Thursday, May 29, 2008

Like Looking in a Mirror

Today was Jayla's end of the school year party at school. It seemed especially fitting since tomorrow is her last day in the toddler room that she has called home for the past 16 months. As usual, I was responsible for bringing one of the entree items for the party. I kind of like bringing hot food for the party because I know I am one of the few parents in the classroom that can do that for our kids. Obviously, most parents who send their toddler to school full-time do so because they work full-time jobs. I am the exception. But, I digress...

This morning, I cut up a couple of frozen pizzas into toddler-sized bites and took it over to the school about 15 minutes before the party was scheduled to start. As I approached the door to Jayla's classroom, I heard one of the teachers yelling her name and then I heard Jayla screaming at the top of her lungs. She was so upset that she didn't even acknowledge my presence. I walked in, she looked directly at me and continued to scream. She was still screaming when I walked out and came back home.

So, why was she screaming and crying while the other 15 kids who are all younger than her peacefully worked on whatever activity they had been assigned to work on at the time? Because Jayla is her mama's child. Jayla gets very frustrated whenever she doesn't do something perfectly on the first try. She was working on a puzzle and had gotten frustrated because one of the pieces did not fit the way she thought it should. And when I say "she gets frustrated", it's really more accurate to say that she gets blazing mad. As I was finding a place to put the pizza down, I heard one of the teachers telling her, "Jayla you got it right. Look, it fits just like this." The next thing I know Jayla was throwing the puzzle pieces across the room. That's when I left.

Jayla has similar episodes at home. But, I try to remain calm (like the teacher did) and I try to encourage her to keep trying. She usually doesn't want to and I don't blame her. I am the exact same way. I basically won't even try anything that I don't think I will excel at it. It's nothing that I'm proud of but, it's something that I seem to have passed on to my child. I don't want her to be like me in that respect. I want her to be able to try new things and work at them even if she isn't perfect the first time. Something tells me that working towards that with her is going to require me to learn a thing or two as well.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Between Semesters

I am glad to have the past two weeks behind me. I was teaching a May-mester class which required me to be up, dressed, and out of the house by 6:00am. This meant that I did not get to see Jayla in the morning and it meant that I was going to bed at the same time that she was. It took away time that I cherish at both the beginning of the day (lounging in bed with Jayla while Daddy gets ready for work) and at the end of the day (sitting in front of the television, surfing the Internet, after Jayla goes to bed). But, it was a valuable experience. It was my first opportunity to teach a graduate class and my first teaching opportunity at a major research intitution. For that, my resume is thankful.

During the weekend between the two weeks of teaching, I made a quick trip to Nashville to visit a friend that I've not seen in almost 5 years. It was a much needed break as I could do no work because I had no access to the Internet. My child and husband seemed to entertain themselves well enough while I was gone and I got to eat some Bojangles. Ya'll know how much that meant to me.

And now, I've got the next two days to catch myself a quick break before my summer class starts on Friday...

Friday, May 23, 2008

...and I just can't hide it!

Either ordering a new laptop after a month of using a broken down one is really, really exciting or I really am the dork that I fear that I am. However, in my brilliance, I waited until the Friday afternoon before a holiday weekend to finally order it...which means it has a projected shipping date of NEVER.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Glimpses of my third Mother's Day (as a mother...)

(I promise that my two-toned arm is not so obvious in person! - However, I suspect the appearance of my arm has something to do with the outdoor 2-year-old birthday party that we went to yesterday...that required me to feed ducks in the park and attempt to function under the blistering sun of 90-degree Houston weather! Ahhh...what I won't do for my child...)

After church, I managed to suggest the perfect restaurant for my mother's day dinner - no waiting for a table and my favorite "bad" foods...

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Not exactly what I had planned...

This past week was what I was considering to be my "free week". It was the only week that I could relax a little bit between semesters and maybe focus on some me-type things. I had planned to:

  • Go shopping for some summer attire to combat this 90 degree weather we are already being subjected to
  • Get a pedicure
  • Attend "Muffins with Moms" at Jayla's school
  • Get an estimate on some work that I want done on the house
  • Hit the gym most days of the week
  • Order and install a new screen inverter in my laptop so that maybe, just maybe I can see an image on my laptop screen

Instead, I:

  • Rode 20 hours in the car to and from Nowhere, Arkansas in a span of the 72 hours that comprised Tuesday through Thursday
  • Painted Jayla's toenails in a $45/night motel room while the rest of the family attended Jayla's great-great grandfather's funeral
  • Took an impromptu trip to school to prepare for a class that I am teaching there starting next week
  • Went to the gym once on Monday morning
  • Ordered and installed a new screen inverter in my laptop and still cannot see an image on my laptop screen

Thursday, May 01, 2008

School Update and A Tribute to Bojangles

Lucy (oh, how I miss you!) suggested that I talk about school, so here goes:

This is the last week. On Sunday I had three big things that were staring me in the face that I needed to do this week...a paper that I've supposedly been writing all semester, a statistics exam, and a dreadful group project/paper/presentation thingy.

The paper is done and I turned it in on time on Tuesday. The statistics exam was completed last night. And now it's just that group project thing left to present on Saturday. Please somebody tell my professors that I don't want to work in groups anymore. I don't like them at all...never have.

So, anyway, I've been trying to figure out what to do in the fall concerning my class schedule. And I've figured out that I've gotten spoiled and lazy by only having to drive up to school once a week...and occasionally twice. In the fall I may be looking at 2-3 days per week. I need to suck it up and get over it.

I started emailing professors and collecting syllabi last week to figure out which classes I wanted to take. The one exciting thing about the class that I've probably decided to take that is going to require me to be on campus the extra day each week is that the professor is from North Carolina. He went to UNC but, we decided to squash our apparent differences since we are so far from "home". But, the great thing about him? He likes Bojangles and said that he misses the dirty rice and biscuits. I was completely sold on him from that point, his class I'm not so much sold on because of the drive and the fact that the syllabus clearly lays out that it is way more work involved in that class than I feel like doing.

Speaking of Bojangles - Cecilia, Jayla LOVES wings...LOVES!! AND she had her first Bojangles the last time we were in NC and she ate an entire box of food (strips, fries, and biscuit) by herself! Just another one of those proud parenting child enjoys consuming saturated fats...and twirling around in the family room while wearing pink camo...

This post has been brought to you by randomness.