Thursday, May 27, 2010

Are Kids Really Good at Multitasking?

So Ten and I work on math every morning for a few minutes.

She will often hum, or tap her feet, or try to carry on a conversation with me while doing a few math problems.

And sometimes Big will come downstairs and try to get my attention, or demand breakfast or something.

I will regularly correct Ten and try to get her to focus on one thing at a time.

That is sort of my thing right now, trying to maintain presence and focus on whatever is at hand (even as I write this, however, I've got about six windows open on my computer, and my cell phone is playing music to my left. At least I've given up IMing.).

Already though, Ten has tried to make the argument to me that she does math better if she's humming, or doing other things.

Of course, her time and her scores don't show this, but kids aren't convinced by evidence, anecdotal or otherwise.

Check out this video on multitasking the next time you try doing ten things at once, or watch your pre-teen in action.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Before After

These are depictions of himself that Big drew in September of 2009 and then in May of 2010. The left picture is the newer one, the right done in the fall.

Tons of research discusses the relationships between a kid's psyche, maturity, etc. etc. and their drawings. Particularly their drawings of people.

I can't see much in these drawings other than a year of major change for our young man. He's still crazy and gets really wild when he's exhausted, but he is a different person now after a year of preschool.

Monday, May 24, 2010


So in a couple of weeks we (the four of us in all of our glory) are going to Ireland for my nephew's Big Fat Irish Wedding.

Two recent things that I have seen/witnessed create a tight metaphor for our plan to do this:
1. During the half marathon that Cousin and I ran a few weeks ago, there was a sign at about mile 9 that read "This seemed like a good idea three months ago!"
2. For any of you who watch Modern Family, you'll remember the line on a recent episode in which Claire responded to a question about how great their family vacation to Hawaii was going to be: "I'm a mother of three" she said "This is a BUSINESS TRIP!"

Of course, I'm excited to go to Ireland, to see the wedding, to have a family vacation, blah blah blah.

But I can't wrap my head around getting the four of us across that ocean.

Particularly Big.

So we're stocking up on small snacks, books, toys, things to do. We're talking about it. We're considering medication.

I kid.

Anyway, all tips, thoughts, ideas, recommendations are really, really welcome.

Oh, and insanity act number 2? I just signed up for a second half marathon.


Two days before Ireland.

Two New Blogs

So I'm supposed to be using these precious few moments between the end of the semester and the beginning of the summer (with kids -- i.e. when school lets out) to be working and focusing on my research, but I'm distracted.

Here are two new (to me) blogs that I can't believe I haven't noticed before!

Life with the Kid
Middle Aged Queer Mom


Monday, May 17, 2010

Eenie Meenie Minie Mo

So tonight we were engaging in a little game of family Crazy Eights after dinner.

BioMom had this Back To The Future moment thinking about how this past January we played Canasta with her parents night after night during our little Florida getaway, and then projecting into the future, thinking about how we might be able to play with our kids.

Anyway, in the middle of it, I recognized that little gleam in Ten's eye that tells us that she needed (needs, will need soon) to go #2.

Me: Do you need to go [#2]?

She: NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Flabbergasted and appalled at the mere question!)

But this conversation reminded Big that he, did, indeed, have to go #2, in fact.

He got distracted along the way, however, and returned to essentially auction off the right to, well, to wipe him afterward.

He comes out pointing back and forth with his little finger: Eenie, meenie, miny, mo! BioMom and I hoping, each of us, that "My Mama said that you. Are. The. Very. Best. One." won't land on us.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

No Girls Allowed

So today Big came downstairs to get dressed for school and have breakfast, etc. All the things one does in the morning.

As we were getting his shoes on he told me that he needed a sign for his door (to his room) that said: "NO GIRLS ALLOWED."

Then he went on to say that essentially the rule applied to all girls EXCEPT cousin's girl.

I nodded.

And, [Ten].

Yes, of course, I said.

And Sidekick's sister.


And, all the girls that go to [his] school.

Basically, he said, it was for all the girls he didn't know.

I wondered, aloud, how concerned he was that all these girls he didn't know were going to gather around his room, seeking entrance.

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Great Video on Asperger's

Cathryn over at Yogurt and Granola shared this video and I thought I'd share it with you. It is amazing.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Enough about Me, Can we Talk about Me Now?: The Nuances of Language

So yesterday after school I asked Ten what everyone thought about her race the other day.

Her response: No one asked.

At first my reaction was again this notion of how self-centered kids are.

But then I realized that she meant exactly what she said and had no concerns whatsoever about it. What she meant (in adult speak) was that it was really a non-issue. She didn't think to tell people, and people didn't, subsequently, respond.

Monday, May 03, 2010

Camp Du Nord (Again)

This summer we are heading up to Camp Du Nord again.

We got #$%@ed on the lottery and so got the last week of the summer.

Which, now that I think of it, isn't so bad because I miss our college meeting which is usually a snore-fest.

Anyway, Cousin just pointed me to a review of the camp in the local rag.

The author is dead on.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

A Global Mosaic and a Half Marathon

So today at 11 a.m. central time I participated in A Global Mosaic by taking a picture of where I was and then posting it at the New York Times. Check out the pictures from today(they intend to post all submissions)*.

I happened to have just finished a half marathon in La Crosse, WI, only a few minutes behind Cousin.

Yes, Cousin rocked it.

I sort of ran out of any extra energy at mile 10 and finished in 2 hours and 14 minutes. Our goal was to be under 2 hours and 10 minutes -- she made it! 2:08!!

I was doing fine and not in any real pain, but I just didn't have the oomph to pick it up for those last three miles.

The kids also participated in some 100m dashes!

*This is an early summary of the more than 10,000 pictures they received: So far, that portrait seems to be one of surprising tranquillity. No one has to tell readers of The Times, or just about anyone else, how upended and violent the world seems to be at the moment. But our respondents tended to show moments of repose, rather than anxiety; of warmth, rather than heat. It may not constitute a “realistic” view of the human condition, but it does offer something of a balance to the images of suffering and destruction that are more often a staple of the Lens blog.