what makes me a PTA reject

Yes, I am that mom. I am a PTA reject.

Why are you even remotely surprised?

Now it’s not that I didn’t try. Back when Hollie was a bright-eyed little kindergartener, I did sign on to join and I enthusiastically planned to attend all the meetings and take on all the projects. Then I attended my first meeting…

Oh you work?

I’m not sure why this seemed to be such a bad thing but it was. Still I pressed on determined to support my daughter by supporting her school. They needed me, no matter what anyone who regards moms who work outside the home as bad people might think. But attending meetings and participating seemed like, well, it seemed like junior high where ugly, awkward, pimply-faced me just wanted to be friends and fit in with the graceful, pretty, clear-skinned popular girls.

It seemed that this is where the pretty, clear-skinned popular girls landed…in the PTA.

UGH! This feels a lot like Moms’ Bible Study!

Whatever!

I stopped attending the meetings. I definitely did not sign on to any committees or special projects…except for that one year I was on the school yearbook committee because Yearbook Mom told me the year before that there was no way that Zoë’s name could appear in the yearbook with the umlaut above the “e”. Well, it did when she was in second grade because her mommy participated in the yearbook committee and with a Sharpie pen put two dots above the “e”. Yearbook Mom at first was not amused, but every year after there were two dots above the ‘e’ because I showed her how it could be done. But other than that I was pretty comfortable with paying the annual PTA dues and buying the crappy wrapping paper, the stinky candles, the chocolate candies and all the walkathons because it was for my kids’ school. The school got the money, my kids got the class credit and ice cream party for kids whose parents were members, the PTA moms didn’t have to deal with the awkward of me wanting to fit in and for them to tell me that I couldn’t…and they could get back to their whispering about the moms who worked outside the home…especially the one who looked like she just rolled out of bed in rumpled scrubs at the afternoon pickup…yes, me. It was good for us all.

Added bonus is the free ice cream for me!

Frankly, I find myself wondering why we can’t just adopt this approach to school support and fundraising?

Sign.

Me.

Up.

All kidding and snarkiness aside, I still support my kids’ schools….Dolphins and Timberwolves and now Sun Devils all the way!!! Just let me write you a check and you all who eat, sleep and breathe PTA while hovering closely over our kids’ schools can continue to do the awesome that you do. Smile and thank me…then get back to the whispering about my just rolled out of bed look…or the other moms who just don’t seem to fit in.

Like my daughter.

We’re totally okay with that.

And then when I’m feeling oh so smug as I write this the phone rings…

Mom…

What’s up Daniel?

Today was a minimum day. Are you going to come get me?

Yes. I did that.

life distracts

No apologies, just acknowledging that living life day to day sometimes will distract.

Doctors’ appointments and wondering what pediatrician’s office doesn’t have these germ encrusted toys that our kids always want to play with? Sorry, some things micro preemie moms just never let go even when their extremely premature baby is now a teenager.

Road trips…for more doctors’ office visits.

Exhausting they are…completely.

Back to school adventures begin and we pause wondering how in the world can she be in SECOND GRADE??!!

And how can she possibly be hundreds of miles from home starting college which includes a class studying Orange Is The New Black? She better ace that class. I mean it.

Then there’s work…

and laundry…yes, still…

Life distracts from taking the time to sit down and write about life and I offer no apology because life distracts…and because I have several loads of laundry waiting to be folded.

One would imagine that with only 2 of my 5 children remaining here under The Big Top that there would be so much less to juggle. One would be wrong.

Give me a sec to adjust this juggling act.

moving back to school

Yes, we are back from my sister’s wedding. Yes, it was absolutely wonderful! Yes, my sister was absolutely the loveliest bride. Yes, the whole family had a great time making great memories. Yes, there are pictures to share. No, I haven’t begun to sort and edit them. Yes, that means that I am not quite ready to share them all.

Patience.

I have some unpacking to finish and, of course, laundry too.

But first…

Daniel’s first day of school…two days after the official first day of school.

Seventh grade life, people!

I’m not sure what to think of this smile of his right now.

Seventh grade life, people!

Best thing about seventh grade so far? His 5th grade mainstream teacher is his 7th grade mainstream teacher. His homeroom teacher is hot. Instead of recess he has BRUNCH and BREAK because this is 7th grade, mom.

Oh, 7th grade life!

It’s going to be a good year.

And then there is this…

I cried just a little looking at all of this and more that is moving to Arizona with my baby girl mainly because I can’t be there to help her move in…and hover just a little…or perhaps a lot because this is my youngest daughter.

Zelda, after closer inspection, thinks this is pretty much bullshit…she’s taking the big fluffy pillows and comforter!!! Now what am I going to lie on while I nap in the warm morning sunshine??!! You can’t FaceTime fluffy pillows and bedding!

or her hugs that she so willingly gives all the time every day. You’re right, Zelda. This is bullshit.

Sigh!

I’m so excited for her next adventure but dammit, I’m going to miss her while she’s gone. ASU, you better be very good to my baby, my love, my heart, my joy!

we’re going to title this “how I spent my summer vacation”

Back to school in our neck of the woods is fast approaching…TWENTY TWO DAYS!!!! So is my sister’s wedding and so is Jodie’s move to Arizona (SOB!) But until then, we have twenty two days left to try to have as much fun as we can and as we can afford because my sister’s wedding and Jodie’s move to Arizona is just around the corner. Meanwhile, since the beginning of June, here is where I have been three afternoons a week.

Sitting in the “Faux-bucks” in my local Target sipping an iced green tea while I write, edit photos, pin stuff on Pinterest, tweet, enjoy a podcast…especially this one because I know Kristen and she and Liz totally rock…and generally try to restrain myself from leaving the Fauxbucks to wander the aisles of Target and buy all the things while Daniel is next door at our local Sylvan Learning Center. Twenty tutoring sessions in and while I admit it hurts paying that tuition, I am so thankful for spending my summer vacation this way…and I guess Daniel spending some of his summer vacation there too. Suddenly my son is enjoying learning a little bit. Perhaps he will never be as excited about reading and learning as his nerdy mommy has been, is and always will be. But after his session with his tutor, he tells me all about nouns and verbs and pronouns and synonyms and homophones and vocabulary words….

HE.

IS.

TELLING.

ME.

He is telling me so much more than the standard “okay”, “we did math”, ‘we had an assembly” answers. He is actually enjoying learning and he is telling me about it.

Worth it.

So absolutely, completely worth it.

Plus I’m spending quality time in my local Fauxbucks, sipping my iced green tea while I people watch, write, edit photos, pin, tweet and catch up on my girls from Spawned.

ready to shake your hand

Six years ago a friend of mine met my darling son for the very first time. As I introduced him to Jessica, Daniel extended his right hand and as he shook hers he said, Hello, I’m Daniel”. And with a firm handshake, my friend and coworker met Daniel face to face for the first time. A day later, I received a message from Jessica telling me how impressed she was that my 7 year old little boy shook her hand and said hello. Clearly his introduction made an impact on her as she reached out to me to share.

Yes, that’s my boy. That’s who he is. Who he has been for as long as he has been old enough to respond when his mom would introduce him to someone.

Hello. I am Daniel.

My baby boy always would reach out and offer his right hand to say hello. Without hesitation. My boy. My baby boy.

Hi, I’m Daniel.

His Dad and I lost count this weekend how many times our son would extended his hand, without our prompting, to say hello and introduce himself to his father’s colleagues at Dad’s company picnic and then the next day to his sister’s co-workers at his niece’s birthday party.

Perhaps this is not what one might expect from the average thirteen year old kid given the reaction from the people who work with Bill and with Hollie; but this is my baby boy, my young man. This is who he is and who he has been. He shakes your hand…or he might reach out to hug you. Fair warning that if you choose to accept his extended hand and introduction he will follow with a discourse on Lego figurines, Nintendo game or, perhaps, the absolutely perfect birthday card he chose (by himself) for his niece. Just go with it. Accept it. Allow yourself to be educated, enlightened and consider yourself so damn lucky to enjoy a hearty handshake and introduction from this remarkable young man

.