Monday, April 30, 2007

My kids are going commando. Why am I the only one who finds it funny? 5 year old dresses herself. In the morning she gets up, goes potty, brushes her teeth and hair and dresses herself. She also helps my 2.5 year old get dressed. This morning I get an angry call from daycare, that my 5 year old doesn't have underwear on, and she has no extras in her cubby. This happened about 2 weeks ago as well. The first time I think I laughed. This time, they were pissed, and said she had to go home. I laughed and said I would bring her some underwear. Frankly, the whole time I am thinking that the chances that the 2.5 year old is also going commando are pretty high. But daycare is not amused. They say I can bring some underwear this time, but next time she has to go home. So..I bail out of work and hurry over there to take her to buy some underwear (there is a dept store about 5 blocks from daycare). When I get there, she has underwear on. They got it from my 2.5 year old's cubby, as well as underwear for the 2.5 year old, who (as I guessed) was also commando. I sat my 5 year old down and told her she had to wear underwear that it was important for health reasons. She said she just forgot (which I totally believe) and said she was sorry. I emphasized that she would need to remember in the future. I had a similar (with less fire and brimstone) talk with my 2.5 year old.

Then we get a note from the director of our daycare stating that if it happened again, the kids would be sent home and could not return until the next day.

I think that is nuts. I mean, what is the big deal. From now on we will check to see if they have underwear in the morning. But, as long as they get underwear, what is the point to send them home? To punish them? To punish me? Seems like overkill. While this has happened 2x in 2 weeks, it never happened before at school (she did the same thing to us on Sunday).

Am I missing something? What is the big deal, seriously. I asked if she was doing anything inappropriate (like playing with herself, or something) and they said no. So c'mon! Make her put on the underwear and get on with the day. Am I under-reacting?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Cool stuff to Make with Cardboard

This is just the coolest website.

I can't wait to get some cardboard boxes and make some of these. Of course, the hubby will probably make me wait until after our home construction is done (it would be nice if it would start!). I particularly like the castle and the pirate ship.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Great Wolf Lodge -- Family Vacation Success!

So last week, we took the whole brood to Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg, VA. I have to say, it was great. Really. First, no plane trip, just a two hour drive. Conveniently, almost the same length as a kids' movie. Perfect. Next, we had a suite in the hotel, giving the kids their own space and meant we could watch movies after they went to bed without waking them up. Third, onsite entertainment. The waterpark was REALLY cool. And good variety. A shallow pool with slides for my 2.5 year old. One of us would sit in that pool with the baby while she went round and round up and down the little slides. The other would get to go with our almost 5 year old on the big (2-4 story) water slides. Lots of fun! They also had a little club with craft activities (about 1/2 free, 1/2 pay) and kids movies. There was also a large arcade (which we thankfully avoided) and storytime every night.

The hotel rooms themselves weren't bad. They didn't double wrap the blankets (sheet on top and bottom), which bugs me, but also makes me a hotel snob. The room was basically clean, but they could have used to move some furniture and clean under that too. They did provide a decent size fridge and microwave, which meant we could eat breakfast and lunch in the room, which was convenient and saved money! The kids loved their bunk beds in the "wolf's den" part of our room. The pool was very clean and the lifeguards were really great. Very attentive, always in and around all the pools. Very good. It can be pricey, however. But you have to remember you can go to the waterpark from 1pm day in until 10pm day out. If you figure in waterpark fees for a family of 5 (even 4 if the baby doesn't count), it isn't as bad as it seems.

We will definitely go again.

This summer we are thinking of spending a week in Pennsylvania. I am thinking of some selection of Dutch Wonderland, Dorney Park (and our friends who live near there), the Crayola Factory and Sesame Place. Anyone have any thoughts??

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Daycare Illness Woes

I love my daycare, really I do. All three of my kids have gone there since they were 16 weeks, and I know they love and care for them well. But sometimes they just get to me.

My little guy ("big man") has sensitive skin. He has eczema and gets rashes a lot. They know this, they have seen it. But on Tuesday they call my DH to say that big man has a blotchy rash and he needs to come get him. So we figure its because big man is wearing a new shirt that day, and that is probably what is irritating his skin (our fault bcuz we didn't wash it in Dreft). So DH goes and buys some cream at the CVS to take it down to him.

When he gets to the daycare, big man is not there. He is out on a buggy ride with the whole class. So my hubby thinks, cool, they must realize its just a skin thing and nothing to be worried about. He comes back in half an hour, just as the kids are returning. He goes to pick up big man to take a look and apply the cream, and the teachers tell him that he needs to go home immediately and not return without a drs note. DH is like "what??!! -- he is too sick to stay at school, yet he went on a buggy ride with the rest of the class?!" That was so ridiculous. They said no way, he's outta here.

So big man had an unrelated appointment the next day with a pulminologist (respiratory and eczema are actually weirdly closely related). That dr wrote a note saying it was a contact rash and nothing debilitating or contagious.

We are still burning over it though. I mean, he is either sick and should be isolated from other kids, or he can keep doing all the regular activities. You can't have both, people!

Potty Train Success Plan

On Sunday I was in Target and saw a family deciding which kind of training pants (pull-ups) to buy. It took everything I had to not run over and say "NOOOOOOOOOO". I consider myself sort of an expert on potty training GIRLS. I can't emphasize that enough. I think boys are different, and won't know for a while as DS is only 8 months. But girls, I got down. And training pants are NOT part of the equation. I say diapers to underwear cold turkey.

As I have found it, the keys are Determination and Denim. Determination because when you start it you have to stick with it even if it appears to be a disaster, and denim because I have found that if your potty training child is wearing jeans, the mess of an accident is mostly confined to the underwear and pants and rarely makes it all the way to the floor. The denim is thick enough to soak up the mess.

So.. here is how I did it for my two girls(and, BTW..I stole this from the mom of a boy!). When they are ready (have sat on the potty a bunch of times, is interested in it, etc) -- both mine were 2.5 -- you go with them to the store and pick out underwear they like. Then you let them look at it and hold it for a week or so, but no wearing. Then for a week you prepare to say goodbye to the diapers. You talk about being a big girl and not wearing diapers any more. Talk about it more and more as you lead up to the big day. Then on the last diaper day -- i suggest a Friday of a long weekend, you talk about how this is the last day of wearing diapers.

Then on Saturday morning, say BYE BYE diapers and put on underwear and jeans. In my experience the first day will be hell. I have not let this stop me and we have continued our regular activities (carrying along lots of wipes, plastic bags, underwear and every pair of jeans I can get my hands on). Anyway, about every 45 minutes ask if they have to go potty. Bring them in the potty -- and I mean the toilet, not a stand-alone potty seat. The regular toilet with a potty seat on it. If you use a stand alone seat not only do you have to clean up that mess, but then you have another transition to get them to the regular potty, and what do you do when you are out and about??!! When they are on the potty read books, sing songs, whatever until they do the deed. For both my girls they only made it to the potty on time once or twice that first day. The rest were just accidents. But DO NOT GIVE UP!

On Sunday, same drill. For both my girls day 2 was MUCH better. Only 1 or 2 accidents (for my second, NONE!). Same on day 3. By then you will be done. Just keep those jeans washed and ready. The jeans are key. Seriously. I buy a lot of my kids clothes on consignment, and I just made sure we had like 6-7 pairs of jeans ready for potty training.

So..that is my two cents. Like I said, I haven't done it with boys, but have a friend who did (actually she taught me most of this method), and it worked like a charm.

Good luck!