Friday, July 29, 2016

Getting Ready

Ugh....School starts in three weeks. UGH! You would think a former educator would not 'hate' school so much, but I do. I hate schedules, making lunches, being rushed, morning alarms, and all the other annoying crap.

August is here in a few days and school starts in three weeks. E1 will be starting second grade and E2 will be entering her last year of preschool!

This summer, the girls have been going to bed late, waking up late, relaxing, enjoying summer. At this very moment E1 is still asleep and it is 9 am, in three weeks by 9:00 she will have already been at school for more than hour. Sigh.

I need to get them ready for the school schedule.

In the next three weeks I will work backwards to reset their internal alarms in an effort to prepare them for the jolt you feel when school starts.

Starting Monday, no one gets to sleep later than 8:00 am. The following week, 7:30, and the week before school starts, 7:00 am. (E1's alarm goes off at 6:45 am on school days)

Starting Monday, the girls need to get dressed when they wake up. This is our biggest hurdle. E1 takes forever!

Starting Monday, the girls will have breakfast after they are dressed. We will run our morning school routine without the pressure of school.

Starting Monday, unless they are on a play date or we are at a party etc, Bed time is no later than 8:30. Then 8, followed by 7:30. The girls are in bed by 7:30 pm each school night. This is a non negotiable. E1 gets to read independently in bed IF she is not exhausted.

Starting Monday, both girls will do school work every day that requires writing. Fine motor skills weaken over the summer and for E1 especially, writing is a big part of school. Writing takes strength and stamina. It is time to rebuild the stamina.

Starting Monday, both girls will do some sort of academic work every day. (max 30 minutes)

Starting Monday, our after school schedule activities switch to school hours. E1 will play tennis on a different afternoon and E2 will be placed in a new a gymnastics class.

Starting Monday, we will still enjoy summer. We have many places on our summer list to visit, many hours of swimming are still upon us, many play dates, both girls' birthdays, both girls' parties, and we still have hours of fun to complete.

BUT we will enjoy our last bit of summer while getting ready.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Sugar and Spice

Sugar and spice and everything nice, that's what little girls are made of.


Things I have said to my GIRLS. (And trust me, there is more)

1. Don't punch your sister.
2. Don't push your sister.
3. Don't feed an actual mud pie made from sand to your friend.
4. Wash your body, including armpits and your vagina.
5. Yes, you have to take a bath.
6. Yes, you have to take a shower.
7. Fine, be the smelly kid at school.
8. Please do not tie the rope around your waist and jump from the tree.
9. Please do not tie the rope around the tree branch and swing from the tree.
10. Climbing the outer part of our play system is dangerous.
11. Fine. Climb it. Don't cry when you get stitches again.
12. Yes, you have to use soap.
13. Yes, you have to wash your hair.
14. Yes, you have to brush your hair.
15. Yes, you have to brush your teeth.
16. Do not throw sand at your sister.
17. Do not throw sand at the dog.
18. I am happy the dog did not bite you when you took his temperature rectally.
19. You are not a real vet.
20. Yes, we must throw that toy away.
21. Chew with your mouth closed.
22. Boogers are not food.
23. Get your fingers out of your nose.
24. Stop picking your wedgie.
25. Dirt under your nails is unacceptable.
26. Get off the dog, he is not a horse.
27. We do not eat off the floor.
28. It fell on the floor, do not eat it.
29. Yes, you have to take a shower.
30. Do not throw a toy at your sister's vagina.
31. Do not throw a toy at anyone's private parts.
32. Do not paint your sink with toothpaste.
33. Your toilet is clogged.
34. You did not wash your hands.
35. No you did not. I did not hear water running.
36. Wash your hands!
37. You did not wipe.
38. Then why is there no toilet paper in the bowl?
39. Toilet paper used for wiping does not go in the trashcan.
40. Do not stick the cheerio up your nose.
41. Do not stick the yogurt covered raisin up your nose.
42. Yes, we have to go the doctor to get the raisin out of your nose.
43. We do not wear panties two days in a row.
44. Yes, you have to brush your teeth.
45. Do not play pile on with your sister.
46. You farted. Say excuse me. Stop laughing.
47. You burped, say excuse me. Stop laughing.
48. Why is your bathroom floor soaking wet?
49. Are you wearing dirty clothes?
50, Yes, you have to take a shower.

Monday, July 18, 2016


I found this simple recipe on The Artful Parent blog. I follow her on Facebook.

2 cups cornstarch
1 cup water
food coloring

We were not expecting the Goop to be hard at first touch and then soften in our hands. It was sensory overload for E2, but E1 and I had fun and made a mess while E2 watched and laughed along.

Friday, July 8, 2016


* E2 has diagnosed developmental delays and a language disorder.

Dear E1,

I am sorry. I am sorry for all the times you frustrate me because you want attention. I am sorry because in that moment you deserve the attention, but your sister gets my undivided attention if she is in the room. It is the truth and you know it. It has been your truth since the day she was born. Sure, every older sibling has had to adjust to sharing the spotlight, but in time the spotlight gets shared equally. That is not the case in this house. Yes, you get praised and cheered on, but not like E2.

E2 gets cheers and praise for getting dressed. She is almost 5 and you know by now she should have this figured out. You get barked at for taking so long to get dressed.

E2 gets cheers and praise for eating. Literally eating. You get to clear your plate.

E2 gets cheers and praise for jumping in the pool and getting her chin wet while you do flips off the diving board.

E2 gets cheers and praise for saying a complete sentence and you get shushed because you interrupted the sentence.

E2 gets cheers and praise for remembering her letters and sounds all the while you read many grade levels above and are an exceptional student.

This list is endless and I could blog pages of all the times you've sacrificed for E2. There are days I feel overwhelmingly guilty, like the days you get bored while we wait two hours for E2 to complete speech and occupational therapy. I don't feel guilty for making you wait. I feel guilty because I reprimanded you at least four times in two hours and seriously, what the fuck are you supposed to do during that time? There are only so many books to read and so many games to play. I am not sure why I expect you to not complain.

I watch you get frustrated as E2 asks the same question about the same movie we've watched a thousand times because she still does not understand. I hear myself reprimanding you and telling you to be more patient because damn it, she needs more time. I hear you mumble at the end of a long day with E2, "I wish she was like other kids." And it makes me cry.


I am not sorry because you have a sister. A sister. Not everyone has a sibling.
I am not sorry because you understand unconditional love.
I am not sorry because I see the love in your smile when your sister screams your name when you get off the bus.
I am not sorry because you get to be the boss in every game and love it.
I am not sorry because you are an exceptional student and it will be E2 who constantly lives in your academic shadow.
I am not sorry because you have athletic ability that will again out shine anything E2 accomplishes.
I am not sorry because you have friends.
I am not sorry because your little sister waits while you do homework, have a play date, take violin lessons, play tennis, finish tumbling class....your list of when E2 sacrifices is long!
I am not sorry because you have an amazing life.

That's right, you and your sister have an amazing life. I realize all the times you BOTH have to be patient for the sake of each other. E2 forgives your lose cannon temper and you forgive her for taking up most of our time.

You are SISTERS.
You learn from each other.
You've taught each other love, laughter, joy, anger, compassion and patience.
I am not sorry.
I am proud.