Monday, April 23, 2012

She comported herself well

As you may know, I had to have a c-section with Sasha. That was not in the plan. The doctor told me that because Sasha was not descending, it was unlikely I'd be able to do a regular birth. This was disappointing. However, I dealt with the unexpected with fortitude.

That's not just MY opinion. The anesthesiologist told my parents I "comported (my)self well." That's, actually, a pretty nice compliment. It's kind of "she didn't cry or throw a tantrum, she just accepted that stuff wouldn't be the way she wanted it and dealt with it accordingly."

Sabrina is my daughter.

Today, I was inside, the kids were just outside the backdoor. Sabrina has been really into dandelions lately, and sadly (or stupidly, as the case may be made)we had some Mason jars outside, and I think she thought they would make lovely vases. The result was sadly predictable. "Crash!" "Waaah!" "Uh-oh." (Jar, Sabrina, and myself, respectively.)

The cut on the inside of her finger was pretty bloody and seemed kind of deep. Hand wound? Not really feeling like taking chances. So, I held her, told her she would be fine, cleaned her up, and took her to the doctor.

During the cleaning of the cut, she was so brave. A little whimpering, but so brave. Then, they put a numbing agent on it. Apparently, before it numbs, it burns. She was scream-ing. But she never pulled away. She let them do what they needed to do. Then, the doctor (really a PA, but who cares) came in, and checked out the injury. She, again, was so brave. No crying or even whimpering at all. He decided she needed a couple of stitches, since the cut was a little deep and right on the inside of her knuckle, so every time she opened her hand, it would pull the cut open again.

Then came the worst part: the shots to numb her finger for the stitches. Again, she was totally crying and screaming, but left her hand where it needed to be. The doctor joked she was making it easy on the nurse; she usually has to hold the kid down. As he gave her the two stitches, I told Sabrina to close her eyes and lay her head back. Then, as she got stitched up, I said, "That feels funny, doesn't it?" She said "Yeah." And giggled. Giggled.

Anyway, as Mom says, she comported herself well. She was brave, not crying when she wasn't hurt, and strong, not pulling away or having a tantrum when she WAS hurt.

Then we went to the store and got princess bandaids, the cure for any ill.

Good work, baby girl.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Great and Spacious Building

I've always been kind of skeptical about the whole "pointing and mocking" part of the Great and Spacious Building of Lehi's vision. I mean, I've never been mocked for being a Mormon. Not even close. In fact, when I was at a school Christmas party in Canada (a Catholic school), there was wine. One of the other student teachers was tasked with serving it. His line went like this: "Red or white? Red or white? Molly, Sprite?" He didn't care that I didn't drink, he only cared that I was comfortable and got what I wanted. So cute.

I've figured it out though. I know what the great and spacious building is. It's the Internet.

No one ever mocks me in person. That would be rude. People don't want to create an awkward situation or make others feel bad. They are polite; we move on to less divisive issues like sports and politics. The Internet is not in person. No one feels bad about accusing Mitt Romney of going to hell because he's a liar or talking about how Mormon's aren't Christian and are going to hell or the Bible is a bunch of fairy tales and anyone who believes them is an idiot holding on to guns and religion or all Mormons are racist or WEIRD UNDERWEAR or Mormons still believe in polygamy or Mormons are idiots online. As Romney has been more in the spotlight, there have been more articles written about him. Then, people comment on these articles. Some of them apparently believe their calling in life is to mock Mormons/Christians/non atheists. It's the Great and Spacious Building. You were right, Lehi.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Soccer girl

One of Zane's (I think) former clients runs a soccer program for the Tinys of the world. Well, we have a Tiny! So, we decided to sign Sabrina up for this soccer program.

It was so, so perfect. They started out just kicking the ball from one side of the "field" to the other. Then their was a "water break." Then a few other drills, well interspersed with snack breaks. The program provided snacks, in the form of a baggie divided in two with grapes in one side and goldfish in the other. The best part? The division was made by a clothespin made to look like a butterfly! I bet you can guess how Sabrina took that. (Mom! A butterfly!)

The last few minutes was a "game." It featured Lance's son and Mari's son tackling members of the opposite team -- or their own team, who cares? --, repeated and deliberate own goals, and Sabrina running behind the group of kids, only three of whom even touched the ball, laughing her head off at how fun this was. A perfect day.

Oh, and the most adorable soccer girl in the world, and possibly the universe. Also, her little bro. Evidence? Here you go.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Kids of God

Sabrina has been asked to say the scripture in Primary next Sunday. Her first assignment! I'm having her say the scripture I once said in Primary. It's short, and therefore perfect for a 3-year-old. I asked her this morning to say her "Blessed."

"Blessed is a peacemakers. For they. Shallbecalled. The kids...What is it?"

Me: "The children of God."

"The children of God."

I kind of like "The kids of God." Has a nice ring to it.

Monday, April 16, 2012


Yesterday, Marilyn gave us some strawberries that were -- let's say past their prime. So today, I went to the car cart store (Sasha: cah caht! cah caht!), aka Valley Market, and got some pectin. And made freezer jam! Yum! It was so super easy I can hardly believe I've never made it before. Then I finished the ice cream (there was NOT that much left, Zane! Stop being rude! I'm supposed to look like this, I'm pregnant!) with freezer jam on it. Soooooo delicious. Sasha liked the jam too, but his was on a PB&J.

Sasha was in a really good mood today. Zane had to get up early and take Spencer to school, so he was up with the little kids too. Sasha came into my room and crawled up next to me, snuggled under the covers, and said "sleep." This was pretend sleep, of course, because right away he jumped up and said "Bird! Fly! Tweet! Tree!" Yes, that IS practically a sentence. Practically. Later, I was doing a dictation downstairs and heard crying a few times. I ignored it and it went away, and I was very pleased that they worked out whatever it was on their own. However, there is a bite mark that's Sabrina-sized on Sasha's face, so maybe my selective hearing DID have a downside. Nah. Still, he's been sweet and cute today, which is frankly a change from yesterday. Phew! He has 35 days to become perfect, self-entertaining, and able to make his own PB&J. Bets, anyone?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Waiting for Superman: Review

Last night, on Netflix, I watched Waiting for Superman. One might think it's about dang time, since it's a heavily discussed documentary about my profession. One would be right. In my defense, though, it hasn't been streaming on Nextflix until now, and I'm inherently cheap about stuff like that.

There were quite a few things I agreed with in this film. For example, the biggest problem I think we have in education is bad teachers. And we can't get rid of them. Just at Snowcrest, the junior high Zane and his family went to, there was a math teacher who had a stroke and lost her short-term memory, and a science teacher who lost so many assignments that Victoria, the only non-ADD member of the Froerer clan, had to get a paper signed every time she turned in an assignment, as proof, since the teacher was almost guaranteed to lose it! And were these terrible teachers fired? No. The math teacher is STILL THERE, and the science teacher was removed after a year's fight by Marilyn, my MIL. But: she was moved to WEBER HIGH (because who cares about the quality of science teachers in high school, right?) where LANCE got her the next year. Needless to say, Marilyn quickly got him changed to another science teacher despite the almost iron-clad rule of not changing kids' teachers.

These terrible teachers should be fired. But we can't fire them. Why? Union rules. Even in Utah, a right-to-work state, it's virtually impossible to fire a teacher. The movie said 1/57 doctors lose their license, 1/97 attorneys, and 1 in 2500 teachers. And honestly, it's almost 100% because the unions protect teachers who are terrible. Terrible as in they have no short term memory, lose every assignment they give, read newspapers in class, only teach grammar in a social studies/English class, watch movies two times a week, have no classroom control, and so on. Unions protect these teachers, and are destroying all respect for the profession of teaching.

The movie suggests charter schools are part of the answer, since they are not bound by the union rules. They can get rid of teachers! They can lengthen the school day and year! Seems awfully commonsenseical. It followed about five kids whose parents wanted better for them, and tried to get them in the high-performing schools. Two got in. The others? They're still going to "dropout factories." When some of these kids didn't get in, I lost it. I was seriously sitting at the kitchen table with Netflix on my laptop, bawling. Of course, I'm pregnant. But still, education should be about the children, and, as Michelle Rhee said, it's become all about the adults.

How would I fix education? I know you were all waiting with bated breath to hear my solutions. Okay. First, you'd be able to fire teachers because they were bad, not just if they sleep with students! Now, teachers get tenure once they have taught for 3 years. At three years you barely don't suck anymore! Tenure = gone. A "bad teacher" is identified by administration, fellow teachers, parents, students, and test scores. I can tell you the bad teachers at my school. Students, too, are really good at identifying them. And don't think students will just say a bad teacher is one they don't like. There would be some, but mostly they will be honest about how much they learned in a year. As far as testing goes, it's a relatively simple matter to organize the data so you can see if a student gained a year of progress under a teacher. If a teacher's students mostly did not, especially over a few years, curtains! Find another job!

Second, pay teachers differently. Yes, maybe merit pay for great teachers, but I was thinking more about supply and demand. We have a shortage of math and science teachers, and a veritable plethora of English and history teachers (of which I am one). I am a great teacher, in my humble opinion. I'd be a great junior high-level math teacher, too. I found out I'd have to take TEN classes to get my math certification. SO NOT WORTH IT. But if I got another $10,000/year to teach math? Suddenly, I'm enrolled at Weber State for two classes a semester. Hey, I'd make the cost back in a year! Then you'd have great teachers more evenly spread out among the subjects, partly because we've have more options, and good teachers would get hired and bad ones fired. How about that?

This is very long, and if you've made it this far I'm impressed. I just have one more thing to say. Our schools need improvement. The best way to fix a school is to get good teachers and get rid of bad ones. Let's figure out a way to do that!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Hunger Games

Spoiler alert! If you haven't seen Hunger Games but are going to, I give away some plots points here. But if you've read the book, you've been spoiled anyway.

Zane took me on a date (probably our last for, I don't know, a year or so) a few weeks ago to see Hunger Games. I loved the first book, liked the second, and was highly disappointed in the third. I mean, come on, why did you kill EVERY character I liked, with the exception of Katniss and Peeta? Oh, and Gale. But I didn't really care that much about him by the end, either. And a de facto Hunger Games for the army? Lame. ANYWAY.

Overall, I really liked it. I was absolutely bawling during the reaping. Since becoming a mom, this sort of thing is so painful to watch and imagine. By "this sort of thing" I mean thinking about a child (my child) in trouble that I can't do anything about. I can shut down my imagination PDQ when NPR starts talking about a 3-year-old dying from a shrapnel wound in Homs or when I hear about the child soldiers in Uganda who are kidnapped after being forced to kill their parents, but when it's there on screen it's harder to ignore. Boy, this paragraph is a real downer. Onward!

Some people have complained that the hand-held camera that recorded the early deaths at the Cornucopia was distracting and, well, lame. I liked it, though. Who wants to see the actual deaths of these kids? Zane pointed out that it's bad enough to see adult-on-adult violence, but kids? Nope, don't want the details. Fuzzy images are more than enough.

I also liked the District 11 revolt. This was in book 2, but fits well here. I can just imagine the despair of who I assume to be Rue's father when he sees his baby girl die on the big screen. Oh, this is the other part that had me bawling. Glad I live far enough away from my students to know none of them were in the audience with me, because this was not an I'm-the-adult-in-control moment. No, it was not. I can see how Rue's death could be a spark to the rebels.

The book is written in first person, and there is a fair amount of exposition that goes on in Katniss's thoughts. That doesn't translate well to a movie. I liked how they gave you that information by showing the gamemakers and Haymitch's machinations. That worked well.

The one thing I really didn't like was how the film portrayed Cinna. He was only my favorite character in the book, or at least vying for first. But in the film he was little more than a background character, not the awesome, gifted, sympathetic man who would help create the Mockingjay. They tried, kind of, but failed.

So. I liked it. I do think anyone who hasn't read the book won't like it as much, but it was true to the spirit and text of the book, with just enough changes to make it a movie instead.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

Easter: Christmas, or not Christmas? Today we went with the "not Christmas" option. A few little presents and not to much concern about getting up early. Sasha sadly woke up at 6:30, and at 6:50 he came into our room from the TV room, where he was deposited in desperate hope of a little more sleep for his parents, with candy. Then Sabrina woke up, and the hunt was on! The Easter Bunny had hidden candy all over the front room! Sadly, she forgot that really only Sabrina would be finding candy, and she didn't need to bring enough candy for four people. Ah well. Somehow, I'm sure it will get eaten.

Last night we also decorated eggs. Sasha was hilarious, pointing and saying "egg, egg." He wanted to hold them while he colored on them with crayons, but I figured that was a bad idea, hard boiled or not. Then he chose the color. Sabrina also got into the coloring, dying, and stickering of eggs. She keeps asking to eat them, but I think she'll be sorry the eggs themselves are not pretty colors and tasting like candy. Just a hunch.

For breakfast, I made pancakes. Sabrina, of course, wanted pink pancakes. So I obliged, because I am a sucker -- or the best mom ever. Take your pick. Anyway, I also made a bunny pancake (circle with ears). The round pancakes I called "eggs." Because otherwise they wouldn't be festive, duh. Sabrina said the prayer this morning, and I reminded her to thank Heavenly Father for Jesus today. She's still working on the whole resurrection concept. So she did. She thanked Heavenly Father for Jesus and the Easter Bunny. It's a start.

Friday, April 6, 2012


When the workers came yesterday, Zane took them downstairs for the orientation. I followed just a few seconds behind, them, and lo and behold, there was a DEAD MOUSE in the middle of the floor! I'm not sure if anyone mentioned it, or if they missed it completely, but there it was.

Naturally being a strong and independent woman, I yelled "Eek! A mouse!" Just kidding. What I did was quietly go upstairs, get some paper towels, pick up the mouse, and take it to the garbage can. Hoping that the workers would not be too grossed out, because that's just what you want to see, right?

I kind of hate to admit this, but I was relieved to see that dead mouse. Because until it was found dead in my basement, it was seen and heard ALIVE (alive mouse < dead mouse) in my kitchen. My KITCHEN. Really, what's the point of having a hunter cat and a dog bred to kill rodents if they don't actually kill rodents? None, that's what.

Thursday, April 5, 2012


I'm seriously nesting here, people. The "workers," as Sabrina likes to call them, are downstairs framing the entire basement. Later, probably next week, comes the electrician and HVAC guy, then drywall. Naturally, I'm not doing any of that work, mostly because I don't know how and couldn't care less and not because I'm roughly the size and shape of a very large beach ball, but I've been inspired lately, by the impending new rooms downstairs, to nest.

Sadly, my nesting has to take the form of "why the crap didn't I do this earlier" stuff. Like, cleaning out the car. Do you know how much STUFF an Explorer can hold? Geez, I could have gone on an Arctic expedition in my Expedition. Food? Check. (Not fresh, if you get my drift.) Clothes? Check. (Not clean, of course!) Diapers? Check. (These, happily, WERE clean.) Toys, books, garbage? Sure, all the garbage you could want in the Arctic! And then some!

I've also been cleaning out those nefarious clutter spots that Zane and I are so good at creating. So far I've thrown away 1-year-old or more: bank statements, AYSO rosters, soccer schedules, and law seminar handouts, just to name a few! That'll teach me to leave stuff in a pile for Zane to take care of! To be fair, though, plenty of stuff in the piles has been mine. For instance, the yarn tangle and breastmilk bags in the corner of the TV room? Not Zane's. But now not there! Hooray!

Now, before the baby comes, all I have to do is move Spencer's bunk beds downstairs, after his room is done, which will require painting and carpet as well as the drywall, HVAC, and electricity, move Sabrina's stuff to Sasha's room, get out the newborn and 0-3 month clothes for Jemonis, wash the infant car seat, and other nesting-type stuff like clean out the garage. Anyone want to come over for

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Ugh! C'mon 40 weeks!

This. Has been the hardest pregnancy yet. My body is screaming "The human body was not meant to have 3 kids in less than 4 years! What were you thinking! Did you learn nothing from the ancient Jewish women who nursed for three years! You idiot! Birth control anyone?" and suchlike.

Honestly, though, chasing after 2 kids has made the difference, I think. Yes, I'm working part-time, but I worked full time when pregnant with Sabrina, and moved at 30 weeks with Sasha, so it's not like my extracurricular (curricular being, I guess, my family?) activities have been worse this time. I mean, I take a nap almost every day I'm home, for Pete's sake.

I had a doctor's appointment last week. Sadly, he did not say Jemonis suddenly and inexplicably matured at 6 times the normal rate, and is now ready for birth. No, I'm still just 33 weeks. Okay, 7 weeks doesn't sound like a lot UNLESS YOU ARE ACTUALLY PREGNANT FOR THE NEXT 7 WEEKS. Then it sounds like a LONG TIME. Besides, despite my ever-increasing girth, I really would like to finish this school year. My last day is scheduled to be May 10, which is 3 weeks before the end of school and 11 days before my due date. (Although May 10 is leadership day, so if I couldn't go that day, I would not cry.) May 12 or 13 sounds perfect.

I know, though. Not before 36 weeks. I can do it, I swear. Mostly because there's no other option! So glad to not be a prehistoric nomad moving with the herds now. It's amazing the human race survived those days.