Thursday, January 24, 2013

Laugh or cry?

So I've always (affectionately) referred to my 8 year old as "Bad Boy". He doesn't particularly care for it at the moment, so I only do it in those moments when he is in the mood to not have a meltdown... And only I'm allowed to call him that.

Anyway, Bad Boy is incredibly smart, a little mischievous and very independent (which basically means he hates being told what to do and has those meltdowns I mentioned earlier when he doesn't get his own way). We're going through a transitional period at home, naturally, because of the divorce, and sadly, Bad Boy has been somewhat caught in the middle. I have tried to  keep the kids from most of the drama, unfortunately, my ex is not so mature and has recently relaunched his campaign of blackening my name. This of course has a negative effect on the boys. My Baby, the 7 year old, has been mostly immune as he's always been mama's boy. Bad Boy is what I refer to as a neutral party, like Switzerland.

As all kids do, Bad Boy is going through this phase testing the waters to see how far he can take advantage. Yesterday lunchtime I receive a phone call from the Principle of his school, which I let go to voicemail as I was on a call to my manager in California. When I listened to the message this is what I heard (names have been changed to protect the innocent):

"I have Bad Boy here in the office with me and he had told the substitute teacher that he has a peanut allergy and that mom had given him a PB&J sandwich. The teacher panicked and sent him to the office...."

Now at this point, I am DYING with hysterics in the reception area of my office. Bad Boy's favourite sandwich: PB&J. Bad Boy's favourite snack: PB&J crackers. Bad Boy has been known to eat Peanut Butter straight out the jar (what kid, without an allergy, hasn't?). So I calmly call the Principle back, inform her in polite words that he's full of it, and allowed her to inflict whatever 'punishment' she deemed appropriate. That punishment was to sit in her office until he confessed why he lied.

The challenging part was how do I have a serious and meaningful discussion with him about why what he did was so wrong, while keeping a straight face?? Well, you'll be pleased to know I managed it. It took a few hours, I had to repeat the story several times first, but he now understands that allergies are very serious. Ok, so I may have used parental license to lie and say that he may have been the recipient of an epi-shot had someone had one in the room and that's very painful and very dangerous..... So he agreed to apologise. And is clear on the fact that using ANY bogus excuse to get out of class is unacceptable.

However, I see a very long relationship with each of his Principles in my future... we're only in 3rd grade... sigh!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Dear Tooth Fairy... You're Fired!

I feel terrible. I lied to my child. I arrived home from work last night to be cheerfully greeted by my 8 year old, sporting a huge grin displaying a newly created gap where a tooth should have been. "Pulled it out in class" He proudly declares.

Well first of all I'm mortified that I wasn't aware of just how wobbly this tooth was... The adult tooth was already halfway errupted and resembled somewhat of a fang. I should have paid more attention. I did a quick mental inventory of the contents of my wallet and established that I had a couple of $5's, $10's and a stack of $20's. Sigh. Gonna have to get change. No big deal, I'm heading to the gym later, I'll stop at the gas station for some Gatorade and break a $20. Perfect.

Not perfect. I bought two Gatorade's one for before and one for recovery afterwards as I had planned a grueling cardio session. My change from $20? $15. And I was so preoccupied, I didn't realise until I was halfway down the road that I needed some $1's. Sigh.

I return from the gym and the children have been successfully tucked up in bed by the 12 year old. No, not quite 100% successful as I hear  the 6 year old "I can't sleep". My response: "OK, get back up and clean up your room" thinking this would elicit a 'never mind' response. Nope. They both (8 and 6) bounce up and clean their room and the loft!! Miracle! And then 15 minutes later they are tucked up back in bed.

I shower, and hit the sack myself by 10:30. And then wake up at 11:45. I don't return to sleep until approximately 30 minutes before the FIRST alarm goes off at 4:15am. I am supposed to get up and knock out 20 minutes of zumba, but I'm tired, hit snooze and roll over. I do this for the next hour or so... And am woken up at 6:15 by the 8 year old: "The tooth fairy didn't give me any money, but she took my tooth." Oh. My. God. I had forgotten! And at this bleary hour of the morning, I cannot think as fast as usual, I mumble something vague about getting dressed because we've already missed the bus and I'll call the Tooth Fairy and fire her. (I thought that was smart, I don't know why).

I take a sneak opportunity to check the bed for the tooth and find that it has indeed vanished! WTF? Oh well, I slip 4 quarters (yes I know, the Tooth Fairy is on a budget in my house) under his pillow while they are getting in the car. My story? The Tooth Fairy was also running late this morning, and hadn't finished the job before you woke up, so she hid until you were gone! WOW, isn't that dedicated? I guess we can rehire her?

I will update you on just how gullible my children are if I am able to pull this stunt off this evening. The 6 year old, who will be 7 in a mere 9 days, has yet to lose a tooth... I'm in trouble...

**UPDATE** Well, the Tooth Fairy was able to salvage her job! Upon returning home from school, my son found the $1 under his pillow. Ironically, it was the 6 year old who asked "Did you call her? What did she say?" My response? "She apologised, but she was interrupted while retrieving the tooth and had to hide until you went to school so she could leave the money." Yes, it was that simple.

Unfortunately, I still have one more child to get through this stage....