Monday, August 27, 2007

8/27/07 An unnatural act

I did it. It's like overcoming an addiction, facing limitations, taking a first step into unraveling years of built-up compulsive behavior, of letting go of recreating my own childhood. I challenged my innermost concept of motherhood, and in a small way, shifted my self-image.

So it is not lightly that I take a deep breath and announce to my friends, my family -- indeed, the world:

Today I ordered a Halloween costume on eBay.

It was time. Though I once again started thinking about Halloween in July, painful history tells of a huge time scramble, late nights, of long lines and even longer credit-card bills at Jo-Ann Fabrics, of serious design flaws, and worst, of uncomfortable children who don't want to wear their goofy home-made costumes.

Oh, I'm not over this addiction. I'll still get my hands dirty with countless varieties of glue, draw and re-draw designs, scour household goods for raw materials and spend a lot of money and time. But Julian has been sufficiently consistent with saying he wants to be a clown that it was a good opportunity to outsource. And save the engineering for costumes that aren't easily bought, as Gabriel won't be dissauded from something battery-powered.

Now, can I bring myself to buy a ladybug costume for Katrina? One step at a time, folks.

Katrina had lots of fun tonight crawling around "chasing" Julian, making loud screechy sounds that are hard to tell if they're giggling or crying. I'm not she knows herself.

After all that yesterday about reading the school lunch menu, and deciding that Gabriel would bring a packed lunch every day, Gabriel got a school lunch today.

Today when I picked up him up, I had to run back into the CDC to his cubby to get his "project," along with some notices and his lunch. I noticed his cubby had two other names now, but found his things there.

But at home, I saw that his lunch hadn't been touched. "Why didn't you eat your lunch, Gabriel?" I asked him. "Oh!" he declared happily. "I had a hot lunch!" Huh? "I had chocolate milk and cookies!" Great.

It was hard to get anything out of him, but apparently the CDC folks couldn't find his lunch to bring with him to kindergarten. My guess is that his cubby's been moved, but he's still putting his lunch in his old summertime cubby, so the CDC staff couldn't find it.

That still leaves the mystery of how he got a hot lunch, but all he said was something about a fifth-grader getting it for him.

Once again, I'm frustrated by the lack of information about how lunch works. There should be something on their Web site about the hot lunches, and about how kindergartners even go to lunch at all. Does the teacher take them? Are they left to their own devices for half an hour? I remember someone telling me something about getting help from volunteer older graders; maybe that's what Gabriel was talking about. I get the most information from the CDC staff, actually.

(Dave asked a good question: why are they giving the kids chocolate milk? That's out of step with this day and age's concern with childhood obesity. Especially when the menu just says "milk.")

Naturally, I'll ask about cubbies tomorrow. And try to find out if Gabriel owes a 5th grader some money!


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