No Walk in the Park

Crying HeadFor the first time in weeks, the thermometer read below eighty degrees. I peeked out the front door, where my husband was weeding the walk. “Hey, do you wanna go for a bike ride?”

“Yeah, sure,” he said, and went to ready the bikes.

I told the kids to get dressed and I dressed myself. I was going to walk while they rode. I’d hurt my back and biking posture would kill me, plus I was pretty unsteady on my new bike. (See “Just Like Riding a Bicicle”) I hadn’t been taking my morning walks because of the heat, and I missed them. read more

The Finger

imagebot (6)I picked up the phone. My husband was on a conference call and had already missed his call waiting twice. “This is Sherry from preschool. Your son hurt his finger and the nail has ripped off. He’s been a trooper so far but can you come?”

“We’ll be right there.” We were already in the driveway, on our way to pick the other car from the mechanic’s. We headed straight for preschool as I cursed the 15 minutes it takes to get there. We finally arrived, jumped out of the car and they took us to him. He held up his thumb and started to cry as I picked him up. A Band-Aid hung loosely around his thumbnail. His thumbnail hung loosely at the top of his finger and his hand was covered with blood. The preschool director explained to my husband that the kids were cleaning up and a little girl dropped a block on his finger. He’d asked them for the Band-Aid. She gave us a wet washcloth to wrap around his finger to absorb the blood. read more

The Kiss

girl and boy“Evan French kissed me,” said my five-year-old daughter. We were sitting in the living room after dinner. She was just about to play cards with Daddy.

“What?” we both said.

“What’s a ‘French kiss?’” I asked her.

She stuck her tongue out and rotated it. “He put his tongue in my mouth.”

“Where did this happen?”

“At Kids Club,” she said — her after school program. “I tried to tell someone there, but they were too busy. He did it to my friend, too.”

My poor little girl. “I’m gonna call your school, Sweetie. When did it happen?” read more

A worm in the apple

apple_wormI’ve had a love-hate relationship with my daughter’s school from the beginning. Oh, who am I kidding? It’s hate-hate. It started last year when she was ready for kindergarten, but the school deemed her too young. They wouldn’t even let her test into school. That pissed me off, but she spent another year in preschool, where she learned more “sight words” than anyone else in her kindergarten class. Just in case you haven’t heard of them, “sight words” are words they want kids to memorize, mostly small words, prepositions, conjunctions and articles.

This year, I signed her up for kindergarten. Finally. But  I had to put her on a wait-list for full-time kindergarten. And pay tuition. For PUBLIC school. Honestly, I thought, if I was paying tuition for public school, why couldn’t they accommodate everybody? Why couldn’t they just form another class? As it turned out, they could, but they needed a quota in order to do it. And they didn’t get it. read more

The battle of the stresses

Stress 2My husband thinks he’s cornered the market on stress. Okay, he’s got a very demanding job; he works a lot of hours, he’s on call 24/7 and he does carry a lot of stress on his shoulders. But the other day I mentioned that I had more stress than usual and you’d have thought I’d said I got abducted by aliens.

“Stress?” he said. “What are YOU stressed about?” Seriously, that’s the way he said it.

I don’t know how two people who live in the same house, eat dinner together and sleep in the same bed can be so far apart in their understanding. I began to explain. read more