Friday, June 15, 2007


Warped logic and faulty thermostats.

Notes to self:
* Housework priority for the day was not 'cleaning out' your email inbox.
* Using the morning madness as an excuse to sit at the computer for an hour and a half is not good use of your day at home.

OK, the morning wasn't that bad.. it's just the little things - about kids! - that very often make you shake your head and wonder.

Like, what on earth do Ms 11 and Ms 8 do from 8.00 to 8.30? They have already eaten their breakfast, and they have retrieved their ironed school uniforms from upstairs. And socks. But at 8.30 they still had to clean teeth, put shoes on, finish packing lunch (that I started). Can it possibly take half an hour to throw a shirt and a pair of pants on. OK, and socks and shoes. And brush hair?

Oh, ok.. this morning they had to pack flute/recorder for lessons at school.

Still... half an hour?

I've been on a campaign of gradually handing over all lunch-box preparation to them. I help out Ms 8 more.. but she is three years younger. This morning I did more of that than usual, and they were still running late!

By the way, at this point in time it is around 12-13 degrees. Not as cold as other mornings have been recently, but still... worthy of more than short sleeves don't you think? We don't have heating in our house... given our temperate climate, we just get through the few weeks of coldish weather each year by putting more clothes on. The schools up here don't even bother with a winter uniform. There's the option of long pants (navy in the case of both primary and high school). And a navy jumper/jacket or any variety.

And so, as we hit winter, we get up, and get dressed in warmer clothes.

Unless you are our children.

Our kids have defective thermostats, and a rather warped idea of how to judge appropriate clothing for the weather. Sunny = warm in their view. (never mind if it might be approaching zero degrees outside!). Granted, it is a frustrating place to dress for winter, because on any winter day, despite a possible cold start, it could hit the mid-twenties, and if you are unable to strip off layers, you will be in a lather of sweat. So many days at school, especially if they do any sort of sport or fitness, they strip off their jumpers, and they are down to short sleeves. And you know what happens when kids (particularly kids like mine) strip off their jumpers!

But there is many a day when I'll be rugged up in tracky pants, long sleeve shirt and a polar fleece jumper. And Zoe or Ali in particular might be wandering around in a sleeveless top and shorts!

So this morning Alison is getting around in just her short sleeve school uniform top, (and long pants.. I think...) while we are rugged up in polar fleece. (And I'm still cold!) Questioned on that, she says she intends to put her school jumper on when she goes outside. (Which is probably the same temperature as our kitchen! Go figure.)

Zoe is the same... and then, as she's ready to race out the door for the bus, she fossicks through her bag. "Mum! Where's my jacket?"

"How would I know Zoe... Did you wear it home from school?" (Thinking it could be dumped anywhere in the house...)

"Um.. no... "

"So.. did you actually bring it home from school?"

"Um.... I don't know... "

GRRRR! This is what we go through every damn winter. I have lost count of the number of times they have left jumpers at school. Sometimes I am callous and I make them go without - because if they don't suffer, they aren't going to learn! This morning though, I find another navy jumper, and reluctantly send her to school wearing that because I don't want this 8 year old who is just getting over a cough and the sniffles to possibly spend all day at school without a jacket. Just in case she can't locate said jacket at school. Which, going on past experience is highly likely.

The risk is that today she will come home without two jumpers!

It happens every winter, and there are times when I wish we weren't blessed with such relatively mild weather. If they were bloody freezing all day, they'd never take their jumpers off! And they'd never leave them at school! Or lose them forever at school.

And as Marc said later on the 'Mum?!' bit.. "What does she think? You took it from her bag and hid it somewhere and forgot to tell her?!"

BUT. I'm a fine one to talk about faulty logic, and good use of time.

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I have the same issues with my kids and clothes. It could be 40 (F) outside, and #4 will come trotting down in shorts and sandals, or, like last night, it could be near 90 and he's in flannel camo pants and his field jacket. I remember being 8 and living where it snowed, and not being cold. Now, if the thermometer dips below 75, I'm putting n a sweater.

I just don't think they have the sensitive regulator that we adults do.
I do the mean thing.
I haven't let my son take another jumper to school until he found the one he left there a few weeks ago - but it's spring/early summer here.
He found it yesterday, then I sent them to school without coats as it was sunny, then there was a downpour an hour later.
Such is the unpredictability of weather here in South West Blighty.
My son will leave his drink bottle in the classroom but he is not one to leave his jumper thank goodness. I figure he is one of about 1% of children who actually put their jumper in their bag the minute they take it off.

Winter has really set in here. I typed quite a portion of mid year reports in gloves last week.
Oh I'm so hearing you! My son and daughter are the same. Although my son has told me that he is definitely not wearing a jumper to school at all in winter cause he doesn't need one! :o And as much as I want to force one on him (kicking and screaming!) I have decided that I'll go along with him while it's saving me money on lost jumpers! (Does this mean that I am a candidate for the Bad Mother award!?)

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