Friday, December 19, 2008

Bullies, Forgers & Thieves

Labels aren't everything. I got to the end of the day yesterday -- Thursday -- and realized the following:

1) Aaron was sent to the office for pushing a kid down.
2) Sophie forged Jon's name on the bottom of her reading log.
3) We got the the car after leaving Children's Place yesterday, and I realized Aaron was carrying a pair of pajamas we hadn't paid for.

So, am I raising bullies, forgers and thieves?

Nah! I felt good to realize these are all teachable moments -- perfect opportunities for parenting. None of them were done with malice. Aaron was frustrated because the special day class joins their class for activities, and the boy he pushed makes noises instead of talking and Aaron lost patience and wanted his personal space back. After the holiday break, they're all going to get practice in how to work together and respect differences. (Planned before the incident). Great training for life, where someone is always in your face, or facing different challenges, or you are, or anything else.

Sophie wanted to turn her homework in complete. She'd forgotten to have one of us sign. We insisted she write her teacher an apology note and let her know we'd talked about forgery and she wouldn't do it again.

And of course I'll have to trek back to the store with Aaron and pay for those pajamas.

All in all, a great learning week! And once again, I am grateful for the training I received during my preschool co-op years so that I can automatically view these moments as opportunities, not problems or just bad behavior.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Notes to the Tooth Fairy

Aaron recently lost his first tooth and was very excited. Actually, he really lost the tooth. It came out during recess at school and he didn't even know it right away. He had several things to write to the tooth fairy explaining the situation, and he was hopeful that she would be able to find his tooth and return it to him, as Sophie always requests to keep her teeth and the tooth fairy has complied with her requests in the past as well as delivering a gold dollar.

He got a note back, plus payment, then wrote another, again asking about the return of the tooth. At some point he asked me if the tooth fairy was real or if it was me. Do I look like the tooth fairy? I asked.

Aaron then wrote up this note, after Sophie questioned the validity of the tooth fairy (upon which I had to inform her that the tooth fairy does not issue payment to non-believers):


(Sophie doesn't believe in you but I do.)

Monday, December 1, 2008

Happy December!

Well, I missed November altogether. I'm still sending out letters to agents. I hope to find an agent this month! Keep your fingers crossed for me!

So back to the book shelf. I had a stack of books I intro'd a while ago. To follow up:

1) The DaVinci Code: This was a fast, enjoyable read. I don't really see what all the fuss was about, though.

2) Palace Walk: This one took me 60 pages or so to really sink into, though I liked it from the start. It slowly lowers you into the vat of this conservative Egyptian family 100 years ago. I felt like I lived in that house by the middle of the book. The women were not allowed out. The father was a philandering tyrant beloved by all and feared by his family. It was weird to realize that this is how many people live still. Excellent portrait of a family and a history and an Arab culture.

3) Run: Ann Patchett strikes again. I want to read more and more of her. Again, I was dropped into a close-up view of a family, with lots of juicy secrets. It's a story of family, politics, and a tiny drop of mystery in the form of a family statue passed down through the generations. I heard her non-fiction "Truth and Beauty" is great. And Bel Canto is still my favorite.

4) The Hakawati: I'm still toward the beginning of this one. It's a big book and I saved it for last. Hakawati means storyteller and I'm enjoying the stories weaving through the text.

And now back to work. Happy December!