My Homework Poem

I should have posted this the day after my anti homework post, but I went off on the Unsolicited Parenting Advice Giver yesterday instead. Here is a Rosie poem I wrote about homework.  Enjoy!

“I miss way back,
When I was Pre-K.
We didn’t have homework.
It was better that way”

“Homework’s too hard.
I can’t do it, see!
If I get something wrong,
Kids will make fun of me.”

Rosie was whining,
Jumping and crying.
Rosie was doing everything
But trying.

Mommy sat down
At the kitchen table
“Rosie, stop fussing,
You’re more than able”

“Let’s tackle math first.
It won’t be a chore.
We’ll use cereal for counting.
See…one, two, three, four.”

“Spelling is next.
It won’t take us too long.
We can sing out the letters
to the Little Lamb song.”

Rosie counted cereal.
Rosie sang out loud.
Rosie finally finished.
Rosie was very proud!

 

With full folder in hand,
Big smile on her cheek
“My homework’s all done!”
Until next week…..

This is my last Rosie poem that I have written. Should I write more? or should I give up my dream of becoming the next Dr. Seuss???

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To the Unsolicited Parenting Advice Giver

Someone with only one child who is under 10 and who has no special needs, recently suggested that I alter my parenting approach.  Apparently, this unsolicited advice giver felt that if I just took a moment to understand where my child was coming from and didn’t judge his behavior so negatively, things would be much more copacetic in my world.  I managed to stifle my laughter long enough to say something like “I’ll give that some thought.”  Later I called one of my good friends who like me, has 4 kids some with special needs, and the two of us laughed so hard that I almost peed on myself.

I too was a parenting expert when I only had one child.  I read the books and bought into all the parenting advice in People Magazine.  But now, three children later, I am much less of an expert and more of a survivor.  Some days, the house looks like a war zone and it is all I can do to make sure the kids are fed something edible and get to school.  Don’t ask me to try to provide psychoanalysis as well.

To be quite frank, many times I don’t give a rat’s ass where my children are coming from.  I used to, but now who has the time? When I ask you to empty the dishwasher, empty the damn dishwasher.  It’s not rocket science.   If you had a bad day or are not feeling heard, I’m sorry.  That sucks for you.  But the dishwasher still has to be emptied and I’m not doing it.  I already do enough around the house.

I am happy to sit down with my children and have a loving exchange about feelings but not until the frickin’ dishwasher is empty.  I am really tired of the idea that our children always have to be happy.  Life is hard.  We all have to do things we don’t want to or don’t like. Sometimes your team loses…even if they lose by 100 points, the other team doesn’t owe you a pass.  Put on your big girl/boy pants and suck it up.

Let me add that not all children are the same and do not respond the same way to the same approach.   Some children are more difficult than others.  It is what it is. Please don’t assume because I don’t do the feelings nonsense now, it is not something I didn’t try in the past with no success.  It didn’t work with any of my children.

But I know my children and I know what does work.  I can just look funny at one child, and tears will follow.  Another one of my kids not only won’t respond to a look, he won’t respond to screaming, crying or the taking away of his electronics.  You know what makes the biggest impact on him when he’s in trouble?  Being sent to his room.  He hates being alone.  One of my kids loves being sent to her room.  “I’ll gladly go to my room, I can read for hours there uninterrupted.”  She however, can’t stand to lose her laptop because not being able to play Minecraft while Skyping with her bestie would cause her to have multiple seizures.

I have tried all kinds of parenting tactics.  I have seen what does and what doesn’t work.  I know my children well.  I assure you I know them better than the unsolicited advice giver does.  And to the unsolicited advice giver I say, if you want to have a debate about who’s turn it is to empty the dishwasher every time you ask, be my guest.  I won’t judge you.  My dishwasher is empty.

P.S. NaBloPoMoW8Lo Stalled at the scale this morning but I did lose a pound yesterday so I will not be negative.  Rome wasn’t built in a day and my weight loss won’t be either.

Homework Sucks!

I mentioned in a past post that I don’t fight about homework.  Honestly I don’t believe in it.   HOMEWORK SUCKS and not just for the kids that are forced to do it after a 7 hour school day.

homework

It’s no picnic for us parents either.

A hundred years ago, I did fight about homework.  Typically, a then 7 year old Jack would stare blankly into the chandelier while I danced in front of him counting cheerios, begging him to pay attention and sometimes dare I say it…YELLING.  I yelled over addition and subtraction.    I screamed over spelling words and often one of us ended the session in tears…usually me.  At 15, I’m proud to say Jack can both add and subtract (although  his spelling leaves something to be desired) but I can’t believe these homework sessions were good for either one of us.   They certainly didn’t do much to encourage a love of learning.

Jack was tired after a long day of school.  He wanted to play.  That’s right I said it. PLAY.  Little kids are supposed to play.  They should be running around outside like little hooligans, climbing trees, getting dirty, playing pick up games of basketball.  You know what they don’t need to do more of after a long day of school? Sit for another 3 hours on their ever expanding asses.

Don’t believe me…I actually have some science to back me up. (This is a rare occurrence so I am gloating just a little)

“There is also a growing body of literature suggesting that physical activity has beneficial effects on several mental health outcomes, including health-related quality of life and better mood states.

In addition… there is a strong belief that regular participation in physical activity is linked to enhancement of brain function and cognition, thereby positively influencing academic performance.”

http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2012/01/20/physically-active-children-perform-better-academically.aspx

See?  Moving that little body actually helps those little brains develop into bigger brains.  I have nothing against 45 minutes to an hour or so of homework for middle schoolers but when each class gives 1/2 hour of homework – that adds up…often to over 2 hours ! Crazy.  What about music lessons or art classes or a sports team or heaven forbid…down time to just read a book for pleasure?  Maybe 1-2 hours  at MOST once they’re in high school.  In elementary school, no homework EVER.  If they can’t learn it in the 7 hour school day, screw it, they can try again tomorrow.

Our kids will be kids for only so long and then they will HAVE to work 8 or more hours a day.  I know enough adults that still act like children. Maybe if we let our children act like children when they are children, they would stop acting like children when they grow up.  Just sayin’.

P.S. NaBloPoMow8Lo – YAHOO!!! The potluck pound is gone.  I am still not close to my 10 pd goal and am starting to think I may have to admit defeat but honestly, if at the end of the month I weigh less then I did at the beginning of the month it will be a semblance of a win.  Yes, I will have to admit failure at my initial challenge but I will at least be a few pounds closer to my goal.  Maybe I’ll have to continue blogging after the NaBloPoMo ends.  I can write about weightloss just to keep me honest…I know!  I’ll change my blog name to Heck of Hlava WeightLoss…hee hee.

 

 

The Stalker Bidder Must Die

Dear whoever is following me around bidding on every house I like before I can make an offer…I hate you.

Please, please, please stop!  Stop stalking me.  Stop finding me excitedly jumping up and down in front of a house with a for sale sign on the front lawn.  Stop bidding on houses just hours before I am about to  make an offer. STOP IT!  It is just  not nice. In fact, I will go so far as to say, it is down right rude.  Didn’t anyone ever tell you it is impolite to take things that aren’t yours?  You keep taking my houses and I do not like it.

I realize I have a good life, a great life.  I have a wonderful husband, healthy, relatively happy and developmentally appropriate children, a job.  I get it.  I have tons to be thankful for and I am thankful for it all.  But I want more.  I want fucking acreage and some godforsaken chickens…is that SO WRONG??

Curse you Stalker Bidder and the horse you rode in on!

Perhaps it is time  I give up on my dream of chickens.  I hear they stink anyway….

HUMPH!

P.S.NaBloPoMoW9Lo – No change.  But I was too stressed to eat much today so I am hopeful I will see some results tomorrow.  At least get rid of the potluck pound!

Turkey Tetrazzini NaBloPoMoW8Lo Style

I like to cook.  But I HATE thinking about it. I should just make a list of 2 weeks worth of meals and rotate through them.  I’ll add that to my to-do list right after lose 30 pounds and clean out my garage.

In the meantime, each day at about 4pm I start to think about what I am going to feed the maniacs and panic.  I probably open and shut the fridge 100 times and walk in and out of the pantry just as many in an effort to figure out what remotely health meal I can present at dinner time.

When I opened the fridge at 4pm today, I saw we had some left over turkey from last nights potluck.  Which only meant one thing…. Turkey Tetrazzini was on the menu for dinner tonight.   Due to the NaBloPoMoW8Lo, I needed to make a low cal version.  Which I did and I have to say I did it quite well……even my picky eaters had seconds.  Of course, I am not a test kitchen and I have no idea what the actual calorie count is on this recipe but I have to believe that since I used low fat everything it has to be better than a regular version.  If you do end up giving this recipe a go, let me know what you think.

Turkey Tetrazzini – NaBloPoMoW8Lo Style

  • 1 box spaghetti
  • chopped up leftover turkey – i used approx 2-3 cups
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 1/2 bag frozen green peas
  • 3/4 cup low fat milk
  • 2/3 cup fat-free sour cream
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 can reduced-fat cream of chicken soup (I bet cream of mushroom would work too)
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted

Cook the pasta according to the package directions.  While the pasta is cooking, mix together in a large bowl the sherry, milk, sour cream, Parmesan, and soup.  Once it’s all blended, add the peas and turkey.  Spray 9 X 13 pan with cooking spray.  When pasta is done and drained, add that to the other stuff.  Spread in the pan.  Melt the butter in the microwave and then mix in the breadcrumbs.  Put the buttered breadcrumbs on the top and then bake it all in a 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.  YUM!

I made so much we will be eating this all week.  Now, I don’t have to think about dinnertime for days.

smiley-face-clip-art_413110

P.S. NaBloPoMoW8Lo challenge….I don’t want to talk about it.  Let’s just say the potluck rocked but I will be making up for it the rest of the week.  And that’s all I have to say about that.

A Thanksgiving Tree

We had a few folks over for dinner tonight; a sort of pre-Thanksgiving Thanksgiving if you will.  It was a potluck and I have to say, my friends can cook.  I made a fabulous turkey – I have decided it is all about the brining.  My NaBloPoMoW8Lo tomorrow is not going to be pretty.

As each family came in the door, I handed them a leaf and a sharpie and asked them to write down what they were thankful for.  Earlier in the day I sent CJ outside to find a branch, which of course he did quite enthusiastically.  I had to send him back out a few times as he, like most men, was stuck on the idea that bigger is better.  Eventually, he found a perfect branch and we put it in a vase.  The leaves, that I found at the Dollar Store FYI,  conveniently had a bendy thing on the end so we could easily attach them to the branch.

Viola!  We  made a Thanksgiving Tree.

tree2

I truly enjoyed reading everyone’s thanksfuls.  There were the typical; family, friends, health.  And the not so typical; a sixteen year old male proclaimed “Girls.” At least I now know what to get him for Christmas – a Costco size box of condoms.   Then there was 7 year old Kylie’s – “I am thankful for life on this Earth.” You know as opposed to life on some other planet.  Perhaps she, like CJ,  has been watching too much Ancient Aliens.

Leaves-  The Dollar Store $1
Branch – Free from my back yard $0
One of a Kind Center Piece/Proof I need to change the channel – Priceless

tree

P.S. NaBloPoMoW8Lo Challenge – No movement on the scale this morning but I did  end up on a 4+ mile walk in the rain today thanks to a comedy of errors that resulted in me having to double back to see if the dog training zapper thing was left on the table in front of the Publix (don’t ask).  I drank gallons of water but the potluck did not help  my cause.  I am just hopeful the scale does not go in the wrong direction tomorrow.  Fingers crossed.