Tomorrow is Pajama Day

In Preschool one of our favorite things to do is have Pajama Day! The kids love wearing PJ’s to school because — well who does love pajamas, kids have the cutes pajamas in the world and love to share them. And there is the whole silly thing about wearing PJs and tennis shoes.

But hey — I am the grown up in the room and adults look ridiculous in public in pajamas. I can’t stop at the store on the way home either. There is no way around it. Walk into grocery store and see the looks you get. Some people look sad- like you poor thing – and other look at you — well– judgie.

Sometimes, I get out my husband’s polar bear slippers- and the kids love them! They grab my feet all day long and I am not sure how I have never tripped. I fear falling and swishing a child, but that makes it funnier to the kids when I say that. But walking the average number of steps a teacher does all day – my feet hurt by the end of the day.

My classic is a pink fuzzy robe that makes every one smile and parents giggle at pick up time. My grade partner put a robe on her Christmas list and she is giddy with anticipation to wear it. Meanwhile, I am currently washing out pancake batter from the sleeve.

The strange thing is even if I get up and do my regular routine – shower, hair, make-up — when I wear my pajamas and feel tired all day. Yes , IT JUST IN MY HEAD! But how to do I get it out of my head!

It is better now that the whole building does the Pajama Day, but I used to be in a bigger school and it was only a Preschool thing, so you turn the corner and no one else is in pajamas. Here is a challenge– have a professional conversation with a principal or a different grade level colleague. It can be done, but it like being on a diet at a wedding cake sample day. Oh yes it can done, but chances are you will be walking around with frosting smudged on your face at some point and feeling like a big fraud!

And there is always that tempting option to cheat and just where yoga pants – like half the staff. In truth? I will figure it out in the morning.

COVID Hobbies

Well– if I only had more time…. Has really been a real thing this year. Think about it — even as I have been working the lack of places to go and things to do are huge even if where I live it has been more self imposed than mandated. Honestly, I never did clean the attic; therefore, I never really will get that job done unless I really need the space, we move or the ceiling caves in. Even then, the last two are more realistic.

But one thing I have found that is rather interesting has been genealogy and online research in the family! I found a “free” site call familysearch.org that lists all kinds of historical references and updates of interest — like I found a relative who was tried as a witch during the Salem witch trials at Halloween and various accounts of typical war experiences linked to families members who were veterans in November. At least it was interesting to me — so I tried relaying the gems I have found to family members.

This is not DNA related, so it feels a little bit like fiction based on actual events, but the current purpose is for entertainment beyond the Netflix, Hulu subscriptions. After the first month or so of frantic cleaning of the house, you realize no one is coming so how much do I care anyway?

One surprise, that I didn’t expect, was how little my family cared about my research. I did appreciate the few who were indulgent and listened, but more often, I felt the reaction was like I was giving details of how to lance a boil or something. My favorite response was, “If you are that bored, have you read the M.C. Beaton books? They are mysteries set in Scotland.” (WTF – I have read some and they are really – okay books. I would rather re-read the Stephanie Plum series even if I am not Italian or Hungarian. )

I also got some more Netflix suggestions and bread recipes. I am NOT a fan of Sourdough and I don’t need another Friendship bread experience. That was brutal.

And the one family member who wants to be the know-it-all gave me a lesson on family history, that when I looked it up was mostly a historical myth. Apparently there were NO witches burned at the stake in Salem, according to history.com. Who knew?

In Conclusion, hobbies can be very individual and NOT the most shareable with others –even with family. The tags on knitting stocking hats ARE important and if you like geeky family history projects, familysearch.org seems pretty good, but keep it to yourself.

Welcome

Hello March and Slice of Life — because it is Spring, or close enough! [Long exhale] And I am ready for something new!

This is my second year in the SOL challenge and here are few things about me before we starting to share in this blogging challenge. First, I love to read fiction stories, about histories, crazy fun characters and enjoy subtle supernatural thrillers. Even better if you can combine them all, but I will read nearly anything. I also love to write, but lean towards assigned writing and have difficulties finding my own direction, so SOL is a challenge for me. I have decided it will be okay to jump around this month and enjoy telling stories.

I am not a writing or reading teacher; I teach Transitional Kindergarten so, I am the only one who can read or write in my classroom, so it all my choice! But the best choices are those that interest children to keep them engaged.

In “keeping it small” I live in rural area in Midwest. Small schools, and I have to travel to small towns to get basic shopping needs. Now in this COVID year, I’d lived in the potential of seen no other people, other than my husband for weeks at a time. Daily cats, dogs, chickens, and various “wild creatures” but learned I can avoid people. We have a few acres to move around and create projects. I can relate to the Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Jack London lifestyle and survived. I thought I was an extrovert, but the introvert life has fit too — who knew? I haven’t seen some family in a year and I am looking forward to coming out in the world.

Although schools were closed last spring, I have been face to face since August, so not cut off from work — just from fun. We have “been responsible” to keep going for the kids to lessen exposure and avoid “sick days” and quarantines.

I am a mother of a college student and a new college graduate, and I believe the college students have had to worst of the COVID experience by far. Fewer social interactions, no on campus socializing — just beer parties are available, no graduations or student sections at games. Just year long leases and online classes. Ugh!

‘Keepin’ it small’ will be a blog in bits and pieces of it all with a little bit of crazy off the rails sharpen some writing skills to spark — IDK, something new to grow into.

Corn

Photo by Zen Chung on Pexels.com

Corn is the clique of Iowa, but it does start somewhere.

The canned corn we are served at school have the taste and texture of pencil erasers, so I can understand why few people care about the starchy vegetable. But the those of us who have access t fresh from the field corn and sweet melted butter have a much better understanding of why rural communities have whole festivals dedicated to it. It is our heritage and it is delicious. 🙂

I grew up on a farm in Northeast Iowa, where my father would plant about a half and acre of sweet corn each summer after the regular crops were planted. He used the field planter, so if you have ever gardened, you will now how much work it can be and how it was easy it was for him to do an extra 15-30 minutes with the tractor and field equipment. The seed itself came directly from the corn seed company and with dad gone now, we have ever been able to get the same variety that was both sweet and tender.

With seeds planted tightly, there were no weeds in the middle, but only on the edges to battle through to get to the “good corn” when it came corn-picking time. Again, less work than traditional gardening, but picking was done by hand.

My father was always efficient. We shucked the corn and prepped it in the field and dropped the silks where they could organic weed control for a time, and be plowed under to be fertilizer for next year’s crop. And there was less mess and work in the house.

I don’t remember farmer’s markets or any farm to table movements at the time I was growing up, but growing it ourselves was the only way to get quality corn when it was fresh and processing corn on hot July days when it came into season, was the only way to have quality corn worth eating during the rest of the year.

When the corn was at its peak, we also called extended family. Corn was picked and we would sit outside in circle of lawn chairs and shuck corn — everyone does there own way. We roasted hot dogs on bonfires in the evening and told stories. There was always a lot of laughter.

Children would run through the yard, play games of ball and explore the corners of every farm shed, building, and garden on the farm. They were some of the best memories growing up and of a time long since gone by. There were no cell phones, going inside the house was avoided and the good-byes were always after dark and long.

Each year when the snow starts melting and plans for the next garden are made the warming sun makes me think of summer. I still know there are somethings that will never be the same and they once were when we were growing up.

Setting it up.

It going back to sharing A Slice of Life -but life has gotten smaller in the last year. Blogging is a way to share my thoughts with a larger audience and a larger world, but everything this year is how to keep our circles smaller and safer. Live on less and with less and how to keep going by doing less — but not losing ourselves, friends or our impact.

Changes that make a difference start out small…. and small is where I started. So let’s keep in small.