friends and family

Some Songs I Like

by Lucky Red Hen on July 1, 2011

A list of artists I’m suggesting my mother-in-law check out:

Allen Stone, Last to Speak
The Colbie Caillat, album Coco
Corinne Bailey Rae, self-titled album
Haley Sales, Sunseed
Jillian Edwards, Galaxies & Such
Joshua Radin, We Were Here
The Lower Lights, A Hymn Revival
Meaghan Smith, The Cricket’s Quartet
Melody Gardot, My One and Only Thrill -and/or- Worrisome Heart
Mindy Gledhill, Anchor
Sara Bareilles, Little Voice
Tonic, Lemon Parade
The Wailin’ Jennys, Firecracker
The Weepies, Hideaway
William Fitzsimmons, Until When We Are Ghosts

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Respectful Disagreements on Breastfeeding

by Lucky Red Hen on April 28, 2011

Recently, I’ve had friends blog and Tweet about the support of breastfeeding anywhere, anytime, and without covering up (I lurv those friends, this post isn’t about them). Then this section of a article got some pretty feisty comments on their Facebook page and I couldn’t keep from saying something about the ruckus.

Cover it up!
Nursing mothers should avoid breastfeeding uncovered around others. Ottley said she is a huge proponent of breastfeeding, having breastfed four children herself, but there’s a way it can be done in public without making others feel uncomfortable. In public places, or when others besides your significant other and children will be around (and maybe your sisters and mom), figure out the best way to cover yourselves and do it, please.

I’m a little appalled by the way most of the proponents chose to defend their opinion. However, I DO believe they have the right, and it’s necessary, to voice their opinion; but wish they would do so politely.

Oh, wait. But they don’t want to be polite. They want to do whatever they want, whenever they want, and however they want with no regard for those around them; everyone else should mind their own business and get over it. That IS pretty much the gist of what their argument is about when all that was said was “cover up, please.”

Here is the comment I posted, trying to explain why some prefer not to see uncovered public breastfeeding (not trying to change anyone’s mind about how they should feel about it… I understand their POV, why can’t they understand, not agree, the opposing view?):

My opinion: I agree with the writer for suggesting that it’s polite to cover up while breast feeding in public.

It’s polite to fart away from people. It’s polite to wipe food from outside your mouth with a napkin. It’s polite to pull up your pants so your butt crack isn’t showing. It’s polite to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. These are all natural things that pretty much everyone does that society has deemed appropriate behavior even though it’s legal to fart wherever you want, leave food on your face, wear your pants down low and cough or sneeze without catching it.

The issue isn’t that the baby is being FED, of COURSE the baby should be fed at anytime that it needs food.

Breast feeding is WONDERFULLY BEAUTIFUL… so is French kissing but it’s generally not done blatantly in public because it’s polite to go somewhere private to do so. Is that a better analogy?

I’m not saying that breastfeeding is like or comparable to those acts (maybe I should have said metaphor or simile; perhaps I’ll be studying a dictionary later). I’m saying that we have public behavior and private behavior. I believe we should conduct ourselves based on the circumstance. We are quiet in a library, we can yell in a park. You dress up for the red carpet, wear sweats at home while watching TV. The dog has to have a leash in town, but at home he’s free to roam.

For crying out loud I’m not saying that feeding a baby is like being in a library, going out to somewhere fancy, watching TV, or a DOG.

If I were to travel to Japan, I would find out what the customs are and do my best to respect their culture; remove my shoes upon entering their house, bow to the elders with respect, use chopsticks instead of a fork (I can do it, it just gets a little messy sometimes).

There were some rude things also said about/to the author of the article on that Facebook page. Without KNOWING the author or commentors, here are some comment snips:

  • breastfeeding mothers… have to deal with this type of hate on them?
  • If someone is so twisted that an innocent baby eating offends them, THEY should cover their head with a blanket. Smarten up and CHANGE YOUR ARTICLE!
  • That’s just daft and an example of poor writing.
  • It is articles like this that help continue the dismal breastfeeding rates… we make them feel like exhibitionists or morally inept… while in the presence of anybody other than their dog in the dark of their homes with the shades drawn! It’s absurd! Please stop letting your issues with the human body jeopardize the health of any mothers and babies by putting out such irresponsible and ignorant articles!
  • we are more comfortable seeing breasts when they are airbrushed and sexualized in print or film, rather than fulfilling their original purpose
  • illogical sexual undertone to process of feeding an infant at the breast while at the same time encouraging our preteen girls to dress provocatively and allowing TV shows to sexualize nearly everything!
  • Dear [Author]: PLEASE put a bag or a blanket over YOUR head while YOU are eating!
  • to the author, if you wanted to broadcast your anti-breasts agenda, why try to hide it in a piece about pregnancy? It didn’t work anyway.
  • positively infantile preoccupation with bosoms!
  • hiring etiquette writers who have an education and are able to demonstrate a familiarity with their topic
  • a healthy number of lulzy prudes squabbling with them. Pathetic. Sad. As pathetic as hiring some ditz who, going by her blog, struggles with some pretty basic rules of English, and pretending that this person has some useful insight into culture.
  • holy fragglenuggets! get some HELP
  • (To a commentor) I hope you someday realise how sick you are before someone has to shoot you like a rabid dog.
  • I believe the etiquette expert should apologize to everyone she has offended.
  • Maybe they could use a real expert this time.

This afternoon I visited with a couple who I’ve known for over ten years. It seems that we believe almost the opposite of each other of most taboo subjects (politics, religion, sex), yet we love each other very, very much. We talked about how our written words can get lost in our meaning or intent. Without seeing the face that’s saying it, or hearing the tone, the words are interpreted however the reader hears it in their head. Our desire to get to the point and avoid the fluff gets the three of us in trouble sometimes. What we say in a few sentences takes others paragraphs of filler because we’re to-the-point and they’re side-stepping to avoid hurting feelings (which does not mean I like to hurt feelings).

“I kicked the dog,” said in a soft tone, slight down tilt of the lips, and an emphasis on kicked to denote shock or sorrow (as in it-was-an-accident and I didn’t see the dog under my feet) is written the same but meant entirely different from “I kicked the dog,” said with a scowl, gritted teeth, and an emphasis on I to denote pride in the act (because the guy is a jerk).

Although this post is all about public breastfeeding, I really meant for it to be about the way we disagree and conduct discussions on differing opinion.

And to bouy my emotions back to a regular level (and probably give me a little justification that I’m not twisted), I’ll share this snip from someone who wrote to me about the other commentors vs. my comment:

Absolutely shocked. And saddened. I realize opinions always open the door to criticism, but I greatly admire a woman who can express that criticism in a respectful and courteous way.


P.S. Remember, keep comments classy, folks :)

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San Antonio: That’s a Yes!

by Lucky Red Hen on April 22, 2011

(LOTS of iPhone photos in this long-winded post about my trip to San Antonio, TX)

This is me with my friend Emily at The Alamo in San Antonio, Texas. Wanna know how we met?… (say it with a redneck accent) on the innernet. Twitter, specifically.

What?!? YOU don’t meet people in person you know from the internet? O_o

As much as you may find it weird that I do, I may find it weird that you don’t :D

She and I follow some of the same people on Twitter. We both replied to those same people’s tweets and saw each others replies. We found each other to be hilarious, so we started following each other. I whined about my ugly blog and she’s The Blog Fairy. BUT (that’s a BIG BUT that’swhatshesaid) she was on hiatus and had a long waiting list. I whined some more and made her laugh even more until I forced her out of hiding and conned her into helping me (and by “helping” I mean doing it for me) by sending her a check AND hand making her this…

It’s an applique’d bird on wool felt that I sewed into a mini book cover. The ribbon out the bottom is an attached bookmark. My MIL (she’s SO clever) came up with the idea to make cute tweetie birds on the front after seeing something similar on Etsy (I love that place.) It took ALL DAY (about 8 hours, on and off) to make this one. The most time sucking step was picking the coordinating fabrics. Oy vey!

During the intense blog transformation, Emily and I texted, emailed, and Skyped (she’s my first experience at Skyping; we even had a three-way with my host company… and by host company I mean my friend who troubleshoots my hubby’s host company business). I met her hubby when he came into the room during a Skype session once and her kids several times as we trudged through the blog designing. It felt as if we were already good friends in a short amount of time.

Wait a minute… what’s the parameter to figure out who is or isn’t a Good Friend? And why is there a stigma about meeting on the internet? Why does it seem that it’s better that people meet in a bar, at college, at a party, at church, or at work than online?

I’m sure there has to be the same ratio of gems vs. non-gems (at first I said losers, but just because you don’t pick someone as a gem doesn’t mean they’re a loser) whether there are 100 people at church, 100 at a bar, 100 at college (small college, haha), 100 at a party, or 100 online.

Anywho… this post is supposed to be about my trip to San Antonio, not a debate on how we meet people (although I will give you a teaser… I invited someone who I met on the internet write up their perspective of our friendship. That will come sometime in May after finals.)

Emily mentioned that their family hasn’t had a professional group photo taken since her first/oldest was a baby (she’s 9) and now they have three kids and no family photo. So sometime in February I said, fly me down (I hadn’t ever been to San Antonio), feed, house, entertain me and I’ll take your family photos. Done! We booked the flight for April, before Texas got too hot (it was 95 degrees there my last day).

From the airport we went straight to the famous river walk for dinner (met another friend, a duck, who wanted my fries) then across the street to The Alamo.

Officer Martinez gave me the 30-minute “gist” of The Alamo and Texas history.

Found this welcome note in my room (a.k.a. the 9 year old’s room)…

THEN (that’s supposed to be a BIG then) we got to meet up with my visiting-from-Utah @Suedonym, 007, and The Princess for lunch Thursday at the Food Network famous Mi Tierra & Bakery. On Monday we had no idea we would both be in San Antonio at the same time until Sue tweeted something about how she’s at The Alamo, can’t find her bike, and there’s NO BASEMENT. Emily asked me if Sue lives in or is visiting SA, I texted Sue and found out they’re there on vacation and lunch plans were in motion! The food was delish and we got to people watch while eating on the patio.

Speaking of people watch… it happened to be Fiesta so there were crowds everywhere, parking nowhere (except in $15 lots), Mexican bands playing (their tubas), and bright colored flowers on everything. Like this entire outfit… (yikes!)

I almost bought two of these shirts for friends, but took a photo instead.

On our way back home from downtown San Antonio, we swung through Gruene, TX to scout out where we’d take the family photos, did some looking through the shops, and had lunch at the Grist Mill (I should’ve taken pictures of that place, it’s incredible and I’ve seen NOTHING like it; if you’re in Gruene, GO THERE).

I’d really REALLY love to own this red glass cake plate from the antique store in Guene, but it cost one hundred and too many dollars. It’s. Absolutely. Divine.

While walking through the shop, a ball-cap-wearing teenage boy stepped out of the way so I could pass. I said, “Thanks.” He replied, almost under his breath because he probably says it ALL the time, “Yes, ma’am.” And not in an you’re-so-old kind of tone, but in a polite and courteous way. I tracked his mom down and told her how he warmed my heart; she thanked me profusely because, she says, he doesn’t always show good manners at home. Awe.

Speaking of expensively divine objects of my affection: Under a bunch of other antique silver cigarette cases on the bottom shelf of the cashier jewelry case was this beauty (that could double as a business card holder; or just lay pretty in my hand)…

I found it at Uncommon Objects in Austin last Friday, but didn’t have $89 to spend on frivolous things. If it’s still there, you’re welcome to buy it for me (my birthday is coming up, wink wink). No really, I’m serious. I shouldn’t crave it, but I do.

Across the street from the store (which holds the object of my desire, *ahem*) is the renowned Cutie Pies (closed for the day). We quenched our after lunch sugar need with a whippersnapper shot (fresh whipped cream shoved into the middle of the cupcake with adequate spillage up top) in our giant baked treats at Hey Cupcake.

But that was AFTER meeting up for lunch at  with yet ANOTHER Twitter persona who neither of us have met before… @JennieBakesALot!

We had fun talking Twitter, blogging, mom stuff, and food. We met at Torchy’s Tacos and took some pictures in front of the little logo guy and the golden wall of oddities.

On our way back to the house, The Hotlight was on. Do you know what The Hotlight is? It’s the devil’s beacon and I hate that I now love it. I have, since that day, dreamed of it at night more than once. I didn’t really know it before this day. I mean, I knew OF it, but haven’t experienced it for myself. When The Hotlight is ON, you get a FREE, hot off the press, classic glazed donut


Please. If you’ve never tried it, DON’T. Trust me. Unless you want to be a slave to The Hotlight (much like being under a trance, with the undeniable magnetic pull) heed my warning.

Saturday on our way back from taking family photos, we drove to this weird thing (it was a surprise, we were just told we would see something “weird”) and boy was it weird! Beautiful to see in person (despite not understanding why it’s a ginormous, at least 20 feet, scrap metal deer sculpture in the middle of a housing development).

I feel like I’ve gone on forever and ever (plus there’s a zillion photos on this post). Sunday Emily made us delicious waffles, we attended church, had a nap, and enjoyed a yummy roast dinner (I ate too much, again). Before my flight on Monday we attended a birthday brunch, ran some errands, dropped off the oldest at piano, played at the park while we waited for her, and swung by Aspen Leaf for frozen yogurt treats (lemon ginger sorbet topped with coconut and pomegranate berry sherbet with blue and rasp berries).

I was bummed to leave.

But got to drown my sorrows in some Bluebell Ice Cream when my last plane got delayed by a good 45 minutes (making the flight back wickedly annoying… I was SOOO tired getting into Seattle at 2am Texas time).

Oh! Other fun thing… while waiting in Houston for my next flight, I ran into my friend and her husband on their way back home from Mexico! Small world!

P.S. I forgot to tell the “That’s a yes” story. I guess it’s a common saying in England because the dad (from London) I sat next to on the plane kept saying “That’s a yes” when he agreed with what I was saying. Kind of like when we say Uh-huh, yeah or amen, and sometimes twice in a row, “That’s a yes, that’s a yes.” He was really nice. I think I’ll try to get the phrase to catch on in The States.

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Baby, OH! Delicious Baby

by Lucky Red Hen on April 18, 2011

I warned you she’s delicious! This little one is such a doll face. EVERYONE who see’s her for the first time says, “She looks just like a DOLL!”

Even when she scowls >=| (I love it!)

…and between awake time and sleep time.

I have to admit. She makes my lack of baby photography skills look good.

I’m not fishing for compliments… there is an art to photographing babies that I haven’t figured out yet. I get SUPER sweaty and stressed that another angle would be better but I’m just not seeing it.

Thank goodness I got to practice with such a beauty! And thank goodness for Bonnie’s huge window of light (I don’t have any of those).

This last image stills my beating heart. Those lips are divine!!! Om nom nom.

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Lucky In Love: an engagement session

by Lucky Red Hen on April 14, 2011

EVERYBODY in love should get photos taken, anytime, but especially if they’re getting married. It’s SO FUN to look back on those pictures when you’re older and “remember when.” Haha, that just made me recall the photos we had taken before we got married. I need to scan them in and share them with you… sometime.

This is one of my buddy’s I worked with at the tree farm and his fiance. He got my jokes, knew the movie lines I quoted, and ALWAYS had a smile.

When he told me about his lady love, I saw the sparkle in his eye that fella’s have when they’re smitten. Boy, is HE smitten!

Because of his smitteness, I insisted on photographing the two of them; if not for their engagement photos, then just for fun.

Look at the fun we had! Smiling and laughing and jumping on backs and crouching…

It was chilly, but you can’t tell by these grins and cuddles.

Thanks guys for letting me photograph you :)

…and my favorite last shot. Happy wedding bliss!!!

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After much online research, my 11yo settled on buying the Nerf N-Strike Recon CS-6 (they used to be called “Nerf guns” back in the day) at Target today.

We had several errands to run, so I suggested he put his quarter-filled film canisters in his camera case and wear it around his neck so it wouldn’t get misplaced.

After 10 minutes of trying on jeans at Value Village (these kids go through pants so fast), we were ready to go and that’s when he realized his jacket and money were GONE O_O

My heart sunk as I recalled the time I was a girl shopping with my mother and set down my purse. It felt like it had only been a second that I turned around but I’m sure it was longer. Time estimation does not seem possible when you’re a kid. Either something takes FOREVER or it happened in a SECOND. The purse turned up at customer service later, without my coveted wallet (white and tan leather with a horseshoe on the front) and 24 hard-earned dollars. I think I was more devastated about the wallet being gone than the money.

After asking a couple store clerks, we found out one of them saw them slung over a rack and put them in the Lost & Found. All was recovered, phew!

Even with extensive editing, this post is getting longer and longer… do you want to hear about my good deed? It’ll make up for the story coming at the end. A little yin for my yang ;)

Good deed: While waiting FORever (time estimation for me might be skewed too) for a VV cashier to count out a customers 40 paperback Star Trek books, having to start over a couple times and they weren’t all the same price, other cashier’s opened up and offered to ring up the next person. I wasn’t in a hurry and had already been waiting so long that I decided to stay put and wait my turn. Buuut, when the cashier finished ringing them up and waiting for the lady to write her check, THAT’S when she decided to tell me, “I’m sorry, I’m closed after this customer so you’ll have to go to another check stand.”


No. There wasn’t a sign or light indicating that her lane is closing/closed. Ugh. All that time being patient for nothing. When I turned to leave, my eyes met some puppy dog eyes (not really a dog and her eyes weren’t really doing the puppy dog look, but she did look a little nervous).

Long story short… this gal had $70 of dishes to return (the set was missing all the bowls) but VV doesn’t give refunds, only exchanges, and wondered if she could buy my stuff with her return credit and I’ll give her the cash (I NEVER have cash, especially that much, but this time I did and it was just enough.) I only had $10 worth of stuff to buy with cash, the rest was supposed to come out of our checking account (we’re on a stiff budget). I said, “I could use some good karma, so I’ll do it!” She couldn’t stop thanking me… profusely.

The second cashier rang me up but then realized she couldn’t do a return/exchange transaction so we had to reverse the transaction and go to a third cashier to actually get the job done. He was FANTASTIC, had a GREAT ATTITUDE, and bent over backwards (figuratively) to make us happy. Dangit why didn’t I get his name? Guh.


THEN we drove 25 minutes to Target for the Nerf gun Nerf N-Strike Recon CS-6 and some perusing. After all the perusing, we just had the gun to buy and approached the next-to-be-served checkout lane. The cashier was finishing up the previous customer with a pleasant attitude. She rang up the gun and gave the total due. My sweet, well-behaved, 11yo then handed her the first bundle of quarters (he had about $19 in quarters then some dimes, nickels and a few pennies for the rest… but MOSTLY ALL quarters.)

Claudia: (looking at her handful of quarters then back at 11yo and in a snarky tone) We don’t take over $5 in coins.

11yo: (blink.blink)

Me: What do you MEAN you don’t take over $5 in coins? Since when?

Claudia: My supervisor won’t let me take over $5 in coins.

Me: Then let’s get the supervisor. (who happens to be just several feet away)

Claudia (to the supe): They want to pay with over $5 in coins.

Supe: Then take it. (turning away with a slight quizzical look)

Claudia: But I’m not supposed to. Two people have told me that.

Supe: I’ve never heard that. Take the money.

Me (directed to the supe): Coins ARE money, aren’t they?

Supe (to me then to Claudia): Yes they are. Take the money.

She starts counting out the quarters. At one point she tries to back peddle saying that she, too, pays her daughter for chores in coins. But then she says…

Claudia: Well, I’d normally take the coins but there’s a backup. (motioning to the nice mom behind us)

It was 2:30pm on a Wednesday, nowhere near a holiday, with at least four other cashiers on duty with only ONE customer each… there was NO backup. And it isn’t hard to count quarters… four equal a dollar.

Me: Wait a minute. You said before that you aren’t allowed, but now you’re saying you would if there wasn’t a backup?!?

Claudia: Yes, that’s right.


I’ve been talking to my kidlets lately about how we say things. Say the word “sorry” in a sarcastic whine with your squinted eyes and sneer -or- in a humbled voice with upturned eyebrows and down turned lips; same word, different meanings.

Like in Three Men and a Baby when Tom Selleck reads to the baby from Sports Illustrated. It’s his tone of voice that soothes the baby, not the explanation of how the basketball star completed his layup and scored his umpteenth basket.

We had several cashiers that day: one at Les Schwab (I returned our chains; the clerk was slammed with incoming calls, an impatient older customer waiting after me, and she maintained her pleasant disposition the entire time, as did I), three at the first Value Village, one crummy one at Target, and one at the other Value Village (we were searching for a small lamp for the hall bathroom).

I KNOW how to behave with cashiers, I HAVE BEEN a cashier, I have a couple of Employee of the Month awards from past employment in customer service, so I am pretty sure I have a good idea of how customer service works.

“Yes, we have no bananas!”

There is no excuse for a cashier to treat someone unkind, ESPECIALLY a KID. And obviously by my momma bear rant, MY kid. If she was having a bad day (which I don’t think she was), she didn’t need to take it out on the customer, my son.

Lesson Learned: don’t punch rude people in the neck. Blog about it instead.

P.S. Told the cashier at the other Target today about the incident and she was appalled. She said that she’s been paid in pennies before, that it doesn’t happen very often, and that their store has nicer employees than the other one ;)

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What Do You Want From Me? Plus Newborn photos.

by Lucky Red Hen on March 29, 2011

Blogging regularly is tricky for me because I think y’all want to see photos with posts. Is that what you want? Or are you here for my outlook on life and weird musings? Do be honest, I guess if I was asked the same thing about someone else’s blog, I’m not sure I’d know how to answer. Am I there for the photos or stories?

I like photos, of course. And I suppose you do too (who doesn’t?) But are photos mandatory? If they are, which is how I think, then my posting will have to be few and far between. I’m just not photographing as much lately, instead wanting to concentrate on my family (not saying that others can’t do both… it’s just difficult for me to manage.)

But you’ve figured out that I HAVE been taking photos lately (obviously, because there are pictures in between these paragraphs), so I DO have content to share sometimes. Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, I’m doing a lot more photographing for someone who’s decided to not do photographing. Hmm. That’s odd. Perhaps I should tell myself that I’m not going to do anymore laundry and it’ll start getting done around here ;)

Sometimes I have an idea of what I’d like to write about, some deep and meaningful thoughts, but I freeze when I don’t have a photograph to put with the post then I wait too long and another subject seems more important and I bail on the other one.

Should the photo coordinate with the post? Does it HAVE to? Maybe not. I’ve seen other bloggers post sans photograph. I kinda think they’re braver than I to not have a crutch of needing one to post.

There are ideas in this 10% used gray matter of mine that could offend others (religion? politics? secks?), bore some (E = MC2), embarrass a few (remember that time when so-and-so was caught making out with…), or just plain make me look like an insensitive idiot (racial/cultural observances). Honestly, I don’t think what goes on in my head is that much different than many other people around the world (just willing to admit it), but whether or not I can convey what I’m really feeling via words typed on a screen is another story.

Q: Are you here for the fun, the stories, deep thoughts, or photographs? Or maybe you accidentally clicked on my blog and really didn’t mean to be here at all (it’s possible, and I forgive you if you never come back).

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[warning: rant to follow]

When do you decide that enough is enough with your kid’s elementary school? How far is too far? Where is the line? What do you do when you don’t know what to do?

I am NOT an educator (that’s the schools job). I have NOT been taught how to teach (that’s what teachers go to college for). I do NOT profess to know how a school should run (that’s why we have education professionals).

I am just a mom who wants her kidlets to have a consistently positive learning experience around other kids who behave decently. Is that too much to ask? I guess it might.

We can’t change the language that a third grader brings to teach my non-cursing children. Yes, I KNOW that’s going to happen, but it happens a LOT (especially younger) and it’s disgusting even though people may say/feel that it’s “just how it is these days.”

How about NO, that is NOT how it is going to be these days. How about we all agree that there is a NO CURSING policy at all elementary schools? Wouldn’t EVERYONE that is a parent to elementary students agree to that? Even cussing families, don’t you think they could agree that 5-11 year old kids should refrain from dropping the F-bomb at school? My third grader came home with a discipline form because he was caught passing a note in class that read (spelled correctly), “You s__ g__ f__ a___.” These are words he has NEVER heard/read outside of school. A kid in his class giggled and told him what to write. Yeah, my kid didn’t know better to not listen. Peer pressure… sigh.

How about we all agree that there will be no TOUCHING each other at school? Just a flat out rule that everyone is supposed to follow just like the rule that they are not supposed to walk on the grass (and they don’t). This would eliminate chasing, shoving, groping, pulling, poking, scratching, etc. Today my guy came home with ANOTHER deep scratch (his neck this time) from a girl in his class. This is the third in 10 days (arm and wrist were the other two), bad enough they needed Neosporin and bandaging (they’re bigger than a Band-Aid size). He’s had issues with kids on the bus harassing him (we drove him to/from school for a week then when he went back he sat in a different area) and girls kicking him in the shins (I think he handled that one by taking them aside and telling them it hurt a lot and would they please stop doing it and they did).

I’m trying NOT to go Momma Bear on the situation. I want him to stand up for himself and know how to talk to the authorities when something is wrong (he’s told her to stop, that’s not working). He’s supposed to go to the principal tomorrow and explain that he’s being hurt and would like it to stop. The nice thing is that he’s pretty docile and non-confrontational with people (who aren’t his parents), but that works against him when he’s getting picked on and treated unkindly.

The trick is that this stuff does NOT happen in Boy Scouts, Sunday School or at other people’s houses… just at school.

I KNOW teachers have a lot of work for little pay. I KNOW that kids will be kids. I KNOW that my kid is not an angel and contributes to an unruly classroom. I KNOW that the adults at school can’t monitor EVERYTHING that goes on. I KNOW that sometimes a class/group of kids can be impossible to manage because they are just like that. I believe that the teachers and other personnel at the school are doing their best to do what is right.

He says he doesn’t have friends at school, everyone is mean to him, he doesn’t feel like he fits in, etc. This. Breaks. A. Mother’s. Heart. And it makes me think about switching school’s or (ack) home schooling (ugh).

I DON’T want to home school but I don’t want my kid getting harassed and feel like a loser either. I DON’T want to get involved in a document trail of he-said-she-said (the principal is WAY into documenting every detail, I’m not so I feel unarmed).

How do I teach my children how to stand up for themselves without being disrespectful (not all adults are right or should be trusted, maybe the adult didn’t ask the right questions or believes the wrong person) or getting in trouble for doing it (if a kid hits mine but mine blocks or pushes to avoid then mine gets in trouble)? What is a kid supposed to do when someone else won’t stop being annoying?

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