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January 28, 2011

Snow Day

As you probably know (or experienced first hand), New York has received a bit of snow in the last few weeks. The Manhattan public school kids have been left out of the Snow Day party until yesterday. So I took a bit of video of the Little Man and the downtown crew enjoying the day. An epic snow covered hill climb and then the “quick way” down. Enjoy!

September 15, 2010

Coffee With That?

The Little Man returned to school this week (technically last week, but in my book, school starting on a Wednesday and then a two day holiday doesn’t count) and that comes with all the usual back to school requirements.

• Emergency Contacts? Check.
• Afterschool Programs? Check.
• Back to School Night? Check.
• School Supplies List? Check-a-licious with a capital “F” footnote.

I share the same surprise as some of the parents in the New York Times article “Scissors, Glue, Pencils? Check. Cleaning Spray?” that our classroom supplies list felt a bit more like a school administrator shopping list.

All the list was missing was a corporate endorsement from Staples or Office Depot. “This years school supplies list brought to you by Staples, your number one source for buying all the stuff the school administrators need for their office that your kids will never use in their classroom.”

Now that the shock of this year has worn off, I’ll be ready for next year when the list includes coffee, a new scanner and a new basketball hoop for the yard.

November 3, 2009

Little Man Big Decisions

Our Little Man participates in his school’s afterschool program a few days a week.  So for one day of the afterschool experience, we had thrown in a Spanish class.  As I mentioned in other posts before (see Màs?), we would love to give our son the gift of a second language.  Before the school year started there were many protests and “discussions” but we held fast thinking he gets to choose two days and we get one.  Fair enough, right? 

As the year has gone on, the protests had not stopped, but in fact had multiplied.  The entire walk home from that day was a recount of the atrocities he experience in his 50 minute Spanish class.  It was enough that we decided it might be best not to forever brand the second language option as a terrible forced experience.  We agreed to change that day to Soccer Club (with all his friends) with hopes of preserving another chance at language in the future. 

Little did we know what an impact this would have on the Little Man’s world.  It started this weekend and continued right into this morning.  He got up today literally singing and joking like he Emceeing a comedy roast or something.  If he wasn’t six, I might have checked his backpack for some kind of mood enhancing substance.  Laughing at everything, doing what we asked, telling us he loved us at every turn, who was this kid?

Thinking more about it, it’s not that surprising.  As little as it seemed to us, this was a major change in his world for the better (in his opinion).  Our little ones go from school to activities to homework to meals to bed, very little of which they have any control over or say in.  Perhaps the most important lesson was him teaching us “No Màs” might be the right call sometimes.

August 28, 2009

End of Summer Already?

We say it each year as Labor Day closes in on us, but how in the world is it August 28 already? Where did the summer go and how did I miss it? For some, the end of summer is a very sad time. No more vacations for foreseeable future, our winter clothes are peeking out of the top shelves of closets and generally we all just get busier. For others, it is a time to rejoice. Kids back to school, the weather may finally cool off and our routines return to normal.

I’m not sure which I feel. I miss the routine that school brings and I sure am looking to cool evenings of autumn in New York (arguably our best season). That being said, enjoying the freedom of summer with my son is amazing – especially for the fleeting time he still is young enough to think it’s cool to hang out with Dad. In a few years it will all be homework, friends and sports and hanging with parents will be a fate worse than teenage acne.

I guess that leaves me with the reminder that I’ve learned over the first six years of his life and that is that as soon as you get used to one stage of your kids’ development – it changes. Don’t look too far forward and certainly don’t check the rear view mirror. I, of course, am terrible at this and need to take my own advice. So for now, I’m going to enjoy the waning days of summer with the little man and then be just as excited for the first day of school.