And now, a post that gets to be all about school. Oh how Sonja loves kindergarten. The days are long, and recovering at home after school usually involves a fair amount of fit throwing, but rarely is there a bad word spoken about school. She wishes for the weekend to be over so she can go back, and hey, she’s not the only one. Ba dum dum dum, crash. She loves her teacher and has made friends with everyone in class, minus two little boys for whom she does not care. She even loves taking the bus. When it comes to school, she doesn’t want to miss a thing.
Some notable school moments from the first quarter of her first year: She is in a reading group by herself because she is reading at a first-grade level and no one in her class has caught up to her. We tested her for placement in the district’s Young Scholar’s program and she was accepted. Just before break, she came home with two awards, one for being dependable, the other for being organized.
She is still a tiny wisp of a thing, and I had several minor heart attacks when she would come home with her school lunch nearly intact. When I spoke with her teacher, I learned that most of the children eat very little at lunch time. We’ve instituted an after school snack, but it’s a very fine line to eat just enough snack to remain hungry enough to eat dinner. And what I’ve found is that hunger works. If we forget the snack, and I can stand the incessant whining about being hungry, then she gobbles up dinner, minus the snooty foodie criticisms of my cooking.
She still loves doing puzzles and mazes and word games in age-appropriate books, and she’s gotten more into coloring than she was before. She always liked to draw, but now she’ll also spend time with a coloring book. Because we can get some peace out of her when she’s doing these activities, and her homework, we decided to buy her a desk for Christmas. I think she will love it.
Several months ago I took her on an outing to Trader Joe’s. She fell in love with it because it had kid-size carts and I let her pick out a few of her own groceries. She’s now a walking commercial for the store. It is absolutely the only place she ever wants to go. Telling her we have to run errands, go grocery shopping, or that we simply want to get out of the house for a while – all of these sentences are met with complete, abject misery. It takes longer to get her out of the house than it would to do the errands. Forget Lamaze, expectant parents should be taking tactical negotiations classes.
We’re reading longer stories now. She loves them all. We’ve read The Giraffe, The Pelly and Me, and Fantastic Mr. Fox by Roald Dahl, several books in the Judy Moody series, and we’re currently in the middle of an Amelia Bedelia. We’ve also watched a few new movies, most recently and notably, E.T. I was surprised that she loved it so much. I thought it might be too much for a six-year-old. Although, I have to say, I don’t know how many times I’ve actually seen E.T., but I never remember anything outside of the major plot points. And the Reese’s Pieces. I tried to use the movie to get her to try Reese’s Pieces. She picked up a Christmas candy cane filled with them at the store, but then informed me that she would put them in my stocking for me.
Speaking of Christmas: it’s coming, and she’s bouncing off the walls. She is so excited to open presents. A few days ago, she went upstairs to my office to retrieve the aforementioned Reese’s Pieces candy cane and she wound up, of course, looking for it in my closet. Luckily, most of the presents were wrapped, but she confessed to me that she saw them. A day later, she confessed that she saw the Tsum Tsum box I got her and then broke down and sobbed in my arms. Through her tears, she said, “you should have wrapped it!”
So there you have it. From telling me my chicken is too dry to faulting me for her own snooping, there is no point at which I, as a parent, can catch a break. But it’s totally fine, because at the end of the day, Santa gets all the credit for the presents.