Friday, September 28, 2012

Farm Kings or Random Musings?


Just a small warning.  Actually have you ever thought about the random warning labels people might have if that was done?  I'm thinking this is most definitely mine. PB's would be "Do NOT add sugar or chocolate under ANY circumstances".   A variation on runs with scissors or doesn't play well with others.  I was going to do some more random blogging today about a few things such as:

-once again being pissed at PB's teacher
-the fact that really I should not ever under any circumstances be dealt with between the hours of 2am and 7am.  It's just not a good idea.
-more on what I want to do with my life when I grow up

BUT while some of that really was winning out I just re watched last night's premiere episode of the Farm Kings.  My former roommate and one of my dearest friends pointed out on Facebook that I am obsessed.  Um- ya think?  At least its a safe cheap obsession!  I could do much worse!  Another friend who checked out the first Farm Kings post dropped me a line asking what the thing is about Tim since its pretty much not what I've ever said my kind of guy is.  I'll go into in more when I do Tim's own post (because you know it has to be done, right?).  To say she's absolutely right is true.  My type has always been the tall (at least 6'), blonde, blue eyed military type.  No facial hair and not a lot of chest hair.  She wondered how I'd gone from that to this:

Yeah I'm not too sure either but it is most definitely working for me.  Maybe the rotten luck with the past military men?  Who knows but yeah this would pretty much be the definition of what makes me want to do some very wicked albeit fun things!  I think I've just crossed over into Tim's post again. 

Alright so last night Princess Bear's (PB) piano lesson was cancelled because her teacher was in the hospital.  So we hurried through dinner, piano practice and all of her homework.  She kept on asking how much time there was until the farmers were on.  It was kind of cute.  My dad finally was like "What the hell farmers is she talking about?"  So PB was being a pretty good kiddo last night because she wanted to watch the farmers too.  I gave her a pass and let her watch some TV and extended bedtime a little bit.  I'm such a nice mom! Anyway she was looking at the greenhouses and the show and went running into the family room where my parents were watching their own stuff screaming "Quick!  Put on the Farmers!  Mommy needs one of those so she won't grow seeds in the house next spring!".  My dad was not amused but it was great watching her trying to convince him a greenhouse was needed!  I let PB watch the first half of the show and then scooted her off to bed.  The show was a lot from the intro episode with some new things interspersed.  I goes a bit more into what what everyone does and every one's personalities.  I've got to say that after watching last nights episode that I feel kind of sorry for Dan.  I can totally relate to how he feels when he says that no one listens to him.  It is also not a fun place to be when your employer is your family as well.  It has a great side to it but it can also suck.  I'm kind of interested to see where Dan decides to carve a niche for himself.  I guess personality wise I'm a bit like Dan too in the not sticking with things but once I've made up my mind its done. 

I didn't catch the last 15 minutes of the episode last night and was kind of glad I DVRd it.  SO, if I had any doubt as to whether I'd watch the show or not I can say I'm a fan.  And its not just about the eye candy.  Actually it's a fun show.  I love watching the family dynamics at play.  It also has some funny moments and isn't that really why you watch TV?  As an escape.  It was great watching mom Lisa fuss over the cow and her calf.  It was damn cute and a reason why I should never go to something like that either.  I don't know why but the part that really fascinates me and makes me want to watch it more is the whole family dynamics thing.  Maybe it's because its so unknown to me.  In my family and extended family we don't have that or anything like that.  I loved when they talked about not holding grudges.  People do that?  Ok yes I'm kidding but it is completely foreign to my family.  Hell- my mom is still pissed about stuff that happened when I was 9.  She has the memory of an elephant!  It was also nice to see them let loose and have fun together when the played paintball.  The family celebrating Pete's birthday was also fun but seriously the suit t-shirt Pete??????  C'mon! :) 

So all in all I still give the show a thumbs up and now its based on content and not just the view.  Speaking of the view though can anyone tell me what the tattoos on Tim's chest are???????????  Thanks!          


OK, I'm out for now.  I think it's time to conquer the house. Not sure if I'll be around this weekend.  We're doing family time and taking PB to the Fine Arts Festival tomorrow.  Sunday is the day I have plans for.  So looking forward to seeing Kristy & meeting her new husband as well as everyone else.  They're planning on doing some shooting.  I wonder if I can get anyone to teach me?  Scary thought!  So not sure when I'll post again.  Monday at the latest hopefully.  Have a great weekend!


Thursday, September 27, 2012

I love my nephews!

Today was mainly a Lukie and Aunt Sarah day which was alright by me.  I love when I get to spend one on one time with the boys!  I think we're going to have to start the Farm and Fleet adventures soon as well as the pumpkin farm.  Yesterday I introduced the boys to Jimmy Buffett.  Tyler loved it because the youtube video I picked for Volcano was from a show at Wrigley.  Anything that has to do with his Cubbies is ok in his book.  The fact that it was about a volcano was also cool with him.  Cheeseburger in Paradise didn't go over so well.  What can you do?  Today Luke wanted to keep on watching the same Wubzy (?) Halloween video again and again and again and again and again and again  (you're getting the point here right?).  Finally Aunt Sarah had enough and decided it was time to once again further his music education.  He was completely loving Marley which is not a big surprise since most kids do.  Princess Bear (PB) loves listening to the lion man.  I have no idea why she calls Marley the lion man but she has ever since she was little.  When I totaled the car a few years ago I had to go get everything out of it.  I thought I was done and went on my merry little way.  I got home and PB asked to listen to Marley.  Oh shit!  It was still in the cars player.  They hadn't demolished the car yet so Marley was saved.  So Lukie and I chilled with Bob Marley for awhile.  After that I introduced him to the Specials.  We were listening to Message to you Rudy and I asked him what he thought.  He looked at me and then looked down at the ipad again and turns back to me "pretty cool".  I love that he actually was thinking about and listening to the music.  I also didn't know that Amy Winehouse covered the song.  The things you'll learn on youtube!  After that we listened to some Sublime, Alan Jackson and The Clash.  It'll take some time but I'm sure that I will have the child broken out of my sister and brother in laws little music mold!  Don't get me wrong I love my sister and brother in law and think that they are great parents.  I also think that my sister and brother in law are as straight possible.  I think in their little world their boys will be perfect little kids and go to school and get straight A's, never buck them or the system and go on to school to become Doctors or lawyers.  My sister declared from the time that Tyler was an infant that her kids would never be allowed to play football in school.  Also once they were in college my sister and brother in law would only help financially if they were studying an approved career option.  Now since I'm the one living with my daughter at my parents maybe I shouldn't say anything except for the fact that PB and I are here because it's better for her and long ago my parents decided that they didn't want me to work but concentrate on raising PB.  Probably one of the biggest mistakes I've made overall but that's a different post.  The bottom line is that PB is a secure, happy little girl that is doing amazingly well and has made huge progress despite what the Dr's told me was possible.  Ok so back to my nephews and I guess PB as well.  I've always said that PB and the boys were more like siblings than cousins.  They fight like siblings and love like siblings.  I think at times my sister and bil being the straight laced ones will help all three of the kiddos.  There is also times that have a free spirit rebellious mom/ Aunt is a good thing.  I think it will all balance out in the end.  I'm also so grateful that I have my nephews and that they are going to be spending a few more years here before Cat transfers my brother in law.  It's been so nice to have an active part the lives of two little kids that don't have the complicated medical needs.  I wouldn't trade my daughter for anything in the world and she's taught me more than I could have ever imagined.  She's more of a blessing than I deserve.  I also know that I'm human and every once in awhile I want to know why or what if.  I get that you can't live your life doing what ifs and I really do try not to visit there often.  I remember around PB's first birthday I added up how many days she'd spent in the hospital in her first year.  Now what?  I never did that again.  I also know that living in land of whys and what ifs isn't a way to help yourself.  My family never understood why I was willing to have more kids after PB was born.  Why not?  First and foremost PB's diagnosis is not a genetic issue.  It is for her but it wasn't a passed down issue.  Then there is the obvious that if I was to have ever had another the DNA was going to be 50% different since her father and I parted ways long ago.  To me it was never even an issue of how could I have another child which is how my entire family felt but why wouldn't I.   I've always said that PB is an only that never wanted to be an only.  Another reason that I'm so glad that she and my nephews are close.  Even as recently as a year ago my uncle was hassling me that I would even consider having another child and how it would be so unfair to PB and yada yada yada.  Since I'm now at the point where having kids is pretty much a moot point I would really like to give the various family members who've given me a hard time about it a bitch slap.  Wow I'm in another post.  All about the dysfunction of my family and lack of boundaries.  It's kind of like my mom's brother and sister not like PB's name and giving her a nickname before she was even born.  Although I hated that my sister wouldn't tell us the kids names before they were born I get it.  OK so there it is.  A rundown on today along with a lot of rambling.  I'm now off to make dinner.  Once again my daughter is already bitching about my menu choice.  10 bucks says she eats like a starving child and begs for more.  Then its time to get the house picked up because Farm Kings is on tonight! 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What door to try now!

It seems like such a very odd day.  Actually it started last night.  I was watching Sons of Anarchy (SoA).  While this is one of my favorite shows I really think that some of the brutality this season has been over the top.  My sister was saying that she's about had it with the show because of it.  I get that raw, gritty violence aspect of it.  It is one of the things that makes it a show.  You can't exactly have a show about a motorcycle gang that is all freaking unicorns and rainbows.  That said ***SPOILER ALERT**** if you haven't watched last nights episode stop reading now!  Ok, that said Opie's death was just completely jacked up.  I even understand why they felt that Opie had to be the one to die and frankly Opie wasn't feeling too much on being part of the land of the living.  The sheer brutality of the fight scene though was horrid.

Ok, so enough about SoA.  Just that watching it made me feel a bit raw.  Also watching it was somehow enough to set my mom off on yet another tangent.  I had laundry going, dishes were done and the house excluding my room was picked up.  I wasn't about to go into my room because every time I walked in Princess Bear (PB) asked if I was going to sleep.  Oh in addition to having committed the crime of relaxing and watching TV I also had not taken the garbage to the curb for pick up.  I went to do it but my mom doesn't like it being down after dark.  After 10pm pretty much counts as dark unless it's summertime in Alaska.  I asked my mom what the deal was since she clearing wasn't worried about my safety (isn't it just peachy knowing that my parents honestly don't give a shit?) to which I got this response "I don't care about your safety I care about mine."  Um our neighborhood may have declined in safety a bit over the years but we're FAR from being in the hood and having to worry about being out after dark.  I'm thinking it's just another control issue with my mom.  Especially since she took it into a full blown issue with you must get up at first light and get it out and you better hope like hell that the garbage man hasn't come yet.  She then asked me what should happen if I missed the garbage pick up.  Yes she wanted me to pick a punishment for not putting the garbage out in time to her specs.  HELLO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  How old are we?  The best part of all is that if I mess up the only one it effects is me since I'm the only one taking out trash.  So I might have more than 1 can next week?  Oh my!  End of the world.  Ok so that is more of me feeling just a bit... odd.

I really can't even put a feeling on what I'm feeling right now.  Tired would be the closest I can come up with.  Somewhere between that, raw and do not pass go give me a bottle of wine stat! 

So this morning I went to my sisters to watch the boys.  I brought some craft things to do something with the boys.  My sister is freaking out about having the entire side of her husbands family over tonight.  She was worried that the boys and I were going to make a mess.  It was an odd day there with Tyler being in pain and almost in tears about his stomach hurting and Luke being sick with general ick.  The boys picked up on their mom being out of sorts and it was just not cool.  All that said I did have a good time with the boys.  My sister so has met her match in those two!  Well played Karma, well played! 

We got a call from horseback riding therapy this morning as well to cancel today's session.  They had to put Hank my favorite horse there down this morning.  I was pretty bummed about that.  He was a gorgeous paint that just had a great personality.  I called to talk to Emma, the equine coordinator, this afternoon.  In addition to his age Hank developed some neurological issues that just made it so the only fair thing was to put him down.  Emma and I discussed that they aren't just animals.  They're pets.  Telling PB that horseback riding therapy is cancelled never goes over well so I really wasn't looking forward to the questions I knew she'd have.  One of her favorite horses Strawberry died over winter break and she still talks about it and asks questions sometimes.  So on the way home from school I told her that riding was cancelled because Hank died today and they needed to take care of things.  PB was so sweet and wanted to know if his eyes were already closed or if she could go say goodbye.  I said that his eyes were already closed.  It's times like this that her cognitive delays make it even harder along with the fact that she so needs her schedule and things to be status quo.  She then wanted to know when Hank would open his eyes again.  We decided probably when he got up to Heaven and was with Strawberry again.  She seemed to be ok with it all.  I'm sure there will be more questions. 

I've decided that regardless of my dad's feelings about me getting more tattoos I'm getting another.  I really want a white tattoo so I figure its kind of like not really getting one.  It's another control thing about living here but I'm about done with that.  It's not like I'm 16 telling them I want one.  It's also not like I have a lot (3).  So, I've asked on FB if anyone has any knowledge about white tattoos.  A lot of what I've read said that if you have darker skin color it isn't a good idea.  I'm wondering about if you're pale as hell and related to Casper.  I need to get in touch with Ted and see who I can go to here.  If you aren't familiar with white tattoos here is some INFO.  Actually I love this heart and want something similar with a K in it. 

So that is the story here.  Also prayers and thoughts going out to my friend Jen.  Her father passed away last night.  It was not unexpected but nonetheless still incredibly hard I'm sure.    I'm now off to peel PB away from the other computer and attempt to clean up her play shelves in the family room.  If I don't post for a day or two it might mean that the shelves won. 


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

So looking forward to this weekend

OK so the fact that I have NO social life is not even in question.  Not sure when it flew out the window but it is sure as hell gone!  That really isn't the point (I don't think)  the point is that I'm really excited to have plans for this weekend.  Plans that are actually based on me.  My thoughts and ideals are at the center for this outing and that is so exciting that I can barely contain myself.  I know there is no doubt that I love my daughter and doing things she likes or based around here. I don't like the loss of identity that comes with motherhood.  You know what I mean.  You even loose your name!  You're no longer Sarah.  It's now Princess Bear's (PB) mom.  Does that even happen to dads?  You lose control of the remote control.  I know that I'm not the only one who has looked up and found myself alone in a room watching the Disney Channel or Sprout.  I do like that PB is getting older.  It means at least she can watch some of the shows I like.  I'm certainly think she's at least a decade away from Sons of Anarchy or Criminal Minds but other things can work.  On Sunday we were on our way to her best friend Shay's house to visit (see she has more of a social life than I do!)  Anyway we were talking in the car and she was so excited and said "Kane is on tonight!"  Kane being Christian Kane and meaning Leverage of course.  I had to tell her that Leverage is on hiatus until November.  She was none too happy let me tell you!  She is getting into the idea of the Farm Kings and asked if they were on tonight!!! 

So while I love my daughter more than life itself I can say that I am so bloody excited to get out this week and do something I want to do.  Don't get me wrong PB is going to be along for the ride.  C'mon its an hour away and I plan to be there for a bit so there is no way my parents would ever sign up for that kind of babysitting.  That's ok though.  There are going to be some other kids around her age so fun will be had by all.  I'm just looking forward to being able to use my adult brain.  Talk about things that matter to me other than my child.  I'm thrilled about seeing an old friend whom I haven't seen in ages (so keep on getting some rest and feel better lady!!!).  Ok, I'm off to act like a productive member of society and/or do my best Cinderella impression before I have to pick up PB for therapy. 

HM Sarah Siggy

Monday, September 24, 2012

Finally! The Farm Kings!

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Holy hotness right???!!!??? And there are 10 of them! 9 boys and 1 girl. Before you ask the girl, Elizabeth, was second born so this wasn't a case of trying for a girl. 10 KIDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ok, now all I think of when I hear that is the fact that I spent 7 1/2 months of my pregnancy with PB throwing up. I can't even imagine doing it 10 times. Hats off to mom Lisa King just for that! Well that and there is no way I could come up with 9 boy names I like to save my life! First off their show is called Farm Kings and its on GAC. It premiers this Thursday. Click HERE for a complete schedule.

 I caught the Meet the Kings episode when I was channel surfing one night last week. At first I was just amazed at 2 things. 1)10 kids (see my reasoning up top) and 2) The hotness factor. The show primarily focuses on the oldest four boys Joe, Tim, Pete and Dan. The whole family has show time but the story as well as the farm is carried by the oldest boys. So I'm sitting there and I'm watching this kind of very fun loving, deeply passionate family. Every single person in the family is good looking. Like seriously handsome (and in Mom & Elizabeth's cases pretty). The show seems to focus on Pete's looks and he is definitely a hottie. No ifs, ands or buts about it. What they really don't look at is that they ALL are. I was watching Tim (3rd oldest overall, second oldest boy) and thinking if I was to write a list of what I would want my perfect man to be as far as overall looks and personality this is it. Send that letter to G-d with a please and thank you. Seriously makes the heart go pitter patter! I think Tim is going to have his own post. So back to the family.

Joe is the oldest and basically the patriarch of the family. In its own way pretty damn sexy. I mean the dude isn’t even 30 and he’s in charge of the farm, bakery and market. Oh and he’s an engineer by trade. Everything that happens goes through Joe. Lots of responsibility and that takes some pretty broad shoulders. From what I've read Joe lives with his girlfriend Heather and their 2 kids. Hey Joe- MARRY THE GIRL!!!!!!!!!!!!

Then there is Tim, the farmer. Man, think he'd take a phone call from me or answer a letter? I have a million and one questions to ask him about seed starting. I know that there is nothing cooler to me then when I have seeds I've planted sprout. Ever want to really get immersed in the complex beauty of nature watch some seeds sprout! Ok, I digress. So Tim is the farmer so basically the success of the farm is on his shoulders in a big way. He's got to get the seeds started. Get them strong enough to transplant and hope that they are hardy enough to take whatever Mother Nature throws their way. (I really want to ask him if they are using heirloom seeds and have considered going organic, think that's too ballsy or nosy?) Tim is also very involved in helping raise his youngest four brothers including the baby of the family Ben that was born with Down Syndrome. He is all about teaching them about farming, hunting and just growing up to be men in general. Do I even have to explain why I find Tim to be the sexiest thing walking G-d's green earth? OK, you want me to spell it out. Here it is without too much description since I really do think Tim is getting his own post. 1)He's a farmer. It works for me 2)He's a responsible guy that loves his family. Something that I've never experienced so I find it to be kind of like a unicorn. That unobtainable that you still wish for. 3)He likes tattoos obviously. 4)He's a man's man. A tough guy. We can talk about his hunting and obvious physical strength and that would all be a turn on. Then there is the fact that when he choose his tattoos he didn't wimp out on stuff. Meaning he has the band tattoo ALL the way around his arm and what looks like a dream catcher on the inside of his right arm. For the life of me I've NEVER understood these huge muscle bound men that thought they were G-d's gift to women and only did a 3/4 band tattoo. You're not guy enough to handle that underarm part? Grab a pair and man up!!!

On to Pete- Pete really does seem like a living teddy bear that just happens to be hot as hell. He has his hair in dreads and seems to give off this very bohemian vibe. He has a great smile and could definitely be centerfold material for Playgirl (I'm guessing! It's been a long time since I've checked one out!) He is also rocking a couple of tattoos I think, one on his right inner wrist (ow!) and a band under his left elbow but it looks faded so not quite sure what is up with. He in addition to be a farmer has an artist streak. He likes painting, sketching and whittling. The slide show has some pics of his woodwork. (Think he could make a fairy for PB or a wolf for me???!!???) He is also the guy in charge of the 150 or so chickens they have. Color me jealous! The damn city won't even let me keep a couple in the backyard here!!! He is also very musical and plays the harmonica and guitar. The sales at the farmers market go up when Pete's shirt come off. To be honest that is just a kind of given. Tall, blonde guy who smiles a lot and is in OMG great shape. Women respond. 'Nuff said.

Last but not least there is Dan who wants to be a partner with his brothers. There isn't as much available to read about Dan on line but he seems like he's a bit of a jokester. I LOVE that he's rocking a mohawk. Reminds me of back in the day when most of my guy friends in high school had them. (Insert '80's/90's HS daydream here) What I liked watching about Dan is that he really does seem like a jack of all trades and so eager to learn and be a part of things. He also has this gleam in his eye that reminds me of my youngest nephew. They one that makes us say that he has the devil inside and we better watch out!!! It seems like a portion of the show is going to focus on whether Dan buckles down and finds his niche and becomes a full fledged partner. I think Dan is probably very lovable but has a wild let’s have fun streak running through him.

Now as I watched the Meet the Kinds episode a few times and then did some looking them up online (both on GAC and the Freedom Farms website) I had a couple of reoccurring thoughts. As I shared the King family with some friends they mentioned this same things that I was thinking. We'll get the obvious out of the way. As already discussed this is a family of seriously good looking individuals! This is also a very big family. This is a strong family. Not quite sure what caused the split literally in marriage and business between the father and the rest of them but they stick together. That really doesn't happen often! They work their asses off. I have never seen people come together and work so hard for a common goal and be so passionate about it. Also everyone is amazed with Mom Lisa. She raised GOOD kids. 10 of them. They all clearly love and respect her and they're decent, responsible, loving individuals. I remember hearing stories of my grandmother who raised 6 kids. When the boys were acting up she’d grab them by the ear and bang their heads together. I can kind of see Mom Lisa doing that. She doesn’t seem like she’ll take any crap from anybody. That said she also seems like she’d give everything she had and then some for her family. The fact that she is so proud of her kids is pretty nice to see. The fact that her kids are so willing to do for her is awesome to see. I can’t wait for the show to kick off on Thursday night. Don’t even think about calling, texting or facebooking me!

~Meet the Kings videos
~Meet the Kings bios
~Freedom Farms Website
~Freedom Farm About Us


OK- no idea why Pete's name is centered & nothing else is I'll try to do some editting tomorrow. I have to go pay attention to my child. You know the little things: feed her dinner, give her a bath and help with homework!

Back again!

I wonder if blogging is like developing a new habit.  It takes 21 days?  Could be.  If so I'm probably screwed but I'll give it a whirl!  I missed yesterday because of one of my mom's famous blow up episodes.  Fun was had by all.... NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I bet you thought my next post was going to be about those hunky King boys, didn't you?  Yeah me too.  Alas, it just isn't so.  Maybe tomorrow!  Just to help out a bit here is some more eye candy!!!


I don't think I could ever tire of looking at them!  Especially Tim!  But on to the topic.  I had a conversation with my daughter that I never, ever, EVER thought I'd be having.  As I mentioned yesterday was one of my mom's blow up dates.  The usual not so pretty screaming and yelling and her telling me to get out.  At 9 years old Princess Bear (PB) is more than aware when this stuff happens not that it slows my mom down a bit.  The whole thing was over the general state of the house which while not wonderful wasn't that bad.  Then again my mom isn't know for being reasonable or rational.  I will say PB's room was a complete s@#t hole.  I've basically gotten to the point that its just not worth the fight.  PB has been sick lately and I'm done doing the total room overhauls.  My mom on the other hand wants it picked up at all times.  So the melee ensued.  I finally looked at PB at one point when my mom wasn't in the immediate area and asked her if Mommy had to leave the house did she want to go with me or stay at my parents.  My parents would have you think that I'm the worse mother in the world to even contemplate taking her with me until I'm on my feet.  Especially since some time at a homeless shelter would be necessary.  I understand that it would be a huge change and somewhat scary for PB.  Really I do.  I also understand that I can't complete trust my parents and that if I left PB here that they might try to use that against me to gain custody of her.  While I do love my parents I'm not thinking they are the best choice of custodians for her.  I also think that as scary as a shelter might be that PB would be very traumatized to be away from me.  It's always been me and her and she has spent 2 nights away from me in her life.   Much to my relief PB instantly pointed her finger at me indicating that she wanted to go with me.  She wanted to know how soon we could move, could we pack all her things and could the cat and dog go with us.  Actually she was somewhat excited about potentially moving.  Bless my child's heart!  I also know that when the time comes that we either move out on our own accord or my mom kicks us out that PB will have a very hard time transitioning.  This has been the only home she really remembers and she does love her grandparents when my mom is being a decent human being. 

Now on the upside of all of this is that PB's room is nice and neat.  I can't say I have huge hopes for it but we'll see.  My mom wants me going in there 4 or 5 times a day to do spot checks and have her pick up.  C'mon she's 9 and its just a room! 

On completely benign and boring side notes other than for a bit this morning when my mom seemed to want to continue the ugliness it was a nice day.  Fall has definitely arrived here in Central Illinois!!!  We woke to a bright, crisp morning.  My dad came in and told me to turn off my alarm. No need to twist my arm!!!  So PB and I slept until a bit after 8am.  We got up and chilled for a  bit and then I jumped in the shower when it seemed like my mom was in a decent enough mood to be around PB.  Sunday school started a few weeks ago but she missed the first 2 weeks due to not feeling well.  She was a bit nervous but excited that Sophia would be in her class again!  I was a bit nervous because I didn't know that the class for for 3rd, 4th and 5th graders.  That seems like a pretty broad range to me.  All in all it went well and PB seemed to enjoy herself.  She came home with some Saints cards so I told her to discuss them with her Dzadza (grandfather) since that is more his thing.  We got home in time to watch the Fox pregame show.  Ah the boys on Fox are back and I couldn't be happier!!!  Of course my mom wanted PB to get in her room immediately and pick it up.  We had to finish the blanket PB made for her best friend Shay since she is still home recovering from surgery.  We had plans to go visit and I wanted to have PB finish it so I could wash it and we could take it with us.  I've got to say that PB did a great job with all the knots!!!  We had a great time visiting with Shay and Laura.  The girls had a blast and I introduced Laura to the King brothers!!!!  I've converted another person!!!!  Laura also told me if it ever gets to the point that my mom does kick me out that PB and I are more than welcome there.  It was nice to know that I won't be totally screwed.  Oh we also watched the Bears go.  They stomped all over St. Louis.  I know its not a huge feat but I'll love any win we get!!! We went to 5pm mass and that about rounds out our day.  So that is todays story morning glory!!!!


Friday, September 21, 2012

Public schools

OK, I'm really not even going to mention that I did it again.  I was going to blog about my newest obsession, The King Brothers of Freedom Farms, aka the Farm Kings.  They look something like this:


Don't worry! I will be doing a post on them very soon. Very, very soon! Unfortunately I have another topic that is really nagging at me.

Princess Bear (PB) got sick last Thursday night.  It was probably triggered by the fact that keeping my daughter away from cats and dogs is simply impossible even with her allergies.  Her piano teacher has 2 new kittens that PB was all about petting.  They really are darling kittens; black!   I LOVE black cats!!!  Anyway I digress PB was playing with the cats and her allergies were already acting up.  This led to a full blown upper respiratory infection.  Thursday night she woke up in the middle of the night running a 101.9* temp.  It was not pretty (especially since Friday was my birthday).  I started breathing treatments Friday morning because she developed a hacking cough.  We were trying to get her healthy enough to go to my cousins wedding today but no dice.  PB missed school on Friday & Monday.  In the scheme of things not too bad for her.  The condition of her going back to school is that she needed to have a breathing treatment at noon.  Since we use samples from the Dr for her breathing treatments because the prescription costs around $400 the school nurse cannot give PB her breathing treatments.  So this Mom has been going to the school daily to do it.  It's amazing what you see when you are in the office a lot. 

Now I really don't understand this but the entire district that my daughter is in is a very poor district.  The entire school is on a grant program that provides free breakfast and lunch to each student daily.  That could be its very own blog post.  It's amazing what they feed these kids.  Back to the school in general.  Here are some stats I found when I googled her school.

Overview: XYZ Primary School

Grades Offered Grades PK-6

Total Students 443 students

% Male / % Female 52% / 48%

Total Classroom Teachers 41 teachers

Students by Grade

This School (IL) School Average

Teacher : Student Ratio 1:11

This School (IL) School Average

% American Indian n/a

% Asian 2%

% Hispanic 7%

% Black 61%

% White 29%

Unknown 1% 3%

This School (IL) School Average

% Eligible for Free Lunch 77%
% Eligible for Reduced Lunch 11%

School Statewide Performance View Education Department Test Scores

School District Name Peoria 150 School District

District Total Revenue $178,634,000
District Expenditure $181,355,000

District Revenue / Student $12,875

District Expenditure / Student $13,071

So just a few thoughts off the top of my head.  There is no way that there is a 1 teacher to 11 student ratio in this school.  I know that it is because they have so many special needs kids and some of them are 1:1 so it's very deceiving.  I won't start with how in reality the school is very, very, did I mention very understaffed.  Probably not legally but in what should be done for the best interest of the kids.  PB is in a special ed room (more like a glamorous closet) with 6 other kids.  They share their aide with another classroom (located 1/2 way across the building).  The teacher is spread too thin and the room is too crowed.  PB has to go in the hall when its time for her to work on her math work. 

It is so sad to see how the majority of these kids are dressed and taken care of.  I can understand not having money and not being able to buy things.  It's just so sad.  The kids are in uniforms that are too short, too small, too big or in general disrepair.  It's just heartbreaking.  If you want to look beyond that there is the general attitude of the kids.  There is absolutely NO respect for adults.  I can't tell you how many times I've heard kids acting up or out.  It's just sad.  If you say something to them they either laugh at you or look at you like you've grown another head.  When I was waiting for PB to come to the office the other day a little boy was sitting on the arm a chair.  One of the aides I know well told him to sit correctly so he wouldn't get hurt.  The child looked at her and completely disregarded her.  A few minutes later another adult told him to sit properly.  Again the child completely disregarded her.  Now I'm not sure about you but I would never, ever, ever complete have disregarded an adult when I was young.  Now part of it was I was sent to Catholic schools from kindergarten through high school.  And when I pushed the limits in high school the consequence was an all woman's boarding school.  I understand that you generally get a better education and get away with less in Catholic schools.  That said I also know that if I was ever that rude or disobedient I'd get my a$$ beat.  No ifs ands or buts.  I was hit for reasons much less severe than that I can't even imagine!    Honestly, what is wrong with kids now????  I thing the answer lays in a few things: 1) kids know that the school and/or adults wherever can't really do much to discipline them.  2) The world is so scared of child abuse that its done a complete 180* to the point that parents hands are tied.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not a big fan of the beat the butt game.  Mostly because I lived with it on a very regular basis since my mom was not any better at controlling her temper when I was young.  I do think that if I parent hits their child in a way designed to get their attention instead of trying to impart pain its OK if that's what they believe in.  Unfortunately if you do that now DCFS will be on your doorstep before you know what happened.  For the life of me I will never understand.  Dealing with DCFS is such a joke.  Incompetent doesn't even begin to cover it.  I worked in daycare for several years.  I had a little girl in one of the toddler rooms that came in with obvious cigarette burns, iron burns and other marks.  I called DCFS.  DCFS sent a man to work with a little girl that was around 16 months old.  First not very bright thing in my mind.  Then he wanted to interview the girl in a room without anyone else present.  Um, let me think about this for a second, NOPE!!!  I finally said if he wanted to interview the child it would be with me in the room.  I would remain silent but I wouldn't send her in there by herself.  He finally agreed.  The man asked her burned her and the little girl named several people.  The DCFS worker asked to have the little girl taken back to her room so we could speak.  He had the gall to look at me and say "It's obvious that she's lying.  Next she'll tell us that the Easter Bunny and Santa burned her too."  Absolutely NOTHING was done.  I can't even tell you how angry I was.  I called and talked to his boss and filed a complaint but of course nothing happened then either.  On the flip side I have a friend whose daughter decided to poke her screen out of her window and stick her head out the window.  My friend was found to be negligent and had to go to parenting classes and all other kinds of rigmarole.  Seriously?????   I don't want kids to live in fear but I do want them to know that if they mess up there are consequences.  If that takes getting your butt popped so be it.  If that is losing TV for a week so be it.  If that is losing phone privileges so be it.  Parents and schools need to be able to get across to kids what is acceptable behavior and what isn't.  When they can't do that we have a generation of kids that think they can do whatever they want without any real consequences.  Never a good thing.    I was also going to discuss our failing school system and No Child Left Behind but this has already gotten too long.  SO- you have at least 2 more blog posts from me in the near future!  Freedom Farm/ King Brothers and No Child Left Behind! 

Catch ya later!