7 Dec
Posted in: parenting
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Random Thoughts From Real Life

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  • Our third grader told his 4-year-old sister she was on the naughty list and would “never ever ever ever get any presents ever if she kept touching the LEGOs.” Now she’s obsessed with this so-called naughty list. I’m thinking brother J may have earned himself a spot on the list.
  • Apparently I’m using the crockpot too much lately. This morning J asked if our oven was broken because I haven’t been using it. Of course, when he came home from school what was dinner cooking in? The crockpot. The temperatures have been in the negative digits this week, and we’ve been eating a whole lot of slow-cooked soup. My new favorite recipes are the tomato bisque soup from 100 Days of Real Food and the chipotle pumpkin barley soup from Life in Grace. Both of these recipes are done on the stove top. I make both in the crockpot with terrific results.
  • All my talk of eating more “real food” at our house is sinking in to some little heads. C, a first grader, actually turned down a brightly-colored frosted cupcake this week, and our 4-year-old wants to know if whatever she’s about to eat is real. Those M&Ms her and I split, weren’t on the list….baby steps.
  • C’s whiny level has reached a crescendo the last couple of weeks. Everything seems to be some sort of injustice being dished out on him. I’ve resorted to holding out my palm (think talk to the hand) and saying, “I’m done.” He will sulk away after that. There’s some über mature parenting happening in our house.
  • Standardized testing how I dislike you and what you are doing to my J. Last year in second grade, J had some problems with a round of testing. It seems that week has scarred him. That kid is throwing up all kinds of mental roadblocks where standardized testing is concerned. He doesn’t sleep well, he’s cried when he talks about them, he doesn’t want to show us his results, and he thinks he’s dumb. The crazy part is he’s testing above grade level across the board. Still he’s falling short of typical growth goals. So my child, who is well above where he “needs” to be, is missing out on incentives being given to kids reaching their typical goal. I understand the motivation some kids connect with being given rewards for goals reached, but when those incentives are doing nothing but tromping on the psyche of the students who have done their job as learners, it might be time to take a step back and look at the system again. The world of standardized testing has done a whopper of a job on our son. We do all this talking about numbers garnered from a test as some magical representation of what are students know and not worry about the toll the pressure to preform takes on them.  This really should be its own blog post because I am, by no means, done with the topic.
  • I’ve started to dabble a little in essential oils. It started this week as a means to help J relax. I’m using the Young Living oils and the Stress Away blend seems to be having an effect on J. We also have some Frankincense. When our oldest smelled it, he wrinkled his nose and said, “I can’t believe they gave that to the Lord and Savior.” Apparently he feels the three Wise Men should have given baby Jesus something that smelled better than Frankincense.
  • We took boiling water outside tonight and threw it in the sub-zero air. The water actually turned to snow, mid-air. It was amazing! Go try it. The awe-factor is tremendous.
  • I need to find the newest YouTube sensation and share it with my children. I’m ready to be done with What Does the Fox Say? I have loved the parodies though. One to show the kiddos is What Did the Farmer Say? and one for adult Saturday Night Live fans is What Did My Girl Say?
  • B and I went on a mom/son date last night to listen to Wyoming author Broughton Coburn discuss his book The Vast Unknown: American’s First Ascent of Everest. Coburn connected the dots between world issues during the 1960s and our country and why it was important for an American team to make it to Everest’s summit. I am not a daredevil or drawn to anything that could end my life. I’m careful by nature. I find it fascinating to read and hear about people who continually push their bodies and take risks I see as insane.
  • Nothing makes my blood boil quite like pickup time at the boys’ school. It is beyond me why seemingly responsible adults turn into gladiator drivers who will stop at nothing to gain prime position to pick up their child. Cars yesterday were triple-parked in front of the school, and I watched as 10 cars (yes I counted) drove by without letting a herd of kiddos cross the street. Driveways and yellow painted lines mean nothing to these drivers, and it becomes completely acceptable in their minds to stop in the middle of a road with cars behind them to wait for the bell to ring. Must we be in that big of a hurry all of the time. Everyone should take a big whiff of Stress Away and remember the rules of the road.
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