Saturday, August 21, 2010

Tower of Terror Drunken Fall a Hoax

As of last week the doors officially closed on summer when Carrie I both went back to work. When I was a kid, we always returned to school the Tuesday after Labor Day weekend. It never changed and somehow it felt just that we should ease our ways out of summer with a nice, short, four-day week. Little did I know, teachers and administrators had already been back at school for weeks - probably drinking heavily in preparation for another school year.

Don't let the 8 to 3 schedule and fifteen weeks off each year fool you - teachers work harder for less than any profession I've known. A friend of mine once said, "Man teachers have it made," siting the "work hours" and holidays to which I replied, "I don't know a single teacher that's done with work at three...or in June for that matter." In fact, more often than not, Carrie worked both evenings and weekends trying to keep prep and grading. It still amazes me that she was able to handle both her first years as a teacher and a parent simultaneously. It's ridiculous. A friend of ours very accurately cautioned Carrie that she could either be a great teacher or a great mom, but not both. I think that applies to any job that shares the stage with parenting. To us, the choice was easy.

Now Amari is older and more independent, but also more engaging and much more often awake. The demands of our jobs at work and at home have changed dramatically. Susan (last year's Thursday Mom to Amari) has moved to Santa Rosa while Nicole (Tuesday Mama) and Noah are hoping to make a sibling for Reya, which means we had to figure out a new childcare situation. Initially we were going to ask Granny C. for an extra day and then pay one of Carrie's former students to watch Amari at our house once a week. Fortuitously, a co-worker of mine recommended a small daycare run by a woman who is affectionately called Mother Teresa. She is a block from the high school, has been in the business for a quarter century, and comes highly recommended from several other parents in the district. She only takes six kids max and only one infant on any given day. When we saw how Amari lit up around the other kids, it became a no-brainer - we signed her up for Mondays and Fridays.

Yesterday, we gave it shot. Amari loved it. Sure she cried about a half an hour after we left, finally noticing we were gone, but for the most part she had a great day. When we arrived to pick her up in the afternoon, three girls were sitting around Amari on the front lawn vying for her attention. Amari looked excited, enamored, and happy. We sat with all the kids for a while, and the little girls all told us how they'd helped Amari that day. Too cute.

Childcare was not something we'd initially planned or wanted for Amari at this age, but we also didn't want to burn Granny C. out or get into a position where we had to stress about rushing home right after work. I will still be working three days/week, and Carrie will be back full-time. Have I mentioned I wish we lived in Sweden? Apparently both parents get 16 months of paid leave per child. Their job and their government foot the bill. I'd be willing to bet that having that parental relationship as an infant and toddler can serve as a tremendous protective factor against future mental illness, criminal conduct, or anything else the socialist government would have to pay for later. Extended, paid parental leaves is basic preventative medicine.

So what else is new? I finally put together the Amari B Fishman's First Ballgame. It features a Flight of the Conchords' song and a whole lot of driving footage. It's short, but sweet. Also, if you want to hear a beautiful singing voice - not mine - check out the "Night at the Headlands" video, too. We played a gig at the local coffee shot last week on our nine year anniversary Here's the link and some photos:

Amari and Siobhan

PS Oh year - what's with the title? Well, I'm trying to monetize my blog - as you can see by the AdSense crap all around the writing. Being savvy-less with computers, I Googled "Top Internet Searches" to see if I could get more traffic to my blog. What did I learn? Three things:

1. people love to see/hear/read about gruesome acts of stupidity
2. Darwin's Theory of  Evolution is absolutely correct, and
3. that one drunken idiot at Disneyland fell 25 feet while waiting in line for a ride, and millions more made it the top story searched today. Now I'm starting a rumor that it was all a big hoax. He wasn't drunk at all...

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