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Harold and the Gemstone

25 Apr

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Allie got in the car after school on Tuesday and looked sad or maybe tired.   This is pretty out of the norm for her, as she is usually happy go lucky. I decided to investigate the problem.  In a matter of seconds, the issue surfaced:

Allie,”Ugh. My boyfriend broke up with me today.”

“Well, Allie, you’re 8.  I think you’ll be okay.   Besides, I think we both know you don’t need a boyfriend. Being 8 isn’t about boyfriends. It’s about playing, having friends, and being a kid. You will have plenty of time in your life to think about how much you want to strangle a boy*.”

Allie,”Oh, I know. But still, what kind of loser breaks up with me? I think I’m cool.”

“That’s an excellent question.  You’re smart and funny.  You’re always happy, and you’re pretty.  Not to mention, you have the best hair out of anyone I know in basically the history of ever.  You, well, you are a total gemstone.”

Allie,” Yeah.  You’re right. What a scum knuckle. Besides, I already have a new boyfriend named Harold?” All of this said while her sad expression morphed into one of cynicism and giggles.

“There’s a second grader named Harold? Does he go by that?” I asked, trying not to lose focus on the subject at hand and go off on a rant in my head about the things people name their children**.

Allie,”Not even close, that’s just what I call him: Harold.”  Then she laughed like a hyena.

And that is why if left to listen to someone for hours upon hours, it would be Allie.

Allie and Harold sittin’ in a tree, R-E-A-D-I-N-G.

*Not all boys need strangled. But some of them do need a slap upside the head.  (Not my boyfriend, because he is a man, like a real one and not just someone who thinks they are a man because they’ve gone through puberty. The latter of which sadly accounts for most men in this area. I think any further rants about that would need a whole other post and would distract from this bit.)

**While what other people name their children obviously isn’t my business, I think when naming a child you should realize how much power you truly have in the initial impression they make. If your daughter is born with a stripper name, it may be difficult for her to become President. I would probably never vote for someone called Precious or Trixie. However, I am only one person. So.

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Like Marie Antoinette

19 Apr

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Allie is 8 now, and the importance of giving her an educated version of recent tragedy is pretty prevalent. If you fail to properly educate your kids about events, they hear the weirdest version at school. I would much rather have a talk with her about something than deal with the strange and recycled version received at school after swapped through various tiny mouths, like a bad game of telephone.

So Allie and I had the Boston marathon talk. She looked sad, and then she looked angry. And then she looked at me, very matter of fact and said, “You know what they should do to those people? Probably arrest them and do what happened to Marie Antoinette. Off with their heads.” I think she will be sorely disappointed to find out that the guillotine is not a current method of punishment in the United States.

This would probably be a good place to be all, “Hey girl, what’s with the urge to behead people?”  But I pick my battles and today the guillotine isn’t one, especially since she just washed a load of laundry by herself.  Not to mention, the chances of her becoming a revolutionary is already pretty much 50/50, because she wakes up ready to stop around about some sort of injustice on a daily basis.

I hope you enjoy your children as much as I enjoy Allie.  I also hope you find a way to explain things to them that means they aren’t learning them on the school bus. I’m pretty sure the only useful thing I learned on the school bus was how to properly launch an egg at someone’s house, and that isn’t the most practical of things.

Allie on Scents and Feather Boas

14 Apr

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While prancing through the store yesterday, Allie stops in her tracks and points to Bugles, “those are so gross. They disgust me. They taste bad, AND they smell worse than feet.”

Me, “I agree. Bugles probably have one of the grossest scents on earth. The smell of bugles could truly make me vomit.”

Allie scoffs, “Worst smell on earth? Clearly, you’ve never smelled diarrhea.”

Me, “Allie, ladies don’t talk about diarrhea, and if they have to, they don’t discuss it in a public place.”

She rolls her eyes then looks at the floor for a moment, quietly calculating if she wants to go on with the conversation or buy into the business of being a lady.

Finally, she looks up at me with a near regal facial expression and wraps an arm around my waist while leaning in to walk side by side down the aisles with me in the style of Siamese twins, “How about Rootbeer? It has a very interesting smell. It’s like you can smell it fizzing.”

She is so spot on sometimes. I love being Allie’s mom, even when it means she stops me in a craft store so that she can bury her body in feather boas because she claims it is, “the perfect opportunity for a photograph.” And it was.

Figure It Out: School Pick Up Line

11 Apr

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If I take into account that most people are obligated in some form or fashion to follow the calendar, I’m guessing that most people know it is April. That said, Allie’s school began back in early August. She has attended the school for 3 years now, and while every year the child drop off/pick up process changes location with each grade, the process is essentially the same.

You have a pass with your child’s number on it. You hang it from your rearview mirror, or you attach it to your windshield with scotch/duct tape like a total junkie. Then, you follow the assigned line to pick up your child. It’s pretty simple. You pull your car into the line of cars. You wait on your child until it is your turn to pull up and get them. It’s really a painless process that has been well thought out by school officials. At most, the process has only ever taken 10-15 minutes.

Anyway, it is April, and it seems that some people still haven’t mastered the parent pick up line. They have had since August to figure out that all you have to do is to get in line with the pick-up pass placed in a visible spot. But no. At any given moment, a redneck car will randomly pull out in front of you in spite of the fact that you are both hauling around children, or try to cut line. Cutting line is pretty obvious when:

a) YOU ARE IN A CAR!

b) The cars you are trying to squeeze between are roughly one foot apart.

c) The average car is 15-17ft long, which provided you aren’t Ray Charles or Helen Keller, is pretty easy to notice.

A Volkswagen Beetle could not slyly sneak in the line; in fact, a Japanese beetle probably couldn’t sneak into the line. Also: it is a line! And I was under the impression most people picking up children were adults that could follow general principles of decent human behavior like waiting your turn or not charging at a car with a freshly retrieved from school child. But I was wrong, because at least once a week a car pulls out in front of me or nearly side swipes me.

Ugh. Anyway, it may be time to give up hope for those haven’t figured out the process, because if you haven’t figured out how to follow a simple process by now, it is probably never happening.

(Also, while I have publicly admitted my car is a disaster, I still refuse to tape a piece of paper to my windshield.)

(And I know the above picture has nothing to do with the writing, but I think Allie is pretty.)