Things I Wasn't Ready For

Colin has been in school for three weeks now. This is the first time I've ever had a Kindergartener of my own, and it's been a few years (coughcoughtwentyfivecoughcough) since I was a Kindergartener - so when it comes to knowing what to expect out of this first year of school, I'm a little (okay, a lot) rusty. Even in three short weeks, there have been a lot of things that have come as kind of a surprise for me. Among them ...

He has a girlfriend. Up until this point, his only "girlfriend" was me, until I explained to him that it's just not possible. Oh, and Kiki from the Fresh Beat Band:

a él le gusta Latinas

So y'all can imagine my surprise when he mentioned his new girlfriend, G., who wears a Dora backpack and knows about Venus fly traps and has a loose tooth. They sit together at snack time and play together at recess. He beams with joy when you even mention her name. Yesterday he told me G. wasn't his girlfriend any more because she "talks too much about silly things" (at which point Curtis piped up and was all, "You'll have to get used to that, son, it's a universal trait"). Today, though? He held her hand on the way into the school. Held her hand. So my guess is, they're back on. But when did my baby get so grown up that he thought he needed to get himself a girlfriend? Wah!

He's clamming up. I've heard countless parents complain that their "What did you do in school today?" is met with an unsatisfying "Nothing." But I imagine this answer coming from, like, a surly teenager who slumps into the house without making eye contact and goes straight to his bedroom - not an energetic and bubbly little Kindergartener. Yet that's exactly what I get. It's like pulling teeth to get him to tell me anything about his day, which sucks, 'cause I'm dying for a play-by-play. I don't understand it: this is the kid that will tell the worker at the ice cream shop that he likes the rainbow-colored ice cream because it's not only tasty but it also makes his poop turn green and that's so cool and did you know that food coloring could do that?

But when I ask him what he did at school? I get a shrug. Or a "Nothing." Or an, "I'm busy, Mommy."

He has homework. Every Tuesday night is homework night. Granted, it's not much, but I didn't expect it this early. What's worse, he already hates doing it. If writing an easy spelling word a few times (which he could do with his eyes closed) hacks him off this much in Kindergarten, what am I gonna have to resort to when he's a high school kid with algebra homework?

He has a ... fundraiser?! When I pulled a large white envelope out of his backpack after school yesterday, I wasn't sure what it was. Information on school pictures, maybe? Then when I opened it I saw ... what's this ... an order form of some sort? And ... oh look, is that ... a catalog? Yes. A catalog of wrapping paper and candy and random gadgets: the school fundraiser. Already? In the first month of Kindergarten? Apparently so. 

And apparently, from what I hear, it's just the first of many. *sigh*

So yeah. All this has blindsided me, and we haven't even completed a full month of school yet. Is everybody so clueless this first time around, or am I just "special?"



  1. Mine starts today. I'm trying not to think about any of this.

  2. The Girl is 3 and in pre-K and she's been this way since she could talk. "How was school (read: daycare)?" Shrugs. Ugh. Money well spent.

  3. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but - you're screwed! It just gets worse.
    My kids are 31, 29, and 26 and they still surprise me!

  4. You can ignore the fundraisers I think. I do, since I just donate money directly to the school.

    Tommy had a girlfriend at that age too. I was all, "Um what?" He has one now in third grade but sometimes he's all, "She was cranky today."

    And I get that "fine" answer from Tommy when I ask him about his day. It's annoying.

  5. Oh, those fundraisers!!!!! They will get out of hand, let me tell you.

    And I don't have kids.

    But I have nieces and nephews. And take some advice from me, as an aunt who feels the need to constantly support the kiddos in their life and their endeavors, don't give every fundraiser to every family member. It starts to add up quickly, and unless someone has made it clear that they are always willing and have money to spend on such things, maybe only give them the big ones. You know, Christmas time, or if they're selling food. I always enjoy the food ones. It's hard when I get a catalog of items that are no less than $25 and I'm broke. Just try to space them out and don't always take it upon yourself to make them tons and tons of money. They'll live if they don't sell much (I did!).

  6. I really wish teachers would make homework more fun :) By college these kids are like "omg, I don't want to do this assignment!"

    In other news, our school wrapping paper sale ALWAYS had the coolest wrapping paper. But my mom has 4 kids, so she really just bought the bulk stuff at target and wherever else she was at the time. I don't even think they had Targets back least, by us :)

  7. Oh the Kindegarten's just precious. But, I can see how it'd freak you out. I'm not sure I'll be ready for that when the time comes.

  8. Coming from someone who is married to a teacher/administrator, I thought I would know it all, in fact, I knew nothing!

    And he is starting young! My first boyfriend was in first grade, a toothless (hey, at that age they are supposed to be toothless) blond named Thane. But then again, I tried to catch up as my second boyfriend (with me still in first grade) was a 4th grader named Danny - ohhhhh, an older man!

  9. I'm sending my third to kindergarten in 2 weeks, thanks for bumming my high, I had forgot about all that crap :)

  10. Oh boy...I am so not looking forward to this next year. I better enjoy this last year of preschool!

  11. OK, so the girlfriend thing and hand holding shocks me. He seems a bit young still, but as long as it stays innocent I wouldn't be to concerned.

    Also the fundraisers are probably optional. Don't do them- they are a hassle and your family and friends will start to hate you.

  12. Oooooh . . . the posts are gonna roll. Just THINK of all the blog fodder school is gonna give you (like you needed any more)

  13. Wow, girlfriends and fundraisers and uncommunicative boys? I think I'm going to put off school for longer!

  14. Let's talk about fundraisers, shall we? Why do they have to sell crap? I want to support the schoolchildren in my life. But, I refuse to be $30 boxes of chocolate, wrapping paper or popcorn. So, come up with something a little creative. A coworker had a fundraiser for mums. I can get behind plants grown in a local greenhouse.

    But, seriously, they have kindergartners hock stuff beginning in the first week?

    And, he's already a ladies man. Good for him.=)

  15. ha! I could have written this post about 6 years ago! When I started getting the "nothing" answer I changed my question. I now ask "What was the best part of your day at school?" And then "What was your worst part?"

  16. I'm really surprised that Colin would clam up about his day at school! He's such a talker, I can't imagine it. Maybe he just has so many things to do at home in such a few evening hours that he doesn't want to take up his time re-telling his school day.

    And I was surprised at the fundraiser already! But I can't wait to look at his catalog and pick out something. I'm just glad most of my grandchildren are done with fundraisers. It got pretty expensive when all the older ones were in school!

    Hang on.....sounds like it going to be an interesting year!

  17. This post made me incredibly happy that my youngest son is nearly finished with school forever!!! yay!!! I don't think I could start all over again...

  18. I work at a school. I think many, if not all, of our kinder parents are surprised by kinder expectations. I feel like we need to be more sensitive to parents and their concerns and put ourselves in their shoes more. Maybe I'll share your story with our kinder teachers! But, the girlfriend thing?? SO CUTE!!! I had a "boyfriend" in kinder. We would walk together and he would bring me flowers he pulled. Then, he always chased me when we played "boys chase girls."

  19. Hello ! a girfriend !! Awww so cute ;D I love your blog ^^

    I invite you to participate in my new giveaway

    Kisses ^^


  20. last year Izzy actually made me promise to stop asking her about preschool after several weeks of irritatedly telling me she didn't want to talk about it. I had to learn she had friends from their mothers when they invited us to birthday parties and said their kids talked about her all the time. what happens at preschool, stays at preschool I guess.

  21. No, I was blindsided, too and mine had homework 4 nights a week (private church school grrrr) and HE HATED IT FOREVER. Hey, and funraisers suck big time - I spend all MY money 'cause he wouldn't do ti and I wouldn't make him.

  22. Really you are all sharing, your thoughts very nicely


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