On Catching a Break

blue red and yellow chalk
Photo by Viktoria Goda on Pexels.com

Monki has not a great track record when it comes to school attendance. She started her kindergarten* last year just before the pandemic closed everything down, briefly returned in the summer of 2020 until we chose to pull her out for a variety of reasons and our hope was that she’d be able to get into an actual preschool for the 21-22 school year. Continue reading “On Catching a Break”

It’s been a week…

For the first time since we went online for the Pandemic back in March of 2020, I started a new school year ready to meet some students face to face. To be fair, a year ago, we tried what we’re trying now, but I opted to stay completely online, which worked out to my benefit since it wasn’t long before everyone was online.

But now, a year and a half into this thing, I’ve got a couple of classes which are going to meet in person and last week, the first week of school, we did. It was nice to be in front of a roomful of students, to be able to see and hear their reactions, but even so, it was a bit disconcerting with everyone wearing masks. As of this coming week, I’m supposed to monitor them all (and each class has more than 60 students) to make sure they’ve been vaccinated and if they haven’t, to ask them to leave. And if they don’t leave, I’m supposed to leave. Continue reading “It’s been a week…”

Finding our way

IMG_2055It started with the car radio.

Since we got the new car, Rasa has been slowly learning all the ins and outs, the bells and whistles (and the weird little oddities) which make up our “lightning car.” One of those things was learning how to set the radio presets, which also means she spends more time in the car actually listening to the radio (which also means Monki hears more songs which I then have to get for her to put on her playlist so she can listen to the music she desires, as opposed to mine, which she has a healthy distrust of). Continue reading “Finding our way”

On Losing Words

monki-hiding-faceThis is a story about the importance of words and their meanings.

For a while now, Rasa has been thinking about getting a plant for the house. Not a flower, mind you, but an actual plant. She had even been thinking of a tree, musing out loud, while going through various online circulars, that “hey, this shop has lemon trees for sale.”

Now, my first thought is “why do we need a lemon tree?” followed closely by “where are we gonna put a lemon tree?” I mean, look, I’ve got nothing against lemon trees, I even like the song, but in the house? Naw. Of course, this didn’t stop her from wanting a tree and then, last week, she bought one. Not a lemon tree but some kind of Dracaena and it now sits in the corner of the hallway, just outside the office. Continue reading “On Losing Words”

What are some of your favorite ways to spend a Saturday?

saturday-superstitionsAs is my wont these days, I tend to analyze the question a bit before answering. One of the things living in Europe, especially Eastern Europe, has taught me is how America-centric things are. Now granted, I do spend a fair bit of my time looking at and reading things in English, but still, there’s this huge bias about things which would be incredibly easy to do/see/acquire/accomplish were I in the States, but that become incredibly difficult on this side of the Atlantic. Continue reading “What are some of your favorite ways to spend a Saturday?”

Family

Monki runningHad an interesting moment today. Monki and I had a fight. Not a big one mind you, but an important one. See, every day, we change the calendars. Over here in Lithuania (and maybe the rest of Europe, I can’t really say), calendars come with a piece of elastic with a little red square for putting over the date. Handy, right?

Anyway, this is just something we do on a daily basis. There’s three calendars in the house at the moment, one in the living room and one in her room, on which she likes to “X” off the days as they happen, and there’s a page-a-day Marvel calendar in the office. And this last one is where the problem occurred.

Continue reading “Family”

Monki with a Tool Belt

chico bon bon copyWe’ve been talking about getting Monki a new bed for a while now. She’s four and a half, sure, but she fits just fine into 122/128 (that’s 7/8 for you Americans) and she tends to thrash a bit when she sleeps. What this means is that the bed she’s had for the last couple of years is actually getting a bit too small. Now, a couple of things have been interrupting this conversation. One, beds are expensive as hell (and there’s a whole host of subcategories that go along with that) and two, we weren’t sure how a new bed was going to fit into her room. Continue reading “Monki with a Tool Belt”

What a long strange year it’s been…

inspire-innovation-challenge-way-to-change-to-inspire-innovation-challenge-way-to-change-to-concept-inscription-187529094It’s been a year, huh?

I mean, heck, it started off swell!

We saw in the New Year watching fireworks from the balcony and anticipating what 2020 was going to bring. We made our usual lists of things we wanted to accomplish in the coming year, read our jar full of accomplishments, kissed at midnight, and met the new dawn full of hope and brightness.

Well that didn’t last long. Continue reading “What a long strange year it’s been…”

Advice

how-to-give-advice-in-englishNow, about four years into this whole fatherhood thing, I’m realizing something I only understood intellectually before – I don’t know shit. When talking to my friend AAron the other day, we were discussing child-rearing and I conceded that yes, I would probably screw up Monki somewhere along the way. No matter how much we try to do the right things in the right way, we (and, let’s face it, all parents) are going to screw up and make mistakes. Continue reading “Advice”

On Quarantine and the First of May

ScooterAbout 6 weeks ago, we entered our apartment. And there, with the exception of a few forays to get food and necessary supplies, we stayed. And, in fact, it was pretty much only me going out, so Rasa and Monki, they really stayed. Monki hadn’t left the house since the 13th of March (remember, we talked about that).

We had our masks and a box of disposable rubber gloves, we got our groceries delivered, lined up outside the door like wounded soldiers, the delivery guy playing a positive version of “ding dong ditch.” We sterilized everything that came in to the house, all the packaging, double and triple washing the fruits. Continue reading “On Quarantine and the First of May”

Your Presence is no Longer Required

IMG_4958Last August, we figured it was time and signed up our relatively freshly minted three-year old for a public kindergarten (which is pre-school in America – the terms are flopped here). And so, on the second of September, when school started for everyone, Monki was ready. Off we went to her new school, dropped off a crying little one with her new teacher, and went about our business for the morning. Continue reading “Your Presence is no Longer Required”