Back to School Boogie

Rebel Dad (and others) have already sent their kids back to school. Mine head back the day after Labor Day.

Summer is over -- or close to enough to catch a whiff of new textbook smell.

For the first time since becoming a mother, all three of my kids will be going to the same school. It's an 11 minute drive from my house (which also happens to be my office). The school offers a fantastic, affordable aftercare program that lasts until 6 p.m. every day (and they do homework!). For the first time in 10 years I don't need full-time childcare.

For my oldest child, back-to-school means he's getting his first locker and two free periods a day. My youngest is afraid of kindergarten -- the great unknown. My middle child is furiously completing a diary about everything that happened this summer (hour-by-hour).

For me, this back-to-school season means I could return to an office job with its 24/7 demands and rewards like a regular salary, benefits, professional camaraderie and resume invigoration. To my surprise, I'd rather stay put, plugging away on my writing and consulting from my office in a corner of my kitchen (it does have a window).

What's on your mind as your kids head back? How your life is going to get simpler (or more complicated) once the school year starts? What clothes to get -- or where to draw the line with new styles? What are you doing for aftercare? Carpooling? If you don't have kids, what does "back to school" mean to your life?

By Leslie Morgan Steiner |  August 13, 2007; 7:00 AM ET  | Category:  Conflicts
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First!

"Back to School Blues"? Sounds like you ought to be happy about everything, so why on earth would you invoke being blue?

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 7:25 AM

Back to school means the traffic will be even worse than it has become over the summer.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 7:30 AM

PLD! PLD! PLD!

Back to school means Parents' Liberation Day at my house. Younger son is in his second week of school!

Posted by: Fred | August 13, 2007 7:32 AM

Fred, how does your younger son perceive returning to school? Do you think kids living in the path of Hurricane Katrina have a greater appreciation of social infrastructure like their regular schools than they did before two years ago?

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 7:36 AM

Back to school for us means my oldest is starting pre-school for the first time. It will give my SAHW an opportunity to take a class with our one year old and actually spend one on one time with him!! I know they will bot enjoy it and I know our oldest is ready for some big boy time!!

Posted by: happydad | August 13, 2007 7:37 AM

Back to school in our house means back to routines, schedules, bedtime, carpools, and girl scouts-honestly I am not looking forward to it. I have been enjoying summer's easy pace. I have 4 kids at 3 schools, my oldest walks, but I drive the little ones to pre-school. On the plus side- I am going to have 3 days a week where all but one of my children will be out of the house for at least a few hours (and hopefully that will be nap time).

Posted by: michelewilson | August 13, 2007 7:40 AM

I'm thrilled to say that my daughter is beginning preschool - hard to believe it begins NEXT WEEK. We've been waiting for this for a long time. I think she will really enjoy it and I'm also looking forward to some new experiences/challenges as I head back to work part-time for the first time in 2 years.

I think our lives, honestly, will get a bit more busy and complicated but in a good way. I am excited for both of us to have some time apart and do "our own thing".

The beautiful part is that my new job is part-time and flexible so I can take her myself in the morning, drop her off, drive to work, then drive back and get her so we can spend our afternoons together.

I'm looking forward to our first "back to school"!!!

Posted by: viennamom | August 13, 2007 7:42 AM

mehitabel


My son's school had been open since the November (2 1/2 months) after the hurricane, so this is most kid's second year back. Most of them are pretty much in the back to the school routine as far as I see.

But there are some schools in New Orleans that still have not opened. The HS (not near where we live now) that I attended was destroyed and a new school bldg in a totally different location is opening today so this is a bit of a shock for those kids.

Posted by: Fred | August 13, 2007 7:53 AM

My nephew is coming, so this will be the first time in almost three years that my daughter will not be attending day care. I am nervous and excited for her, but a little worried that he won't be able to handle her when she gets wound up. It's going to be a learning curve for all of us, no school for Ashlyn, new baby for me and my husband, and a new place for my nephew who grew up in a town with a 1,000 people. I'd rather he was going college, but he decided to take the year off.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 8:07 AM

My son will be returning to college this weekend, so I am already feeling the empty nest syndrome and I am sure I will cry again when I drop him off in Atlanta.

Posted by: sharonw | August 13, 2007 8:14 AM

aw, mehitabel - it was just a title!

and i echo michele's feelings that the return to routine is kind of sad. the free wheeling days of summer are wonderful in their own way. i'm glad my work is flexible enough that i can be a big part of their summers now.

fred -- what a terrible symbol of destruction. i am really sorry.

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 8:30 AM

Back to school: as the Office Depot(?) commercial goes, "it's the most wonderful time of the year."

Unfortunately, we're back to 4 kids in 4 schools. Oldest DD starts college in 10 days (not that anybody's counting); DS starts his junior year in one high school; next DD is a sophomore at a different high school; and youngest DD starts middle school. Should be fun!

(The neighborhood elementary school opened in 1997. For the first time, we have no children there! I'm thrilled.)

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 8:30 AM

Most of the schools where I live (Wake County, NC) went year-round in July, so no back-to-school season here! Whatever will the retailers do?

I have always loved the end of summer, though. It marks the beginning of my favorite season, the time of year when my two youngest were born, soups and stews and chili. Okay, I'm getting ahead from myself a bit since it'll be in the 90's here for another month, but autumn to me has always felt like a time of renewal, when you start again. My kids will both be in preschool this year, and I can't wait to see how my daughter does. I'm sure she'll love it!

Posted by: WorkingMomX | August 13, 2007 8:31 AM

I'm actually headed back to school for my Master's. Luckily for me, my company is paying for it. But I'm going to have to figure out how to juggle a full-time job, class once a week with homework, and weekend volunteer committments. My husband and I have already talked about him pitching in more to make up for when I'm doing homework. I'm nervous and excited!

I'll also have to figure out how to cheer on both my Terps (undergrad) and my new team, the Wolfpack, when basketball season rolls around.

Posted by: Meesh | August 13, 2007 8:32 AM

Oh, I'm looking forward to my 10 pound weight loss. I teach 5th grade, and between planning and setting up my classroom, I'm usually too busy to eat!

Just for fun: http://dcteacherchic.blogspot.com/

Posted by: heatherdc1980 | August 13, 2007 8:33 AM

Fred, one of the high schools I attended on the north shore was totally destroyed by Katrina. My sister tells me they've been having school in one of the junior high buildings since then; but they've been working on rebuilding the school and hope to have it back open later this year. That will help a lot.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 8:33 AM

No, Leslie, it's NOT "just a title." Words have meaning, and if you don't mean what you say then you're remiss in saying it.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 8:33 AM

WorkingMomX, okay, now I'm excited for fall. Chili, the crockpot, football, Halloween, and changing leaves! I can't wait!

Posted by: Meesh | August 13, 2007 8:37 AM

Back to school means that I get to pawn my childcare responsibilities off on the public institution.

Thank you, taxpayers!

Posted by: Lil_Husky | August 13, 2007 8:38 AM

My sister's kids are going back to school. I better put the folding chair back in the car - I'll need it for soccer and hockey games.

Posted by: ckunkle720 | August 13, 2007 8:42 AM

My youngest son starts his junior year in High School in one week, my older 2 are in college. I used to love the start of the school year, when they were all small. They were finally in school and no longer bickering in my house! I always felt that summer vacation lasted about 3 weeks too long then. Now that they are older, every school year that starts is one more year closer to an empty house. Savor your babies, they grow up too fast.

Posted by: sparks3 | August 13, 2007 8:42 AM

Meesh, most people's hearts reside with their undergraduate alma maters. So while you'll probably find yourself somewhat rooting for the Wolfpack now, it'll be only as long as their success doesn't hurt the Terps :-)))

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 8:42 AM

Army Brat,

Some of the public school bldgs are still closed in our school district. My son, along with the elementary school students are in modular classrooms. This is why they went back to school only 2 1/2 months after Katrina.

The modular bldgs do have some advantages, the air conditioning works better! High today will be about 100 degrees!

F.

Posted by: Fred | August 13, 2007 8:45 AM

Actually, I dropped my oldest son off at kindergarten today for his first day *sob*. They are in a kindergarten 'annex' because it took so long for the school system to realized that the elementary school was overcrowded (there are 11 kindergartens this year). So they have an annex, they say, for two years, so by the time the younger son is old enough, supposedly they'll be in the same school.

I'm pretty happy about it, except for the bus situation (which I found out last Thursday!- no communication before then).

The kindergarteners get a dose of elementary school - but with a playground just for them, and everything else, just for them, and they'll probably get to know each other - although, in two years, there will be redistricting and they will be separated.

But, he ran into the class, and barely said goodbye *sigh*.

Yeah, I'm already sad about them leaving the nest - ...

Posted by: atlmom1234 | August 13, 2007 8:54 AM

atlmom1234, How's it going with the au pair? Is she learning more English quickly?

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 8:57 AM

Well, back to school means back to work and routine. In-service meetings start next week, and the students come back on the 27th. I'm looking forward to having structure in my days again; the only structured activity this summer was the class I took. Fall also means back to classes for me -- I have two, and my thesis seminar, remaining in my graduate program (yeah, I work full-time as a teacher, go to grad school, have a 4.0, AND had two kids in the house until recently, with a STBX who was less than no help...I find sleep is overrated).

This past weekend, I dropped son #2 off at college. He's going to a small D-3 school to play football, and 'camp' started on Sunday. Son #1 is going locally for now, but he wants to get an apartment, so I think he'll be out of the house by the end of the year (although I don't think he can really afford to move out). I think I'm going to notice the absences most at dinnertime. It does seem like only yesterday I was buying uniform shirts and new lunchboxes...

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 9:04 AM

"They are in a kindergarten 'annex' because it took so long for the school system to realized that the elementary school was overcrowded (there are 11 kindergartens this year)."

My goodness that is a lot of classes. We three here and I thought that was a lot.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 9:14 AM

This has been a good summer for us. No transitioning, no house on the market, no new baby, no new jobs. It was terrific just to get to enjoy the free schedule, spend lots of time as a family and attempt to be more relaxed.

I spent a lot of time this summer doing educational work with my kids. Lots of fun history, literature, art and the always exciting kitchen chemistry. We all got so much out of it and I now feel less tense about what I perceive as a lack in the current educational system with its devotion to the testable math and reading skills.

As for the school year my youngest will be in preschool two days a week for 4 hours a day if I can keep up the naps for him I will have about 18 hours a week to work at my part time job. This will mean so much more sleep for me for which I am grateful but I will miss my 1st grader. It is always a tradeoff.

Posted by: ChesapeakeBeach | August 13, 2007 9:18 AM

scarry -- i'm curious about your nephew coming. i always fantasized about one of my relatives caring for my kids and then it turned out to be a total disaster because i really misjudged her caregiving abilities. tell more.

and mehitbel - fine, i hear you. if you come up with a more apt title for today's entry (five words max) i'll change it.

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 9:27 AM

Mixed feelings really.. The next few weeks are like a giant taffy pull.. One end, prolonging laid back days and no evening commitments and the other end, the beginnings of emails about GS troop meeting times and new principals, and the foreboding WRAPPING PAPER SALES..

Yet .. it is all good. We're healthy, fed and housed. a true sense of contentment to roll with the Seasons.

Posted by: kfoley311 | August 13, 2007 9:28 AM

Hey, everyone! Due to the new sign-in policy, my name has changed to my washingtonpost.com User ID: Violinline. Formerly known as 'equal'. Anyway, I'm excited about the start of Kindergarten at our house in a few weeks. It is frustrating that we haven't found our our daughter's teacher assignment yet, or anything else about what to prepare. But it will, I trust, all fall into place. She will be one tired girl, switching from 2 1/2 days of preschool to 5 days of Kindergarten each week.

Posted by: violinline | August 13, 2007 9:28 AM

Long time lurker, first time comment, but I can't let this one slip. WorkingMomX, I also live in Wake County, with a child in elementary school. 38 of 96 elementary schools are on the year round calendar, 8 of 30 middle schools, and none of the high schools. Hardly "most of the schools" as you've phrased it. And considering all the acrimony, lawsuits, and the attitude of "I don't care what's best for the kids or the system as long as it doesn't inconvenience me" attitude that is prevalent here, I couldn't let the comment just slide. And please understand, I'm not saying you have that attitude, normally I read your comments, and am nodding my head in agreement! And I'm completely with you, I can't wait for the first weekend that's cool enough to start a stew early in the day, and let it simmer all day long. These 95+ degree days are just getting exhausting! For my little fam, it's two weeks til the start of school, so we're trying to figure out the new year wardrobe. Anyone have ideas where to find pants or jeans for a girl who has Size 12 length legs, and a size 7ish waist?

Posted by: OrganicGal | August 13, 2007 9:30 AM

Oy. Well, the school year means clogged roads again. Unpredictable traffic patterns to the point that you really can't plan to leave the house and get to work by any certain time because someone inevitably does something stupid to ruin it for everyone else.

I love how summer gives you just enough time to get used to the lighter traffic, and then the school year comes right back.

I have thorougly enjoyed the lack of school buses crawling at a ridiculously slow rate, Mommy Vans and S-MOO-Vs racing to get kids who overslept to school on time (and risking everyone's life in the process), and irresponsible, sleep-deprived, inept teenagers driving Beemers that Daddy pays for, who have no business being behind the wheel, again, threatening the lives of others.

Oh, and let's not forget bus stops. And the parents who deem it to be social time, sipping coffee, kissing their kids a million times, and feeling the need to hold up traffic to converse with the bus driver. Some of us have real jobs we need to get to!

Posted by: aNoN | August 13, 2007 9:35 AM

I must admit to being a little freaked-out about the impending start of school (8/20 in scenic Prince George's County MD). For starts, my kids return from 4 weeks at sleepaway camp THE DAY BEFORE school starts. (Camp is in PA, and schools start later there.) For another, DD is starting high school - wasn't it just yesterday that I was in HS? And, DS will be in 5th grade, a big transition year. His ADHD will come into play even more, we're starting family therapy with him... too much to cope with. (And that doesn't take extra-curriculars into account, which mercifully are minimal around my house.) Thank goodness for after-care at school, with homework time built in.

I am planning to ask my boss next week for a reduction in work hours - I have no idea how she'll respond, as she's very hard to read. But something's got to give.

Posted by: lorenw507 | August 13, 2007 9:36 AM

algriner1, One way to lengthen jeans is to sew a decorative border onto the bottom (your daughter might even enjoy helping you select it, in order to make her own "fashion statement"). Two considerations: the material needs to be of similar weight and sturdiness to the denim; and, both the extension material and the jeans need to be washed first (maybe even a couple of times) in hot water, to eliminate bleeding of the jeans' dye onto the extension, as well as to avoid uneven shrinkage of the two materials. Such a project requires minimal skills, but would likely need to be sewn by machine, for sturdiness' sake. Besides fabric, another category of choices for such an extension would be wide woven trims.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 9:42 AM

For me, this year's back-to-school is sadness and frustration, because we've been so busy I feel like I missed it. Usually summer is the time all the lawyers we work with go on vacation, so we all take it a little slower, and by the time September rolls around, I'm ready to kick it into gear again. Not this year -- had one out-of-state trial in June, and another coming up at the end of September (and I'm NOT a trial lawyer!), and way too many client crises in between.

I guess I feel bad because the summer didn't match my mental image of what I'd hoped it would be. But I think I need to let that go, because I know my kids had a great time -- beach, multiple sets of grandparents, swimming, and for the older girl, soccer/dance, cousins, sleepovers, BBQs, and even a trip to King's Dominion. Every day when I'd pick her up at camp, she'd be having so much fun playing outside she wouldn't want to leave. So I guess it was a good summer after all, and I just need to remember the first rule of parenting: judge by what is, not what you want things to be.

Posted by: laura33 | August 13, 2007 9:45 AM

Leslie: I like the alliteration of the "B" in "Blues" -- the reason I suspect you chose "Blues" -- so propose any of the following alternative titles off the top of my head. I'm sure a clickster can, with a little time and thought, come up with something better (where, oh where, is Chris when we need him???):

"Back to School Boogie" (my favorite thus far)
"Back to School Bop"
"Back to School Bugaloo"
"Back to School Beat"

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 9:48 AM

aNoN:
Allow me to suggest the blindingly obvious solution of leaving early enough to allow for all the morning traffic contingencies and unpredictability.
Unless you are one of those people who sleeps late and needs to rush down the road to get to work on time, and you think the entire world needs to 's-moooo-ve' out of YOUR way...

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 9:51 AM

aNoN, I'll cite the "6 P's" I learned while teaching at the AF Aacademy:

"Proper Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance"

While I tend to agree with you about the kids driving - especially in the beemers - I disagree with you on the school bus issue. You need to learn to deal with it - specifically, you need to plan for the fact that there will be school buses, they drive slowly and stop frequently, and add time to your commute.

And honestly, they have places to get to that are just as important as your "real job".

So - proper prior preparation on your part will prevent problems!

(We have a number of school buses that drive past our house, and I've seen idiot drivers with "real jobs" to get to do some monumentally stupid things. I'm amazed nobody's been killed yet. The best one was the idiot who passed a school bus that was stopped to take on kids, crossing a double yellow line and driving on the wrong side of the road while doing so. Of course, he wiped out on the next curve down the road and then tried to explain to the friendly police officer that it was all the school bus driver's fault.)

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 9:52 AM

Here in Paris, back to school is called the "rentree" -- it's really the beginning of the new year for everyone, not just kids. I love this time of year. Everyone gets back to work in a serious way, all the new books come out, the extended vacations are over but everyone is still tanned and rested.

I tried to explain to someone here that it's not quite the same in the US, where the actual calendar new year is more the time of change. Here, everyone is essentially on the school calendar. The rentree means everyone is starting anew.

Love it!

Posted by: chicamericaine | August 13, 2007 9:56 AM

I would lilke to know how stay at home moms handle it when their kids go off to college and they become empty nesters.

Posted by: sharonw | August 13, 2007 9:59 AM

Mehitabel, THANK YOU!! Oh, I don't know if I need to say this, but I post as Organic Gal sometimes on Kim O'Donnel's blog, so if any of y'all are crossovers, that's me. Organic Kid is artsy, and theatrical (but don't call her Diva!), and would love the idea of fun jeans-extensions. Now if I can just figure out if I know anyone with a sewing machine...

Posted by: OrganicGal | August 13, 2007 10:00 AM

educmom_615,
I we all allowed enough time for emergencies around here we would never actually be able to leave work.
I too see people speeding around buses every day and it makes me crazy.
On the other hand, I get equally annoyed by the kids who take their time and play around rather than getting on the bus.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 10:03 AM

I can relate to the "back to school blues" theme. Not that it is such a horrible thing, in reality, but I hate to see the end of summer and its long, light-filled, lazy days. We are headed to the beach this coming week for one last hurrah before our days become scheduled and orderly. My son is ready, with all school supplies purchased and backpack filled up with the loot. My husband is furiously working on finishing some last minute home repairs in the next couple of days before we leave for the beach. Once fall arrives, we will be busy with holidays and baby preparations, and I have a feeling the next three months will fly by even faster than summer has.

I guess I get the back to school blues because summer just seems to go by too fast for my taste, and it reminds me that time is going by fast, and I wish I could somehow stop it for just a little while and savor it a little more, and let the wonderfulness of it linger and mellow. I want it never to end, and it makes me sad to think that someday, it will.

From Pink Floyd

"And you run, and you run, to catch up with the sun, but it's sinking. And racing around, to come up behind you again. The sun is the same in a relative way, but you're older. And shorter of breath, and one day closer to death."

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 10:03 AM

Leslie, I realize you were addressing the question just to Scarry, but let me add my 2 cents-- the biggest problem with having a relative live with you and provide childcare is, in my experience, getting health insurance coverage for them.

Why does it take insurers almost 2 months to start coverage? My relative/childcare provider has been approved for coverage, but it won't actually start until the 1st of next month. She'll be ininsured for the time between now and then-- yikes! It took my bank less than 24 hours to approve my $750k mortgage-- what is the hold up for heath insurance coverage? I've asked them to make an exception and allow coverage to start early-- i.e. finsih the remained of this month, and my fingers are crossed it will happen. In the meantime, I'm very worried!

I guess that isn't unique to hiring a nanny who isn't family. When it's family, there is the whole added stress of either you or your spouse having an "in-law" in the house almost all the time. And you worry about them more than if it were someone who isn't family-- who are they going out with? why haven't they come home yet?

i should write a book-- overall it has been REALLY great though.

Posted by: louisa_smith03 | August 13, 2007 10:13 AM

To algriner1 a/k/a Organic Gal: If you have a friend who sews well, you might arrange to barter sewing services in return for, say, organic produce from your garden (if applicable), or cooking a complex dish that your friend doesn't have time to make.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 10:19 AM

Leslie,

He is almost 19 and just graduated from high school. He is my super smart (has a genesis IQ) but a little backwards nephew. He received a scholarship to go to college, but at the last minute decided he wanted to wait for my super out going nephew. I was upset, threw a fit, cried and used all my other Catholic guilt trips to try and get him to go, but he wasn't budging. So, they will go next year together.

He is really good with kids and since I work from home, I will be here most of the time in case of an emergency. He is cheaper than day care for two kids, so he is helping me out. He gets to make some money and get out of the comfort zone of a small town. To be honest, I think he has never met a person of Indian descent before or have had any Hispanic or Asian friends. I think it will be good for him.

I am hoping he can see that there is a world outside of coal mines and people who are exactly like our family. Yes, I am still praying for the miners in case anyone is wondering, but it doesn't look good for them.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 10:34 AM

Ok, I don't speed around buses. That's just stupid. Aside from harming children (I'll leave that to the rushing Mommy Vans), I don't feel it's worth the risk to myself either.

And your wise idea of leaving earlier was just my point exactly. It DOESN'T matter what time I leave the house--inevitably, I get stuck behind buses or other backups. In fact, I have found that sometimes leaving earlier actually makes the commute LONGER. Go figure that one!

All I am saying is that there are those of us who don't have the luxury of not having to punch a clock in the morning. Having lengthy chit-chats with the bus driver is inconsiderate to those who stopped and gave reasonable time for your kid to get on the damn bus.

Posted by: aNoN | August 13, 2007 10:37 AM

Oh, and speaking of the school bus issue. I find it ironic that I have seen more family vans run school bus stop signs than any other type of vehicle out there. So what does that say when one parent will risk the lives of other people's kids just so they can get theirs to school on time?

Posted by: aNoN | August 13, 2007 10:41 AM

More congestion in the stores, and on the roads, even in my barbershop

One college graduate, ready to start their first full time job.
One still commuting to college with a part-time job to pay for car expenses.

We just returned from our first adults-only vacation in 6 years, and enjoyed every minute.

Posted by: chemguy1157 | August 13, 2007 10:49 AM

Do you think that Karl Rove has decided to go back to school?? He has spent the better part of his life propping up our national hero, George W. Bush. God Bless you George W. Bush. Thank you for allowing the Supreme Court to appoint you as our President!!!! I bet all of you faithful readers of Leslie's blog forgot that George W. Bush actually lost the presidential election in 2000. But who cares about the little people. Let them continue to think that their vote counts!!! It's so cute!!!! GOD BLESS YOU SANDRA DAY O'CONNOR!!!! How much did the Bush family pay you?!?!?!? Nothing. Oh good. You just put him in office because we know that Bush is the superior intellect. Thank God that Bush did not embarrass us in front of the rest of the world. Oh wait. He did?!?!?! Well, screw the rest of the world. You are all slaves of America!!! Accept your fate, you pathetic losers.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 11:03 AM

Karl Rove spoke to the Wall Street Journal exclusively??!! But that can't be right. The WSJ is fair and balanced just like FOX News. Why would he choose that outlet??? Oh God, Karl Rove, why would you do that?!?!?!? Oh MY EVER LOVING GOD, I ADMIRE YOU SO MUCH KARL ROVE!!!! Please keep fighting for equality, justice, and the American way. When you die, Karl Rove, you will go straight to heaven. Along with Lee Atwater, who died such an early death. How could God have stricken him with that evil cancer when Mr. Atwater was doing the work of the Lord?!?!?! Oh, I know. The Lord works in mysterious ways.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 11:08 AM

Mehitabel: au pair's working out really well. DH and I are home sick today and she took the younger one to the park. It's so nice not having to take him somewhere when I'm sick!

She's learning english - she took a class, will take another one. We were a little worried that she was spending all her time with us, but she's making friends and going out, so it's going great. We're very happy. Of course, there are bumps in the road, but for the most part it's working out very well. It was nice when we were on vacation and had an extra pair of hands, and she seemed really happy to be traveling with us (and seeing new things, etc).

Posted by: atlmom1234 | August 13, 2007 11:12 AM

"inevitably, I get stuck behind buses or
other backups."

Ha! HA!

It's so rewarding to hear that people with poor attitudes like you get what they deserve.

Posted by: Lil_Husky | August 13, 2007 11:14 AM

This is a message to the rest of the world from America. Listen to what we say, and more importantly, DO WHAT WE SAY. Listen to Leslie's views on child-rearing. Because they are correct!!! Why are they correct? Because they ARE AMERICAN VIEWS ON CHILD-REARING. Therefore, THEY ARE CORRECT!!!!! Understand that, you foreign losers. WE ARE AMERICA. THEREFORE, WE ARE CORRECT AND YOU ARE WRONG!!!! God Forbid that Leslie should listen to anyone else. They are wrong. Why??? She is Leslie and she is American. End of story.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 11:15 AM

bababooyey,
Did you forget to take your meds?

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 11:19 AM

Mehitabel -- Back to School Boogie it is! Love it. Thank you. Titles can be hard and I am always grateful for catchy sugggestions and substitutions. Anytime.

Scarry -- Glad to hear the poop. My situation was very different. First baby, I was working 45 minutes away, just different. Keep us posted.

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 11:21 AM

bababooey666, dude, are you OK? Is there something I can help you with?

Posted by: Lil_Husky | August 13, 2007 11:23 AM

imagine, scarry has made a well-considered choice to have a male relative assist in childcare and the sky has not yet fallen. wait until pATRICK hears.

Posted by: gcoward | August 13, 2007 11:24 AM

KLB:
I know what you mean about feeling like you can never get out the door, and I'm also annoyed by the kids who take their sweet time getting on the bus (they must not be in any hurry to get to school!)

aNoN:
We ALL have to commute into work and deal with traffic issues. I live in a very rural area, and I sometimes get stuck behind harveting machines being towed between fields (and, unlike the school bus, they are not on a predictable schedule). I simply leave early for work, and I am never late -- teachers simply CANNOT be late!! And, unlike you, I have had to get several other people moving, and planned my morning routine around a house full of others.

In fact, the biggest benefit of getting everyone out of the house is going to be a calm, peaceful morning routine, and that's what I'm looking forward to more than anything else.

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 11:28 AM

imagine, scarry has made a well-considered choice to have a male relative assist in childcare and the sky has not yet fallen. wait until pATRICK hears.

You rang? I actually have no problem at all. Scarry is very aware of what can happen and has obviously made a choice she is comfortable with. The only problem i have are the "nothing will happen, stick you head in the sand" types.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 11:31 AM

And, by the way, it is ILLEGAL to pass a stopped school bus!

Besides, how do you know the 'mommy' in question is having a casual chit-chat? Perhaps her child is being harrassed on the bus, and she needs to tell the driver, or perhaps the driver is telling the mom that the child is having (or causing) problems.

It would be best if you stop and think before making blanket statements prompted by unsupported underlying assumptions.

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 11:32 AM

I am sooooo loking forward to school starting! DS is going in to 4th grade. Since I now work from home full time I have had an interesting summer of patchwork care/camps and will look forward to the regular routine of the school day. (Seven full hours of uninterupted work time!)

Progression of events for the first day of school drop off:

K - Cried like a baby once his class walked in and I could no longer see him.

1st Grade - A few tears, stopped by the time I got back to the car.

2nd Grade - No tears, but I missed him

3rd Grade - Dropped him off, met the teacher, drove directly to the salon for a facial!

4th Grade - Will drop him off at 9:00 and I have a 9:15 massage appt!

Posted by: shammersten | August 13, 2007 11:33 AM

The only problem i have are the "nothing will happen, stick you head in the sand" types.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 11:31 AM

the types who've responded have said, keep your head up and aware of the propensity of ALL childcare providers, relatives and non-relatives, parents and non-parents, male and female, alike - but, of course, you don't want to hear that message because it offends your easily set-off anger button.

Posted by: gcoward | August 13, 2007 11:35 AM

And, by the way, it is ILLEGAL to pass a stopped school bus!"

Oh but I will be late for my nails/ the presentation/golf/the mall/ etc. My friend who is a police officer says that nothing used to piss them off more than someone speeding in a school zone and some kid gets hit and then trot out some BS reasons like these.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 11:38 AM

One of the things I miss most about being a student is the ebb and flow of the school year - my son is only two now so there's no real difference to us in terms of his care (although he just started in a Montessori preschool, which is closed this week to transition from the summer program to the regular school year program, so I guess we're getting a small taste). But I always enjoyed finishing one semester, starting another, finishing the summer job, going back to school. I liked the change - inevitably, no matter how much I like my job, I get both wistful and antsy for change in the fall.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 11:39 AM

Posted by: gcoward | August 13, 2007 11:35 AM

Sorry, if you want to go down that path, you will go alone.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 11:39 AM

Scarry -- Look forward to hearing more. Can you get your nephew to post as well?

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 11:45 AM

"My friend who is a police officer says that nothing used to piss them off more than someone speeding in a school zone and some kid gets hit and then trot out some BS reasons like these."

Colorado has a special license plate that was put out after the Columbine shootings - it has a columbine flower on it and says "respect life" at the bottom. When I had a hit and run accident with a car with one of those plates, the officer who responded told me that he catches more people with those plates speeding in school zones than with regular plates. Go figure.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 11:46 AM

About half the people I see driving past the school buses that are stopped with lights flashing, etc are on the phone.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 11:49 AM

KLB, Another of my favorite (ha!) distracted unsafe motorists are those (re-)inserting a contact lens or applying mascara -- each just a fraction of an inch away from poking themselves in the eye while driving.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 11:56 AM

to the jeans poster: try old navy, they have adjustable pants for children, they have an elastic band inside them that can move according to how tight/loose you need them. ask an associate for help if you need it; in my area they are usually helpful. you might want to try gap kids; usually the gap is good about having different size jeans for different people. gap would be pricy but if you can find a pair that fits correctly it would probably be less stress to you. maybe you need to simply settle for capris instead of regular length pants for now.

Posted by: meredithneale | August 13, 2007 11:58 AM

back to school = my husband and i being able to go the movies on weeknights without obnoxious teenagers there

Posted by: meredithneale | August 13, 2007 12:02 PM

"About half the people I see driving past the school buses that are stopped with lights flashing, etc are on the phone."

GOD BLESS THEM!!! They are pursuing the right to life, liberty, and happiness. Let me guess. You want THE GOVERNMENT to step in and prevent these people from talking on their cell phone. Give me a break. MOVE TO FRANCE YOU HATER OF AMERICA!!!!

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 12:04 PM

Okay, I'm going to get sentimental for a moment. Please excuse.

I love the fall. When my mom visited me this past week, she mentioned how much more productive she feels in the fall. I told her that it comes from years of conditioning--from age five, they put us in school every September, and there's a quick transition from "lazy summer" to "homework every night." As kids, we got used to productivity in the fall, and that's probably why she feels more productive then. I know it's that way for me, and I've been out of school for a few years. Being a total school nerd, I always looked forward to a new school year: new classes, new classmates, new books, a clean slate. The year is ahead of you, and academically you can decide how well you're going to do, as opposed to the end of a term, where you have to get a B on the final or repeat the class.

It's not really like that in the working world, where there are really no clean slates, but that feeling still persists. I'm starting school again, and I wish I could feel as positive about school as I used to. Right now I'm just terrified. It's not the workload or the gargantuan reading assignments; I'm petrified of the Socratic method and the competition. Law school seems to me like a business environment, nose to the grindstone, competing for the top level, and coming from happy-go-lucky, eccentric, laid-back academia, I'm afraid I'll have a hard time fitting in and excelling. So I'm more nervous than anything as this school year starts. I guess the only thing to do is stay focused, have faith in my capabilities, and hit the ground running so I don't fall behind. Wish me luck--and good luck to you and yours who are returning to school. Especially those with college kids--they've got some great years ahead of them, and you've got some great expenses coming your way. ;-)

Posted by: Monagatuna | August 13, 2007 12:05 PM

Lil-Husky:

"bababooey666, dude, are you OK? Is there something I can help you with?"

Are you Al-Qaeda??

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 12:06 PM

"Sorry, if you want to go down that path, you will go alone."

What does that mean, pATRICK? It's the truth. I recall Jen S. (?) stated that she was interested in hiring a male au pair because he was the most qualified or something and you flipped out. something like "There is something seriously messed up about any man willing to provide childcare."

You seem to be changing your tune now?

Posted by: baby-work | August 13, 2007 12:07 PM

"bababooyey,
Did you forget to take your meds?"

Oh Emily. Did you take Ambien again last night? You do know that it can cause sleep-posting don't you??? That would explain the nature of so many of your posts. Please tell me you are drug-free Emily. Please.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 12:13 PM

The plus side of the kids returning to school is that as a single person, I can go to the beach during my vacation without seeing screaming kids.

The negative side is that there will be more bad kids riding the Metro.

Posted by: Strawberry23 | August 13, 2007 12:14 PM

Strawberry23:

"The plus side of the kids returning to school is that as a single person, I can go to the beach during my vacation without seeing screaming kids."

Hey genius. Ever thought the kids might be screaming because they had to look at you in beach-wear???

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 12:17 PM

Today is back to school for my daughter, and there are big changes. She starts middle school, and she is enrolled in a performing arts charter school in downtown Phoenix. Her school is 10 minutes from my office, so now we carpool together (she took the school bus in elementary school).

To bababooey666: the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness does not give some self-absorbed jerk the right to blow through a school bus crossing zone. And yes, government entities have begun banning cell-phone use while driving to keep said self-absorbed jerks from killing others. They have the right to kill themselves...perhaps I can find the rather graphic photos taken at an accident scene where some self-absorbed teen-ager here in Phoenix was talking on her cell phone and inadvertently parked her car underneath a flatbed truck...removing the top of her car (and her head) in the process. Apparently her pursuit of happiness interfered with her right to life. At least she didn't kill anyone else.

Posted by: pepperjade | August 13, 2007 12:29 PM

Also to the jeans poster: learn how to do alterations. Buy to fit the largest part of the body and tailor everything else. If she needs a longer inseam, buy the jeans with the right inseam length and take in the waist. Adding "homemade" details like extra fabric at the bottoms might seem cool to you, but if it's not "in style" at school she'll be teased and ridiculed at school. Preteen girls are not exactly known for their individuality and confidence when it comes to fashion - they want to look exactly like their friends.

Posted by: dcgirl1899 | August 13, 2007 12:30 PM

chicamericaine,

Washington has something similar to the rentree -- the new federal fiscal year on Oct 1. We're either racing to spend leftover money by then or counting the days until new money starts flowing.

Posted by: tomtildrum | August 13, 2007 12:41 PM

You seem to be changing your tune now?

Posted by: baby-work | August 13, 2007 12:07 PM

Nope, Just no reason to refight the same argument again.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 12:44 PM

LizaBean, the Maryland equivalent of that would be the people with their "Treasure the Chesapeake" license plates, throwing litter out of their windows! And yes I've seen it happen many times. (Those are often also on the biggest gas-guzzlers that can be bought.)

Seems like they view the license plate as an "indulgence" they can buy to make up for their "sins".

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 12:46 PM

KLB:

About half the people I see driving past the school buses that are stopped with lights flashing, etc are on the phone.

__________________________________

A friend of mine is a police officer; one of his "favorite" stories is about a woman who ran a red light, hit two other cars, narrowly missed a line of kids waiting for the school bus, and came to rest in the front wall of a house.

When he got there, she was still in her car. He ran over to see if she was alright, and to start the investigation. She was very upset - the important conference call was still going on; he was interrupting her; and if he'd just wait another half hour she'd be right with him.

One can only fantasize about what happened next.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 12:50 PM

But that still doesn't explain what "Sorry, if you want to go down that path, you will go alone" means. My guess was you were saying that gcoward is a voice int he wilderness to call you out for the fact that you were once adamently against male childcare providers and I'd just like to say gcoward is not alone to recall this.

But maybe you are saying gcoward (and myself) are right and you have changed your view, but you just aren't interested in revisiting? If so, you have a remarkable talent at turning an admission that you previously wrong into a personal attack.

Posted by: baby-work | August 13, 2007 12:51 PM

Strawberry23 - i for one like to be reminded of life sans kids. i too will be without them one day. thanks.

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 12:52 PM

dcgirl1899, I take your point re not inflicting additions to the bottoms of jeans on a daughter who doesn't want them or might feel embarrassed by them. It's important to be sensitive to these things. On the other hand, sometimes a girl who's a trendsetter at school can start a new fad with something like this.

I'd warn, however, that the sort of alterations you suggest are not easy for a novice at sewing -- since not all bagginess in a pair of jeans that are long enough can be taken in -- and it's not necessarily worth the expense of getting them altered professionally, IMHO.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 12:53 PM

One of my more passionate peeves is with drivers who run stop signs, red lights or pass schoolbuses because they are on the phone. it is a kind of insanity. it is especially bad in my neighborhood because every corner has a stop sign and people treat them as if they are optional. i often wonder if it is going to take someone's death to make them really STOP at the white line.

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 12:56 PM

"Seems like they view the license plate as an "indulgence" they can buy to make up for their "sins"."

Army Brat, exactly. As if buying the expensive item thereby excuses any obligation to actually change their behavior.

Baby-work, seems to me patrick is being perfectly clear that he doesn't want to get into it again today. And I for one am thankful as I am tired of having that particular argument.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 1:00 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions for the tall, slender girl jeans suggestions. I've never had to go through this, since I'm only 5-foot-nothing. Organic Kid is, at age 9, only 3 inches shorter than me. I believe she'll be taller than me by the end of the year! She's starting at a new school this year, so she's thinking shorts/capris until she knows what the fashion "vibe" is there. Of course, I don't think she's too worried because she's planning on mostly wearing the tye-dyed shirts we made all this summer along with the short. Fashion isn't a real concern. She's mostly worried about being in a new school and making new friends. But she's also very excited, BECAUSE it's a new school with new friends. Ah, to be 9 again, and be looking forward to school because you get to meet new people!

Posted by: OrganicGal | August 13, 2007 1:01 PM

"Sorry, if you want to go down that path, you will go alone" means. "

I still believe exactly the same thing as I posted before. I simply meant that I will not be fighting it out again. Is that plain enough?

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:01 PM

"To bababooey666: the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness does not give some self-absorbed jerk the right to blow through a school bus crossing zone"

Why not??? Why is someone using a cell-phone a "self-absorbed jerk"??? Because you say so. If you don't like AMERICA, LEAVE IT PAL!!!! GOD BLESS YOU SAMUEL ALITO!!! GOD BLESS YOU JOHN ROBERTS!!!!! Thank God no one listens to people such as this poster. We only listen to those who count, such as Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. WE LOVE YOU CLARENCE THOMAS!!! Do you think the porn of the early 21st century is better than the porn you used to rent???

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 1:02 PM

test

Posted by: kattoo | August 13, 2007 1:04 PM

BTW has anyone experienced a barfing kid lately? If not, I highly suggest it if you have a few hours to kill and enjoy cleaning. Amazing the volume.When it was over she said, 'Can we still go skating?".Kids......

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:05 PM

"BTW has anyone experienced a barfing kid lately?"

No, but my kids experienced me barfing just this weekend. Too much Jack Daniels!! Oh wait, that wasn't me. It was Britney Spears. Sorry, back to our regular programming.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 1:08 PM

pATRICK, Sorry to hear about your having to clean up such a big nasty mess (you didn't let her have too much flan, did you?). BTW, this is one of situations that empty plastic wastebaskets are for. Set one next to your child's bed and train her to try to hurl into it if she feels nauseated while in bed -- or to race to the toilet, or at least to some part of your home with hard floors (like linoleum) that can be more easily cleaned up afterwards.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 1:12 PM

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 01:12 PM


That would have been nice. Instead it was, I think I am going to throw up. Which in kids language means " I AM THROWING UP IN .004 MICROSECONDS" . Our poor car.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:17 PM

pATRICK,
And how does the car smell today? Puke and heat do not mix.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 1:19 PM

With the horrible things that go on in the world involving children, I completely understand pATRICK's position.

I practically raised my nephew though; so I have no worries about him being around my daughter alone. I have not raised the other males in the world, or for that matter the other females, so unless the nanny is family or I am in the house, I don't feel comfortable leaving my kids with only one person for long stretches of time. It doesn't matter the sex of the person, violence has no gender. I really have to trust a person to let them have access to my kids. What other parent's do and are comfortable with is up to them and I won't judge them for it, but this is how I feel about it.

Leslie, I am not sure I want to subject my sweet nephew to on balance. It has gotten better in the last few weeks, so maybe after he eases his way into his new job, he could write a guest blog.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 1:23 PM

pATRICK,
And how does the car smell today? Puke and heat do not mix.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 01:19 PM

I cleaned for two hours yesterday. I put baking soda down and vacuumed this morning. I then left a whole jar of coffee grounds in the car and left all doors open. It is 99.9 percent gone. I on the other hand am traumatized. I like my car nearly immaculate and this is my worst nightmare. ;). The funniest part is when I am driving her home covered in throw up and she says "Can we still go skating?"

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:23 PM

pATRICK, when I was a kid my parents took long vacation trips on hot, twisty, dusty roads that were enough to make any kid carsick. My folks brokered a deal with me: I was to notify them the moment I thought there was a risk I might vomit, and my dad would pull over to the side of the road ASAP (note: these were not freeways, so pulling over was reasonable possibility). While the occasional false-alarm occurred when I merely felt queasy, this practice generally worked well for all parties -- and, perhaps most importantly, I outgrew the problem around age 11.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 1:24 PM

pATRICK, Try Febreze on the unpleasant scent.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 1:26 PM

I think that is a great idea. I got car sick a lot too so I have some empathy. We actually talked about what to do next time.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:27 PM

My mom loves it when this stuff happens to me. She views it as cosmic payback for barfing on her when I was a kid.:)

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:28 PM

Those are often also on the biggest gas-guzzlers that can be bought.)

Seems like they view the license plate as an "indulgence" they can buy to make up for their "sins".

I have one of those awful gas-guzzlers (it's almost 9 years old, it still runs, it's paid for, STBX had given it to me as the most unwelcome Christmas present I have ever received, and I can't buy a new car right now).

I REFUSE to put a bay tag on it! Not going to be a hypocrite!

In that vein, I'm annoyed by the people who have never lived in the same zip code as a working farm having the farming license plates. My neighborhood is surrounded by farms, and I almost never see those tags out here -- but I do see them on 'city' cars. What gives?

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 1:28 PM

" Instead it was, I think I am going to throw up. Which in kids language means " I AM THROWING UP IN .004 MICROSECONDS" . Our poor car. "

Oh man, you gotta love that... The last time my son had a stomach bug I figured out that he makes a peculiar whimper right before puking, it's the only warning system we've got right now. Love the skating thing too, they're so funny.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 1:29 PM

Sorry i misunderstood. glad you aren't interested in blasting Scarry for what sounds like a well-thought out decision. most parents who hire male child care providers are similarly cautious.

Posted by: baby-work | August 13, 2007 1:30 PM

pATRICK, Sometimes it's not payback but a hereditary tendency. If you outgrew it, presumably your daughter will, too. Does your son have the same problem?

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 1:31 PM

"I'm annoyed by the people who have never lived in the same zip code as a working farm having the farming license plates. My neighborhood is surrounded by farms, and I almost never see those tags out here -- but I do see them on 'city' cars. What gives?"

I don't know what the license plates are, but I don't think that living in a city and supporting farmers is inconsistent. Maybe those are the same people patronizing farmers markets and CSAs? In fact, living in the city instead of in the suburbs that are swallowing up farm land might be viewed as more supportive of farmers. Or they could just be crazy hyprocrites, who knows? :)

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 1:33 PM

Of course kids want to go skating or whatever else fun was planned before they puked - the poison is out of their system and they are raring to go. Plus, they aren't the ones who have to clean it up. That makes another sick person.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 1:36 PM

I'm feeling rather cynical today, so I'm going to go with crazy hypocrites...

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 1:37 PM

"pATRICK, Sometimes it's not payback but a hereditary tendency."

My mother views my son's willful, stubborn personality with the same pleasure; as her mother also viewed mine when I was growing up. I suppose the old saying about paybacks can apply equally well to hereditary tendencies, LOL.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 1:38 PM

Army brat,

Before I moved away from Ohio we had a stupid butt cop who was on her way to a brush fire (out of her jurisdiction) and passed the school bus carrying my nephew and the neighbor boy. My nephew hadn't been dropped off yet and was still on the bus (busy road, so they dropped them right in front of the house) anyway, she hit the neighbor and broke his leg all the way up to the hip. Then, after she did that, she sat on the ground and cried because she was going to lose her job. She was also a paramedic, but did nothing to help this boy. They were 8 at the time. I think anyone who passes a school bus should have mandatory prison time. The family sued the town and her and won a settlement.

I can't believe anyone would pass a school bus.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 1:40 PM

"I'm feeling rather cynical today, so I'm going to go with crazy hypocrites..."

LOL, sounds good - sometimes it's just that kind of day.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 1:43 PM

"Of course kids want to go skating or whatever else fun was planned before they puked."

Absolutely! Not getting to go skating (or whatever was planned) afterwards feels to a kid like getting punished for having thrown up.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 1:44 PM

"I can't believe anyone would pass a school bus."

And I can't believe anyone would not teach their child not to run out in the street. Oh, yes, I know. You JUST CANNOT TEACH A CHILD THAT!!! Well then, gee, maybe you should meet your child at the school bus and walk them home. OH NO!!! I CAN'T DO THAT. I AM A BIG IMPORTANT WASHINGTON-TYPE PERSON. And you just can't find a good nanny these days. Wake up and smell the coffee people. If you want to have a child, then take responsibility for him or her. YOU ALL SICKEN ME!!!!!

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 1:46 PM

I see the blog cookie monster is still eating posts. I thought this was fixed.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:48 PM

pATRICK,
Are you sure it isn't bababooey666 eating any sensible posts? Seems even more unbalanced today. Best to ignore tho - just like a gnat - tiny annoyance that you swat away without thinking.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 1:50 PM

"I see the blog cookie monster is still eating posts. I thought this was fixed."

He/she is not eating my posts. I KNOW you are all happy about that. GOD BLESS YOU ALL! YOU ARE ALL GOD'S CHILDREN!!!!

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 1:51 PM

"Are you sure it isn't bababooey666 eating any sensible posts? Seems even more unbalanced today. Best to ignore tho - just like a gnat - tiny annoyance that you swat away without thinking."

Then why aren't you taking your own advice, genius???? You're so good at "not thinking", it should be second nature to you.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 1:53 PM

"I see the blog cookie monster is still eating posts. I thought this was fixed."

Block and copy your post text before hitting the "Submit" button. That way if the blog eats your post, you can just paste it in and resend with minimal effort.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 1:53 PM

Bababooey reminds me of that guy in that 70's film 'NETWORK". The one who was 'MAD AS HELL AND NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE'

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:54 PM

Actually, I'm as CONTENT AS HELL. I just hope the American people wake up and refuse to keep on takin' it. And why does everyone think I'm a guy???

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 1:56 PM

I will say this.

The 666 behind bababooey's moniker is extremely appropriate. She is a tad unbalanced, but she can also be pretty funny.

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 1:57 PM

pATRICK, Sometimes it's not payback but a hereditary tendency. If you outgrew it, presumably your daughter will, too. Does your son have the same problem?

Yes unfortunately. Do you think it is hereditary?

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 1:57 PM

I will say this.

The 666 behind bababooey's moniker is extremely appropriate. She is a tad unbalanced, but she can also be pretty funny.

Well the "funny" thing to me is that bababooey probably could have something interesting to say but just uses the same tired shtick for every post.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 2:00 PM

pATRICK, I have a friend who lives on an island and unfortunately gets so easily seasick that he's unable to ride on passenger boats, only on a large (and far more stable) auto-ferry. His wife doesn't have his problem, but both of their kids do -- and they believe it's hereditary (rather than learned).

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 2:01 PM

I don't know, Patrick. I thought the God bless you, Clarence Thomas line was pretty good. And with that, I am off to buy a Coke. But you can bet I'll be checking the can for stray hairs.

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 2:02 PM

"The 666 behind bababooey's moniker is extremely appropriate. She is a tad unbalanced, but she can also be pretty funny."

Thank you Emily. It is so nice to see that the Ambien has worn off. :)

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 2:03 PM

I have to drive or sit in the front seat. I get carsick still pretty easy. When we went to NYC, and had to ride in all those cabs, i was not a happy camper.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 2:04 PM

Your welcome, Bababooey. It is nice to see that you have moments of lucidity. I also like your politics. God bless you, Karl Rove!!!

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 2:06 PM

pATRICK, You're correct about the front seat. On the rare occasions I need to ride in a taxi, I insist on the front passenger seat.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 2:06 PM

Emily, what did you put in your flan today???

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 2:07 PM

No flan today, catlady. I am just punchy for some reason.

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 2:10 PM

Emily, what did you put in your flan today???

If I didn't know better, I would say pot. Finding Bababooey funny must take a lot of pot though.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 2:12 PM

My parents owned VW cars when I was little. When traveling, I could always feel the engine buzz and the suspension "felt" the road pretty well. When I got in a car with a smooth ride, it made my stomach feel queazy and I got carsick on many occasions.

Posted by: Lil_Husky | August 13, 2007 2:12 PM

I barfed a chocolate shake on my dad once when I was 8. It must be payback time.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 2:13 PM

The front seat of a vehicle seems to be better for a lot of people who suffer from various types of motion sickness. A doctor once told me that it gives you a better ability to see where you are and acclimate yourself to the motion.

Wayne Gretzky used to have terrible trouble flying, which for a professional hockey player can be a wee bit of a problem. The solution was to let him fly in the cockpit of the jet the team was taking.

That wouldn't work in the US, even before 9/11 - airlines weren't supposed to let passengers disrupt the "sterile cockpit" during takeoff and landing. But on every flight in Canada, Gretzky rode in a jumpseat in the cockpit.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 2:13 PM

Getting varfed on is the parent's red badge of courage.

Posted by: Lil_Husky | August 13, 2007 2:18 PM

I used to get carsick really easily too - now it happens only with a driver who doesn't keep a steady speed or on really twisty roads.

I also associated the smell of coffee with carsickness for the longest time because my dad would always bring a thermos of coffee on road trips, so the car always smelled of coffee when I would start to get queasy. I couldn't stand hanging out in coffee shops for a long time because of the smell, though I've finally gotten used to it now that I drink coffee. ALthough if I spend too much time at one I sometimes have to change my clothing afterwords because the smell of the coffee shop lingers on and bothers me.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 2:18 PM

LizaBean, I think the "farm" tags in question aren't farm-supporters, but rather, special tags that identify vehicles that are designated for farm use, and hence, subjected to a different tax rate. These are pretty common in states where agriculture is still a really significant portion of the economy. I don't see them as often as I used to (even though I work in the ag industry!) because the restrictions on obtaining "farm" tags are pretty strict, at least here in North Carolina. I was recently at a meeting of the State Agriculture Commission for a raw milk discussion, and this issue was brought up because so many vehicles that are pretty clearly family-use were getting farm tags. They were trying to decide how to ensure that only the vehicles that are necessary for farming get these tags. I don't have farm tags, but I do have a "Support Organic Farmers" bumper sticker! But it's an equal-opportunity hippie vehicle, I also have a Save the Sea Turtles liscence plate!
--Organic Gal--

Posted by: OrganicGal | August 13, 2007 2:19 PM

The worst part to me was that we had a whole afternoon planned together, since brother and mom were out of town . Skating, going to the library (her favorite) and it all went to crap. Life sucks sometimes

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 2:21 PM

"The front seat of a vehicle seems to be better for a lot of people who suffer from various types of motion sickness. A doctor once told me that it gives you a better ability to see where you are and acclimate yourself to the motion."

My understanding is that many people only get car-sick if they are not the one who is driving. Could have something to do with what you are saying. When you're driving, you feel like you are in control. Of course, this is not a solution for children. Why? Because the government feels like it should regulate when someone can drive a car!!!! Imagine that!!! Damn government bureaucrats telling my child when he/she can drive a car! Thank God they can't tell what health care I can get. But it's a slippery slope, people.

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 2:22 PM

In MD the agriculture tags are a not farm vehicles. You pay a bit more for a plate with a picture on it. The money is supposed to go to support farming in the state just like the one with a heron is supposed to go to support the Bay.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 2:23 PM

The plates like what KLB is describing is what I was thinking of when I wrote my post. We have farm vehicle tags here too but I think that is pretty strictly enforced.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 2:30 PM

algriner1, the plates to which I was referring and to which I think educmom is referring are Maryland "Agricultural Education Fund" plates.

In addition to the regular plates, Maryland offers two "Specialty" plates that cost more initially and then cost more every year, with the money going to a special fund. There's the "Treasure the Cheasapeake" plate, with a marsh scene/blue heron, for which the money goes to the Chesapeake Bay Trust. Then there's a "farm" plate, which is all 'earth tones' orange read and brown; and says "Our Farms Our Future". The money from that one goes to the Maryland Agricultural Education Foundation.

The point being that you buy your big gas guzzler, put a Chesapeake Bay tag on it and you're doing something to "save the bay" (donating 5 bucks per year) despite your gas guzzling, littering, etc.

Similarly, I think educmom's point was that people live in the city, or in farm-destroying suburbs, and put the Farm tags on their car and they're "supporting the Maryland farmers" (to the tune of 5 bucks per year) while not doing anything to actually support the farm lifestyle.

(educmom, jump in and correct me here if I'm wrong)

It seems like the people who actually live on farms don't get the farm plates; and a lot of people who are actively committing serious time and money to help clean up the bay don't get the bay plates. They just make other people feel good.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 2:30 PM

In MD you can get many different plates - Humane Society, College, Square Dancing, and ham radio to name a few.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 2:39 PM

Living in a farm-destroying suburb and driving back and forth into the city every day and having a farm tag would strike me as hypocritical, but living in the city may not be - I think there are some people who choose to live in cities in part because they don't want to contribute to the destruction of farms/open space etc.

But I agree that in general the people who get the plates don't usually seem to be the people who are actually committing time and energy to the issue.

The real question, though, seems to be whether living in the city and having Square Dancing plates is hypocritical or not...

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 2:41 PM

Thanks for the clarification on the Farm tags. I understand it now. I guess I was thinking the original comment was about someone beating the system and getting "farm" designation tags for the tax break on a vehicle that was clearly NOT part of regular farm work (that really bugs me...a farm tag on a huge SUV for the tax break, when it's only used by the family member who works off the farm and to schlep family members various places). I try not to judge who has a $5 to help whatever cause on various vehicles. I spend extra for that reason on the sea turtle tags I have, because I live no where near the beach, but I know the money goes to a sea turtle hospital, and I want to do what I can to help. How can that be bad? Yeah, gas guzzlers and Save the Bay are hypocritical, but how would a Support Ag tag be like that? I don't have land to farm, but I support family farms by buying locally, sustainably, etc. But you can't tell that by just looking at my vehicle, can you?

Posted by: OrganicGal | August 13, 2007 2:42 PM

My nephews will both be in all day classes for the first time this year. My sister is going back to school and taking two courses this semester during the day. She's concerned about time because she's always been very active at the boy's schools- volunteering for trips, weekly class parent duties and things like that. But it's very awesome.

Posted by: EmeraldEAD | August 13, 2007 2:44 PM

I don't think there is anything wrong with supporting agriculture or the Bay with your license plate at all.
Now admitting to the world that you square dance? That is another story. And pity the poor teenager who borrows the car with square dancing tags.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 2:47 PM

"And pity the poor teenager who borrows the car with square dancing tags."

Yes! KLB, I do believe you've hit the master parenting stroke. Stick one of those tags on, say, a Plymouth Valiant, and your kids will NEVER beg to use the car!

Posted by: laura33 | August 13, 2007 2:53 PM

" I try not to judge who has a $5 to help whatever cause on various vehicles."

But Organic Gal, that's just so, so, so reasonable and good natured, what are you thinking? Seriously, I think that's a good perspective. I have a particular gripe about suburbs but I shall try to adopt your more holistic way of thinking. :)

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 2:54 PM

I don't think there is anything wrong with supporting agriculture or the Bay with your license plate at all.

Me either. I hate what I call purity tests. You can't support a clean lake because you have an SUV, or you can't be for environment because you have a 3000 sq foot home. Always seems like these types of people are demanding absolute dedication to some cause.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 2:55 PM

Hey, I owned a Plymouth Valiant! I proposed to Frieda in it!

Posted by: fred | August 13, 2007 2:57 PM

bababooey666

Feel free to pass a school bus anytime you want, just remember that when you hit a small child, a mob of parents might beat you to death.

By the way, the mom was waiting for her kid, she saw him get hit in front of her. A few months later the idiot police officer was beat up pretty badly. They still have no idea who did it because no one in town would come forward.

I will say it again, only an idiot would pass a school bus. Kids are told that it is safe to walk infront of the bus when the sign is out. They should look, but self absorbed people should also take the time to stop.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 2:57 PM

Living in a farm-destroying suburb...

It's called progress. People live there and businesses cater to them. Beats being cooped up in a city with choking smog and sky high dwelling prices and tiny apartments.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 3:00 PM

"I hate what I call purity tests. "

LOL, I think what you hate is other people's purity tests - you have your own that you embrace. We all have areas that we are adamant, strict or purist about, and areas that we are not.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 3:02 PM

To the person looking for jeans -- Try Lands End. In addition to having several waist-styles, they will hem to your specifications. So, order the size and style that will fit your daughter's waist, measure her inseam, and let them do the rest. I believe this is complimentary, but the heans are probably pricier than the average.

DD is only 9 and runs into the same problem -- long legs, slim waist. We buy pants in Slim sizes at JC Penney, Lands End and Old Navy. Don't know if you can still buy "Slim" sizes for teens, but check it out.

Posted by: vegasmom89109 | August 13, 2007 3:04 PM

LizaBean hit it on the head - we all have our hot buttons and woe to the person who hits one on a bad day.

Posted by: KLB_SS_MD | August 13, 2007 3:05 PM

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 03:02 PM

Hmm a well reasoned post. I think I agree.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 3:08 PM

I always look forward to the start of school--probably a holdover from my school days. What I don't look forward to is the drop in daylight, the increased commuting traffic in the morning...and all of the organized activities that re-start in the fall.

Posted by: kattoo | August 13, 2007 3:10 PM

Yes! KLB, I do believe you've hit the master parenting stroke. Stick one of those tags on, say, a Plymouth Valiant, and your kids will NEVER beg to use the car!

_______________

Laura, never underestimate a teenager desperate for a car. I have an existence proof that an 18-year old girl will learn to drive a stick-shift and drive a 16-year old Ford Escort (with rust spots and 268,000 miles on it) to high school rather than take the bus.

I'm betting the valiant with the square-dancer license plate looks really cool to a teenager whose other choices are walk, stay home or take a bus.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 13, 2007 3:11 PM

Cheers, KLB and Patrick! We just need one more person and then we can square dance!

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 3:13 PM

You know when we lived in Utah the outside of our fence was painted by "save the farm" people. Most of the houses were modest homes, 1,200 square feet. The thing about saving farms though is that it has very little to do with the people who buy the land the farmers sell and more to do with big business agriculture and the importing of cheap foods from other countries. The small farmer can't compete so they decide to sell the property or in some cases they lose it, which is different in my opinion than selling.

In our case, the old man didn't want to farm anymore, the kids didn't want to farm anymore, and he couldn't find a farmer to sell the land too, so he broke it up into a sub division. A great place to learn about the issue concerning family farming is on the farm aid site. I buy local when I can and get my meat beef from family farmers. When the government finally lets the chickens in from China, I will be getting my poultry from them too.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 3:16 PM

I think that I will get a square dancing tag for the Creepy Van (tm)!

Posted by: fred | August 13, 2007 3:29 PM

Cheers, KLB and Patrick! We just need one more person and then we can square dance!

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 03:13 PM

Now that I am safely a grownup, I can admit,I liked square dancing in PE, you always got to eventually dance with the pretty girl. ;)

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 3:31 PM

pATRICK: there's that old yiddish saying:

May you only have kids just like you.

Some say it's a blessing, some say it's a curse...

Posted by: atlmom1234 | August 13, 2007 3:31 PM

Cheers, KLB and Patrick! We just need one more person and then we can square dance!

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 03:13 PM

OH OH OH -- Choose me please to round out your square, LOL.

Square dancing was the only form of dance at which I was mildly proficient. I was a total clutz at everything else.

Posted by: vegasmom89109 | August 13, 2007 3:41 PM

Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 11:15 AM

sigh of relief, we have gotten the daily hang leslie up by her well manicured toes post from Bababooey. All is right with the world.

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 3:45 PM

ArmyBrat, you're right about the tags -- they raise money for farm assistance.

I guess I'm aggravated by people who talk about saving farms when they don't seem to understand that family farming is almost nonexistent today! STBX grew up on a farm, and we have a number of friends who do boutique farming (vinyards, organic CSAs, equestrian operations, etc). People buy a license plate and don't realize that they're just contributing to the corporate farm welfare program. And, I certainly don't begrudge the Chesapeake Bay foundation the money from license plates -- I might be too embarrassed to slap one on my Stupid Useless Vehicle, but I'm glad other people will do so.

BTW, I teach in the same area where I live, so I don't commute into the city. Besides, it was my impression that I have the right to live wherever I want to live. If a city, such as Baltimore, is unable to manage its affairs (contain its criminal element, clean its streets, maintain its infrastructure), why should I subsidize it with my property tax money?

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 3:47 PM

Ok, VegasMom, you're in - we'll have to take turns playing the gent though since we have three ladies in our square.

Patrick, you apparently are not alone! We had square dances in the community I grew up in and I have to say I always loved them.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 3:48 PM

«Actually, I'm as CONTENT AS HELL. I just hope the American people wake up and refuse to keep on takin' it. And why does everyone think I'm a guy???»
«Posted by: bababooey666 | August 13, 2007 01:56 PM»

O Lady! It is in this way thatI have always addressed you, as I address the other Ladies here. «I do not mean any offense», this is how you began a posting, I said that is how ladies begin to speak in mixed company, men do not begin by excusing themselves, so I knew you were a Lady. Giant CAPITAL LETTERS, once in a calm posting without these big letters you told us how it was without whining and griping, you negotiated maternity leave, men do not negotiate maternity leave, so I addressed you as, «O Lady». Other posters, maybe they look at the CAPITAL LETTERS and think, here is a guy shouting, men so often shout where there are women, they think to intimidate women, this is mostly a women's blog, people think, «this posting is trying to intimidate us, this poster must be a guy». How is it, you can be «as CONTENT AS HELL»? Hell, no one is content there, Hell is where sinners and infidels who do not pay the jizya tax are burning in fire. Here above the ground, we can be content, if we just learn to get along.

Posted by: abu_ibrahim | August 13, 2007 3:48 PM

My 9 1/2 year old daughter attends a Catholic school (public schools in my area are lousy) and as a mom who works full-time, I am constantly frustrated by the school's scheduling. They offer after-school care, but no before-school care (the principal claims there's no space for it, but they could have it in the same space where they have after-school care), and it seems like every year the kids get more and more time off from school - 2 1/2 weeks at Christmas, a week and a half for Easter vacation, three days off for Thanksgiving, and at least one to two days off a month for other miscellaneous things. They even get St. Patrick's day off when it falls on a weekday! The last few years they started back to school in the fall on the 23rd or 24th of August, but this year decided not to go back until the 27th, so I have to take a week and day off from work to stay home with my daughter, since her summer day camp program ends on the 17th, and to make matters worse, the first day of school is always a "drop in day" where parents come to school with their children, tour the school, meet the teachers, pick up paperwork and go home. I end up having to take a full day off from work for a 30 minute visit to the school ( have no one to watch my daughter the remainder of the day). I try to stay involved with the school and get to know my daughter's teachers, so I'm not griping about the involvement, it's just that the school already has a mandatory meet the teacher night for parents the same week, and, as a fourth grader, my daughter doesn't need to "tour" the school - she already knows where everything is, and already knows the gym teacher, librarians, etc! The school has a fair number of working moms, but most of the wealthier families (who provide a great deal of $$$ to the school) have stay at home moms, so the school caters to them. Any other parents going through the same thing???

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 3:49 PM

VegasMom, not to worry -- there's room at the "On Balance" square dance for everyone -- and Bababooey666 won't be there, since Bababooey666 is just a do-it-yourselfer.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 3:54 PM

Posted by: abu_ibrahim | August 13, 2007 03:48 PM

this blog now alternates between the pATRICK blog and the "abu talks to bababooey" show. Until, or if, it returns to its former variety of voices and perspectives, it's not worth visiting. I can't understand why registration should have concurrently resulted in one psycho and one Texan - some would say two psychos - having so much time to blab.

Posted by: gcoward | August 13, 2007 3:54 PM

Posted by: gcoward | August 13, 2007 03:54 PM

Where you could post an endless stream of anonymous hit and run snarkiness right?

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 3:57 PM

Gee, gcoward, since your only contributions seem to be aimed at provoking patrick, I would say two psychos and one Texan.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 4:08 PM

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 03:54 PM

Maybe we can coax FRED out of the creepy van too. Flan and square dancing, now that's fun! I would invite EMILY too but she might kick me in the privates on the dosee do......lol

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 4:12 PM

LizaBean - my contributions are to express my opinion. I don't see pATRICK or Leslie - the target of my second post in one day (The Horror, the Horror) - asking you to intervene, so you might consider why you feel the need to comment. Not sharing your taste in friends doesn't make anyone a psycho. Can this blog not accommodate a person or two who doesn't type 18 messages per day and call out to a select few as her friends?

pATRICK - snark is at least amusing. what you post alternates between smuggly and nasty. how do you ever look yourself in the mirror?

Posted by: gcoward | August 13, 2007 4:15 PM

Liza Bean, this GCOWARD, even took the name I called anonymous posters. How creepy and obsessive is that?

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 4:18 PM

So are mine, gcoward, so are mine. That's the joy of it all - nobody needs permission (not even yours!) to say what they want to say.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 4:18 PM

The hardest part for me about Baby Booey is THE ALL CAPS THING. And I never assumed gender -- although now that I think about it, the question is wide open. The anger in the posts is undeniable, no matter what his/her gender. What is up with you, Bababooey?

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 4:20 PM

Laura, I am afraid I had to file that under not being grateful.

I'm sorry it's harder for you- but you have the blessing of a private education that you specifically chose for your child. Along with that comes some negative consequences for you.

Are there no other parental/guardian types who can help switch off time together so that taking a chunk off during the summer isn't a burden and that you both can even take half days to do school stuff with your kid a few times a year?

Posted by: EmeraldEAD | August 13, 2007 4:25 PM

"They even get St. Patrick's day off when it falls on a weekday!"

Do you live in a highly Irish area? For a lot of Irish Americans it's more than a drinking day, which may be why your school has it off. Although it does seem like they have a lot of school days off. Is there another school you could try or are you Catholic and want them to have a Catholic education?

I would love to not have to take St. Patrick's Day off as vacation.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 4:25 PM

I think Bababooey is one of CBC's alter egos. Thus the anger that can't be camouflaged.

And Patrick, as much as I would like to kick you in the groin, I must decline on the invitation to square dance. I have 2 left feet and would probably miss and kick myself.

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 4:27 PM

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 04:27 PM

Gotten past the munchies yet?

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 4:29 PM

pATRICK, let's wait till after the square-dancing for flan, OK? We don't want anyone feeling queasy while they do-si-do.

Posted by: mehitabel | August 13, 2007 4:30 PM

Actually, being pregnant makes me really hungry lately. Hungry to the point where I can't wait to eat. I am at it all day long. Right now, I am munching on cherries to tide me over until dinner.

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 4:32 PM

Emily, how far along are you?

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 4:35 PM

I'm at 23 weeks.

Scarry,
How are you doing? Any news on the baby front?

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 4:41 PM

Emily I am actually not as far along as I thought, I am 28 weeks instead of 30. I took my glucose test today and at this very moment am sick and going to take a nap.

I hope all is well with your pregnancy. The glucose test sucks, try to get it in the morning so you can eat.

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 4:45 PM

I'm so sorry you aren't feeling well. I don't remember the glucose test making me ill the first time I was pregnant, although of course it was sickeningly sweet.

Hope you feel better soon.

Posted by: Emily | August 13, 2007 4:49 PM

Have a nice evening!!

Posted by: pATRICK | August 13, 2007 4:52 PM

EmeraldEAD,

Not grateful??? I think that's pretty presumptous of you! I appreciate the good education my daughter gets at her private school, but considering that probably 70% of the families at the school have two working parents, or a working single mom, the school needs to get a clue that their scheduling is a huge hassle! I am not the only parent who have complained about this. Yeah, I chose to send my daughter to this school, but at $4,200 a year in tuition per child, not to mention several hundred dollars more a year for various fees, I feel the school should be more accomodating to parents' needs. And no, my husband and I aren't some wealthy couple who can shell out $4,200 a year like it's pocket change, and just want something to gripe about. We earn a lower middle-class income, and scrape, pinch, and do without luxuries to send our child to a good school. I think schools in general (both public and private) need to get a clue and realize that the vast majority of moms in the U.S. are now in the workforce, and need some flexibility with their childrens' school schedules. And no, I wasn't griping about summer vacations. I can always find a summer care program for my daughter. It's the Christmas/Easter breaks, and other assorted days off that are problematic.

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 5:01 PM

The glucose test is the most disgusting part of pregnancy. Amnio was hard but not gross. Good luck Emily!

Posted by: leslie4 | August 13, 2007 5:11 PM

"I appreciate the good education my daughter gets at her private school, but considering that probably 70% of the families at the school have two working parents, or a working single mom, the school needs to get a clue that their scheduling is a huge hassle"

I understand where you are coming from. We just switched our son from a daycare center to a Montessori preschool, and I am extremely happy with the quality of learning and care at the Montessori. I think it's better in a lot of ways than the day care. However, although it's not much more expensive, it is a lot less flexible - it follows the school calendar so there are more days off, it doesn't open until 8 (other place opened at 7 or maybe even 6:30), closes earlier, and it's more difficult to arrange for him to be there for longer hours when we need to. Fortunately, my husband and I have enough flexibility in our jobs that this works for us. But for people who don't have the same flexibility at work, I think that issue could put the school out of reach for them, even though the tuition is comparable to other daycares. Scheduling can affect accessibility as much as tuition given the restrictions that a lot of working parents have.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 13, 2007 5:25 PM

Re: glucose test

I also found if you drank the sugar soda with a straw you could drink it faster and not have to taste it so much. Also have some protein and healthy cards with you that you can eat as soon as you get the all clear. Helps keep you from getting more nauseated.

Good luck!

Posted by: robinwfcva | August 13, 2007 5:26 PM

Back to school for me means routine. I'm glad to see summer end for my children's sakes. They all have varying degrees of special needs, and it really hurts them when they don't have school over the summer.

I have all four of my children in the same school. I have a brand new kindergartener, a 1st grader, a 4th grader, and a 5th grader. They are all absolutely enjoying their new experiences.

For me it means that I can devote more time to work, blogging, and most importantly at this point finishing my degree.

I am glad school's back in session although not for the same reasons that most parents do. I don't necessarily like getting "rid" of them. I tremendously enjoy having them around, and spending oodles of time with them, but I also know and realize that they need other things in their lives as well, and education is one of them.

Posted by: pr | August 13, 2007 5:34 PM

Laura -- Your private school schedule isn't far off most public school schedules. Two weeks for winter break, one week for spring break, 4 "staff development" days, 1 parent-teacher conference day, plus several holidays that folks in the private sector don't traditionally get (in our case, "Nevada Day," Veterans Day, MLK and/or President's Day [we get one or the other, but not both]).

DH or I plan to take off most of those days. When we can't swing it, we either look for a friend who will be home (with the promise to return the favor next time) or send her to her former babysitter's house, where she assists with the babies (DD is 9). And, while we've never had to use this option, many city-operated parks/rec departments, Boys/Girls Clubs, or Ys have programs for children on such holidays so that parents don't have to use so many vacation days. I know many parents who do this. Check out your local options.

Posted by: vegasmom89109 | August 13, 2007 5:41 PM

Laura,
I teach in a Catholic school. I am paid about 70% what I would make if I chose to teach in a public school. Our archdiocese mandates just five fewer days of instruction as the public schools. How nice of you to expect your principal and faculty to accomodate you personally, especially since you are paying our salaries through your tuition -- I assume that's what you meant when you said
**$4,200 a year in tuition per child, not to mention several hundred dollars more a year for various fees, I feel the school should be more accomodating to parents' needs**.

I AM SO FREAKING SICK AND TIRED OF PARENTS ASSUMING THEY CAN TREAT FACULTY AS PERSONAL SERVANTS JUST BECAUSE THEY PAY TUITION!!!!!!

YOU chose the school, YOU signed a contract with the school, and by now YOU should know what is expected of you. If YOU want your child at this particular school, then I suggest YOU make the necessary arrangements well in advance, and STOP COMPLAINING about the absence of PERSONAL SERVICE.

Aahhh....I've wanted to say that to parents for YEARS. I feel SO much better now.

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 7:41 PM

Educmom,

Your comment was nasty, and way off base. Neither I nor any of the parents at my daughter's school treat the teachers like personal servants. I stand by my original comment that if parents truly are equal partners in their children's education, then they should have some say in the school structure. Yes, I know Catholic school teachers make less than public school ones. I went to Catholic elementary school myself, and spent my entire 8th grade year listening to my teacher gripe about how underpaid she was compared to her public school colleagues. Yeah, Catholic school teachers are paid less than public school ones, however, Catholic and other private school teachers have a heck of a lot less hassles to deal with than public school teachers (suburban Cleveland) has a huge problem with discipline, uninvolved parents, and many transient students. How many Catholic schools do you know that have those problems? In the city of Cleveland itself, the schools have decrepit buildings, a 90% poverty rate gang problems, kids being drugs and guns to school, extreme racial tension, a 30% high school graduation rate, and too many parents who could care less whether their kids even show up to school. The Catholic schools physically within the city however are stellar. The wealthier public suburban districts are much better off of than Cleveland of course, but even they have far less leverage to deal with discipline problems, etc., than the Catholic schools do. Instead of snapping at me because you feel you are underpaid, why not take a job at a public school, and see how much that extra 30% pay goes when you have to deal with all the additional stressors.

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 8:07 PM

Educmom,

Your comment was nasty, and way off base. Neither I nor any of the parents at my daughter's school treat the teachers like personal servants. I stand by my original comment that if parents truly are equal partners in their children's education, then they should have some say in the school structure. Yes, I know Catholic school teachers make less than public school ones. I went to Catholic elementary school myself, and spent my entire 8th grade year listening to my teacher gripe about how underpaid she was compared to her public school colleagues. Yeah, Catholic school teachers are paid less than public school ones, however, Catholic and other private school teachers have a heck of a lot less hassles to deal with than public school teachers (suburban Cleveland) has a huge problem with discipline, uninvolved parents, and many transient students. How many Catholic schools do you know that have those problems? In the city of Cleveland itself, the schools have decrepit buildings, a 90% poverty rate gang problems, kids being drugs and guns to school, extreme racial tension, a 30% high school graduation rate, and too many parents who could care less whether their kids even show up to school. The Catholic schools physically within the city however are stellar. The wealthier public suburban districts are much better off of than Cleveland of course, but even they have far less leverage to deal with discipline problems, etc., than the Catholic schools do. Instead of snapping at me because you feel you are underpaid, why not take a job at a public school, and see how much that extra 30% pay goes when you have to deal with all the additional stressors.

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 8:07 PM

Educmom,

Your comment was nasty, and way off base. Neither I nor any of the parents at my daughter's school treat the teachers like personal servants. I stand by my original comment that if parents truly are equal partners in their children's education, then they should have some say in the school structure. Yes, I know Catholic school teachers make less than public school ones. I went to Catholic elementary school myself, and spent my entire 8th grade year listening to my teacher gripe about how underpaid she was compared to her public school colleagues. Yeah, Catholic school teachers are paid less than public school ones, however, Catholic and other private school teachers have a heck of a lot less hassles to deal with than public school teachers (suburban Cleveland) has a huge problem with discipline, uninvolved parents, and many transient students. How many Catholic schools do you know that have those problems? In the city of Cleveland itself, the schools have decrepit buildings, a 90% poverty rate gang problems, kids being drugs and guns to school, extreme racial tension, a 30% high school graduation rate, and too many parents who could care less whether their kids even show up to school. The Catholic schools physically within the city however are stellar. The wealthier public suburban districts are much better off of than Cleveland of course, but even they have far less leverage to deal with discipline problems, etc., than the Catholic schools do. Instead of snapping at me because you feel you are underpaid, why not take a job at a public school, and see how much that extra 30% pay goes when you have to deal with all the additional stressors.

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 8:07 PM

Oops, didn't realize my last post went through 3 times...

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 8:09 PM

As an addendum to my last comment, not to mention that teachers in Catholic and other private (non-charter) schools, don't have the huge hassle and stress of having to spend most of the year teaching to the NCLB proficiency tests, and dealing with all the related regulations.

Posted by: lauraconeal | August 13, 2007 8:12 PM

lauraconeal over educmom with a TKO in the 2nd Round. as a bonus, she landed her jabs with substantially more class than her opponent.

Posted by: anonfornow | August 13, 2007 8:26 PM

Now I see why you have St. Patrick's Day off. By the way, does your daughter go to Cleveland St Ignatius? They can beat the pants off anyone.

Have you tried any of the outer suburbs of Cleveland?

Posted by: Irishgirl74 | August 13, 2007 10:06 PM

No, I don't have to deal with the high-stakes testing issues.

You are wrong, however, when you state that Catholic schools are devoid of problems.

Our school, in a wealthy suburb, has children of drug addicts and alcoholics, children who are physically and sexually abused, children who are neglected and children with severe learning and cognitive disabilities. We have no support staff -- if a child needs speech/occupational/behavioral/psychological therapy, the child must leave school to get it or, more often, the tacher must deal with the child's issues and attempt to work in the therapy in a class of 35 students.

In addition, Baltimore County has such a detailed VSC that anyone could implement it -- I would never have to research and write a lesson plan for the remainder of my career if I was so inclined; there is more (theoretical) planning time in the public schools; and the classes are smaller.

My students have NO IDEA that I make less than a public school teacher (except the students I have had who are children of teachers) because I would never, ever discuss my salary with them.

What you, and many other people, seem to willfully forget is that all these accomodations you think schools should make for 'working parents' will be made on the backs of teachers -- many of whom are working parents as well. I don't have 27 credits toward a masters in reading education just so I can be a glorified babysitter. I was able to make arrangements for my kids when I had conflicts -- if you want to be seen as a responsible adult, I suggest you figure out how to do the same.

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 10:28 PM

*tacher* -- teacher

VSC: voluntary state curriculum (which I am told by my fellow public school teachers is anything BUT voluntary)

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 10:31 PM

You know, I would love to go to the mall at 9:00 on a weeknight, after I've cooked, consumed and cleaned up dinner, graded papers, and done a load of wash. I would like to shop until about 10:30. I think the mall should accomodate my needs, since I'm the shopper -- that makes me an equal partner (especially if I own stock in the mall developer or any of the stores in the mall).

And I would LOVE to renew my drivers license on a Sunday morning, after early Mass, while I look nice.

And it sure would be nice to consult with my divorce attorney on Saturday night.

I'm a working mother -- shouldn't everyone accomodate me?? No?

You mean I might have to (horrors!) arrange my schedule to fit the workings of the world around me?!

Posted by: educmom_615 | August 13, 2007 10:57 PM

I have to agree. You chose to have and raise a child- that entails a lot of sacrifice. You chose to put your child in a specific environment- this environment entails particular sacrifices.

I understand it's not easy- but it really does come across as ungrateful whining to have a parent upset because they are expected to put parenting as priority- especially when they are complaining about circumstances they themselves controlled such as the school they chose having certain annoying requirements.

Posted by: EmeraldEAD | August 13, 2007 11:37 PM

Actually, educmom - you have a point about bunches of stuff, but the DMV is there because the taxpayers pay for it, and they really *should* be open at our convenience.

In GA, they are open on Saturday AM, and I thought, when I moved here, how great, cause I won't have to take time off from work to get the DL. Then I thought - hey - it's *my* money that's paying for it - why aren't they open evenings and weekends so people could get things done more easily? I mean, most people work weekdays, why is it that govt offices, there to serve *us*, aren't open when it's convenient for *us*? You want to work there, you'd have to deal with the hours...

Just a thought.

And yes, your divorce attorney should be willing to accomodate you - you *are* paying him.

When I needed to hire an architect, da*n straight he was here when I got off work. Wasn't the most convenient for him, but I was paying him.

But I definitely agree with your point re: schools. If kids feel entitled to have the school work for them - then it just gets worse when they get to college and think that they deserve grades just cause they are paying for it...

Posted by: atlmom1234 | August 14, 2007 12:51 AM

Education consumers are consumers of services the same as any other business. For consumers of education services who do not seek a Catholic education, they can take into consideration in purchasing those services the school calendar, services, and the teamwork between school and parents. Our family rejected a school option last year solely because the school was open on Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday. We considered that that policy choice probably indicated other values of the school which wouldn't have made it a good match for us. We had other choices.

Catholic schools, on the other hand, essentially function like any monopoly. Their educators are able to take the attitude expressed by educmom and the attitude expressed by the school described earlier by another poster because they know their target market -- Catholic parents -- has no alternative education choice if they want their kids to receive a Catholic education. Other private and government school options are not fungible. Closed markets make for poor service, IMHO.

Posted by: MN | August 14, 2007 1:05 PM

A little late, but I agree with MN. My parents taught and worked in the administration at a secular private school, and dealing with parents more and providing more attention to what they think is important is part of the bargain. The parents chose the school and signed the contract, and so did the teachers - for better or for worse.

Posted by: LizaBean | August 14, 2007 1:13 PM

Back to school in the UK. Amidst the controversy of children's performance gradually slipping down in maths and literacy in the UK despite £ 21billions spent on the programme to improve things.

We have to accept the status quo within our schooling system as a leviathan that will struggle to change course easily. As parents how then do we handle the probability of our children passing through the whole system before any modification can take effect? Falling standards, compares with a football team slipping down a league, it takes immense effort to recover.

If children are behind as they enter the critical move to secondary school, it can be devastating to see the numbers that switch off during this transition. If it was easy to find an answer we would be out of the woods long ago, but if a 21 billion investment has failed we cannot expect the solution to be prompt or entirely school driven. Yet there are up 60 parents to every teacher in each class of 30 children. Should we not get teachers to mobilise this resource to help them.

Literacy and numeracy skills benefit from a high degree of practice and repetition. This can be dull and boring or entertaining and fun depending on the approach. Parents taking a lead at home can now support their child through the range of educational games - used in school, that can pay dividends through additional practice at home.

Maths games to practice multiplication and division, and English games to practice say grammar and proof reading skills have opened the door to a hidden army of parents. Taking a more constructive role in supporting their children can lead to a significant boost in performance in school and a mutual desire to learn more.

Alistair Owens

Posted by: alistair | September 4, 2007 11:26 AM

Am I the only teacher who struggled to find daycare for my infant son? WHY is this not addressed? If I worked for the county gov't I'd be able to use their center, but since I am employeed by the school system this is not an option. Luckily,I don't qualify for head start so that's not an option. Many people leave teaching because it is too difficult to find daycare...the most stressful part of my pregnancy. Can someone help me get the word out that teachers need a daycare option for their own children?

Posted by: wlindsay1066 | September 4, 2007 9:13 PM

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