Back in the Swing of Things

I had a good first week of school. Things went relatively smoothly, I did the right amount of planning, and the principal happened to roll through my Algebra I class when the kids were actively debating the merits of two different equations they came up with to describe a puzzle.

That's right. Kids debating about equations. On the first day of school. Principal saw them.

The laundry didn't get backed up and nobody got sick. I went to bed early.

Nonetheless, even as smoothly as everything went last week, spending all day balancing the psychological needs of teenagers with my appointed task of teaching them math is exhausting.

I come home to my chatterbox toddler (kids racing! mail man! fire hydrant! moon out, mommy? squirrel eat nut berries? Sarah Kai park. what is that called? Want to paint, mommy. Sit in blue chair and paint brush, mommy. Want the other one. No. No. No. No.) She's very vocal, they report to me at daycare. They look serious when they say that. I decide to take it as a compliment. However, I do know that her rather large vocabulary includes the local term "jag-off", among other things, so I pack her up quickly and get out of there.

You would think that any toddler who had spent all day playing with friends at daycare and running around at the playground and racing her mommy through the park on the way home, would be highly willing and eager to go to sleep at night.

My friend's son is about the same age as Laurel and he recently learned how to get out of his crib. She texted me for advice for the post-crib bedtime era.

Good luck, I said. Bedtime has turned into a rather lengthy affair around here.

It's like Calvin and Hobbes. Or am I thinking Dennis the Menace? Laurel leaves a destructive path in her wake. Today, I was preparing dinner and turned my back on her for one second only to turn around again and see that she had dumped out an entire box of baby cereal into a bowl and was enthusiastically stirring a powdery mess.

"Yum, Mommy! Making eggs!"

It was in her hair. And all over the previously clean drying rack of dishes. It was not, however, on her clothes, since she wasn't wearing any. She stripped down at the store, earlier in the afternoon.

Bedtime is the same thing. I try to do all the right things. We have a routine. We turn out all the lights and get mellow and sing quiet songs and read books. We say a firm goodnight and tuck her in with an ever-expanding menagerie of stuffed animals. But some nights, she just won't go to sleep. She makes funny demands. "Lay down, mommy. Next to." There are requests to go to the potty. Another glass of water. Hungry. Or my personal favorite, "Ok, all done sleeping," as she dramatically flings her pacifier to the ground.

We had an interesting weekend...an impromptu party after the Big Pour, and we hosted a guy who biked from Charlottesville, VA to Pittsburgh. The house was loud with records playing and conversation. People gathered on the porch. Friends splashed with Laurel in puddles out front. It was the most fun I've had in ages.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I wish I could say "Okay, done sleeping" and really be done with it. Maybe Laurel's on to something...