Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Some Things I Want to tell My Friends

I've been talking about Fierce Kingdom by Gin Phillips on FB and in real life since I read it a few weeks ago. I read it in one sitting, staying up half the night to finish it. I know I skimmed parts of it--I was gulping down paragraphs without chewing them because I had to find out what happened. My heart was racing even after I finished it, and then I went and snuggled my sleeping children because OMG it is terrifying to contemplate the scenario she lays out in the book, and it does not feel all that improbable, either. Also, after you finish the book, google the author's blog and read what she says about the conclusion. It made me like the book more.

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My mom gave me a silk pillowcase for my birthday and it is ah-mazing. It makes unwashed hair look at least 50% better the next day. I am not overstating this. I have dramatically decreased the frequency of shampoos around here. There is nothing I can't accomplish with dry shampoo (it's true that this is the best, but the price is steep, so I also use this kind) and a silk pillowcase. It's also supposed to be good about preventing wrinkles, but I'm not sure about that. I can vouch for dirty hair looking better, though!

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I mentioned Kumon in my last post. Zuzu has been doing Kumon for a while now. We started in the summer. I wrote a long post about it a while back, but then I hesitated to post it because I didn't have the emotional fortitude to withstand criticism about parenting, and it's one of those parenting decisions that I question. (Also, if you didn't know, people on the internets will sometimes be unkind, believe it or not). The short of it is that she doesn't have any homework at her Montessori school, and we make her sit down and do 5 pages of Kumon a day. She does not like it. IShe can easily complete five pages in about 15-20 minutes, and that's with PLENTY of fiddle-farting around. I second guess myself constantly, but I want her to have a solid background in mathematics and I want her to be really confident about it; however, I don't want to fight with my kid every day. I want her to enjoy school/learning. So I question whether it conflicts with my larger philosophy of education, but I also see how much she is improving even though she complains about it. Now that we're doing a lot of it in the car, it's actually going much better.

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After five people in my life recommended the podcast Dirty John to me, I started listening this morning. So far I find it riveting! I'm still only about 30 minutes into the first 47 minute episode, so I don't really know what's going on, but I'm looking forward to listening on my drive home.

On the other hand, I randomly listened to a few episodes of "Murder on Orchard Street" and I don't like it nearly as much. Maybe it's because the episodes are shorter--like 12-15 minutes? I find the unsolved murder frustrating (as I do any and all unsolved murders, I suppose), but I don't find the story line all that compelling.

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We had family photos taken a couple of weeks ago and I just saw them today. There are some super cute ones of the girls. David and Zuzu both have a blinking problem that makes family photos difficult, but there are at least a couple that might work for Christmas cards. Unfortunately, in the one good group shot that includes my parents, I look about 24 weeks pregnant, which I MOST ASSUREDLY AM NOT, so that photo will never, ever get printed. But there are ones of the girls throwing leaves that are absolutely charming and adorable.

Other bummers: I wanted fall pictures so I scheduled them for what is traditionally the prettiest weekend in the fall--the third weekend in October. But fall colors didn't happen this year until the first weekend in November. So the leaves are either green or brown in the photos, and it was hot so the girls are bare-legged, which is not that cute, and you can't even see Zuzu's little ankle booties in the pics and they were really cute. So those are my general complaints, but nothing the photographer could really control. I probably should have had the girls put on tights, but Coco had just hacked off her hair and I was sweaty in a dress and a scarf, and they definitely capture a particular moment in time! (The moment when I realized I either need to stand differently, never wear that dress again, or enroll in Pilates classes, stat. Possibly all three.)

Upside: Most of them are cute, and I'm still glad to have these, especially the ones of the kids and the ones of the kids with their grandparents. Too bad my dress is supremely unflattering in the group shot, and no I will not be posting it, no matter how much you beg or what you promise me because my vanity cannot take it.

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I got a flu shot on Monday and I treated myself to a Pure Life black iced tea afterward. I felt very adult even though I went with a coworker and made him hold my hand when I was getting my shot and I'm sure he felt totally awkward, but needles, man. I have a hard time.

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Ok, I've gots to hit publish on this and go. Zuzu will want to make some crafts, and I'm going to a book club tonight.

And I still have 36 exams and 14 papers to grade. But those will wait another day!

4 comments:

  1. I just requested that book at the library! Also, thanks for the podcast suggestion. I was just thinking how I need to outsource people for some new suggestions.

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  2. I have tried a couple of dry shampoos, though not the ones that you show, and I feel like they make my hair look even dirtier. Is it possible my hair is just too fine?

    We had Eleanor do a lot of math practice at home in kindergarten and first grade, though we have slacked off lately as she takes on more activities. There is this expectation that kids should be reading or hearing books every day, but we do very little in the way of math literacy.

    Glad your flu shot went ok! I'm usually fine with shots, but my flu shot this year was super painful. Henry was with me, and I had to squeeze my eyes shut for a good 15 seconds to keep from crying.

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  3. I don't know a lot about Kumon, but I understand it involves a lot of drills and worksheets. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. We did flash cards and were drilled & did speed tests for addition, subtraction, multiplication & division in elementary school, until we knew our facts cold. I can remember being agog when nephew #2, when asked a simple math problem, started counting on his fingers & told us this was how he was being taught in school. He was at least 9 or 10 years old at the time. Yikes!!

    I am sure the photos are great! :)

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  4. Based on your blog, I listened to Dirty John. I have a 1-2 hour commute each way every day so I'm always looking for podcasts. I am very torn about whether or not I liked it. I'm still thinking about it 2 days later, so I guess that means in intrigued me, but also disturbed me.

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