One day at a time, 365 days a year

Just us … and all that entails :)

Candy.. really?

Our local aquatics center (just a couple of fun pools attached to the high school, really) is in its third year. In past years, I have thought it would be nice if they had a vending machine there, so I could get water or the kids could get a Gatorade.

This year it seems they went one further. They have added a little snack bar at which kids can get candy and sodas. I know it’s summer and kids love candy and soda, but it’s such a mixed message. We talk often about how our children these days are malnourished as so many of them shun fruits and vegetables, yet we willingly open little snack bars that feed them exactly what we say they don’t need.

Confusing!

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Things don’t always go as planned

The son had high hopes for this summer season of basketball. He has high regard for the coach and believed that all the ills that befell his freshman team would disappear in light of moving on to the JV coach.

Unfortunately, this coach — though well regarded and known for bringing a winning season every year to the JV team, getting them ready for our school’s championship varsity team — seems to play the same favorites that the freshman coach played.

We had hopes that he would “figure it out” and there is still hope, but it’s hard to watch the weakest players on the team (who routinely dribble when they should pass, turn over the ball and shoot when they should .. well.. pass) start the game and make the same mistakes over and over again.

There is still plenty of time and while my son blew through every expletive in the book today after yet another game where he mostly warmed the bench, his tears meant something important — even coaches who don’t always “get it” should notice where the passion and conviction is. Often it’s at the end of the bench. And talent? Yep, it’s there, too.

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Awards season

I am not a braggy parent. I am, of course, extremely proud of my kids’ accomplishments, but have little need to brag to other parents. I do share with grandparents their various accomplishments, but have little need to tell everyone.

It’s awards season, which means Facebook post after Facebook post where parents brag about the things their kids have done. Frankly, I think it’s great that your kid got a 4.0 in 4th grade, but it doesn’t tell me that your child is brilliant or on his or her way to MIT. It tells me that 4th grade (and c’mon, it’s 4TH grade!) wasn’t a huge challenge, or that the teacher was an easy grader (yes, those exist) or something else.

I’m much more interested in hearing about the things kids DO, and not what they do better than everyone else. I think that my generation in particular is extremely bragadocious. Why is that? I haven’t a clue, but I imagine it has something to do with some insecurities that must have manifested themselves as we grew up in the 1980s.

Sometimes I worry that by not standing around bragging about my kids (both of whom are always honor roll and who test off the chart) they get overlooked. But then I realize and understand that the way I work is I’d rather my kids get credit where credit is due, from their own efforts and in all due time. They are quiet, hard workers who always land at the top of the heap, sometimes to the astonishment of their teachers, who didn’t see them coming.

So to the parent who told me today (without any prompting on my part and with whom I wasn’t even having a conversation) that her daughter nearly got 4.0 all through 4th and 5th grade except for one B, I say I’d rather you brag about her generous nature or her loving spirit. A brain without a heart is irrelevant and if she’s that brilliant (aren’t they all) then it will show itself in due time. You don’t have to tell me about it.

 

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Is it August yet?

The kids are barely out of school and are already driving each other crazy. Only one is really out of school and I think he’s already a bit bored and the other doesn’t get out until Wednesday. But she has no homework and no after-school commitments these days, so she’s kind of bored, too … and they are bugging each other .. and bugging me .. and bugging the dog .. and as much as I was looking forward to summer, I am now wondering … is summer break a mistake? 🙂

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