Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Or for those who don't do Halloween, Happy Harvest! Or, Happy Fall!

Did you know their are not one, but two vampires at Philosopher Child's school? He told me so. It's true...or so I've heard. See what happened is there are these two kindergarteners...

Kindergartener Richard* claims that kindergartener Peter* turned him into a vampire. It must be true, because one of them has pointy teeth, says Philosopher Child.

Husband and I have told him over and over that they're not vampires. Made no effect. So finally I said, "But he comes out in the daytime. He can't be a vampire."

"No," said Philosopher Child. "He can because he goes to school."

Well, there you go. If you are a vampire and want to be out in the daytime, you must be enrolled in school.

*Names have been changed to protect the questionably innocent.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Murphy's Law of Child Discipline

Murphy's Law of Child Discipline: noun. The universal law that states, "No matter how many children were perpetrating a breaking of the rules, yours will be the one that gets caught."

Philosopher Child is pretty mild mannered, all things considered. He has is snotty days like everyone else, but is mostly, well, a philosopher child. Imagine my surprise, then, when his teacher came up to me after school yesterday wanting to talk to me about a bit of trouble he had caused.

Apparently, Philosopher Child had made an obscene gesture, which I had never seen him do.* I was a bit upset, but of course I know that part of growing up is learning what is and is not socially appropriate, and this was squarely in the "not" category.

After a talk with Philosopher Child, he understood that what he did was wrong, and said he wouldn't do it again. And then...more info. This wasn't something he just up and did. He saw two other children doing it, and he simply mimicked it.

Oh, joy! I was right in thinking this didn't sound like him.

Oh, crap. Of course he's the one that got caught.

In the end, the teacher was polite and respectful and didn't fly off the deep end and demand therapy or anything like that. In fact, she, too thought this was out of character for him. In her view, what's done is done and it probably won't happen again.

*...never seen him do with one exception: he once was playing with his fingers and stuck both his middle fingers up, but of course had no idea that it meant anything at all.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Holiday Time Warp Part II

Holiday Time Warp: noun. The strange yet common situation of losing several weeks or months of time upon walking into a store.

Part I here

It's that time again, kids! Again comes the weird twilight time when people are planning place settings for Thanksgiving and thinking about Christmas gifts while trying to finish up Halloween costumes.

At the very beginning of this month, I walked into a home improvement store (was it Lowes or Home Depot?) with Husband and the little monkeys. To my left was a large Christmas display. To my right, it was Halloween. I pointed this out to husband and commented on how it was October on one side of the aisle, and December on the other.

Here's the sad thing: I want to be able to say take it one thing at a time! Do Halloween, and THEN Thanksgiving, and THEN Christmas, but the sad truth is...I'm already dropping Husband less than subtle hints about a particular item I would like to see under the tree with my name on it. Hard to complain about this time warp thing when I'm part of the problem.

I guess I should finish the kids' Halloween costumes.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

A Silly Scary Story for Your Silly Scary Monsters

Halloween is just around the corner. Some of us parents take our kids Trick-or-Treating, some plan some sort of group activity, and some ignore the day all together. No matter what you do, I think you'll enjoy telling this little tale to your monsters. I'll be honest, this tale must have been around for some time. I heard it as a child. I told other children. A quick Google search tells me that there are many different versions of this story. Here is the one I heard, as I remember it.

The Purple Gorilla

Once there was a man [I'll call him Steve, but you can call him whatever you want. The name just makes the telling easier. You can use "I" here if you prefer. Anyway...] Steve was driving along the road one evening, when his car broke down. He looked up and noticed it was about to storm, and so set out to find a place where he could spend the night.

[When I first heard this story, it was long before the cell phones were common.]

Steve walked through several fields, and jumped a few fences, and after a while, he came to a large house. He knocked on the door, and a man answered.

"Hi," said Steve. "My car broke down. I was wondering if I can spend the night here?"

"Sure," said the man in the house. "But I must ask you not to touch my purple gorilla."

Confused, Steve said, "What's a purple gorilla?"

"I'll show you," said the man.

The man took Steve down a flight of stairs into the basement. They passed through a regular wooden door. Then a thick wooden door. Then a thin metal door. Then a thick metal door. On the other side of the thick metal door was a huge cage, and in that cage was a massive purple gorilla.

"What happens if I touch the purple gorilla?" Steve asked.

"Just don't touch the purple gorilla," replied the man.

That night, as Steve was lying in bed, he just kept thinking about the purple gorilla. Finally, curiosity got the best of him. He crept down to the basement, and went through the regular wooden door. Then the thick wooden door. Then the thin metal door. Then the thick metal door. And finally to the gorilla. He reached out a hand and touched the gorilla. The gorilla flew into a rage and tore out of his cage.

Steve ran out all the doors, out of the house, across the fields, over the fences, back to his car and locked himself in. But the purple gorilla was right behind him! The purple gorilla reached out and ripped the top of the car off. He reached in towards Steve, laid his hand on him, and yelled--


Thursday, October 8, 2009

Crafty Dare

Crafty Dare: noun. A craft, recipe, or any from scratch project that makes most people cringe.

Yesterday I made a pumpkin pie. From an actual, honest-to-goodness pumpkin, not from a can. I have never done this before. My friends were applying some lovely adjectives to this activity, using words like "brave" and "daring." Hmm...

I'll tell you something. When someone looks at something I'm planning on doing and says, "Wow!" or, "That's brave of you!", or, "I wish I could..." it makes me really wish it works out. Deep down, I really want to know that I am clever enough to figure it out and make it work.

So, about that pie. The one from scratch. It was yummy. :) This the part where you say, "Wow!" and I say, "Aw, it wasn't that hard," and act like it wasn't.

But honestly, it wasn't that hard. Time consuming, sure, but not that hard. I ended up making the pumpkin puree one day, and the pie the next. I did get a little worried when at 40 minutes, when the recipe said the pie would be done, the pie was still mostly raw. I started watching the clock, fidgeting, and thinking about the time when I would have to leave to go get Philosopher Child from school. I checked out the window to see if any of my neighbors were home that could babysit my oven while I was out.

In the end, it worked out. It was finally done after baking for over an hour, and I was able to pick up Philosopher Child on time.

Oh, and this didn't happen this time.