SciFi Mama

Adventures in raising a geeky child

Routines September 1, 2011

Filed under: parenting,school — scifimama @ 4:21 am

Starting kindergarten has changed up our usual routines.  Before the alarm went off at 4:45 and Paige and I would take our time getting ready in the morning, leaving the house by 6:15.  Ronnie has to be at work at 5:30 so he’s always gone before us in the morning.  I would fix a quick breakfast-y snack for Paige knowing she would eat a full breakfast there around 8.  After I got off work I would drive that hour home while Ronnie cooked dinner.  We had a nice little routine going on.  Then school started.

Now I’m up and moving with Ronnie at 4:30.  I do a few things to get ready for the day, then jump back into our bed for a quick snuggle with Paige.  (No, she doesn’t sleep with us.  She wakes up slow in the mornings and a quick snuggle with Mama is usually enough to get her up and going without a lot of complaints.)  She and I are up and moving by 5:15.  Ronnie heats up a breakfast that we’ve already mostly made.  Things like frozen breakfast burritos that I made and froze, smoothie packets I’ve got in the freezer, or even French Toast Sticks from Sams.  I finish packing lunches (both mine & hers) while she eats.  By now Ronnie has left for work and it’s me and Paige to finish out the morning.  With the change in traffic patterns we now have to be out the door by 6.

Ronnie gets Paige in the afternoon and has to do homework with her while also cooking dinner.  He’s juggling as much as I am, if not more.  Paige no longer gets a nap everyday and that makes her super cranky in the evenings.  It’s taken us a couple of weeks to get into a routine.  We’ve tried a few other things but they haven’t worked as well.  We’re still trying to get the hang of this school thing.  Ronnie has let his boss know he can’t travel for a while.  We need to get things running smooth here again before we add the stress of him being out of town for a couple of weeks and it all being up to me.  I’m definitely not ready for that.


First day of school August 16, 2011

Filed under: Family,Paige,parenting,pics,school — scifimama @ 5:06 am

Monday Paige started school.  She was so excited to go to kindergarten finally and be at big girl school.  She had her uniform all picked out and ready to go so she would look her prettiest.  We went last week to meet her teacher and get acquainted with her classroom.  Her teacher, Ms W, is wonderful!  She’s been teaching school for 20 years; mostly kindergarten and first grade.  Ms W told us she missed most of last year due to an illness which has given her a new outlook.  Ms W was beyond excited to get back the grade she wanted.  Her illness? Colon cancer.  I don’t think we could have asked for a better teacher.  Before I go much further, I’ll appease the family and post a few pics.

Here’s a few stats for the first day of school.

The required first day sign.

Family picture.

Daddy walking her to class.

Yes, the backpack is almost as big as she is.  It’s mostly empty though, there’s only a lunchbox in there and the red go home folder.


Paige is going to learn a lot this year.  There’s the usual reading, math, listening that she will learn.  But there’s also tolerance and patience.  As much as we are free thinking parents, Paige has not been exposed to special needs kids.  Not that we’ve been trying to avoid anyone or keep her sheltered, only that there’s none in our daycare and we don’t know anyone with a special needs child.  Her class has a special needs child in it.  The little girl has an assistant who sits in the class with her to help out as needed.  Paige has already mentioned a couple of times that the girl doesn’t sit down, has special scissors, and a lady to help her stay in her chair.  We’re trying to teach Paige how to be friends with her and everyone else in class.

The first day of school was declared a success, with Paige wanting to go back.  If she keeps this attitude up, the school year could be decent.


Teacher Gift August 8, 2011

Filed under: crafts,Mommy,pics,school — scifimama @ 5:16 am

I’ve been working on a gift for Paige’s new teacher. I didn’t want to do anything super over the top, but I did want to do a little something. At the bottom of our school supply list was a teacher wish list. I’m sure everyone else probably got the same thing. It’s common for teachers to ask for a few extra items that they need for the class in hopes that parents will bring in some of the items. Most of the requested items were already on Paige’s supply list already so I picked up an extra here and there as I shopped. Money is tight for us just like it is for most people that I know. I wanted a cute and fun way to give the teacher the things she had asked for. And here it is, my back to school bouquet.

I found the jar at Old Time Pottery on sale for $1.50. I picked up the school supplies from Walmart once they put out the back to school section. It took 2 boxes of 24 crayons, 2 glue sticks (packaged together in 1 package), 1 bottle of school glue, 1 small hand sanitizer, a pair of safety scissors, and a package of water colors. And here’s where I really got creative. I wanted a good way to hold everything in place yet still be movable for adjustments. I used red aquarium rocks. (Slight digression here, but hey, it’s my blog, right? Anyway, I recently found a tutorial for dying rice. I’ll probably try that next.) The sticks? Bamboo skewers for grilling. I put the sharp ends down into the gravel so no one would get hurt.

I started by lining the jar with crayons. This took most of the 2 packs I bought. I put the jar on it’s side and lined as many as I could, then started putting in the gravel. I found putting it in a measuring cup and pouring it in worked the best. Once I finished placing all the crayons I filled the gravel up to the top of the crayons.

With that done I started preparing the “flowers” for my bouquet. Out came my trusty glue gun. Using hot glue will keep the supplies attached to the skewer securely, but will still allow the teacher to take them apart with no permanent damage to the items. I gave it a more finished look by tying rick rack in coordinating colors on each “flower.” You could use whatever ribbon you have on hand. I had this left over from last years end of school gifts.

This was a quick and easy craft that I think will go over well with Paige’s new teacher. I will also take in a pack of computer paper that was on the wish list; it was just too large to put on a skewer. I posted a picture of it on Facebook the other day and a teacher friend said she really liked it. I’m hoping the bribe, er I mean gift, is a hit with the teacher.


Daycare dilema February 7, 2011

Filed under: parenting,school — scifimama @ 4:41 am

Let me start by saying we’ve been spoiled by the daycare we have.  They’re amazing.  Really, really amazing.  The director is a friend and has even offered to take Paige home with her if we’re running late.  Yeah, that’s spoiled.  Most daycares in our town offer drop off and pick up to the local schools.  It makes things very easy and convenient for the parents.  Parents can drop their kids off at school or at daycare, then after school the daycare picks them up and takes them back to the daycare.  We’re looking for the same thing on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  Any idea how hard that is?

It’s not hard in a couple of the larger cities.  However, in the not so larger cities, forget it.  Don’t get me wrong, there’s one of the larger towns we would like to live in.  Our checkbook could have other ideas though.  The school district is great and it’s a wonderful town, but it’s a bit on the expensive side for housing.  We have a couple of towns we’re looking into, but haven’t decided on one yet.  A lot of it will depend on where we can find a daycare that will do after school pickup.  I can drop her off at school in the mornings, but we need that after school pickup.

Some people have suggested we use the schools after care program.  But that brings up a bigger problem: what happens when school is closed?  School is closed so the after care program is closed.  We need somewhere for Paige to go on those days as well.  Finding this ultimate in daycare has proven hard so far.  Hopefully we’ll figure something out soon.  We’re starting with this first since it will determine more of where we live than anything else.


First Day of School August 9, 2010

Filed under: Paige,pics,school — scifimama @ 8:51 pm

We survived the first day of school.  Mommy didn’t even cry once.  I know, it was amazing.  Part of it was the fact that she’s at the same place as before.  Only now, instead of going to one room, she goes into another.  It’s very structured, and is a great K-4 program.  Paige definitely enjoyed her first day of school.  She especially loved wearing her Twinkle Toes shoes for the first time.

This morning meant pictures of course.  Luckily, Ryan (Aunt Wii’s youngest son) hadn’t left for school yet when we went out to take pictures against the official first day of school picture wall.

Here’s Ryan on his last first day of school (he’s a senior this year) and Paige on her first  first day of school.

Paige wanted to take a silly picture, as usual.  Personally, I enjoy the silly pictures.  That’s when her true personality comes out.

Please notice the Twinkle Toes.  She adores them.  You can disregard the empty plant pots behind her though.  Paige did dress herself.  She thought the shoes matched the dress nicely.  And she says the dress is very pretty, so she had to wear it.


All ready for school August 8, 2010

Filed under: Paige,school — scifimama @ 9:41 am

Tomorrow is Paige’s first day of school.  We elected to keep her at our daycare, in their K-4 program.  They follow the same curriculum as the public school, only in a smaller setting.  The class is taught by an elementary education major, state certified teacher.  It’s even state subsidized.  More like private school than public school, but the same program.

I got Paige her new pair of Twinkle Toes.  She absolutely loves them.  I thought about waiting to give them to her tomorrow morning, but then decided it would be better if she tried them on to make sure they fit.  It would be devastating to get dressed for the first day of school and find out the shoes were too small.  Paige has been on a small growing spree lately, and her toes are dangerously close to the end of her sandals.  I had to be sure.  Luckily, shoes all fit.  No special new clothes for tomorrow, but we have new shoes.

Friday daycare had an end of the summer party.  They partied the day away with pizza, chips, ice cream, and a very special treat: a movie.  Daycare does not normally even have a TV.  But, with it being the final day of summer, one was brought in for the day.  They’ve been talking about the end of summer and the beginning of the school year.  The more Paige hears about school the more excited she gets.  Paige is talking more about what she’s be doing and how she will be learning more things to get smarter and smarter.

Ronnie keeps reminding me that it isn’t Big Girl School yet.  I know that.  But I did take the morning off from work.  I will get up, get Paige dressed and ready to go.  I’ll take the usual first day pictures and take her to school.  I don’t have to have the morning off, but it will be nice.  Next year, Paige will start Big Girl School.  Some of my coworkers and I have already made our plans for next year.  Their kids will be starting high school while mine starts kindergarden.  We’ll all take the full day off for registration, and the first day of school.  We’re planning a day of it for Mommy’s to enjoy.  I won’t have that until next year, but I’m still looking forward to tomorrow.  My baby girl starts school.


Summer is almost over July 28, 2010

Filed under: school — scifimama @ 7:51 pm

School starts here in just a week and a half.  Our first day of school is August 9th.  That’s just around the corner!  Paige will be starting Pre- K or K-4 as it’s called around here.  K-4 is not mandatory in our state.  Instead it’s used as a prep tool to get at risk kids ready for kindergarden.  Paige is not at risk for not being on par with her peers.  She tends to lead the pack.  Not in everything of course, but we’ve been told for years she’s ahead of her peers in language skills among other things.  In order to go to public school Paige would need to be tested and score low enough to be at risk.  I didn’t even have her tested.  I didn’t want to take that spot from another child who could really use it, and we have other options.

We could pick the private school option, but that’s just not for us.  The private schools are all related to a church.  We aren’t very religious.  Ronnie was raised Lutheran, and I was raised this and that, mostly not going to church at all.  I don’t want to feel like a hypocrite by making Paige go to a Catholic school when I wouldn’t go to Catholic Mass for example.  Also, I don’t want to have her learn a religious doctrine that I can’t support.  Our other option is our daycare.  They are a state accredited K-4 program.  They are state subsidized  as well.  I really like that part.  We didn’t have to test for a spot.  All the kids already attending get first priority.  After that they open it up to the public.

Paige will be attending that program.  It’s a great one too.  The kids are taught by a state certified teacher with a certified teachers assistant in the room as well.  They follow the same curriculum as the public schools. We don’t have to buy uniforms like the public school.  And we don’t have a supply list either.  We will have to pay a small amount each month for our portion.  Other than that we’ll have a couple days a week of before and after care.  But, overall, we’ll be saving lots and lots of money.  Our monthly daycare bill will go from $484 a month to about $160 a month for a 4 week month.  My checkbook is looking forward to this big time!

Since we don’t have uniforms or a supply list I’ve been thinking of something else to do for Paige on her first day of school.  There should be something to make it special.  I was thinking about buying her the pair of shoes she’s been begging for.  No, not a pair of peep toes, I can’t find those in her size.  No, Paige wants a pair of Twinkle Toes by Sketchers.  She’s been begging for a pair for a couple of months.  I’m thinking this may be just the right special occasion for a new pair of shoes.


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