I'm always, like, "Hey, let's talk about this!" and then I get everyone's input and I make my decision and I never mention it again because it's not on my mind anymore. Let's see which threads I've left loose.
The Scale. I ordered the one Jess recommended, the Newline Well Balance. It's supposed to arrive tomorrow.
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The Toddler. I cannot even describe how scattered and distracted I continue to be. It's not just Henry, who has added biting, smacking, and lashing-out-with-a-fork to his repertoire. I feel like I am the CENTER of a WHEEL, and ALL SPOKES LEAD TO ME. EVERYONE has to talk to ME, so each of THEM is having ONE conversation but I am having FIVE. It is NO WONDER my mind feels like a metaphor for something else.
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End-of-Year Teacher Gifts. I had the kids write their usual "What I remember about this school year" letters. I also contributed $5 to a collection taken up by the room mother for one teacher's gift.
As always when I do these teacher gift posts, I am simultaneously so grateful for and so sorry for some of the input I get about teacher gifts from teachers. On one hand, I can imagine how frustrating the gifts can be, and I think it's good to point out that if _I_ only like one in twenty fragrances at Bath & Body Works and find ALL the others BARFY, the odds of choosing a good one for a teacher are slim. I also think it's good to remember that in general, it's good to buy a gift for a teacher as if the teacher were a REAL PERSON, someone who would prefer Good Chocolate to Chocolate-Flavored Candy just like the rest of us would.
On the other hand, I am almost flattened with discouragement hearing about baked goods thrown directly into the trash, non-giftcards referred to as "useless junk" or "crap gifts," and the term "even as little as $10" (as if $10 is a tuppence, merely a thought that counts) brought up ANYWHERE AT ALL. In fact, I find those comments lead me to this train of thought:
1. It really is unfortunate that teachers get so much stuff they don't want/need.
2. It's too bad the gifts can't be merely Representative Tokens of Appreciation (the way Teacher Appreciation Week is representative of the entire year), and that the teachers can't compensated in some OTHER way for the work that they do, perhaps by their EMPLOYERS, perhaps with CURRENCY so that they could buy what they DO want/need.
3. OH WAIT.
So here's what I'm doing:
* $10 or $15 Target giftcards (one per classroom teacher---nothing for assistant teachers, art teachers, music teachers, gym teachers, computer teachers, secretaries, directors, principals, assistant principals, student teachers, room mothers, cleaning staff, cafeteria workers, lawn maintenance team, head of the PTA, because OH MY BEEZUS THIS IS GETTING RIDICULOUS) at Winter Holiday
* a letter from the child at end-of-year, telling the teacher all the things they remember/liked during the school year
* a Target giftcard for the bus driver: $10 per child of mine riding her bus
* throughout the year, contributing disinfecting wipes, boxes of tissues, baked goods (I hope they're not thrown away when they're specifically requested), paper towels, hand soap, disinfecting hand gel, Box Tops for Education, and anything else the teacher or PTA requests during the year for the school and for school events
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Well, now I'm all distracted by teacher gifts and am no longer in the mood to discuss pens, or clerks who think it's okay to reprimand my child, or the recent failures of muffin recipes using baby food. Hee! It is the downside of reheating leftover topics!
Edit 06-23-2009: I think MOST teachers are NOT icky about teacher gifts and that it's just a vocal minority that says those mean things that get me all anxious. I kind of wish I hadn't posted my little rant, because I think my attack on the vocal minority comes out sounding like an attack on All Teachers. Plus, it's the kind of post that makes people nervous because it makes indirect references: SOMEONE is in trouble, but WHO?? (And yet I don't have anyone in particular in mind, and can't remember who posted which comments, and just sort of came up with representative TYPES of comments from all previous teacher-gift-related posts.) Considering how much I hate such posts myself, I don't know why I succumbed to my pique.
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