Saturday, January 17, 2009

Baby Its Minus 13 Outside

Yeah. Again. NOT a temperature. I don't miss the south, I don't miss the south, I don't miss the south. Okay, maybe I miss the HEAT. A little. But I will NEVER say I miss Florida. It was warm in California where we lived for 3 years too! I MISS that. People were nice there. And we were toasty and warm. And I saw my grass 12 months out of the year. At least people are nice here. Even in the cold, people are kind and courteous and seem generally happy. So......I try to be like them.

The kids don't care at all that it is cold. They want to go outside SO badly. They look longingly at the snow and look at their sleds and say, “please mommy?” But when the high is zero, I can't let them out. Sunday is supposed to be a VERY warm 31. So....then. That is when they get to go out. Happy day.

Mat was away this week in North Carolina. He had a nice time catching up with his friend and past boss, Tim and his family. Plus, he is there on business. We missed him and are happy he has returned safe and sound. He actually asked me while he was gone if the snow melted. That made me giggle. I think it will be melting in about.......April. What a funny guy I married.

My parents left this morning to go home. It was nice to have them in. I can always give them little jobs to do around the house that I, ahem, don't want to touch with a ten foot pole. And they always do them!! I guess when my kids are older, I can pay them back the same way. Hmmmmm....... We had some fun times. Wednesday we went out to dinner. THAT was not a fun experience. Arlington cried and Finley whined the whole way home. But dinner on Thursday was perfect. The kids were angels. They are so hot and cold! This is why we stay home. No 50/50 chances for Mat and I. My parents just don't know any better. They also don't care if the kids make a scene. They are just their perfect little monsters grandchildren. They aren't “bad”. They are “independent” “strong minded”. Seriously? The kids are NUTS. Say it like it is.

This week at work really tested my patience. I had a hard time holding it together on Thursday with the kids that are TRULY behavior problems. I didn't have a lot sympathy by the end of the day. But, you would have been proud. I calmly sent them on their way. You will have sympathy for me in a minute BECAUSE on Wednesday I broke my own record and saw.....take this in.....70 kids in my office. Yep. 70 little blessings in a 7 hour period. Thursday I saw 60. Friday, 54. (at least it got less!) I know what the problem is – the kids can't go outside. They are breathing that dreaded school air. For a whole week they have not been able to go outside due to these crazy temperatures. We haven't been above 18 degrees this whole week. Too cold to go out. So, they have stomach aches and sore throats, and headaches, and chapped lips, and dry eyes, and on and on and on. It was non-stop traffic. I had 10 kids in my office at once during a period of my day. But, I kept my cool. Even some of them made me laugh.

On Wednesday:
Girl: I have a stomach ache.
Me: I am sorry to hear that. When did it start?
Girl: Monday

Kindergarten girl: I have a staple in my leg
Me: What? Where? Let me see
(pulls up her pant leg and points to the SMALLEST little red dot I have ever seen)
Me: I don't see the staple – are you sure?
Kindergarten girl: yes- it was on the rug. I saw it.
Me: Well, you look okay – do you want a bandaid?
Girl: no
Me: an ice pack?
Girl: no
Me: cream?
Girl: no
Me: Well.......
Girl: can I have a life saver?

Little boy (3rd grade): (very serious little guy) I have an ear ache. It started in November.

I cannot make this stuff up folks. They really don't have any concept of time.

My diabetic also had an awful week. His blood sugar numbers were all over the place causing his behavior to be all over the place. It is hard enough being a 9 year old boy. It is harder to be a 9 year old diabetic whose sugars control his emotions. One of my school phobia kids was also off. She is really stressing right now. So, on top of the 70 “non emergent” kids I saw, I have them too. Plus my regular work (which is starting to look like a distant memory) and meetings, and staff that come in constantly, and the Chinese teachers who came for a visit. AND I don't ever get to eat lunch in peace.

But that is about to change.

I am getting my own 15 minutes of fame to stand in front of the staff at my school and plead for mercy on January 28th. I am handing out info on the health office, (courtesy of my over protective nursing supervisor), “nurse passes” that the teachers will be filling out when they send a kid to me and they will each get little baggies of bandaids for all of those little hangnails.

I am glad I have great staff. They just need a little fine tuning. I am tired of being a rock star. I want to be a normal school citizen who sees an average of 20-25 students (like the other two elementary nurses in my district) and get my work done. I am beyond bandaids and boo-boos. 4 years of college, and 11 years of experience – I am MORE than that. I am part of the special education team. And I have kids who seriously need me every day. There is a lot of parts to my job that are getting lost in the shuffle due to weeks like this.

Blah blah blah.

Friday was SO cold here. It was minus 13 on Friday. A lot of schools were on a delay, but not my lovely district. No, we had the Chinese educators in town, so we were going to school ON time no matter what. The parents of the kids were not happy. One kid had to wait for the bus for 20 minutes! I have a hard time figuring it out. We get canceled when we have RAIN, but minus 13 doesn't even get us a delay. Huh. And can I tell you – the building was 50 degrees. The kids (and us) were so cold! It took all day to warm that building up.

The Chinese educators were nice. The students did a fabulous assembly. Each grade had a presentation and gift for our visitors, and then we gave a school gift. And each room had done some Chinese decoration. The school was very festive. I was really proud of them! It was so fun. I work (and live) in a small town that doesn't have much culture influence. This was great for them!!! I had several parents call/email me thanking me for the assembly teaching their kids about the Chinese culture. I am glad the kids enjoyed it. I got to have lunch with the principal and Chinese educators and we talked a lot about Cainan. It was great (and the food was AWESOME). It was a great day. I am thinking that the week of Chinese New Year, we may have to do something else fun!!

The kids had a nice break from daycare this week. We didn't get to go many places due to the cold, but we did eat out every night. Friday we took the kids to the mall and let them run crazy at the indoor playground. My dad hung with them and my mom and I went to “Pennys” to do a little shopping. I found some AWESOME deals. I had quite a bit of gift cards for JcP from Christmas (thanks Sally and Aunt Betty!) and I spent them wisely. I got 5 sweaters and a pair of jeans for me, and then went over to the kids section and got tons of shirts and jeans and two winter coats ALL for next year for the kids and I didn't even spend $100!!!! I saved some money for Mat to get a few things for himself as well (I share). It was awesome. I got winter coats for Cainan and Finley that were originally $60 on sale for $8.00. Yeah baby! They are all set for next year.

Arlington is doing well. We watched “Kit Kitridge and American Girl” today. She really wants an American Girl doll, but until she turns 8 (and a relative buys it for her), so will have to wish on. But the movie was pretty cute. We have also been reading this years choice for her Chinese New Years Book “The Monkey King” It is a good book for older kids – I recommend it.

We have played some Wii, played some board games, and read about 100 books. It is hard when they can't go outside. Oh, and my mom started to teach her how to play the piano this week while she was visiting. I think Arlington liked it. We will see if she wants to keep going. We had basketball practice this morning. It gets her out of the house for a few hours for exercise and that is always good!

We are also trying to plan her 6th birthday party. She will be 6 on February 15th. There aren't as many choices as we are used to for party venues, but thanks to our wonderful neighbor, Michelle, she has given us plenty to choose from. Arlington has decided she wants to have a bowling party. Sounds good to me. Last year we did the princess thing (and the year before) so I am ready for a change. AND, she is friends with everyone in class, and wants to invite everyone (although daddy is a little unsure of this idea) so we had to come up with a place that all kids MIGHT enjoy. So we will see. We are going to check out one of the venues tomorrow. I think it could be fun for them. Her birthday does fall at a tricky time as well. It is the day after Valentine's day AND the beginning of a week long break from school, where families might be going away. So we will see.

Cainan is doing well. He had his speech therapy appointment at home this week. He is speaking pretty clearly, but he a ways to go. We have a meeting on February 11th to start to work on transitioning him from the Birth-3 program to the public school system. He will probably qualify for speech, but not for special education services. That will be fine, but I will not be able to get his speech therapy through the school, then, because I will not be able to get him there due to work. So we would have to arrange for private therapy. So we will see what happens.

Finley is fine. She was singing the other day in the car and started to sing “mommy is a weirdo”. So nice!! She sings the weirdest songs. I have decided that she doesn't have any private thoughts – she says out loud every thing she is thinking. She is becoming a talker like Arlington, so my house is getting louder every day. Thank goodness Cainan is a little on the quiet side! After the kids had gone to bed the other night, I thought I heard someone moving around upstairs. I went up, and Arlington and Cainan were asleep, and Finley was standing beside Arlington poking her in the arm. Cainan's door was wide open – she must have already been in there. Sigh. She is also still fighting potty training. My parents really tried to work with her this week. And no good. She will sit on the potty. FOREVER. But she only went once this whole week.

Before I forget - I wanted to say congratulations to Matt and Madeline for a BEAUTIFUL spread in People Magazine this weekend. I was reading my favorite mag, and there he and his beautiful daughter were! Hop on over to his blog and check out his story. Matt, Liz, Madaline (click on the name to go to their blog)

So that is it!! I am really looking forward to Inauguration day. I am so happy my children are here to see the inauguration of our first African-American president. I wish we could take the time off to go to Washington to see him inaugurated into office. I am over the Bush era (just like my friend Michelle!) and ready for the future of our country with President Obama. I have been watching the news today on his trek to Washington DC and we are SO excited. OBAMA!!!!

Enjoy the pictures and I will see you on Tuesday!! Have a great weekend!


Tara Bennett said...

A lifesaver for an invisible staple? That kills me! =)

Michelle said...

I'm looking forward to hearing how the crack-down at school goes...