Month

August 2015

7 Things Your Child’s Teacher Wishes She Could Tell You

vintage-teacher1.  No More Lotion.

For the love of all things Christmas! I have 5,000 mini Bath and Body Works lotions in my bottom drawer! I don’t expect gifts, but if you’re going to send one with your child, send chocolate, Dr. Pepper, or something they made at home.

I’m always way jealous of the guy teachers. While I have a desk full of bath gel at Christmas time, Mr. Pratt has a desk full of treats and movie tickets.

2. Don’t believe everything you hear. And I won’t either.

It never fails. I get my class list and hear, “Oh, you have ‘Gavin?’ You better watch out!” It goes in one ear and out the other. If I had listened to all the horror stories, I would have never given some of my favorite students a chance. On the flip side, if you hear how mean your child’s teacher is, give her a chance! She might end up being the best teacher for your child.

3. Oral Hygiene= Happy Teacher

Maybe the really little kids still have “baby breath” but believe me your 4th grader has a major case of dragon breath! I want to get down on their level but most kids just haven’t developed their space bubble yet. And Sophia’s breath just popped mine wide open! A quick brush before you send them out the door is appreciated!

4. …And Other Smells

I know essential oils are all the rage right now but, without fail, there is always the kid that smells like a mixture of 15 different oils. My nostril hairs are burning before we’ve even said the Pledge of Allegiance! Could you tone it down a drop or two?

5. Fair Does Not Mean Equal

The other day I bought my daughter expensive ballet shoes. If fair meant equal, I would have bought ballet shoes for my two sons as well. What in the heck would they do with ballet shoes? Fair means each child gets what they need when they need it.  Life is also not fair. If it was, horses would be riding on your back half the time. My classroom isn’t always going to be “fair.” If you’re giving your kid everything they ask for at home it’s making my job a lot harder. We are trying to teach your children how to handle success and failures, how to be adaptable, get over disappointments and handle wins with grace. It would help us out a lot if you were a good example of these attributes at home.

6. Tell Us Things!

When I said fair does not mean equal I meant it. I might not get after Hudson quite as harshly if I know his parents are getting a divorce and his big brother just left for college. Things at home affect the way children behave at school. If we have a heads up, we can help them have a better day at school.

7. Tomorrow is always a new day!

This is the best advice I ever learned during my first year of teaching from a woman nearing her last year of teaching. It doesn’t matter if Maddie had a bad day and threw a tantrum, poured glue in her hair and refused to pick up a pencil. When the day is over, it is over. Tomorrow is a new day with new possibilities and yesterday is forgotten. Please give me the same courtesy. If I had to get after your daughter for peeking at someone else’s spelling paper during a test, that doesn’t mean I hate her or that I will still be mad at her the next day. Please let it go. I did.

P.S. Your kids’ aren’t fooling anyone when they eat their boogers hidden behind their hand.

Some Women are Helicopter Moms, I’m a Hummingbird Mom

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I’ve  heard the hummingbird is the most energetic animal in the world.

If that’s true, imagine a hummingbird. Now give the hummingbird a 64 ounce Mountain Dew and a few dozen pixie sticks and then I believe you will be nearing the energy levels my son maintains 12 hours a day. Disclaimer: Before anyone calls CPS, I have never given my son Mountain Dew or Pixie Sticks, this is just how he came into the world.

When I mentioned putting my son into preschool this fall I had a good friend say, “But don’t you just want to keep him home and close for one more year?” I actually had to mask my shocked laughter because the truth is… No. I don’t.

I live in a 700 square-foot apartment and it doesn’t always mesh well with my son’s energy levels. Don’t get me wrong, my son is not naughty. He is a great little boy and a mega people-pleaser. He just happens to be the perfect storm of energy and curiosity and that doesn’t always bode well in such a small space.

My son is social and smart- he was ready for preschool. But maybe more importantly I was ready for preschool! In the mom world (as seen on Facebook) that does not feel like a popular thing to admit.  Let’s face it, amid all the #emptynester, #todaypreschooltomorrowcollege, #isthatabeardisee, my #wootwootamorningtomyselfmaybeiwillseeamovie makes me seem a little heartless!  In fact, as I sat in front of the preschool building this week watching all the other moms, packs of Kleenex in hand, waiting tearfully for the doors to open and their kids to start school, all I was thinking was,

“relax ladies, it’s preschool not Nam!”

No lie, as the kids made their single file line and walked into the school it was like surround-sound cry fest. Not wanting to be seen as the mom eager to make the 9 o’ clock showing of Pitch Perfect 2, I may or may not have… and by that I mean I totally did, fake getting choked up. It looked something along the lines of this…

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And now I feel lame! Not because I was excited and the other moms were going to use their morning in bed crying. I feel lame that I played into the sad mom syndrome. Because truth is it’s okay that I want that 3 1/2 hour break, just like it is okay that those moms want to keep their kiddos close forever. We are all so different and we need to let each other be. Maybe someday it will hit me just how much my little guy is growing up, and on that day I will probably need a hot bubble bath and a high dose Prozac, but for now I am excited for a little extra “me” time.

That night, after my ball of energy had fallen asleep I went into check on him and found that I love him more fiercely today than I did yesterday. And if that 3 1/2 hours is what I need to be a freaking awesome mom for the other 20 1/2, well then that’s okay too!

“If I burned something we were going to eat I told my kids it was Cajun cooking.” Marlene H.

I Let My Daughter Choose Her Own First Day Outfit

And by outfit I mean dance costume.
My daughter is what the kind people of the world like to call a “free spirit.” She’s what I’d call a quirky little bird. She wears giant tutus and queen costumes to her brother’s soccer games and twirls around on the sidelines. You’re probably picturing a 5-year-old right now. She’s eight. Bless her heart.

But the wonderful thing about her being eight is that she still hasn’t developed her “give a crap” meter. Or if she has it’s still at a zero. She seriously doesn’t give a hooty-toot about what people think about her which is why when she begged to construct her own first day of 3rd grade outfit I agreed. I mean, how much longer is she going to be so naïve to the world’s meanness?

She picked out several options and as she was going through her closet came upon last winter’s dance recital costume. With a hopeful look she said “I’m sure you wouldn’t let me wear this…”  But I was bound and determined to let her wear whatever she wanted. So I said as long as she made it appropriate for school and not too distracting for the other kids, she could.

Ta-da!

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This is a seriously proud look on her sweet little face.

And don’t forget the fake Wal-mart glasses she wore ALL day. Side note: Who on God’s green Earth decided these nerd classes are cute? No one looks good in them. Seriously, nobody. Side note over.

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Having her as my daughter has reduced my “give a crap” meter by at least half.  There is a serious epidemic of trendiness and coolness in America right now. I blame social media. I admit I get caught up in it. It’s like the cooler our kids look, the cooler we ourselves appear. I’m past my prime of coolness myself so I have to make my kids look cool to make up for it. I’m not gonna lie, I dressed my little man up super cool for his first day of Kindergarten. I can’t help it! I’m a sucker! But I have had to let go of looking cool when it comes to my daughter.

When she was 3 I had to not give a crap that she changed her clothes seven times a day and wore dress-ups to the grocery store.  Last year I had to not give a crap when she tried out for an advanced dance class and did crazy leaps and back summersaults in her solo. This year I had to not give a crap that my daughter wore a dance costume on the first day of school. And honestly, I think the less we give a crap what people think about us, the happier we will be. Don’t ya think?

 

 

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