Please Quiet Your Kid

February 9, 2012 at 8:57 am | Posted in Family Ties | 4 Comments
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Before I was the mature, civil 29 year old I am today (wink), I was a rambunctious college kid, a wild teenager, a rebel pre-teen who barely noticed the adults around me, a hyperactive child, a mischievous toddler who once ran away from home and a typical baby who didn’t want to sleep.  For some reason, it is easy to forget all of this, especially when you are in some public place and you hear a screaming or babbling child.

Must be the parents’ fault, right?  Because none of us were ever like that, right?  We were all perfect, well-behaved children.  Can’t you tell by how civilized we all turned out?  We never bitch about stupid, meaningless things, except of course screaming children.

I spent a large portion of my twenties away from all forms of children after 6 years of babysitting, and when I was exposed to them again, it was so easy to get aggravated by the shear energy of a child kicking the chair I sat in on that super tight flight – so easy!  Granted, I have a very low level of patience for anyone, really.  But now as more and more children seem to be popping up around me, I am turning a corner.  It’s not their parents’ fault they are loud.  They are still learning the ways of the world, still so innocent and excited about life.  Now when I see a kid acting a little crazy, I just smile.  They are enjoying life and God bless their parents who have to deal with that energy 24 hours a day.

But while I am at least gaining patience for the little people, I am nowhere near wanting my own just yet – so don’t get any ideas!  I am more than happy to spend time with my nephew or my friends’ kids, but I am still fond of the fact that I can return them at the end of a visit. I have my own noisy household to deal with.

We are Family…and 100 posts!!!

March 3, 2011 at 7:32 am | Posted in Family Ties | 12 Comments
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What is the “perfect” family?  The “typical” family?  Modern tradition (though not accurate) may say two parents, husband and wife, and two children — a girl and a boy. Back in the day, families consisted of two parents, husband and wife, and as many children as they could possibly have.  Big families ensured that enough people would survive to carry on the bloodstream. To me, big families also mean lots of people who know you, understand you and love you; lots of people who can pass on the traditions that give this country its character.

I have what some may call a modern traditional immediate family, but my family is small overall.  My mother was an only child and my father only had one brother.  I have but two first cousins, 1 uncle, 1 aunt.  I lost my grandparents at a young age, and barely know any relatives beyond a few second cousins.  But the idea of family is something that I have always valued. So I subconsciously studied other people’s families — their relationships with their siblings, grandparents, cousins.  I actually think this might partially explain my obsession with Italian Americans.  All the Italian Americans I know have big, close knit families — something I always craved. I know, I know, I shouldn’t make assumptions based on culture, but you can’t help what you see as true.

I actually find it ironic in a way the media spectacle that was Nadya Suleman (aka Octomom).  While I don’t agree with the way she went about building a family (I just think it’s a little irresponsible, and well the pictures were just yucky), she was basically building a big family — the way that families used to be.

I always envisioned myself having two kids.  I really want a girl one day so I can teach her to be a better woman than I am, and I want a boy too, so I can learn about raising both, and so that they can have each other and not grow up lonely, or too spoiled.   I never thought about having more kids than that, which now that I’m old enough to really think about it, I think is actually realistic.  Kids are expensive! It costs almost a quarter of a million dollars to raise a kid, and that doesn’t include college!

But I do want a close family.  It may not be big, but I will do everything in my power to make it close knit family.

I hope you enjoyed my 100th post!  It’s been quite a ride so far!  In honor of my 100th post, I am trying to get 100 fans on my Facebook page by my blog-anniversary (April 11).  So if you haven’t already, like me on Facebook. You’ll get post previews and other cool stuff.  Thanks to all of my loyal readers and those who have stopped by over the past year.  You’ve made this blog a success!

The Kids from Yesterday

January 27, 2011 at 9:47 am | Posted in Life and Living | 4 Comments
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adventures in babysitting

It seems like a lifetime ago that my main source of income was taking care  of children.  For six years, I watched kids from aged 11 months up to 11 years and made really good money doing it.  It was a pretty easy job most of the time (except for that summer where I watched 3 young boys — boys really are harder than girls).

I had started out working at a local day camp. I had 11 three year olds to care for with the help of two other counselors.  Since the kids were so young, they were only in the program for a half day, but I still got paid for the full day. I would use the remaining time to work at Dunkin’ Donuts and hang out with my friends.  It was the summertime, after all.

Most of my babysitting experience was daytime work, not much of that Saturday night babysitting that I really hated. I really got to know the kids I watched, but I only really watched them for a couple years before moving on to the next stage in my life.

My last babysitting job was when I came home from college.  I had graduated early, but still had a few credits left to complete my degree, so I took my last two classes and babysat for two girls, aged 8 and 11.  At that age, it’s really all about play dates and dance class, so there was a lot of chauffeuring as part of the gig.  The girls were great, and I have kept in touch with them via Facebook ever since.

Recently, the older one had a status update that said she had just turned 17.  When I read this, I literally almost fell out of my chair.  Where had the last six years go?  How did she get so old?  She’s too young to drive, too young to go to college. These are things I can’t handle.

A few years ago, I ran into one of my former three year old campers.  She was 11 when I saw her.  It just doesn’t register in my brain that these kids have grown up.  It’s a strange thing to imagine people that are younger than you aging as well.

I will always remember the kids I watched at the age that I watched them.  I will always remember Mia looking like Dora the Explorer.  I will always remember Jocelyn doing gymnastics in the living room.  I will always remember Savannah and her love for writing.  I will always remember Dakota picking on Madison.  This is how these kids will always be to me, in my memory.

The title of this post is inspired by a great song from My Chemical Romance. Check it out.

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