Sunday, September 14, 2014

Costco Vacuum

We got a great deal on a membership to Costco from LivingSocial. Today, we took the kids there to redeem our voucher and do a little browsing. We walked by the appliances, and Oliver got really excited. Recently, he's gotten into vacuuming. Seriously, he's thrilled if I take out the vacuum and plug it in and let him use it. Anyway, a man was doing a Dyson demonstration and let Oliver vacuum up some confetti! It was such a fun experience for him, but now he's asking for a $480 vacuum cleaner for his birthday. Oops.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

We Have a Preschooler!

Oliver started preschool this week! He goes as part of the Des Moines' schools "universal preschool" program which pays for all preschoolers in the city to attend part-time school at age 4. I know this is a big deal. Even part-time preschools offered in public schools in the Denver area cost at least $300/month, so we are very happy to take advantage of the universal preschool program here! The drive to his school is short, his neighbor & friend is in his class, and the class only has about ten kids and two teachers!

Here's our Ollie Bear on his very first day:

Here's his preschool! It's one of the few private schools that are part of the public universal preschool option. We chose it because the classes offered at the elementary schools looked much larger.

So far, Oliver seems to like preschool. His first day started out well, but when a teacher told him that he wasn't listening, he started to cry. From what I gather, a teacher asked him what was wrong, and when he tried to articulate it, he said, "Someone told me to do something naughty," instead of, "Someone told me I did something naughty." I think the teachers were a little freaked out and pulled me into the class later to talk about it. Once I figured out what the matter was, I told them and said he was probably just embarrassed about being told he was doing something wrong. He's not used to hearing feedback from anyone but me, so it's going to take some time for him to get used to listening to teachers.

The last two days have gone much smoother, and Oliver tells us all about the songs they sing and the question of the day and the games they play at school (including playing grocery store!). He seems to like it, but then he also seems reluctant to have to go back. It'll just take some time to adjust. I need time to adjust, too! Every day, I ask the teachers how Oliver did that day. Every day, they tell me a problem and never give positive feedback. Yesterday, it was that he got hungry and cranky and the end of the day. Today, they told me, "He got hungry at 11:10." I feed him breakfast, and they give him a snack when the kids arrive, so I think it'll just take time for his stomach to get used to a more rigid meal schedule. I feel like I'm the one reassuring the teachers of that, though, instead of the other way around.

Next week, I'm determined to work up the courage to ask for positive feedback from them. If they insist on telling me something minor that went wrong, I think I'll just say, "And did he model any good behaviors?" It's frustrating because I'd promised him he could have a book today if he did a good job in school, and I explained that a "good job" meant listening to his teachers. When he came out of class, I asked him if he did well, and he said, "Yeah!" Then he started telling me about a gumball machine. Then I asked the teacher how he did, and she just said, "He got hungry at 11:10." I don't really know what to make of that, so I later told Oliver he earned his book.

I know the road will be a little bumpy for a few weeks as we all adjust to his schedule, but I think Oliver's really going to like preschool. And that's the most important thing to me!