Thursday, September 27, 2007

Sis Boom Ba - Blah

I have nothing of substance against the average cheerleader. Cute, perky, shiny hair, in shape...what's not to love? But I don't....never have. It is a completely unjustified secret (until now) lackadaisical loathe. It is one for which I am not especially proud. Being that I am usually all live and let live etc. To each her own...and let the kidlets be free to be who they really are, never squelch that new age of me.

This is why the Muffin Man was practically doubled over in hysterics last night ready to have a kitten when he guessed immediately what Ava's first choice for after school activity would be. Tried as I might I just could not steer her to italian cooking, karate, baking, mad cap science, chess for champions, or kickball. "Cheerleading", she whooped. (Just like a cheerleader...I observed grumpily.) I tried psychology, reverse psychology and bribery. Nothing worked. "Tell her how cool chess playing scientists are.", I snottily scolded him. He giggled like a school girl and slinked out the back door. Seriously, I am the only one who really parents around here.
So, on Monday night at 7pm I will be standing in line at the school gym with all the other cheerleading wanna-be mothers with $20 in hand to try to be one of the first to enroll Ava in cheerleading. My God, I could tolerate this so much better if she would just concede to hip hop dancing. I've heard through the ever powerful elementary grapevine that after school activity sign up can be very crowded and somewhat competitive. Fabulous. Competitive to get this kid into the class? Where is the ice pick? My eye needs it.

Since she doesn't have to see me go sign her up I might take my old basketball, university diploma and dusty old corporate id badge while standing in line. How's that for live and let live?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Chatterbox

This morning at the breakfast table Ava asked the meaning of her Chinese names. I explained that the character for Jing that she was given means quiet and the character for Tang that she was given means sweet. She thought about it for a minute and then said, "quiet, really?" "Yes", I smirked. She thought about it for another minute and then quickly blurted out, " That doesn't really fit, I am not very quiet. I am pretty sweet though, so that one fits." A human life left unexamined is not a human life worth living, yes?

She then went on to observe that perhaps Liv should have been named Jing and she in turn should have been given GeGe, which means princess. Always love a gal willing to laugh a bit at herself, or then again I'm not entirely sure it was a tongue in cheek comment. Welcome to the world of Ava.

This was all interesting and in my opinion a quite fitting observation in Ava Jing Tang's part.

Olivia Xi GeGe, the happy princess remains a quiet one. Unless I have the audacity to move from room to room attempting to do laundry, then she is quite verbal, but in a whining sort of way that seems not Cantonese, not Mandarin, and certainly not English...although very almost 2 years old universal high pitched WHINE. (As in, you are not right next to me and I am in complete fear that by tossing a load into the dryer you will mysteriously disappear from my life forever and honestly I don't care all that much about clean jammies so stick nearby Momma for God's sake.)

Although, perhaps I am not being completely fair in judging Olivia's language development. We have had a huge breakthrough this week. She is now officially naming Ava. She looks right at her and calls her Vava. Which is pretty darn close if you ask me. She even points to the window when Ava is gone at school and says in a clear question, "Vava?" Meaning where is my five year old playmate?

Her language development, which has been professionally evaluated 2 times now and scores somewhere on the low but functioning normally range, remains a complete mystery to me. Why is it that she almost always gets the first 2 letters of a word and cannot get the last part even it it is only 1 more letter? Watch is wa...wall is wa...ball is ba....bus is ba....daddy is da....but mommy is mama. As you can imagine almost everything that comes from her is ba or wa or da...but rarely finishing a word. The speech therapist says this all counts as complete words and don't worry. Hmmm....I'm still not sure.

Perhaps I just got too used to having my Ava Jing chatterbox haunting my every move. I knew at every given moment what she was thinking, add in a touch of her dramatic and dogmatic self and there wasn't much mystery. With Liv, I sometimes pause at how unnerved it makes me to be living with this little short human who understands every last word we utter...but cannot in turn respond verbally.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Back Pack Management

I have two daughters. Between the two of them they are attending 4 schools, if you count Chinese school on Sundays. I'm not exactly sure why I thought this many schools would be a good idea when I was planning for scholarly excellence this past spring. Apparently I need to re-read my back issues of Real Simple magazine for a refresher as I am sure they would not advise this many halls of excellence.

Each child has a backpack or tote bag for each school. Again 4 bags for 4 schools...2 kids. One of which is not even 2 years old.
I'm going to the hardware store for a peg board from which to hang them all just as soon as I can come up for air from the Kindergarten newsletters. I have three on my desk as of right now. Apparently Ava's teacher needs to write one as does her principal. Could they not get together on this and save a tree?

This is quickly turning into a time sucking warp trying to keep up with which school is having the spaghetti dinner fundraiser and which one is having the ice cream social. Who is selling entertainment books and who wants me to spend $12.00 on a roll of Christmas wrapping paper. Never mind filing away those darling macaroni works of art. By the way those hard macaroni droppings really create a nice puncture wound when stepped on at 3am while trying to go to the bathroom. Consider yourself warned.

You know what peeves me the most? This is a tad off the subject but I must stop for posterity's sake and mention that Ava's public school is requiring $69.75 to borrow books. Yes, $69.75 and yes borrow at public school. I'm not getting this one. It's Kindergarten, and I already sent in the appropriate list of school supplies. What part of and old mimeographed alphabet worksheet costs $69.75. Am I going to call and complain? Oh no, I'm determined not to be the problem parent until 2nd grade.

So, each day after school I peer over my child's head to inconspicuously gaze at how much paperwork is in that bag for me to read and consequently write a check for. Managing this is a part time job. Which in itself wouldn't be a big deal since I'm not exactly full time occupied cleaning floors and popping laundry into drawers. Oh, how I pine for my old cleaning lady of bygone years. I am however in the throws of heating up over at Pink Evita. Which is good news. But getting a wee little business up and running is proving to take a little more time than I had originally anticipated. I sort of thought 2 hours during nap time and a small business could run smoothly. Oh, the naivete. I'm feeling so darn green, what with the booking of Design Your Own parties for the fall, (5 thank you very much) sending invitations to hostesses, sewing bags, looking into expansion opportunities at boutique stores and changing a diaper in there....well I could quite possibly get in over my head. Dare I suggest?

But then, I have so many ideas in my head for Pink Evita. I get love struck at the idea of creating a business my way. Breathe and ride the wave...that's my new motto.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Not So Much With The Preschool

Olivia attempted preschool this week. Technically, I suppose you could call it Mom's Day Out (MDO) since she is still shy of two years old. And how much schooling is there really in a 4 hour time frame once a week for a 22 month old? I like to think of it as Mommy's little sanity time, they should probably be up front and just call it that.

If hamsters had MDO perhaps they wouldn't eat their young. This is why every Mommy I know, or at least the sane ones who will admit to needing a short break now and then clamor to the good churchly types eagerly signing their little darlings up for MDO asking of one morning a week is all they have. I've known some who don't go to suck down 13 vicodins and slowly stroke their hair in front of their master bathroom mirrors saying "pretty" over and over and over. Seriously, I don't want to hear from you in the comment section if your child did not attend any school at all until late the late preschool or kindergarten.

Liv went in just fine and even smiled a bit for the teacher. Great I thought, this is easier than Ava's first preschool experience. I skipped out of the building while turning my cell phone on and sticking it in my pocket. Then I thoroughly enjoyed 3 hours and 45 minutes of no whining, no sticky hands, and no cute little smiles from a little girl who insists on stomping around in her sister's shoes while depositing them in strange places throughout the house leaving me to utter every bad word in the book looking for that damned elusive shoe when we need it.

I arrive at pick up bright eyed and bushy tailed. Then I hear Liv from down the hall. It is not a happy sound. Apparently she cried on and off the entire time. She enjoyed sticker time and outside play but that was about it. She calmed down the minute she took her place on my hip. Then she waved bye-bye to all the MDO kids. We plopped down in the car and she sorrowfully sniffed her way home while signing ALL DONE. Oh gees, Mommy guilt. Mommy guilt as the ice pick is stabbed into my heart.

But then one first time MDO does not a preschool career make. We will try again next week. Sniff Sniff.