A Thank You

Alex received a lovely package from my Gramma, his great grandmother, yesterday. In the box was a beautiful handmade knit blanket, a stuffed animal baby owl, and a hand made blanket for the baby owl. It was insanely adorable.

On his fourth birthday, Alex had received a stuffed animal owl, and now, he says, the baby owl “has almost a whole family. A daddy and a baby. I bet he’s sad that he doesn’t have a mommy yet.”

True story, kid.

I figured a “Thank you, Gramma!” video would only kind of of suffice in how grateful we all are to have such an amazing, generous, woman in our lives. Seriously, my Gramma rocks. And the blankets she knit Alex? The big one is our new “cuddly blanket” that we will use for all future reading times.

Now That’s Typical February

Well, we got snow!

Sorry, everyone.

Snow Fun!

Snow Fun!

I had stopped looking at the weather. Day after day it’s been mild, maybe rainy at best, but never snowy. So, I just gave up. I stopped looking and just assumed the weather would be okay from now on. As I was leaving one location and heading to another on Friday during work, I realized there was salt everywhere. Working at a hospital means that if there is any chance at all, no matter how small, of snow the sidewalks will be salted. Like, super-crazy-covered-one-pound-per-square-foot covered. So, I thought maybe some snow was coming.

Well, turns out we did get some snow. Mostly overnight, so when we woke up on Saturday morning it was beautiful.

Snow Fun!

And now Alex believes me that it snows here. He can’t yet believe me that snow men can be built (the snow was really dry and wouldn’t even form snow balls), but maybe next year. I say next year because now that we had one good snow fall? I’m over it. Done. No more snow, please.

"Bahaha, now I have the better snowball!"

The Great Debate

In his current “class” at “school” (I use those terms very loosely, as he is four and preschool is still daycare) Alex is one of the youngest. In fact, he may be the total youngest. With a birthday at the very end of August and cutoffs around this area of September 1st for Kindergarten, I realized a while back that his age could potentially be an issue.

An “issue” only in that I am scared. I am scared that it is an issue.

As the youngest in his class at school, he isn’t the most advanced. He isn’t the fastest; he hasn’t learned the most letters; he isn’t as close to writing out full sentences as some of the other kids; he has trouble sitting still for as long as they want them to. As the kids turn 5 month by month and Alex is still closer to 4 than 5, as the teachers have approached us with concerns that he is talking too much during circle time and isn’t picking up on his writing like his classmates, I worry. The teachers aren’t particularly worried, but just the fact that they brought it to my attention makes me feel like a worrywart.


I find myself doing all of this comparison that I swore I really don’t do much of these days. And I still swear I don’t. I got over most of it when I saw, time and time again, that kids are all different! It seems so obvious, I know, but it took me a while.

And now, here I am, back to comparing. I don’t want to be. I don’t want to be worried about whether my kid is smart. I don’t want to be worried about whether he will be athletic. I don’t want to be worried that he, like me!, will be called a “chatterbox” and be removed from activities in early elementary school. I don’t want to worry that he will be too young and the teachers won’t recognize that he is young and then blame his inability to sit still on ADHD or some such nonsense.

He’s four.

Four year old boys don’t sit still. And four year old boys will talk to their friends if they are sat next to each other. A four year old boy will throw things. And fight. And wrestle. And scream. And my four year old will always choose building with blocks over working on his letters. Every. Single. Time.

With many months of living ahead of Alex, I see his classmates and think, “Wow! Look at them go!” But…they are older. And, quite frankly, it doesn’t even matter. Every kid is different. Even if they weren’t older, I tell myself, it wouldn’t matter that they are writing their name better. It wouldn’t matter that they can recognize the whole alphabet and Alex can’t.

So, in a few months we will be receiving information in the mail about enrolling Alex in Kindergarten. The “Big K.” Real Kindergarten, in our public school system. Real Kindergarten, with the cut off date 3 days after Alex’s birthday. And here I am, wondering. Worrying. Contemplating.

At the end of the day, I want him to do the best he can do. I want him to learn the most he can learn. I want him to be as smart as he can be. I want him to be challenged, but not to the extent that he feels stupid. I don’t ever want him to feel stupid. I want him to like school. I want him to be enthralled by learning.

So, at the end of the day? I think we are going to give him another year. At his current daycare there is a full day, legitimate, Kindergarten program. I think we are going to let him do that. Another year to determine the best route for him (and us!) to take. Maybe after this Kindergarten year he will be ready for first grade. Or maybe another year will help us determine that he is a little boy and should be one of the oldest in his class instead of one of the youngest.


Not a Typical February Picture

Part of me is scared at how mild this winter has been. But the other part of me is all, “Yeah! Bring it! Warm weather in February is awesome!”

Outside in FEBRUARY

Two years ago yesterday Alex was learning how to shovel, and now he doesn’t believe me that we get snow in Pittsburgh. So, let’s all work towards not killing the environment so that I can prove to him that snow is normal and fun!