Monday, February 21, 2011

Musings on Valentine's Day

As we all know, last Monday was Valentine's Day. I was inspired to write about it just now after reading another post from a lovely girl. (who I don't actually know IRL, but is the friend of the daughter of a friend.)   Seems we feel the same way about this particular holiday. 

See, I am not a huge fan of Valentine's Day either, even tho I have been in a relationship since I was 16. (All with the same guy!) You'd think I'd be all for it since I have had someone to share it with for so long.   

I recall many years ago when I was a pre-school teacher in a local childcare center, I had a sweet girl in my class who’s dad was here on assignment with IBM from Italy.   I remember her mom being very confused about the whole idea of kids giving each other valentine treats and cards and why we were having a party in our class.   I recall her saying (in the most wonderful Italian accent) "But, Valentine’s is for romance and love. It's a grown-ups holiday, not for child’s play."  Amen.  

But even for this grown-up, it's all seems a little silly.  The whole holiday seems sorta frivolous to me.  And stressful.  I have always felt sorry for the poor fellas who feel the need to spend a week's pay on flowers that will last less than that..or on a piece of jewelry that she may or may not like.  I guess I just don't understand the need to go all out to show someone how much you care about them just one day a year.  I would much rather have the daily reminders in the little things - an unexpected hug, a lingering kiss, help in the kitchen or an invite for a spontaneous coffee date or the chance for an afternoon drive on a beautiful fall day.  Those are the things my guy does to show me he loves me.   I guess that's what 25 years does for a couple.  

As a momma of four, I have always felt this pressure to “do” Valentine’s for my kiddos,  that I can somehow show them I love them by spending more money than I care to admit on trinkets and treats and cards for them and even more money on trinkets and treats and cards for them to share with the kids in their classes (x4!)  For the past 4 or so years, I have gone the cheap route, printing clever labels for them to slap on a plain white envelope with some candy inside. They don't even have to hand sign them.  I really wish we didn't have to do any of it at all.  

I have to admit though, this year, I did do something for my sweet family.   Mondays are the one evening each week we are now home all together as a family so for me that was a gift in and of itself. (Even though the kiddos don't realize it yet.)   Since I was home most of the day, I decided the least I could do would be to plan and make my kids favorite dinner- spaghetti. Which in this house is pasta from a box, sauce from a jar, with the fancy part of it being the pasture-fed organic ground beef we bought last fall!   I splurged with some homemade garlic cheese bread (French loaf bread from kwik trip, pre-shredded cheese and garlic powder from a jar).  

I really went all out and made heart-shaped brownies (from a box) for dessert served with ice cream...I even drizzled Hershey's chocolate syrup on the plate all Martha Stewart-like. Ya know cuz I'm klassy with "K" like that.   

After dinner, we played a couple rounds of Apple to Apples Jr. after dinner, did some homework and called it a night!  No candy, no cards, no trinkets.  Perfection. 

For me, the most important thing to remember is it doesn't matter what you might do or buy on Valentine's Day or any other day for that matter.  All that really matters is that the ones who are important to you, that you care for and love the most, know it. 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

100th Day of School…

I was inspired by a friend, who also has a wee boy in the 1st grade, to post this from Jaxon’s 100th day of school. They make a big deal about the 100th day of school in kindergarten and 1st grade.  It’s fun.

So, here are the answers to his “100” questions…his answers are in bold, exactly as they appeared, written by him, on his fill in the blank interview.

I wish I had 100…friends.
I wouldn't want 100…
I can make 100…blundes.  (had to ask him what this was…balloons!)
I can eat 100…marsh melose. (I would’ve thought he’d say French Fries for this one)
I could never eat 100…cakes.
I can lift 100…
If I had 100 dollars, I would buy…DSi

And all I really want to know is…what does this sweet boy have against cake? (one of this momma’s favorite food!)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Out of the mouths of babes...

My dear sweet boy...

Last night I was in a meeting at church and my children's music teacher was in the same meeting.  We have known Miss M. as so much more than simply a music teacher - she is a talented musician, educator, director extraordinaire.   She loves music, theatre and children and loves bringing them all together in fun ways.   I could go on and on and on...but that's not the point of this post.  

So, she tells a story about how she was talking to each of her 1st grade classes about their report cards that will be coming home soon, since it would be the first time they would be receiving a grade for music.  
For music, they use a 1-2-3 grade scale.
3= exceeds expectations
2= meets expectations
1= needs improvement

She also reminded them of the expectations of her class so they would have better understanding of what everything meant when they saw their "grade". 

She concluded this story by saying that at the end, as the children from that class were filing out to go back to their classroom, a boy stopped to say " Miss M, you know that even 1's are ok, cuz we're all just students who are still learning, so a 1 is still good.   

And then she said to me, "And you know who that boy was?  Yours." 

My sweet Jaxon wanted to make sure SHE knew that even 1's were really okay, cuz everyone's a student and still learning.  Love him so much!


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