Friday, February 3, 2012


We had Our Little Helper's parent teacher conference at preschool yesterday so my mom played hooky (she has about 100 sick days she has never used and since she'll be retiring in a coupe years she figures she ought to use them for occasional babysitting instead. So I took the boys to her house in the morning and we hung out there until I picked up Mr. W for the conference. This also worked out well to keep us out of the house while we had viewings scheduled.
We had a very good conference. There were some things that his teacher wanted to work on for him, like drawing and art projects since he isn't as interested in those fine motor skills. But she said after she had put her report together he participated in drawing time and drew a dragon complete with a mouth, arms, a tail and lots of scales. He also signed his name to it, a skill that they are NOT working on a t preschool, just something that he has picked up on his own. I beam with pride for my boy!
We also talked about school plans for next year. I had been considering trying to get him in at the public school near our new house which has the only half day kindergarten in the city. I intended to have him repeat kindergarten at another school. As I was trying to figure out the wisdom in that, a bumpie pointed out that if I think he is excited about kindergarten now, consider how hard it will be when they ramp up the children for 1st grade at the end of kindergarten. That spoke volumes to me!
The other thing that was swaying me in the plan to push for kindergarten this year was how not assertive he is. When I was able to observe him with his classmates at snack day last week I noticed that he is shy in a group. The child whose snack day it is gets to make all the announcements that day and he was so soft spoken, no one could hear him. I have noticed with his friends that he is not an Alpha kid. He is happy to follow along with what other children are playing, even if his friend is younger than him. I don't have any problem with my child not being and Alpha kid, but I realized the impact of him being the youngest in his class with this characteristic. Better to be bigger/older than the others and not assertive than smaller, shy, and a target for being picked on. His teacher expressed concern that he doesn't play with others. This was shocking to me since he always engages in active play with his friends. But in this larger class setting he doesn't. Later int he day though I wondered if it might be the result of his best friend in the class moving to North Dakota two months into the school year? Perhaps he doesn't want to have his little heart broken again? In any even we discussed with his teacher which classroom options for the fall would be close to a pre-kindergarten program since he is so eager to go.
After the conference I drove out to Milwaulkie to pick up tamales from Casa de Tamale.
I'm doing abridged celebrations this winter since they house is on the market. I was thinking about just eating out there for dinner, but Mr. W was afraid that might be too chaotic with the children. I only bought a dozen tamales this year since we weren't having guests (my mom already had other plans)
Back at my mom's house Grammy and Our Little Helper made candle shaped cookies to celebrate Candlemas. I considered making candles at my mom's, but couldn't locate the box with the candle kit which we recently moved into her basement. Moving is crazy! This was a much easier project to work on, and Our Little Helper really likes making cookies.
Adding ingredients.Cutting out the cookies.Adding the sprinkles.Candle shaped cookies! (This cookie cutter was among the stuff my MIL gave us when they moved)Chicken and green chili tamales. I bought these festive little melamine plates at Target.Baby Boy dining on rice cakes. Yes, it is one of those kinds of days that he's still in his jams from the morning!Pork and asparagus tamale with cotija cheese.Baby Boy walking, he carries this fridge toy around like it is his ghetto blaster.

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