Wednesday, April 30, 2008

a stone, a leaf, an unfound door

(from Thomas Wolfe: Look Homeward, Angel, which I haven’t read, but I liked the sound of the phrase)

What to write, what to write?

We walked — not just me and Aidan, but almost the whole crew were outside together. Aidan was pushing his purple wheelchair — good therapy, it is up and down hills and that thing weighs about 50 pounds. Kieron had the scooter. And Paddy was running after us in his little rain white boots with spots and dog faces on the front. And plaid shorts. He looked a bit like Christopher Robin. It was breezy and cold. There are still patches of snow hidden among the shady parts of the woods.

We had to go into town to supposedly get Clare’s baby teeth extracted, but instead she came out looking bewildered and said she had only gotten a checkup. I found that they needed a referral from the orthodontist. I wish they had let me know that BEFORE we made the 120 mile round trip at $4.15 per gallon gas. Ouch. We went to Costco and spent quite a bit more but we can probably last for several weeks now as far as the freezer and pantry stocks go.

While the kids unloaded the groceries from the car I made phone calls. … insurance related. Five separate bills were refused by our insurance company for 2 separate reasons (both due to billing errors). I am tentatively hoping that the calls — these are by no means the FIRST of the phone conversations about these bills — resolved the issue. But I have hoped before, and in vain. We shall see. I find I have to talk billing-insurance-speak, and this is something I was never taught in school. Could it be that it’s better to teach children HOW to keep learning throughout life, and to develop capacities for adaptation and patience, rather than put too much trust in a given set of skills and scope of content?

Then we were off again, Aidan and I, to more testing at the school. It still may not be the last test. But when we come to the last tests, they are going to be the LAST tests, indeed.

I baked — pizza, “cookie bread” (our family name for Toll House Cookie dough baked in a pan — makes it sound nutritious or something, doesn’t it?), then I made fudge. I guess the cold air outside revived the baking instinct.

The quote for today comes from The Learning Umbrella: Do Your Kids Get Enough Danger? — quoting Swallows and Amazons.

“Better drowned than duffers - if not duffers won’t drown.”

Maybe I’ll read that book to my kids this summer. I know so many people who love that series, and I’ve never managed to read it, even though we’ve had it around the house for quite a long time.

Clare has been reading Hardy Boys now, of all things. Kieron just read “The Forgotten Door” one of my favorite books in childhood. Alexander Key’s books are great for introverted kids. I must have read this one a score of times in elementary school.