Spun Like A Top

We were gifted a fun egg decorator this year that we immediately dubbed “The Egg Lathe. ” Today we pulled out traditional egg decorating supplies as well as The Egg Lathe and three hours later the kids decorated four dozen duck and chicken eggs and three goose eggs.

They turned out beautiful but unfortunately we are a family where zero people eat egg salad.

I hear you can make chocolate chip cookies with hard boiled eggs. How many bags of chocolate chips do you suppose we need to get through four dozen eggs?

I’m participating in the April Square hosted by The Life of B. Have you figured the theme out yet?

Top o’ the Morning to Ya!

It’s Sunday morning, we have, of course, no where to go. I’m pretending to sleep in when Jane shows up to “snuggle” (i.e. asks three thousand questions and demands one million items). After a long three minutes of such talk I caved and threw my phone at her in self defense so that she could check out every filter on all the platforms my phone can offer.

The end result was this picture.

I quite like it and I’m saving it because I think it will come in handy for handling the current most common questions I get.

“How’re things going?” – see above picture.

“How’s that homeschooling thing?” – note how I can no longer smile a real smile.

“How are the kids handling it?” – check out that kids face and then you tell me.

“What’s it like with the kids home all the time?” – please note how I no longer even have enough personal space for my entire face.

Top o’ the morning to ya! I hope you and yours are safe and healthy and that in the process of staying that way you still have enough elbow room of your own to see out of both eyes!

I’m participating in the April Squares challenge over at The Life of B come check it out!

Reading Concerns

Clara has always struggled with reading.

She dropped behind her classmates early on. It wasn’t surprising given her complete and total lack of interest in the entire “learn to read” plan . Given a list of words to practice such as “the”, “two” and “go” she would respond to flashcards of the same with answers like, “turtle”, “grapes” and “birthday cake”. And with that less than auspicious start, she was off on the road to reading.

Over the years she has, of course, greatly improved but in a house full of readers, she is a listener. Happy to listen to audio books for hours and beg for chapter after chapter of whatever our current nightly read is.

This has been troubling as a mother (not to mention as a reader and an author) but Clara has always been disinclined to acquiesce to anyone’s plan just because someone thinks she should. When I worry, I remember how much she likes books and stories and figure that eventually Clara will decide that reading is important to her but it’s not going to happen until she darn well feels like it.

Two nights ago I gave her yet another pile of books that I thought she might be interested in and now I have a new worry.

Will the girl ever get enough sleep again?

Clara has gone to bed hours past bedtime since she picked up Homer Price by Robert McCloskey. Of course as a life long “just one more chapter before bed, oops it’s 2am” sort of girl I’m not about to throw stones. But as her mother I am a bit concerned. Not only is she not sleeping but what book do I give her next?

Book suggestions welcome!

Insurance Foolishness

The deck at my family’s Shack” has never had a railing. Dogs, kids and intrepid adults have spent over thirty years jumping off the edge and climbing back up without the benefit of steps. But the powers that be in home owners insurance decreed it must have one… or else.

So now it has one…

… and I’ve never seen the deck look so hazardous.

Seeing Flowers

Parenting is overwhelming.

Not necessarily on a daily basis. On a daily basis you are required to keep the children safe and feed them. That’s not bad.  I mean they keep requesting to be fed three times a day this summer, but if they are all still alive at the end of the day you’re winning. It’s when you start to think about the tiny humans you are raising and what they might become that the weight of the parenting responsibility comes crashing down like a summer’s worth freeze pops and pool floaties.

Are you raising them to be kind but also to stand up for themselves? Will they be generous but not taken advantage of? Are they polite? Do they wash their hands when they are supposed to? Do they know how to fold a paper bag and collapse a cardboard box? Can they cook a meal? Have you taught them not to talk to strangers but also to be friendly? Can they swim? Can they ride a bike? Do they have decent morals? Have they learned not to lie but also to tell white lies when opening gifts in front of people? Do they eat the food they’re given? Did you remember to teach them how to behave with strange dogs? What do they do with a bully? Are they the bully? …

Parenting is overwhelming.

Today I took my kids to the beach (either I was trying to teach them that if you hurry up and do chores then you can play or I was just tired of being hot and sweaty myself, I forget which). While we cooled off in the lake we noticed catalpa flowers floating by, the girls started to swim them down collecting as many as they could.  As we gathered a small pile on our floatie and tried to tuck them into swimming suits and behind ears as decorations, we heard a group of girls squealing about the toilet paper that was floating by them again.  Aghast I looked up to avoid this floating health hazard only to realize that they had misidentified the beautiful catalpa flowers as toilet paper and were swimming in the other direction. I was still aghast, but for a different reason.

A dramatic re-enactment of the situation staged in our rain barrel.

Parenting is overwhelming.

Are you raising them to be curious enough to look, really look, at the world around them? Are you remembering to teach them to use their brains? (One of mine is in middle school, she forgot how to use her’s but I’m hoping it comes back to her in a few years). Do they run from something different or lean towards it? Can they tell the difference between a nasty piece of trash and flower dropped by a tree?

I left the beach thinking that maybe the only parenting goal should just be to teach children to recognize a flower when they are faced with one.  Even if it’s out of place, even if it’s different, even if they have to stretch their brains to figure out how it came to be there, even if it’s something they’ve never been faced with before.

And if they can do that maybe they can do anything.

Except fold a paper grocery bag.

That one is apparently much trickier than I thought.

Parenting is overwhelming.

But I fed mine more than once today and they got to bed alive, if hours past bedtime, so I’m totally winning and I bet you are too.