Friday, October 24, 2008

Got Milk?

Who knew you could have this much fun milking a (fake) cow? My daughter was helping me choose a picture for Candid Carrie's Friday's Foto Finish Fiesta this morning. This is from a fair we went to in 2004. She had a natural knack for her first time milking and she had a lot of fun. Plus there were no cow patties to step in and no smelly barn!

Friday, October 17, 2008

I Left My Heart... San Francisco. What a beautiful city. It felt very much like home. Honey had a conference to go to, so we got a sitter for three days and flew down. I wandered around the Union Square area during the conference, and in the afternoons we played tourist together. The day we arrived we went to Fisherman's Wharf, ate magnificently stinky garlic fries, then boarded the ferry to Alcatraz. It was an amazing experience, even though I was burping garlic the whole time. When we were walking up the hill I had to let one out, and some people behind us said, "Hey, do you smell garlic?" Hahahaha...good times.

Visit Candid Carrie for some more Friday Foto Finish Fiesta goodness.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Homework 101

I deserve a frickin' gold star. Or a big-ass glass of Merlot. I helped my daughter complete her difficult math homework yesterday, complete with three tear-filled meltdowns and numerous 9-year-old expletives against the teacher, without a) losing my cool, b) giving up, or c) running away from home. I am proud of myself for handling this when I would have done one of the above in the past. Even though on the inside I felt like a seething mama bear and wanted to bitch slap have a strongly worded conversation with the teacher.

My daughter has liked all her teachers from kindergarten to grade 3. Even the firm, no-nonsense ones. This year we had to wait until the second week of school to find out which classrooms they would be divided into. The temporary teacher she was assigned that week was so nice, and she ended up getting all my daughter's friends. The remaining grade 4s ended up with our current teacher, who seemed competent and friendly on our first meeting. Although the kiddo was upset about not being with her friends, we told her she would make new ones and that this teacher was just as nice. Um. Yeah. I'm not sure what happened. 3 nights out of 5 she is complaining that her teacher is stupid because she doesn't explain anything. Most nights we are able to diffuse the situation and get the homework done, but last night she was damn near homicidal.

If my facts are correct, and I only have this second-hand, the teacher was yelling at the class, and specifically my daughter, for not getting the work right. First of all, the concept of "mental math", whereby you employ one of three methods to quickly add large sums in your head, completely goes against the principles of math she has been taught all her life. Adding left to right does not compute in her brain that is conditioned to add from right to left. So I understand her frustration. She told me she brought it to the teacher's desk three times, and each time she got in trouble for adding it incorrectly. Not that the answers were all wrong, but in the way she added them, one over top of the other. Who the hell cares? Not everyone is destined to add large sums in one's head.

While it's possible this could be exaggerated by my sensitive 9-year-old, this is not the first time I have heard tell of her yelling. She gets pissed at the class on a regular, if not daily, basis. They are a noisy, talkative bunch. But it's certainly the first time my girl has been personally yelled at. I'm pretty sure I don't like it. It makes for a really negative evening. Sure as I'm writing this blog, my husband and daughter are arguing over not calling the teacher stupid while doing homework. I'm tending the soup and tuning out to preserve my sanity this evening.

It really seems that this teacher is not prepared for this class. I don't know if it's because she's new to our school or she hasn't taught grade 4 or she has personal issues. If it's not obscure concepts not being explained, it's contradictory information being given (one day she says colour the map all green, and after it's coloured, do each province a different colour), or not enough information being given (which questions specifically to answer). I can't wait for parent-teacher night, because I need to find out why this woman is driving me to drink making school so f-ing difficult. I swore I wasn't going to interfere and ask to have her moved to the other classroom, because I don't want to send that message to my kid. But now...seriously wishing I had. Damn.

On a positive note, she did receive praise for sticking with her math homework and the evening ended with a smile on her face. So a gold star for her as well.

I would like to give a shout out to some moms who deal with shit like this times 3+ and have lived to tell the tale:

Scary Mommy, who is not really that scary (unless you piss her off), considering she's home with 3 young kids

Candid Carrie who has a never-ending supply of kids and patience (and cats)

Insane Mama who has a houseful of teenagers and a grandma!

I raise my glass to you! Cheers!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Which Came First?

The liquor or the drugs? While in Playa del Carmen, I saw a lot of things outside my prudish Canadian cultural realm. I found these two signs amusing:
I did not venture into the Drugs & Liquors store; however, I did go into the Tequila & Drugstore several times for tequila samples, souvenirs and tampons. Muy bien!

Check out Candid Carrie's Friday Foto Finish Fiesta!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Naked Statues = Art

Heh heh. I am so immature. It could have been the wine. Do you recognize her? It's the naked bronze lady statue from Telus World of Science aka my profile pic. After I groped her breasts I had myself photographed with her naked self. I was giddy with delight (and wine!) as I mingled with naked headless people.

His and Hers. You know I did something lewd in the corner with Naked Bronze Man. How could I not? Anyway, um, this is serious art. Yes. Educational serious art. Educational serious art with a scientific purpose. A purpose which I have now forgotten. Doh! In the words of Ned Flanders: "Homer, I can see your doodle!"

Check out Candid Carrie's Friday Foto Fiesta!