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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Dead Computers & the Value of Private Religious Schooling

I will not be able to post photos for a little while, because my computer went crackle, crackle pop! The monitor will no longer display and the power source has a short. It looks like the stuff is still on my hard drive, though, we just need to replace/fix the power source so we can get it off the hard drive. I have a temporary computer up, so I am still receiving e-mail, but it only lets me send when it is feeling especially kind. Using this PC reinforces my opinion that Windows takes all the things you can do with a Mac and makes them more convoluted, difficult and illogical.

Pray that we can get the information off the hard drive, though, there were lots of pictures on there of the family that had never been mailed or posted anywhere, and aren't on disk. Also, please be in prayer for Rich, as he has an opportunity at work that could benefit us a great deal and provide far more security than we have now.

As the end of the school year draws nearer and nearer, I am getting a little weepy. My little boys are growing up. Every now and then I look at them and see what they will look like in college, or when they are fathers, and it is so sweet and touching and so sad because it makes me miss them already.

Anyway, this is Dominic's last full week of school. He did a Spring program last night that was so wonderful! Two years ago, he was too shy to sing in front of a group of mothers at a ladies' Bible study for Mother's Day. Last night, he was singing and doing sign language and dancing, all up front. Next week is his graduation, then it's on to kindergarten.

Alexander finishes a week after Dominic does, and because even in private Christian schooling, every single, stinking stage of life gets a graduation ceremony or award or something, he also has graduation to look forward to, complete with caps and gowns. I kid you not.

However, there is still a value to private religious education that I didn't even pay much attention to as we were discerning where to put our children: They not only don't call children's services on you when you try to teach your children consequences and responsibility, they are happy to help support you in your efforts.

Example: A few weeks ago, Alexander, while doing his normal morning dawdle, decided to add outright disobedience to the routine. He knows what to do to prepare for school in the morning, and each morning we give him little reminders anyway. We get to his school, late, and he tells me he doesn't have his backpack (which contains his homework, snacks and lunch). I told him I would try to get it to him, but that this added an extra trip for me, when I don't have time for that, couldn't be combined with taking his brother to school, because lunch is earlier than the drop off time by a significant amount, and it would also be an added gas expense (I didn't tell him that part) because it added a 25 mile roundtrip to the car. We make three of those trips four times a week, two once a week, without counting any extra driving, church, Bible study, family excursions, etc. You can see why I combine trips and errands to coincide with school drop offs or pick ups.

Anyway, I came home irritated, and fuming a bit and talked to Rich. I really wanted to leave Alexander in the lurch. This was not the first time he had forgotten his backpack because of misbehavior, but it was usually detected before we got far from home, so I'd turn around and get it. After talking it over with Rich, we decided that we didn't really want him to go hungry, but that he did need to learn a lesson. So, I dropped off his backpack in the office, rather than his classroom, and told the office manager that I would like him to miss snack, so please not to give the backpack back before lunch. She and I discussed what had happened briefly, and she said "Good for you for sticking to it!" she wrote a note on the bag, made sure it was in the lunch room for his lunch and did not give it to him earlier. He suffered nothing but the consequences of his own behavior and has not forgotten his backpack (even on accident) since.

That's all for now folks. Thank you Amanda for your compliments, I was pleased with how the shawl turned out as well. As soon as my Zonta wires arrive, I will be able to block it and get it ready for giving away.

GOOD for you for actually PARENTING your child. My oldest tried this one oh...nearly 20 years (or was it 2 minutes, sigh) ago. We finally decided that he should also suffer the logical consequences of his dawdling. So he went to school in PJ's and slippers. (we brought his clothes to change into later unknown to him). Not only did he NEVER dawdle in the mornings again, but he so warned his younger brothers about the prospects, that I never had to repeat the occurence with them.
You go girl, with God on your side, what do you have to fear?
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