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Showing posts from October, 2017

Memories

Two-year-old No. 3 and my stumbling crash a few weeks back has become shared legend between she and I.  I got to hang out with the gang all day today, and when we arrived at soccer practice, three weeks, and one-and-a-half blocks East of our tumble on the sidewalk, she pointed down the road and said "That's where we tumbled, and went crrsshhccc."

I said, "Yeah, and where'd you land?"

"On my backpack."  Then unexpectedly, she said, "You landed on your cheek."  I had completely forgotten that she'd been looking right at me as she landed!  Her attention to detail during our crash is astounding!  I had landed on my cheek.

Later in the afternoon, No. 3 and I headed back out to pick up chicken at our local market.  As we rounded the corner to our bus stop, a woman said "Hi Diana!"

The kids have lots of friends in the neighborhood I don't know thanks to their daily roamings.  I introduced myself and we started to talk.  It tur…

The Fun of Unschooling from a Dad's Point of View

The dad-person over at 'Happiness is Here' recently wrote an article to other dads who might be making the decision to homeschool.  As a dad who already has kids who decided to homeschool, I thought I'd chime in with why it's so much fun.

As a fellow dad of unschooled kids, I confess that people will on occasion give you meaningful glances--over an apparently harmless statement or question about your kids' education.  Glances that obviously are meant to imply that you should be very, very concerned about this non-standard thing your kids are doing, (unschooling).  I'm happy to report however, that this has only happened a very few times for us.

The more common thing, at least for me, are entertaining questions from non-homeschoolers, but those are just fun.  Things like looking with great consternation at the pack consisting of then 1 year-old No. 3, 3 year-old No. 2, and 4 year-old No. 1 wandering around beside us and asking, "Are those your kids?" …

Young Indie and the Fish Temple of Doom

As a kid, one of my coolest memories of San Francisco was visiting the fortune cookie factory.  Consequently, one morning, I snuggled six month old No. 3 into her Moby wrap strapped across my chest, handed 4 year-old No. 1 her backpack, asked 2 year old No. 2 to put on his shoes, and we hopped onto MUNI.  We BARTed to Montgomery Station, wandered up top, meandered for about a block, and hopped on the 30 to Chinatown.

When we arrived, we found ourselves awash in a sea of people!  No. 1 and 2 made their way slowly through the crowd in front of me.  No. 1 was perfecting her bob and weave.  I stayed close to No. 2, serving as a kind of safety flag.  providing a large slow moving baby-wearing obstacle that caught people's attention even if they didn’t see the kid toddling along at my feet.

 All four of us, have lightning fast metabolisms, so it wasn’t long before we needed a snack.  Fortunately, we were in the right place.  The groceries and bakeries in Chinatown are full of all manner o…

What Kids Remember, Glorious Tumbles, and Other Things

Two year-old No. 3 and I just got back from our walk around the block.  She’s learning new words daily, and occasionally throwing out wholly formed sentences just for the fun of it.  She doesn’t notice it’s the big deal everyone else thinks it is.

As we started our walk, I thought she was saying no stars, no stars since the sun had just set, and there weren’t any stars out yet.  Instead, what she was doing was checking each driveway for moving cars, and saying “No cars, no cars.”  She and the rest of the gang have been practicing this game every time they go somewhere to make sure they don’t get hit by someone pulling their car out of their driveway and across the sidewalk.

As we hit our first corner, No 3 began to tell me how she had fallen and,  “Toes hurt.”

“Your toes hurt?”

“Yeah.  It’s OK though.”

“Why do your toes hurt?”

“I fell.”  Here, 3 launhes into a pantomime waving her arms at head level, and then making a crashing noise.  “It’s OK though.  I landed on my backpack.’

“Oh!  …

Buying Flowers

Now that the kids can safely cross the street on their own, they’ve started to take over some of my jobs at the Farmers’ Market.  Specifically, they buy the flowers each week.  This particular week, since mom-person had come, 6 year-old No. 1 and 4 year-old No. 2 split up.  No. 2 wanted to show mom-person around.  No. 1 was more interested in carrying out her usual jobs.  I handed her a 20 and asked how much change she should get back for the $5 flowers.  “15 dollars,” she responded.

“Do you remember how to get across the street here?”

“Yup”

“OK, I’m going to head down this way, and then I’ll come back up and meet you here if I don’t see you sooner.”


“OK”

“Be safe,” I admonished, as No. 1 headed out for the flower stand across the thoroughfare that divides the market so cars, (of all things), can drive through.

I carried on with my shopping, getting a few particularly sweet cherry tomatoes, and taking time to check out the many vegetables that I have yet to learn the names for, naviga…

When the Digits Fill they must Spill

Another conversation No. 1, our 6 year-old, and I had about number bases.  I'm not sure where I'm headed with all this.  No. 1 and I tend to talk as we ride through San Francisco on its various buses, trains, and cable cars... a lot.  It would be more concise to explain what we're doing math-wise by writing down a short description of the concepts.  It's not what we're actually doing though, so I'm not sure how much help that would be.  I'll just say for now, that I've discovered more about the math No. 1 and talk about by talking than I did by 'learning' it in school, so for now, I'll carry on.




OK, so No. 1 and I had covered the basics of number bases.  You choose you base, you get that many numbers to place in a digit, and you have to include zero as a number.  Choose base 10, and you get our finger-counting system with ten different numbers represented by a single digit: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.  Choose base 3, and you get 0, 1, …

Dance Parties and Books

Lala Land dance Parties have become a thing of late at our house.  The kids put on the soundtrack, and vamp around the room dancing every which way  Four year-old No. 2 has settled into a decidedly beatnik shimmy of late.  He’ll plant his spread feet, shake his shoulders, and then, as he pulls his feet together, ooze to some other spot in the room before doing it all over again, perhaps throwing in a spin with his shimmy this time.  I’m convinced he’s channeling the dance he watched Audrey Hepburn at the French cafe in Funny Face.

Six year-old No. 1's, dances tend to be influenced by whatever she’s reading.  When she’s heavy into comic books, she might dance like a robot, making start again, stop again, syncopated movements around the den ala Cliff Steele, Robotman of Doom Patrol, or she might move from tree pose to tree pose spinning as she goes, ala Poison Ivy of Superhero High.  This week, No. 1 discovered a beginning ballet book from the ‘50s at the university library, so she’s…

Lost Phone

We were incredibly lucky to have both been in university settings when our kids were born.  When No. 1 arrived, we were both still grad students.  Not long after No. 2 arrived, (about 10 days to be exact), mom-person defended her dissertation and gained the appellation prependage Dr. 

While there are lots of perks attendant to grad school, not the least of them phenomenal health insurance, that’s not the one that’s come to mind for me just now.  The one I’m most grateful for at the moment with respect to our kids was the opportunities for sheer independence.  Most days, we’d meet for lunch on the quad of whatever university we were hanging out at at the time, (physics research requires a bit of travel), to eat lunch.  During those lunches, the kids could crawl, toddle, or jog off into the distance.  There were no roads, and therefore no cars.  And, I realize now with a certain wistful bliss I had no knowledge of at the time, there were also very few people at hand that new what a baby…