Wednesday, January 13, 2016

The [Re]Birth

Hi. Hey. Hello.

I'm not even going to attempt to make an excuse as to why I haven't blogged for two years.  I was contemplating coming up with some elaborate story about how the kids tied me up in the basement, took away my iPhone, and attempted to force me into some type of normal, less embarrassing existence but then I remembered I'm Facebook friends with some of you so that obviously wouldn't work.  Damn it.  So let's just call it what it is - Life.  I got busy. Really busy apparently.

Austin was in Kindergarten the last time I blogged.  And he was trouble.  The fact that his teacher didn't retire after the group of kids she had that year is a miracle. For those of you who remember what a hard time he was having behavior wise that year, it never improved. {lol} I can laugh about it now because it was so long ago.  I really don't know how I survived that year.

Fast forward to 1st grade.  Austin's teacher was AMAZING!  She was so patient with him and really encouraged him to find himself.  Everything was going really well!  Then he got detention.  Yes, I said detention. 1st grade. How I managed to get through 12 years of school without having detention and yet this kid couldn't get through 1st grade without one was simply baffling to me.  I honestly had no idea you could get detention when you're 7 but low and behold - you can! #GOALS  Much to my dismay, his pink slip wasn't one of those neat carbon copy forms from 1988 so I couldn't save a copy in his baby book.  Thank god I decided to blog again so we have proof of this joyous event 20 years from now when I'm too old and senile to accurately recall the details of what happened. Is being unable to figure out which kid you're yelling at a sign of dementia or senility?  If so, I'm screwed. I've already resorted to addressing them as "whichever one you are." And for those of you who are new to my blog, let the record show that I only have 2 children {and still can't keep them straight}.

What else exciting has happened?  Oh right, yes... my cat became a diabetic.  Remember all those jokes I used to make about how it's a miracle I'm able to keep two children alive? Well the cat almost met sudden death due to my amazing mothering skills.  He started losing weight like crazy so I thought the end was near. {cue dramatic music}  He beat cat cancer back in 2012 so I figured his 9th life was about to expire.  I took him to the vet like a concerned cat-loving mom only to find out that he was diabetic and the batteries in his automatic feeder had gone dead.  He was dying all right - of starvation.  I felt awful.  He recovered just fine and now requires insulin injections twice a day.  I try to be more diligent about making sure his feeder is, in fact, feeding him.

A funny little side note here... there are two things that inevitably always make me feel like an intravenous drug user: picking up my cat's syringes at the pharmacy and using the CoinStar machine to turn my change into cash that doesn't weigh 40lbs.  Which reminds me of that one very embarrassing time that the CoinStar machine jammed after I entrusted it to sort my change without incident.  Imagine my shock when the nice gentleman at the bank pulled a bullet from the machine and asked me if it was mine.  Fun times!

If you've been following me on Facebook or Instagram, you know that there has been no shortage of Austinisms during my little siesta here.  Just last week he tried to extort a cash settlement out of me in exchange for his silence about the fact that I found $100 on the sidewalk.  He asked for half but we settled on $25 with the understanding that if he ratted me out to his brother, he would have to split his $25 with Jayden.  I'm learning that I need to stay a step ahead of that one, especially when money is involved.

So there you have it - Austin is 8, missing half his teeth, navigating his way through 2nd grade pretty successfully, and enjoys antagonizing his brother.  Jayden is 4, practically the same weight as Austin, does not enjoy or partake in human interaction before 9am, and is in love with Peppa Pig.

I'm back and ready to blog about all the crazy sh!t that happens in my life on a day to day basis.  I still maintain that my life would make good reality TV, but I've yet to sell that idea to anyone. ;)

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Progress Report

To say my son is a thorn in his teacher's side might be an understatement.  I can't be certain until she admits it, but it certainly seems that way.  Let me be honest, I wouldn't blame her for feeling that way.  He's a difficult personality and he's a boy.  A boy at the age where most boys tend to really start pushing boundaries and seeing what the people left in charge are made of.

His first progress report was pretty much what I expected considering the kids had only been in school for about 5-6 weeks and it was a huge transition for many of them. Despite being in daycare since he was 6 weeks old, it's been quite the transition for Austin too.  He's coming into his own, discovering "who" he's going to be, and watching people closely.  

He spends a majority of his days parked on yellow [a sign of mediocre behavior].  This tends to happen later in the day, usually after lunch, as a result of his inability/unwillingness to pay attention to the task at hand.  Again, not surprising news but still concerning to some degree. 

At his 1st parent-teacher conference in the public school setting, his teacher advised me that he is Mr. Popularity in class.  Everyone wants to sit near him.  She said he can be very charming and he has a great sense of humor, but then she basically went on to say he's a pain in her ass. The latter wasn't surprising.  I love Austin, but he has a tendency to be difficult and argumentative at times.  I have no idea where he gets that from [and by "no idea" I mean he definitely gets it from me].  I was surprised to hear that he is so popular though. That possibility never crossed my mind.  Since kids are so brutally honest and sometimes cruel, I automatically assumed he'd get picked on for being so short.  I spent so much time trying to make sure he knows people come in all different colors, shapes, and sizes, I forgot to stress the importance of pay attention and "getting your smarts" as we call it at home.  We'll just add that to my increasingly large list of parenting fails. 

I'm hoping that as he builds up confidence in his academics, he will learn that he doesn't have to use classroom antics as a way to get attention from his peers.  As crazy as this may sound, I think he's using humor as a defense mechanism because he is not at the "head of the class" academically.  Humor is his niche.  It's his "in."  It's the reason that, on 4 separate occasions since September, another parent from the class has told me "My son/daughter talks about Austin all the time.  He/She always says Austin is his/her best friend."  

Two things happen whenever I hear those words... 
I immediately apologize [because I just never know what sort of trouble my son has sucked their poor innocent child into] and I always scramble to figure our who the hell their child is because my son never comes home declaring one of his classmates is his bestie.  
Talk about uncomfortable.  *sigh*

Maybe this is all part of growing up & maturing.  A year ago Austin was the type of kid who could easily get sucked into following a crowd.  I often joked with his Pre-K teachers that he'd never be the type of kid to say "Hey, let's go rob the 7-11." but he'd definitely be the type of kid that might join a group of kids who decided to do it simply because he had nothing better to do at the time.  His classroom antics and increasing popularity are giving him a sense of leadership.  

His teacher did say "I could definitely see him becoming a lawyer."  Those words are hard to process when your child is 6 years old... is it a compliment to his intellectual ability and thought processes or is an insult of sorts being disguised as a compliment?  I guess time will tell.

In the meantime, I will continue to stress that being Mr. Popularity means all eyes are on him to set a good example.  If he wants to be a leader, he needs to set the bar higher by being a wonderful example himself.  That gets bears in the jar and a full jar of bears gets popcorn for the class.  Don't ask.   [lol]