A brown belt for Big Guy – not that it’s important
Mon, 12/03/12 – 12:49 | Comments Off

It was testing week in karate and, as usual, Big Guy was under the gun. Not as much as he used to be, when he didn’t have a clue and had to frantically cram, but …

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Picky eaters and allergy-safe cooking — the two aren’t necessarily unrelated.

Girl Gone Wonk

From policy to politics, this rant’s for you.


The day’s events in a family way — unless something else amuses me.

School days

From preschool to kindergarten — so far

Simple Gifts

Inexpensive homemade gifts, creative parties and low-cost projects, for Christmas and beyond. Many are easy enough for children to help.

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Articles tagged with: day care

When your sick child really isn’t
Tuesday, 20 Apr, 2010 – 18:11 | Comments Off
When your sick child really isn’t

They’re probably not doing it because they’re out to get you – though it feels like it sometimes – but you’re right about the second part: Day cares do send kids home when they’re not …

I have just enough patience
Wednesday, 10 Feb, 2010 – 13:29 | Comments Off
I have just enough patience

When a friend asked recently if I’d babysit her toddler during the week, I quickly declined.
I really can’t get any work done during the day when the kids are home, I said. Besides, I’m not …

Be careful what you think — the Parenting Gods always know
Wednesday, 11 Jun, 2008 – 5:50 | Comments Off

“There are certain things you don’t do in life.

You never stroll through a newspaper late on a Friday and say, “”gosh, the police scanner sure is quiet today.”"

You never sidle up to a pitcher before the bottom on the ninth inning and ask, “”Have you ever thrown a no-hitter before?”"

And you never, ever, ever say, “”What else can happen?”"

Here’s a new one for the list: Never blog about your kids’ ick-free winter. As sure as you do, within months every bug on the West Coast will land on them. For that matter, bugs will come from countries far and wide to join the party. Bugs will merge and mutate just for the joy of torturing you.

I speak from bitter recent experience: Four weeks, four doctor’s visits, three sick days. I’ve seen

In love with teacher
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 21:14 | Comments Off

There comes a moment in every boy’s life when he realizes there are other women in the world besides Mom. When he notices a certain lady with a certain light who outshines all others.

At the guys’ preschool, that moment comes at roughly age 2½, when Teacher L captures their attention.

The first six months of preschool, you see, are spent getting used to the strange new land, adjusting to the structure of “class time” and jockeying for position. Once that’s dispensed with, there’s time to fall in love.

It happens to all the boys at that preschool. The 4-year-olds in her class fight to sit next to her during lessons, and a chance to be by Teacher L’s side no doubt is more responsible for Big Guy’s

Big Guy’s autumn awfuls
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 21:04 | Comments Off

Big Guy’s Best Girl ran up as I got to the preschool this evening, yelling my name. She’s done that daily for the past few weeks – it’s a Big Thing when you’re a kid and learn an adult’s name. Except today, she looked serious.

“Debra,” she said, hands on hips. “He’s weird to me.”

I was afraid to ask, but I did. “How’s he weird?”

“He’s just so goofy! ” she giggled. Right on cue, Big Guy bounced up, doing his favorite new dance, the one that makes him look like Pinocchio without strings.

“I was nice to my friends today!” he whispered.

It wasn’t that way for a while. By mid-September, he’d realized that many 5-year-old friends wouldn’t be back. Preschool resumed, except it now involved sitting and

The alphabet and the stinkin’ cards
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 20:55 | Comments Off

I should have learned long ago, sometime around the start of the Mufasa Bridge phase, to be careful what I start with the guys.

At least I can blame my lengthy detours to see the lions guarding the Seventh Street Bridge on an accident – we drove that way one morning to avoid a train, and I wound up taking that route for weeks. Even Little Guy joins in on the pleas – “Fasa Ridge, Mommy!” – and the only thing he knows about “Lion King” is “Thimba.”

This latest insanity, though, was a deliberate action on my part – one of those “seemed like a good idea at the time,” and it would have been if I’d just kept it simple.

But, noooooooooooooo! Instead, I

Sick kids and day care inspections
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 20:19 | Comments Off

Getting on a plane with four ounces of shampoo would have been easier than getting into day care today.

There’s been an outbreak of hand, foot and mouth virus – which sounds worse than it is, especially when I goof up and say my kid has hoof and mouth disease.

Little Guy came down with it Friday, so he had to be inspected at the border this morning. I watched nervously – for some reason, I flash back to spelling bees in these situations.

I didn’t want to face the humiliation of trudging back to my desk, head hung low, if she found spots on him that I’d missed. Except in this case, the humiliation would have been in being labeled Bad Parent Who Tries to Sneak Sick

Day care regulators fight the real menace: Sunscreen
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 20:10 | Comments Off

Here’s an opportunity for local meth manufacturers in a bind as production increasingly is outsourced to Mexico.


Seems it’s the new hidden menace. Recently, my day care’s licensing agency told the director that staff can’t apply sunscreen to the children. It’s a “medication.”

I’m sure glad the licensing agency nipped this one in the bud. Turns out, sunscreen is a dangerous, dangerous substance. I bet the FDA is even looking into reclassifying it as a narcotic.

From the hands of preschool teachers to the clutches of a corner drug dealer. No doubt, it’s a direct path, and I was willing to send my young innocents down it.

Bad, bad Mommy!

Parting is such sweet sorry
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 19:38 | Comments Off

It started as a soft plea from the back seat halfway through the drive to day care this morning. “I don’t want to go school. I want to stay with you, Mommy.”

“I’d love to stay with you, babes, but vacation is over now.”

“I want to go home,” Big Guy replied, not angry, not insistent, but sad.

“I’d like to stay home, too, but I have to go to work,” I replied, striving for sympathetic yet upbeat.

“I want to go home,” he volleyed back.

The chorus looped endlessly — why did I ever think life would be better when he could talk and let me know what he was thinking?

By the time we hit downtown, genuine tears were flowing. We got out of the car, and his chest was heaving. A teacher had to peel Epoxy Boy off my shins so I could leave for the office.

And so it’s been for three straight days. Though Big Guy is quite the actor, this is no Made for Mama Drama. It’s real – it always is when it starts with a whimper instead of a roar.

Bad, bad day care kids!
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 19:27 | Comments Off

To children entering kindergarten in 2008, let me apologize now. Seems my heathen brat is going to disrupt your education for years to come.

Or so recent headlines would have you think.

“Poor behavior is linked to time in day care” screamed the New York Times. “Study: Day care can lead to bad behavior,” proclaimed the Salt Lake Tribune.

The chilling news makes me want to hang my head in abject shame for sending my children to a place that’s a cross between “The Jungle” and “Lord of the Flies.”

Problem: Once you look beyond the headline, the news isn’t chilling.

Learning to be 4
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 19:18 | Comments Off

When a preschool teacher heads toward you, she’s usually not coming to tell you your kid played nice and listened all day. With Big Guy, I’ve had plenty of teachers head toward me in the past year.

Not that he’s always a brat – more like Dr. Freckle/ Mr. Make Mommy Wanna Hide.

At times, he can be the most cheerful, cooperative 3-year-old on earth. He also can be an over-the-top, incessantly chatty, whirling dervish. Those are some of the things I love most about him.

They’re also the things that get on my last nerve, particularly when you throw in a side order of stubborn. So I understand the need to rein him in – heck, I’ve been tempted to hogtie and gag him. And

Little Guy and lovey obsession
Sunday, 1 Jun, 2008 – 18:38 | Comments Off

Some kids easily give up their blankies, lovies, whatever. I was that type, heartlessly abandoning blanky around age 3 or 4.

There are others who hold on until the object of the obsession is in so many shreds that continued cuddling is impossible. My older brother falls into that category. I think the last shards of his blanky went on his honeymoon.

Seems that Little Guy has