Thank goodness it’s over!

I had been glancing at this past weekend on the calendar with dread for most of the month. I am so glad we’re past it. 

It ended up being not as bad as I expected. Super busy, but not too bad. 

I spoke at a Kindergarten Round Table at my son’s preschool to promote my daughter’s school. We go to a Spanish Immersion preschool/daycare and my daughter’s school is Spanish Immersion so there really isn’t a better group of parents to talk to about the school. I’m glad I went. 

I did end up presenting after a father who was speaking about one of the most highly coveted schools in the district (and also Spanish Immersion) . Evidently their PTA raises $430K a year, and “just takes care of everything the school needs.” They even pay for two full time teacher salaries! That totally bummed me out. We struggle to raise $5K a year. The indiscrepency is astounding.

Saturday night was a birthday party at one of those jumpy house emporiums. So intense! Both kids had fun though, and we got them out of the house for the afternoon.  

Sunday was a big PTA event, and the first event I felt was a success. We had a table at our neighborhood multi-block party that is always a really big deal. The purpose of being there is to talk up the school to local parents in the hopes they will send their kids to it. (Our schools is located in a very well-to-do neighborhood but very few parents there send their kids to our school. Most of our student population is bused in from the “least desirable” areas, where the schools have mostly been shut down due to poor attendance and low teacher retention.) It’s also a nice place to make a little money. 

For once I think we did both!

It was my idea to bring calaveras sugar cookies with stuff for the kids to decorate them. My mom was amazing and made the cookies and icing and we just charged a dollar per cookie and it was a huge hit. So while the parents were standing around watching their kids decorate cookies we talked about our school. It feels good to finally achieve the outcome we wanted. It also felt good that my idea was such a success. 

Sunday was also my son’s birthday. I spent the morning at the event, and took the kids for a couple hours, then cleaned the house while my son slept. The grandparents can over at 4pm and my son indulged in the present orgy he’s been talking about for months. I do think he was really happy with everything he got. 

We had an early dinner and enjoyed cake. The grandparents left and we built some LEGO sets the kids had gotten. My daughter rocked it all day—she finally seems capable of enjoying a party where she is not the main focus (and the one getting all the presents). My son handled himself well too, though the morning was a challenge (it was so hard not wait for his presents).

I definitely want to bring down the present expectation at Christmas this year. My daughter is ready but my son is not. We’ll see how it goes. 

What were you up to this weekend?


  1. Christmas. Wrap in pieces for your son and tell your daughter you are doing this if she will be jealous about numbers. What I mean is if there are 2 pair of pajamas: make 4 packages to be opened, a set of doll clothes ~ wrap sweater separate from dress; a set of 4 small cars in a box ~ open box and wrap each one not just the big box.
    Glad your block event went well. Yes, the disparity in education within a school district can be EXTREME. In many wealthy districts the Parent Teacher group will ask on ‘enrollment day’ for a check for over $1,000.00 for each child being enrolled; and there is NO privacy about who contributes and who does not. Social pressure. This initial ‘contribution’ is not the end of fund raising but the beginning.
    The implications for inequality in educational opportunity are exactly what you mention above…….. and it is VERY real in it’s impact. Maybe some day there will be a lawsuit about the inequality that results … but not today. Your difference is inside one school district…. but when you look a Piedmont (a rich enclave surrounded 100% by a far more varied income level city) versus Oakland…… It is really clear.

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