Nov. 6th, 2007 09:30 pm
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Robert was as aggressive as I or the karate instructors had ever seen him, at karate yesterday. Aggressive is good, in this case. If it's because testosterone is starting to flow, that's the right place for it.

Robert: "Mrs. Gill made a mistake. She wrote 2x+4 is the same as 4x+2."
Kate: "2x+4 = 4x+2? X is 1."
Me: "Kate, how about if 4x+2=10?"
Robert: "Oh! I know..."
Me: "I know you know. Kate?"
Kate: (tsks) "Daddy, I know this algebra stuff. X is 2."

Josh last night found an old favorite toy, Good Drop Off Bear. "Did you know you had Good Drop Off Bear when you were three? That was half your life ago, when you were first starting at preschool." His eyes fill with tears. "Then Alyssa will may want him when she goes to preschool." I had to reassure him GDOB would be his forever, and Alyssa would have her own bear. "Besides, you'll need Good Drop Off Bear when we take you to college. Or at least Mommy will."
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I had a hankering for old Ultima games. Partly cuz I think my kids would get a kick out of them.

To my chagrin, after pulling out my old 386 computer, finding power cords for it, digging out a keyboard -- I find that even this old machine lacks a 5.25" floppy drive. And the Ultima games are copy-protected, and came on 5.25" disks that need to be in the drive.

Anyone have an old 5.25" drive they think still works?
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Thinking about these for the new year.

1. At least fifteen minutes with each kid individually each day, to be distinguished from time I also spend with them as a group (where many conversations involve "Just a minute, let me stop Joshua from eating the crayons"). Katie, who is sometimes getting squeezed out, especially needs to be guaranteed some time. Given that bedtime reading already mostly covers this, it's not such a hard thing to do, but I want to formalize it and protect it from interruption. And I'm a weasel because the best I can do for this on Wednesdays and Thursdays is by phone.

2. My C++ project that has been languishing for most of a decade will get attention, to a minimum of three hours a week.

3. Fifty-two pounds off in fifty-two weeks. More to come on this one.
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Shameless plug for those who care: the internationally prestigious and reknowned Walmart Portrait Studio Digital Picture Blurring System has produced some stunning new results... note that blurring is a special service they only provide for their electronic customers, and the actual portraits won't have this important touch-up step. If you'd like to see exactly what the actual holiday portraits will look like after you've consumed significant amounts of eggnog and have sat on your glasses, take a look at this...
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It must be getting colder -- Bobby and Katie were both in our bed this morning. Bobby had climbed in next to me and had appropriated enough of the comforter that Sherilyn woke and demanded it back, at which point we found that Katie was snuggled between our legs. It required discombobulation of all four of us to get the comforter arranged more equitably, after which Katie was crushing Sherilyn's legs; moving her caused objection, which led to her muscling herself in between us, under the comforter and on pillows.

My shoulders are too broad for this. They still ache from being subsequently crushed between the kids.

On Boasts

Oct. 13th, 2001 09:29 pm
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I felt pretty bad about something last night at the moms' group party. (See Sherilyn's entry about the party.) Some of Bobby's Calvin and Hobbes antics came up in conversation, and one of the other dads asked me incredulously "He's reading it to himself? Already? How old is he?" I started cheerfully into my normal brag about how he reads ahead in Harry Potter and... the dad got a wistful look on his face, glanced out the window to where his son (Bobby's age) was playing, and said "Maybe I'm not challenging Alec enough."

Knife in gut time. I listed some of Bobby's shortcomings quickly (he can't tie his shoes, for example), with some awkward preschool-teacher 'every kid's interests/development is different' pablum, but wow. I'm usually totally oblivious (at the time) to coming across as a braggart even though I know I do; I try, at least, to project a 'this day fortune smiles upon me; may she smile also upon you' attitude that seems to keep me from completely driving away friends, when I burst from feeling I must share something good that's happened to me... but sometimes that's not enough. Especially when it comes to comparing kids.

It's not in my nature to keep quiet about things that excite, fascinate, awe, or enrage me. Yet I really should know better; the way my insides twist when I hear about anything that any other kid does better than my kids should give me a clue about getting too free with stories about how well my kids are doing.

It's both good and bad to have an outlet (like, say, here); a place where I know I can boast. Good, because I simply /must/ tell someone, and I can; bad, because I forget where I am sometimes, and say in one place things that belong in another.
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The kids have been playing in the library a lot in the last month or so. The library, I will mention, has about forty linear feet of science fiction paperbacks and about the same amount again of everything else combined.

On Tuesday I was helping Bobby with his bath, discussing what we might read next after finishing Prisoner of Azkaban. I talked to him about science fiction. "There was a famous author, named Robert Heinlein, who wrote a book called 'Farmer In The Sky', about colonizing Ganymede." Bobby responded: "Yes, and he wrote another book called 'The Past Through Tomorrow'."


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