Thursday, August 29, 2013

Stretched Out

The kids' English is AMAZING.  Oak still has some grammar errors ("Did you saw her?") and vocab gaps that result in a lot of "The thing did the thing to the thing."  But Linden--you'd never guess she isn't a native speaker.  Today I used the word "vulnerable" and she wanted me to define it, then break it down for her a few times so she could practice saying it.

But there are two errors they make that I hope stick around awhile longer.  The first is that they've conflated "join" and "enjoy."  So when Oak is still working on his ice cream after the rest of us have long finished he'll smugly tell us, "I'm enjoining it."  For some reason, I find this so charming that I've started using it as well, which only adds to the confusion.

The other one kills me.  Occasionally Linden will politely say, "Mama, I think you're kind of stretched out, because you're being kind of crabby."  Yes, I am stretched out.  Not in a loose, yoga kind of way, but in a stretched too thin kind of way.  I reply something along the lines of, "Yes, I am feeling kind of stretched out right now.  I'd better take some deep breaths, huh."

School starts next week.  We are broke*, and are waiting for tomorrow's paycheck before we can buy school supplies.  The Winemaker has mono, and although I am theoretically safe, having had it in high school, I came home today with a 102 temperature.  I've been at inservice all week, feeling like crap, and trying to wrap my brain around, coincidentally, about 102 different apps and functions as my school gears up for a one-to-one student iPad initiative.  I am stretched out.

*Of course, when I say "broke," it's middle-class broke, where at least I have a job and the cars are crap but paid off and we've already paid the mortgage this month, but we're down the wire on cash flow.  I know there are scarier kinds of broke to be.  It's hard for us, when we used to have two incomes and live below our means,  to have to be all, "No milk until Friday," and "thank God the kids don't care if their back-to-school clothes come from Goodwill."  But we have plenty, really.  

Monday, August 19, 2013

Busily ignoring Back-to-School ads

I'd like to pretend that the slowdown in my summer blogging is because I've been too busy having FUN.  But mostly we've just been chugging along.  I have never (ever ever ever) been one of those teachers who gets all antsy in mid-July and has their classroom decorated and their first three units planned by this point in August.  Yes, I like my job.  But I prefer not-working.  Even on a day like today, which consisted of thrilling events such as a trip to Target (for socks, no less), Goodwill, and the pharmacy; about seventy billion petty arguments between the kids; and a ridiculous amount of screen time for them, just so I could read a bit more of this really great mystery I got yesterday.

The Winemaker has mono.  I had it when I was fourteen, and the main effects were: a) acquaintances assuming I'd gotten in by kissing someone, thereby looking at me with new respect, b) being able to sleep in without getting scolded, and c) not having to take freshman PE.  Basically, a win all around.

This is not what the Winemaker is experiencing.  He can't eat.  His throat feels like razors.  He's so congested I have to interpret what he says for other people.  He has a constant low-grade fever. *Warning* next symptom is gross--He keeps barfing up giant balls of mucus.  (Oak late at night:  "Can you shut the door to your bedroom?  I keep hearing Daddy frow up and it makes me sad.")  He was so sick for a day or two that he didn't want me to leave the house, because he was afraid his throat would swell shut and he wouldn't even be able to call for help.

So instead of my usual seize-the-summer August frenzy of back-to-back camping trips and day trips to the beach, we have this excess of movies and books.  It's still summery, because when else can I stay up until 4 in the morning finishing a book?  Plus, you know, it's sunny outside.  In fact, today was downright hot.  I celebrated by cooking a casserole.  Because of course, on a hot day there's nothing like first turning on 2 burners and then the oven.  But it was comfort food.  Father's Delight for our poor miserable father.

Did I mention it's his birthday?  Yay.  Last night he was laying on the couch and said, "I have some birthday requests.  Let's not have a big group of people over.  And how about a nice cold glass of water?"

So summer fizzles out, but I'm still resisting the end.  I find September to be the saddest month of the year, and May to be the most stressful.  The rest of the year, I like my job.

In retrospect, the nicest part of this summer may be the time I looked out the back window and saw my two and their neighborhood bestie sitting on a blanket having a picnic in the shade, none of them squabbling for a good seven-eight minutes.  They looked so sweet.  Now that I think of it, the best aspect of summer this year (not so much last year, during our crazy new-family stage) is watching the kids enjoy their summer.  I expected that with Christmas, but hadn't considered that summer is also something magical in childhood.  Maybe I didn't expect it because summer hasn't lost any of its shine for me as I aged.  Even without the campouts and road trips I'd like to have fit in, there were still popsicles, and slip-n-slides, and two weeks of day camp, a few great day trips,  and hours of just playing outside.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Some days

Some days I think,"maybe after the kids are in bed, we can have a little glass of wine and watch a Karyn Purvis video."

Other days I think, "Maybe if the kids go to bed we can have a big glass of vodka."