Something Beautiful or Humorous: Apples that Eli painted

Saturday, December 2, 2006

Guest Writer

Chris just finished writing his portion of our monthly updates to friends & family. He has some funny stories to tell & I thought you guys would like to hear another person's perspective on our crazy kids. :)

Chris' letter:

Eli & Mia doing well. On Veterans Day, since I had the day off, I got to go volunteer to help at Eli's preschool. When I showed up, there was another helper there, who knew about as much as what goes on in Eli's class as I do. She was there to help because Eli's normal teacher Miss Mindy, was at parent-teacher conference for her own children. Since it was veteran's day and many people had the day off, many more parents attended parent teacher conferences than usual. Mindy, who thought she would be just a few minutes late, turned out to be two hours late. The other helper and I were left asking the 4-year-olds what they do every day.

Well we had an extra long playtime at the beginning. Then we read books. Then we figured out what the day of the week was and what the weather was like outside. Finally, the other helper went to find the director of the preschool so we could figure out what to do next. I was left alone, with 12 four-year-olds. (have you ever seen daddy-daycare?) I suggested a song -- head, shoulders, knees and toes - an old staple. Most of the kids were fine with whatever, but I had to keep them focused or they would bouncing off the walls, you know how 4 year-old attention spans are. One of the children, Laurel, began saying, "Boring! boring! boring!" A little flustered, I began singing - a solo. Attention spans were growing short and they were starting to wander.

Then I said, "Can yo sing it faster?" Instantly I had the full attention of all 12 children. (ah, this is good.) We sang it a little faster. Finally I had a little chorus of children. "Eyes, ears, mouth and nose." Can you sing it FASTER? "Eyesearsmouth'nnose." Can you sing it FAAASSSTERRR?!?!?! "Eyesermthnnose." Each iteration the song became less and less understandable. I have discovered that you can only go so fast and you quickly run out of material, impromptu as I was, that keeps the attention of 12 4-year-olds.

"How about we sing If You're Happy and You Know it?" Laurel begain chanting again, "Boring! boring! boring! This time all eleven children (I think Eli felt my pain a little) joined the protest. All they needed were picket signs. Just as I was about to throw in the towel and curl myself up in the corner in fetal position, the other helper showed up with animal crackers and water for snack time.

Fortunately, as the children were eating their snacks, Miss Mindy showed up to relieve us. I was glad to resign my role as teacher and be a helper once again. I think next time I volunteer to help in Eli's class, I'll come prepared with a lesson plan.

Anyway, Mia is doing really well. She is starting to learn to use multi-word sentences with regularity. She's such a cute little girl. -- Except when she removes her messy diapers during naps and flings their contents across the room and leaves the crib soaked in pee.

This is not all. It turns out that Mia discovered this month that she is now strong enough to lift the toilet seat by herself. We have had several incidences of Mia playing in the toilet water. Did I mention that Eli is not always the most consistent flusher? A cup, a toilet and a two-year-old are three things that should never go together too long unsupervised. Aahh, the terrible twos.

On a related note, Eli is good at using the bathroom when he has to go, except in the morning. He gets up before Natalie and watches Noggin (children's educational programming) in the morning. Apparently, the shows on Noggin are so riveting that Eli just can't stand the long trek up the stairs to the toilet to relieve himself in the morning - even though he knows how to pause live TV. Instead, he has been opening the sliding glass door in the back, exposing himself to the back yard and taking a wizz on the back porch. All this time, I thought the smell in the back was a mouse that that ate the poison I had laid out there which found its final resting place in the shed. I had been putting off trying to find the mouse because it's just unpleasant to take care of. Now that Eli got caught red-handed - or probably yellow-handed when he got startled from the scream that Natalie bellowed out at finding hime - the smell in the back is gone. Hopefully the behavior was gone too.

I guess that mom would have to say that the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree.

Eli is pretty good at going #2 though. Except he's not that good at wiping. He is still too skinny to wipe while sitting on the toilet without falling in and his balance is still not good enough to stand while donning his underwear despite the large sum that we give to the Little Gym for gymnastics classes. So he has to sit to slip on his underwear. At any rate, the other day I walked into the bathroom and found, to my utter dismay, that I stepped on something where something should not have been. Too bad you can't really boil your foot.

Say a prayer of thanksgiving that most of you don't have to pick up your kids' payloads from off the floor, and have a very merry Christmas.



P.S. Natalie just told me that she didn't catch Eli yellow handed (tee hee). She had been seeing unexplained puddles on the back porch and had also been catching a whiff of the offensive odor. She told me she used her $60,000 law degree to pry the truth out of him. Eli got put in the hot seat with the laywer! Don't think she can't get the truth out of a witness. And don't you dare think that law degree is going unused.


Andrea said...

I'm glad to see that humor runs in your family! My cheeks hurt from smiling!!

Hardy's in Utah said...

This is some kind of funny. i am not looking forward to Jakob learning to use the potty.