The rain would have been number SIX.

Top five reasons the teacher is going to the “candy” store tonight.

5. When Gary put his finished breakfast garbage into its paper bag , the orange juice he neglected to drink spilled out like it was running out of a spigot full blast. He managed to soak the carpet, the class’s completed dot-to-dot morning work, Angela AND Frank. School hadn’t even officially begun.

4. When I was putting a few of the completed leaf print journals on the drying rack, I managed to dodge Frank’s flying miniature skateboard as it flew across the room in front of me. I had two HUGE green leaf prints across the front of my tee shirt ALL DAY LONG; right on my boobs. The most disturbing part of that? No one on the staff noticed, or thought it was out of the ordinary.

3. The child who is the neediest of all the children in the room, left school today rambling about how all we ever do is PLAY; play, play, play! “It’s ridikulus!” She said. Did I remind her about our literacy centers, the listening center, the phonics center, Starfall phonics computer game, Calendar Math, math centers, math groups, sorting and the math GAME we play every day? EVERY DAY? No. I gave her a hug and sent her on her way.

2. Carl came to school wearing his Flash Gordon Halloween Costume. While I DID laugh out loud when I saw him, and most of the morning, the fact that “Flash Gordon doesn’t HAVE to follow the kindergarten rules” prohibited me from enjoying this new daywear properly. Frankly, I have a Flash Gordon headache.

1. When I went into the kindergarten bathroom in our classroom after school to turn off the lights, I found a cryptic message written in a brown substance all over the outside of the toilet bowl.

It wasn’t paint.

Now pass the super-juice. I have a throbbing headache.


Where has HE been for the last two weeks?

We’ve spent the better part of two weeks studying apples.

We made apple mobiles. We made apple puppets. We did apple patterning. We sorted apples. We tasted three kinds of apples, graphed our favorites, did a survey and played an apple game.

We’ve read Ten Apples Up on Top; The Apple Pie Book; How Do Apples Grow?; Apples, Apples, Apples; Amelia Bedelia’s First Apple Pie; Apples; It’s Apple Picking Time; I Am An Apple and Up, Up, Up, It’s Apple Picking Time. Just to name a FEW.

Today we finished the unit by making a pie in one of our centers. The children rolled the dough; peeled the APPLES; helped slice the APPLES; mixed the APPLES and filled the pie shell with APPLES.

I walked over to Frank, and looked him in the eye and asked, “Frank! What kind of pie did you make today?”

He swallowed his apple, looked at me with a smile and shouted,


Yeah. My job is done.


It’s like looking into a mirror of my five-year old self.

It only took nine years in kindergarten, but Susie finally managed to get the teacher to spit her coffee all over the carpet.

During our morning meeting discussion about what we wanted to be when we grow up, Susie crossed her arms and said matter-of-factly,

“I can’t wait to grow up to be a mommy. Then I can stay up late and drink Mommy drinks.” Smile.

Please send the janitor to room 222 for a clean-up.


I can’t even blame it on the anesthesia because they didn’t give me any.

I went to the doctor’s office today fully expecting to be sent home. I was told that the fatty lipoma was pretty large, in the chest muscle (in my back-go figure) and I would probably have to have it removed at the surgical center.

I told Tightwad that. I told my co-workers that. I told my sister that. I told myself that.

I was wrong.

“It’s fairly large, but I think we can do it here. Would you like to have it done now, or have us schedule you at the surg-center?” Dr. Seriousness asked, as he stood there with the Physician’s Assistant "student". She was shadowing him for the day, and I think I was part of the show.

“Let’s do it!” I said, hoping to be done with this whole crazy thing.

I was on the table being carved like a tough Thanksgiving Day turkey when the nurse said to the doctor, “She’s a celebrity, you know. She’s the teacher who writes those funny columns for the newspaper! The kindergarten teacher!”

I was laying face down on the table with my head turned, and tried to answer the questions the nurse and the “student doctor” were firing at me in an effort to distract me from the twelve-pound boulder they were trying to YANK from the middle of my back.

The doctor, who I THOUGHT was a bit busy, asked, “Did you ever teach your own children?”

“Hell no!” I replied. “I can barely even LIVE with them.”

I heard the elusive guffaw from stone cold Dr. Seriousness and his loyal nurse; it was music to my ears.

Now, someone pass the Motrin. I’m a WEE bit sore.

(I am thrilled to have been chosen as an "LG TextEd Ambassador" by BlogHer. The fact that the only way we communicate in this house by texting has increased my rep GREATLY over there. Fortunately, there was no spelling test involved, and they don't really know that profanity comprises MOST of the texts. Moms with kids- check it out. You will either be there SOON, or you are already. Never say never people. Haven't you learned a THING over here???)


Guess what one of my little darlings left on the carpet at the end of the day today???

Roses are red,

Violets are blue,

It looked just like an acorn,

but it was really poo.


(I am thrilled to have been chosen as an "LG TextEd Ambassador" by BlogHer. The fact that the only way we communicate in this house is by texting has increased my rep GREATLY over there. Fortunately, there was no spelling test involved." Moms with kids- check it out. You will either be there SOON, or you are already. Never say never people, haven't you learned a THING over here???)


And I didn't even have to hold still..

I have a brilliant little artist in my room.

And apparently I looked pretty hot yesterday! I'm so glad I didn't let my mother convince me to have that nose job.


Wordless Wednesday (or things that made me smile this week.)

The best dressed class in town.

Thank you Mouthy Housewives, you really DID send me a vacuum cleaner. (HOLY COW!!!) However, you neglected to include the operator.


A word of advice to any potential kindergarten or first grade teachers:

When talking to the children about what they want to be when they grow up, be very careful.

If one of your darlings says they play the piano, and they want to be a “Piano-ER” when go grow up, let it go.

Do NOT tell the whole class the real name of what it is she wants to be. THEY will hear PEEanist.

Unless, of course, you want to start a mass riot of children shouting PEE PEE PEE for about twelve minutes, that will result in mass hysterical laughter.

Then, by all means, go right ahead.


Crazy things that happened this week while I was distracted by my life.

I'm sure the list is longer, but I'm disausted....

1. I have been given a great opportunity to give away a $100 gift card. ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS. Since I can’t ethically keep it for myself, I would love to give it to one of you. Go over here and do a billion things to qualify.

2. I woke up the other morning and discovered I had over 100 new followers on Twitter! This continues to amaze me because frankly, I have nothing of any value to say. Babble decided that after spending the last 20 years screwing up my children, that I had earned something, and named me a Twitter mom. When I look around at the others, I’m convinced that they had me confused with someone else. However, I’m going to take the trophy and run with it.

3. Sassy’s team had another game on Wed. and although they lost in overtime, she was thrilled to have played every second of it. Tomorrow, Bitchy and I are traveling across Oregon to watch the first home game, and I will try extremely hard not to embarrass her. Frankly, I’m hoping Bitchy and I will have a knock down drag out and I’ll be able to get out of this bizarre crazy estrogen deprived cave.

4. I’m still amazed at the power of the internet (Thank you Al Gore for inventing it) and have been smiling from ear to ear when I think about Kevin and his family, as they bask in the afterglow of winning the Pepsi Refresh Grant! They are basking in glimmers of hope, optimism and love. You all are amazing, as are the many thousands of others who took the time to vote and text. Power to the people; power, indeed.

5. I am ASTONISHED with the Hillshire Farm people, as they pulled my card out of the fishbowl after the Blogher conference, and informed me that I am getting free Hillshire Farm products for a year. A YEAR!! This email conveniently arrived about 10 minutes after Tightwad and I had a minor DISCUSSION about the status of his employment. Or lack thereof. (Sandwiches for breakfast, lunch and dinner? You bet your ass.)

6. Last but not least, I had a crazy dream that I ran into my principal at a meeting, and he told me not to worry about my blog anymore- that no one really cared about what I was writing. I am taking that as a sign, and am trying to reclaim my identity.

7. I am totally in love with my class, and am so thankful for my little fella Jack. During a very important discussion about rules, he rolled on the floor and started moaning. THEN he sat up, raised his hand and shouted my name until I finally called on him.

“Mrs. Smythe. I want to talk about this NO NAP thing. I do NOT like it!”

He then started a “We want naps!” chant that resulted in the teacher throwing in the towel. “Recess. RIGHT NOW!” I shouted. And THAT is how we ended our week.

Now, wish Sassy luck, cross your fingers, and go over and win that $100 bucks.

Today I'm wearing the my plastic jumpsuit.

Note to Self…

If a child says their head and tummy hurts, and you ask them if they think they are going to throw up, and they say maybe, odds are great that they will vomit at that very moment.

If said child is one that has been crying every afternoon since school started, and you have a feeling she just wants to go home so see her mom, IGNORE that feeling.

When taking said child to the office because the crying is disrupting the class, take a garbage can with you. Chances are great that said child will vomit.

When interviewing prospective K-2 Failsafe paraprofessionals for your classroom, make sure they don’t run when they see vomit.

When talking to parents at the beginning of the year, make sure they send extra clothes just in case their child vomits.

When planning a program that involves running in place, jumping jacks, and singing and dancing, make sure to schedule it in the morning, and NOT after lunch. Someone might vomit.

Guess what happened yesterday in kindergarten? Yep, you got it.


He can multiply, divide, speak Spanish, discuss square roots and perform magic.

I have a little boy in my room this year who is gifted and talented.

I was given a heads-up by several different people who shared that John was not only an amazing reader, but he was very advanced in math.

Many times I smile when I hear these things, because more often than not the Asian children who usually appear in my room are heads above the other children- but they never seem to have an “advance team” informing their teacher of their supernatural powers. (And somehow, miracle of miracles, I usually figure out what they need to succeed.)

As the days progressed, I have noticed that John WAS indeed an amazing reader, and his problem solving skills are equally amazing. However, it was THIS conversation about our Hopes and Dreams for the year that confirmed his place in my heart.

Boys and Girls, now we are going to talk about our OWN Hopes and Dreams for this year; what do YOU want to learn this year? What is your HOPE for the year?

Susie: I hope I learn to read!

Janie: I HOPE to learn to read, too!

Jack: I hope I learn to swim! With NO floaties!

Trixie: I want to learn to do math. Really hard math!

And then I finally heard from my gifted and talented John:

“You know what? I want to learn how to shoot lightening bolts out of my hands! That’s what I really want to do.”

And that made my day. Yeah, he’s gifted and talented, but you know what?

He’s also a real, live boy.


I'm just not sure how you would wrap it..

I'm a century old today. Divided by two. Plus one.

If you INSIST on celebrating with me, bring pie or ice cream - because I don't do cake.

Oh, and no gifts, please. Just perhaps a little something over here.

xoxoxox to all of you. You lift me up every single day, and for that I am eternally thankful.


Sometimes THEY know what's best for them.

I’ve spent the last four Septembers driving through every small town in this very mountainous state of Oregon, to watch Sassy develop into a decent field hockey player. Before that, I spent two springs doing the same.

As Sassy approached her senior year in high school, we were not aggressive about touting Sassy’s talents to every Division One Team in the nation because frankly, it costs a pretty penny to get your child noticed.

Tightwad and I both believe that an athlete’s talent ought to speak for itself, but the reality is this; you have to be seen at every college camp, at Festivals held in California and Florida, play for every and any team within a five thousand mile radius, and send your films and endless begging emails to any coaches or teams that MIGHT have a spot for you.

We are among many other families in this country that just do not have the money for this kind of advertising. So, in the end, you not only have to have natural god-given talent, you also have to have some wealthy family members to help you along the way.

I hate that *@&^.

Fortunately for Sassy, there WERE some D-1 teams that expressed interest in her, even if she DID have crappy parents. For a while we expected her to attend a smaller D-1 school that was fairly close to home.

Then the calls started.

They were from a D-3 coach who was extremely interested in Sassy, and she would not give up. She called her weekly, kept up on her games and her accomplishments, and made her feel important.

It was after the season ended that Sassy informed me that she wanted to visit this particular coach, her university, and see what she had to offer.

I laughed it off at first. “What??” I said. “But that’s NOT a D-1 school! Surely you are kidding.”

“Mom. It’s JUST a visit.”

And so we went. It was her life, her path and she needed to be informed so that she could make a decision that was best for her.

We went on a Friday and I dropped her off with a group of girls I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW. I drove to my hotel thinking that this was probably the craziest thing I had ever done.

We left the following afternoon.

“That’s it. THAT is where I want to go to school. Those are the girls I want to play with, and that is the coach that I want to play for.”

I tried to keep my mouth shut. It didn’t work.

“But it’s NOT A D-1 SCHOOL! You are so talented! Your coach said…”

“Mom, stop. Listen to me. Why do I want to go to a school where I have to fight and kiss up to people on the SLIGHT CHANCE that I MIGHT play when I’m a senior? WHY? I want to play now. I want to play with a team that plays as a team- not where people are only playing for themselves.”

I digested this on the long ride home.

She was right.

Last night she called me after her first college game.

“Mom! WE WON 5-1!! And guess what? I started. I played MOST of the game! I came out by mistake and when coach realized I was out she sent me back in!”

I was so proud, and couldn’t really talk for a minute.

But then, she continued, “Mom, this is what I’ve worked so hard for all these years. THIS. I feel like it has all paid off.”

And with that, I knew that she was right where she was supposed to be.


I, for one, adored the swag.

Because I spent the last four days with 19 five-year olds who don't know what a line is, what quiet means, and who can cry, laugh, yell, run, shout and cause their teacher to laugh uncontrollably - I am planning on sleeping for 12 hours. Straight.

However, as I've been promising, here are some of the swag items that I scored at BlogHer. I am still somewhat speechless.

Yes. It's a Vera.

Awesome headphones from Social Luxe. I didn't even get to TOUCH them.

INCREDIBLE!! I decided to keep this myself.

This, frankly, is life support.

Yes. It's a vacuum. IT IS! Now, if it comes with an operator I just might turn it on.