Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentines, medals and more

Things have gotten busy here.  Between work, school projects, trip preparations, valentines day, and birthday planning, blogging time is scarce. Somehow we still find time to watch the Olympics many hours a day.  I have four Olympic apps on my iPhone to keep me updated when I’m away from the TV, including one that alerts me every time medals are awarded.  We eat all meals in the basement in front of the TV.  Neve had a dream the other night about Sarka Pancochova, the Czech snowboarder who cracked her helmet in a bad fall.  In the dream, Sarka was at our house (as she so often is) and Neve kept asking her if she was okay (not the most exciting dream, but still).  If I could turn back time, I would have scheduled our trip a few weeks earlier so that I could have been more productive with my preparation time. 

I’m trying to understand why it takes longer to prepare for a trip than the actual trip. Not all my busyness is specifically for Costa Rica, but in my mind, the trip is a solid wall of a deadline for many things that have to happen by then.  When I finally hit that wall and break through to the vacation side, I am fully expecting my whole world to burst with the joy of a million singing angels.  I’m starting to wonder if planning ahead is overrated.  For example, I have been thinking about Neve’s birthday way too much.  I should buy her present the day before her birthday and make a cake the day of and call it done.  But I feel like there should be a special breakfast and balloons and cupcakes to take to school and family and friends to help celebrate and goody bags and special surprises.  If I didn’t plan ahead, I wouldn’t have time to think of crap like that.  Once it’s in my head, it’s hard to get it out.  I really don’t want to be a Pinterest person who fills their child's bedroom with balloons for a magical birthday wake-up or someone who gives their child a birthday present on the hour, every hour throughout the day.  Or do I?  No, I guess not.  But I sort of wish Dale was that person.  Instead, he gets to be the person who whispers, “Which one’s birthday is it again?” while we’re singing happy birthday.

One thing that's worth thinking about ahead of time is valentines. I learned my lesson the hard way when Chloe was in nursery.  I remember two days before Valentines Day, we started writing out her valentines for her classmates.  I thought that would be plenty of time, but then I realized it took her ten minutes just to write "To Courtney, From Chloe." She quickly tired of this activity while I tried to encourage her to hurry up.  There was not a lot of love flowing during that excruciating experience.  Turns out Chloe's valentine-writing was sheer joy compared to Spencer's a few years later.  How I didn't turn into a homeless alcoholic that February is nothing short of a miracle. Thankfully it's one of the few mistakes I actually learned from, so Neve's valentines were all ready to go by the beginning of February. When I picked Neve up from school on Tuesday, I overheard a mom saying to her Kindergarten-aged son, "We should start writing out your valentines tonight because you're supposed to bring them to school on Thursday."  Rookie mistake.  Some day she will be as wise as I am.

Neve made 25 Rainbow Loom valentine bracelets (and I made the cards)

As a follow-up to the situation with Neve and her student teacher in the last post, I am pleased to inform you that Neve decided to give her a second change.  Miss L is only in their classroom on Wednesdays, so Neve had all week to worry about what to do. And worry she did.  The topic came up every day.  When I picked Neve up for lunch yesterday, she was jubilant.  She had had a long talk with Miss L, in which she told Miss L she was hurt and disappointed in her (!) for not keeping their secret. Miss L apologized and amends were made after Neve told her she would give her a second chance, adding that if she breached her trust again, there would be no more chances. I suggested a little graciousness and forgiveness might be in order, but I’m not sure how effective that was. I wouldn’t be surprised if Miss L abandons her teaching aspirations after this. The bad part is that she has a part-time job at the same place where Neve takes swimming lessons.  I tried to avoid her this week, but Neve sought her out.

Here are some pictures of my little medal winners from the other weekend:

I have to show off my adorable great-nephew and -niece.  They came over last weekend and we didn't want them to ever leave. They are such hilarious little characters.

That’s enough valuable time spent blogging. It’s actually not a waste of time; writing this helped me put things in perspective.  I just talked myself out of blowing up 50 balloons to cover Neve’s bedroom floor.  That gives me more time to watch the Olympics.


Anonymous said...

I have an Olympic head ache from watching too much 'screen time'. :)


Anonymous said...

"Instead, he gets to be the person who whispers, “Which one’s birthday is it again?” while we’re singing happy birthday." Oh my gosh I howled at this!! And then again when you described writing valentines!!

Um, when did Chloe turn 20???

And I can see what you did not want those little bugs to leave your house!! They look like such delicious little IMPS!!!



Daniel said...

It's always amazing to see what you come up with for Valentine's Day! Love the cards you make, and the breakfast cake!

"Which one's birthday" - ah Dale, you make me feel less guilty about missing a kid's birthday every once in a while!

Here's hoping for the million angels!!