Friday, September 30, 2011

Today ends the first month of Kindergarten for the Sinki famiy. I know that Henry, Jim, and I aren't sitting next to her on the carpet while they review the calendar. I know that she and her peers negotiate the monkey bars at recess. We are not with her during the day, but school has changed our family. The first two weeks, we were exhausted. She was a zombie when I picked her up at the end of the day. All day M-F school will do that, I guess. We were all zombies: our wake up time changed. We had to figure out 1 bathroom and 4 people who all needed to be in it at the same time. Lunch had to be made and packed up, shoes carefully picked out (is it gym today?), and forms, and forms, and forms... But we did it. Today, I got to go to the ballet with Willa and her class. Which meant Willa went on her first bus ride. Two weeks ago, the class all sat on a bus to learn about etiquette and emergency procedures. Today, Willa was my stewardess: "mom, if the bus tips over, we can get out through that hatch on the roof, and if we need it, there's a door in the back, and these windows come down..." Kind of a worrier, that one. The ride was fine. The ballet was... well, I think I share the opinion of ballet with a lot of 5 year old boys. Ballet is not "my thing" but I didn't put a coat over my head like my pal next to me did. I straightened him out, and then spent the rest of the time enjoying Willa's enthralled face down the row from me, and trying to get the other kids to be still and quiet. That's a challenge when it's dark, and quiet(ish), and you don't know names. Also, noteworthy: dark is different in the age of light up tennis shoes. I met a lot of characters today. There's no English girl (only one, I think), girl who steps on Willa's heels in line all the time, and Willa's self-proclaimed boyfriend who "sometimes makes bad choices, but is really cute."

Thursday, September 29, 2011


It was pouring when I went to pick Willa up at school today. I got a great parking spot, and locked Henry in the car. Under a giant yellow golf umbrella, I walked 50 yards and waited for Willa's class to come out of the school, lined up behind a teacher. There was another mom waiting. She stood under a tree without an umbrella or a rain jacket. "Hi," I said, "you're already soaked, but let's stand next to each other." We shared the umbrella.

She didn't say a word. For the whole 3 mintues that we waited.

I was so uncomfortable, and it's obviously stuck with me for the day.

Monday, September 12, 2011


World, be prepared for Henry and his shoebox guitar covering ABBA.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Class of 2024

Today was a good day. Getting ready at home went well. The school was chaos when we arrived. Willa hugged Henry for a big minute. We found a table for her to sit with, and the girls already there introduced themselves to her right away. She gave me a duo of hugs, the second more tight. Both of us had a tiny lip quiver. Then I told her it was time for us to leave. She smiled and said okay. I kissed her cheek, and left. I took one last peek (and photo). She was ready for me to go, and was just fine:

It was a great first day. No tears from Willa or me.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Kindergarten eve

Her outfit is laid out. The backpack is labeled, and has been filled with crayons, glue sticks, markers, pencils... We did some role playing at bedtime where she introduced herself to me (someone in her class). We giggled as I pretended to be people from the Ramona books we've just finished.
This morning, Willa had a hard time listening and acting like... well, herself. When I asked her what was going on, she shuffled her feet and mumbled "Idon'tknow." A minute later, she whispered in my ear, "I know what's going on. I'm nervous about tomorrow.
I am about to pack her lunch. I want to include a note. I'll just write "I love you." I know she can read that. Also, it's not very appropriate to write this:

I'm nervous too. How is your teacher going to be able to make sure you're safe and learning and making friends when there are 34 kids in her class? How will she know you're left handed? I'm nervous that you'll have a hard time finding someone to sit next to at lunch. Or that you'll be the kid clinging to her mom at drop off. Worse yet, I'm worried that I'll be the mom clinging to her student. I'm nervous about packing you the right lunch. Are you going to be comfortable in your new clothes? Will you remember to shut the door when you use the school bathroom? Will you want to go back for day two?
I'm nervous about how Henry will cope with his co-conspirator gone during the day. I'm worried about how my role is changing as you both grow up - SO FAST!
But then I take a deep breath.
And I am comforted in knowing that you are a friendly little girl. You are smart. You are strong. You will get what you need, and try for what you want. You will make friends fast. You are kind and caring and respectful, and funny. You will do great, kid.

Like and oyster and a pearl

I mentioned in my last post that I had my gall bladder removed.

I spent a good part of late Fall - early Spring pretty sure I was pregnant. I was nauseous all the time, and there were other digestive issues. I had occasional pains that felt like early pregnancy stretching. There was bloating. I was exhausted. Despite the fact that I still had regular periods, I took a pregnancy test about every other week (friends, did you know Dollar Store tests are just as effective as the expensive ones?). I saw my gynecologist for my annual appointment, and talked to him about it. He took me seriously when I told him what was going on, and we both laughed when I told him I was worried I'd end up on one of those awful "I didn't know I was pregnant" tv shows - except I was certain I was. We did a blood test, and nope.

A month later, pain increased, and my doctor ordered a cat scan. The cat scan showed no cysts or hernias, which was what she was expecting. I did, however, have one stone in my gall bladder. And that stone was mighty large, and likely occasionally sat on the bile duct. It's amazing to me how much trouble that one stone caused.

So, a week and a half ago, I had the gall bladder and stone removed. Today, I'm feeling 95% back to normal. When I was preparing for it, I did a lot of reading on the web. That's a bad idea, as there's a lot of worst case info out there. To balance out the info, I might write here about the surgery and recovery this week.

Friday, September 02, 2011

Outing. Robots. Sweet girl.

Blanco de Sinki has been kind of Willa heavy lately, hasn't it? I imagine it has a lot to do with the deep down part of my brain wrestling with the fact that the newborn that joined our family yesterday is going to kindergarten on Tuesday. Not next year, not in a few months, or weeks... Tuesday. Woah.

We're working on changing routines in increments to help our first day go well. Soon, Henry and I will walk away from the elementary school, and start the rest of our day. And then, I'll probably have more to type about the little boy, who insists on being called a "medium sized boy."

Yesterday the kids and I went to Meijer. Mundane. Unless one is 5 days post gall bladder removal. This was the first time I took them out by myself. I wasn't on pain meds, I could brake quickly if needed. We walked around the whole store picking up fruits and vegetables, folders with horse pictures, and a pencil sharpener. Success, though I felt exhausted and kind of sore at one incision. I'll take the lifting restrictions more seriously for the next few days.

When we got home, Willa took a paper bag, and started to imagine it into a robot costume (one of 781 costumes Henry would like for Halloween). And then she counted our reserve paper bags, asking me how many kids were going to be in her Kindergarten class again. I asked what she was doing. "Well, I thought I would make robot costumes for me and all of my new friends."

I closed my eyes for a moment, listening to the deep down part of my brain pleading, "please, please, please, let my little girl keep this feathery sweetness about her."