Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What We Are Left With

Things we are willing to spend tons of money on:

the latest i-Whatever and all the bells that go with them
fast food
video games and fancy televisions
gps navigation thingies (whatever happened to maps?)
fancy pants coffee

(I could go on, but you probably get my point by now)

Things we aren't willing to spend money on:


It is a sad that at this very moment in our country schools are having to cut millions of dollars from their budgets.  Don't be surprised when your kid is in a classroom with 40 others.  Don't be shocked when your child's school library shuts down because librarians got the ax.  Don't be startled when there is no one left to help the at-risk students.  Don't be stunned when the principal answers the school's phones because they had to let the secretaries go. 

You may think I'm being extreme, but I am not.  These cuts are being made in our country, in your city, each day.  Bills are being considered by legislatures to increase the number of students allowed in a classroom.  We aren't willing to pay an extra cent on our grocery bill or an extra few dollars on our property taxes.  Politicians aren't willing to reduce spending in other areas. 

So, this is what we are left with.  We will soon have schools that are full of students and not enough teachers.  (Maybe we should just call them free daycares.)  We will still complain that our kids don't read enough and that the literacy in our country is falling but there will be no librarians to help students discover new books.  Our students who need a little extra support won't get it.  They'll fall off the radar (well, at least until they show up in stripes).  Is this what we really want for our children?

We can and should do better.  Spending on education should be a top priority.  Our children cannot grow into the leaders of tomorrow without learning the basics today.

Friday, March 4, 2011

What I've Learned

Oldest Kiddo is turning 9 this weekend!  Un-freakin-believable.  Anyways, I thought I would share a list of lessons I've learned during this little adventure called parenthood.  There are nine of them in honor of the kiddo...

Top 9 Parenting Lessons Learned

1.  Silence is long as the kid is supposed to be sleeping.  Any other time, silence is a sign that something not so fantastical is going down.  (Chocolate syrup and parm. cheese will be all over everything, a wall will have been turned into a mural, etc.)

2.  Kids only get sick in the middle of the night when you are sleeping soundly in your cozy bed.

3.  The ears of children produce some sort of special chemical that blocks the voice of their mother...unless, of course, she utters the words ice cream or candy

4.  I am mean.  Yep.  I never knew this until I had kids to tell me.  I always thought I was a nice person, but my kiddos cleared that one up for me.

5.  My parents were right.  All those times they told me that I would never understand until I had children of my own...yep, they were right.  I get it now.  (Shhh, don't tell them though.)

6.  No kid ever needs to potty until you are in a car that is fifty miles from the nearest rest stop.

7.  Kids do not come with volume buttons.  They come with a loud and louder setting.  And the louder setting will be used if they sense you are annoyed or have a headache.

8.  Those little suckers can smell fear or uncertainty.  Waiver for a minute and suddenly you are in the middle of the toy aisle saying yes to everything just so they don't use that louder setting again.

9.  Being a parent is the most frustrating, rewarding, gross, fabulous job ever.  I wouldn't trade any of those kiddos for anything.  Every time I see them learn something new or do something thoughtful for another person I forget all those moments when I wanted to pull my hair out and scream "I can't do this anymore".  It is wonderful.  I just wish I could slow it down a little bit.  9 years already!  Wow!