This amazing couple, along with their 2 children, raised these pheasants since they hatched in the first grade classroom last spring. (I want their truck, it is crying out for a Christmas tree peaking out of the back.) Everyone got an upclose look. Our Head of School, Mr. F, releasing them onto our beautiful campus. I feel so lucky the boys are able to go to a school with this amazing environment, prairie, woods, lake, and a great sledding hill...what more could a child desire. The fog today set a great tone for the release.
I just watched a segment on the Today Show about a father that went onto his daughter's school bus, to confront the kids bullying his daughter. And my hats go off to him. I don't agree with all he said, but his passion to protect his daughter, I can relate to. The idea of my boys being bullied would break my heart. I have been a victim of bullying on a school bus, of course, this was years ago. I was taunted, spat at, had lit matches thrown at me. I was told to ignore them, and my parents did nothing. I watched a mentally retarded (that is how they were referred at the time) girl being mercilessly bullied. It makes me cry now, thinking about her anguish. She didn't have the skills to fight back, and I became her protector, all less than five feet and 80 lbs of me. I watched a little boy have his football thrown out of the window by older boys. The bus driver refused to stop to get it, until I threw such a fit he pulled over and I went out to the ditch and got it. I can still remember Briton's tears flowing down his face, unable to protect himself from kids twice his size and age. If the schools won't protect our kids, what message does that send. I would board that bus, in a heart beat.
This weekend I finally saw Eat, Pray, Love, and ever since I've been thinking about pizza (and Javier Bardem, but that's a whole different thought). So a field trip to Pizza Bruttaon Monroe Street in Madison was called for. They never disappoint. There they are making my pizza.
There are days when everything seems to be going against me, and I want a do over. Start the day over, from scratch, make better decisions, better choices. Today was a day I want a do over with the boys. I struggle with thinking about where they are now, and if I could start over from birth, what I would do different. You won't know how badly you screwed up their lives, until it's too late. Is demanding they have a plenty of playtime and unstructured hours going to hurt them? Should I have had every hour accounted for? Should I have spent more time practicing reading and arithmetic, instead of letting them flood the sand box and make castles? Are they going to be behind because I wanted them to spend time painting and coloring instead of touching a computer? Will their creative and imaginative selves be applauded? Will it matter that they can tell you about Abraham Lincoln, but don't know anything about video games? I think children need lots of time to explore, create and dream, but is that unrealistic. I can't help comparing my boys to other children academically. I know it's wrong, but I do. No one wants their child singled out as the kid that doesn't get it. It would break my heart if they were teased about it. Do I have them in sports, even though I don't think the practices and games are beneficial to our family? Is it better to have them at a soccer game on Saturdays, instead of a family trip to a botanical garden in Milwaukee? What will they get more out of and remember as adults, that Mom wouldn't let me play soccer or that Mom took me to some neat places? Life is more competitive, stressful and rushed than it was when I was a child. Can I give them the childhood I want them to have, without causing problems in their adulthood? I wish I had the answers.