a wastin'.

And that brings us to the next morning. School picture day. Emma woke up, ate breakfast, put on a dress and brushed her hair and was ready to go. Let's not talk about the fact that her hair was a little crazy because it had been braided the day before and we forgot to wash it that night. At least she got herself ready and was happy with the way she looked. I had already decided I wasn't buying pictures this year so I let go of the "wouldn't it be nice if her hair looked pretty?" thought.

Jake woke up, went to the bathroom and proceeded to cry/scream/wail for the next two minutes until I went in to see what in the name of God was wrong. There was pee everywhere. I asked him what was wrong and he said that going to the bathroom made his little toe hurt. I said a quick prayer to Jesus and commenced mothering. After commenting that I didn't see how a hurt toe could have affected his aim so much, I looked again at the toe. I touched it. I moved it around. Again, it did not seem any different from his other toe. So I gave Jake a quick hug and told him to go ahead and get dressed for picture day and would he mind just putting on a nice shirt with a collar just this one day of the year please.

He came out of his room ten minutes later with the shirt I picked out and some khaki shorts and he looked so cute. Then he started crying. "Mom, this shirt is too big. Look how far it comes down my leg." I told him that his shirt actually fit him nicely. It's just that all of his other shirts were really too small. He wasn't buying it. So I told him to just tuck the shirt in. "Mom! That is just not going to feel good." Tears from Jake. Sigh from mom. So I said "ok Jake, just go pick out a t-shirt that doesn't have any characters on it then." He said he didn't have any. So I went into his closet and came out with a cute green and white striped t-shirt for him to wear. He put it on and came out five minutes later crying more. "What's wrong Jake?" I asked. "This shirt is too big mom. Just like the other one!" Oh, dear Lord. "Jake!" I said. "That shirt fits you just fine and looks really handsome." More tears. "Jake! Why are you crying?" He said "mom, this shirt is making me want to throw up." I said, "Jake, it is physically impossible for a shirt to make a person throw up." He said, "no mom. I'm serious. This shirt is actually making my stomach hurt." I said "is it too tight or something?" He said, "no mom. It's this color green. I don't like it and it is going to make me throw up." I threw up another prayer to Jesus to deliver me from this getting ready for school pictures hell I found myself living in. So I said, "Jake, that shirt is actually doing something really cool right now. Because you see you have your daddy's pretty eyes and when ya'll wear green, your eyes actually get a cool, green ring around them." He said, "wait. Really?" I said, "yes." He said "oh wow! I think you're right!" And then he wore the damn shirt to school hobbling around on his hurt pinkie toe the whole time. And I chauffeured myself to Target all by myself listening to music that I like turned up nice and loud.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Back to school!

Well, we have managed to make it through the first three weeks of school. My cute little bronze skinned, summer sun-kissed children are back to learning! Jake started 3rd grade and Emma started 1st. And I started a new job this year working four days a week at a different church preschool teaching 3 year olds.

We are back to a routine schedule where the kids go to bed by 8:30 and wake up eager and chipper at 6am on Monday and then by Friday I am pulling them out of their beds at 6:40 because they are just so tired. We are all just so tired. This waking up to an alarm every day? Hate it. However, the good thing about school starting up again is that I make the kids take regular baths and practice good personal hygiene. Because, let's face it, in the summer? We just stay dirty. I figure a good rinse in the pool every day counts for something right?

The start of a new school year brings about a lot of excitement too. Who will their teacher be? Which friends will be in their class? And my personal favorite. The buying of the school supplies. I don't actually like spending $75 on the school supplies. But I love spreading out all the crayons, markers, folders and hand sanitizer on the table when we're done shopping and organizing it. I love the smell of new supplies! Weird maybe. But it's just my thing.

Of course, as parents all over this country know, the beginning of the new school year also brings about a slew of paperwork coming home from the school asking you for your money. All of it. Want to be involved in your child's education? Join the PTA! $7.50. And sign up your husband too. $7.50.

Capture the moment your child entered a new grade with one of these school portrait packages. Most popular package? $38. Why can't I just buy one freakin' 8 by 10?

 Help your child become a better reader by ordering from Scholastic Books! (I secretly love this one by the way, but I always end up spending way too much money because books? They are my favorite.) $20.

 Your child needs a new class t-shirt to show their school spirit and so we don't lose them when we go on field trips. $10 a shirt per kid. And they need a new one every. single. year.

Cafeteria money. Now I know this one is optional except that it's really not. My kids take their lunch Monday through Thursday but on Fridays they just absolutely MUST go through the cafeteria line and have cheese pizza. Then they MUST spend an extra dollar to get ice cream. If I do not allow this then I am the meanest mom ever. Friday lunches at school $20 a month per kid.

And finally, the packet I can't wait to receive every year. School Fundraiser! It's so easy to participate! Just ask all of your friends and relatives to buy a tub of $17 cookie dough or how about a Fiesta Soup Trio for $17? We also have $15 lunch totes, a $20 Santa Plug In Warmer or a $15 roll of wrapping paper. What a steal! I know I can't buy wrapping paper at Target for less than that! Who can resist? Everyone. That's who. None of your relatives want to buy this crap. And all of your friends have kids selling the same crap so that is a no go. But if your kid doesn't sell 10 items then they won't get their own piece of duct tape to tape the assistant principal to the wall! And if they don't sell 20 items then they won't get to ride in a limo to Gatti Town with all of the other over achievers for an afternoon of pizza, games and fun! They will be stuck back at school with all of the other under achievers who probably won't go to college or ever move out of their parents house. What's a mama to do? Order stuff you don't need to promote your child's self esteem and hopefully cut down on the cost of therapy in their future. $100 per child. And we're done until Spring when the next fundraiser begins. I can hardly wait.