Thursday, June 3, 2010

The things we have to do to get things done...

I was waiting and waiting for a phone call or two to be returned. Said phone call was made to the insurance company of the neighbor who hit my parked van while I was at therapy. Oh, cruel irony.

I called my insurance agent, who, although I've never met him, sounds like a really cool guy based on the handful of conversations that we've had. I explained to him the situation, and he said that it's not his issue at all, that this guy's company would be taking care of it, but he'd be glad to call over there and nudge some people.

All of a sudden, I got phone calls. First from the other guy's agent, then from the claims person, and then from the appraiser. He'll be here tomorrow.

We can get a rental car, but since we really don't need it (Musical Daddy takes the bus to work, and school is almost over), we'll just live life as a one-car family, something that we were seriously considering anyway, depending on who gets what jobs and how easy it is for them to bus or bike to work.

We do have a friend who bikes from this area to downtown. Also, one of the teachers who lives on the other side of the city bikes to work. He says that it's mostly downhill on the way there anyway.

I did bike a little bit today. Following a quick family trip to Oakland for Musical Daddy's comic book fix, Daddy took the children to the playground in the wagon. I was to join them after I made sure that dinner was ready (cook everything, then leave it in the oven, but make sure that the oven is turned off. Stays warm enough for a park visit). I hopped on the bike and rode to the playground down the street...and found no one. Oops--wrong playground. No problem...although this one is a little further away, with more hills.

We played for awhile; then I put The Boy in the seat on the back of my bike and rode home. I took a different path, but it was still hard work. Particularly with 30 extra pounds behind me. The Boy is almost too tall for the bicycle seat, and Meatball is just about ready to start riding in it! I think The Boy can still ride for one more summer, provided that he refrains from kicking me.

I think I'm feeling better, overall, about the past 2 days with The Boy. I'm really not pushing the potty issue. I am, however, making sure that he understands, as well as he can, that he is responsible for what he does. If he makes a mess on purpose,
he is expected to help clean it up. If he wants to go somewhere yet runs away when we try to dress him, we won't chase him; we just let him know that he needs to be dressed to go.

Somewhere, buried in the pile of stuff downstairs, is our Love and Logic book. While I find this book and this parenting theory to be very appropriate for us as teachers and parents, I have also heard a lot of criticism, from both "sides" of the parenting debates. Some say that parents are just manipulating their children into thinking that they have a say when they don't. Others say that giving little children too many choices is a waste of time. I admit, sometimes I feel that way, when The Boy has picked out his third plate of the meal.

The struggle, as several wise friends have mentioned, is not about the potty, and it isn't about the toys or the messes either. It's about The Boy adjusting to life as something other than the center of the universe. Additionally, he is lacking in social skills, and to fight with him to get him to join in activities is pointless. We might be better off inviting one or two friends over at a time. Probably friends who are a little younger, at least at first.

There's NO way that The Boy would be ready for preschool in the Fall. He'll be 3. I don't worry that he'll "fall behind" if I don't send him, nor am I that excited to send my socially awkward kid, who will be one of the youngest unless he is held back (likely), to "school" when one of us will likely be at home and we won't have that kind of money anyway (long freakin' sentence!) He has no interest in group activities, his ability to listen and follow directions is VERY selective, and he has a tendency to get walked on, literally and figuratively.

Not gonna lie--homeschooling has crossed my mind more than once. Not going to do it, but it crept into my head.

Meatball is 11 months on Saturday. Where does the time go?!


The Reluctant Crunchy Mama said...

Wow, you and I have had very similar thoughts...! Thought about home school, but decided against it... Like the idea of it, but wonder how that might affect the development of the child's social skills. Think about how our kids get walked on... I have wondered if preschool will help or make this worse. I am hopeful that it will help her, given what we have noticed about the environment in the classroom/how teachers model behavior/respond to different situations. Wondering about Love and Logic... There is a lot of it that I like, but I also wonder what other smart people out there have figured out via research or personal experience. Looking for new books to read!

Did The Boy enjoy bike riding with you? Sounds like fun!

Alina said...

I think you should totally do it! Homeschool the boys I mean. You'd be great at it. As you know, I thought about it a million times and I think I am going to homeschool Rebeccah at least. I have actually always homeschooled Ausonie, even though she is going to school (if that makes any sense), in the sense that I taught her everything she knows *gloat* and she still sees school as a place where she goes to play and home as a place to learn and explore whatever interests her. I'll check out Love and Logic, never heard of it, but one of my favorite books on parenting is Raising Self-Reliant Children In A Self-Indulged World.