It’s Not All Mary Poppins

The Old Red and White

Tomorrow is Canada Day, the 138th anniversary of Confederation, and (praise be!) a national day off. Today we are making flags in honour of the event.

For those of you who haven’t seen this daycare-nursery school-and kindergarten staple craft, it’s blessedly simple:

Take a rectangular sheet of white paper and paint a strip of red along the short ends. Then cover the child’s hand in red paint, either by using a paint-saturated sponge made of a few layers of paper towels, or, my preferred method, simply painting the little palm.

The hand is pressed onto the white space between the two red stripes, and, Voilà! You have a pretty decent impersonation of the Canadian flag, with your child’s handprint as the maple leaf. Cute, no?

Anyway, we produced quite a few of these today, one for each of the six children here, and a few extra to decorate my front porch.

Zach was particularly enthusiastic about this craft, and gleefully made half dozen on his own. I assisted in the stripes on either side, and then he would slam his hand with great emphasis onto the middle of the flag. Such fun!

After we were done, I took the flags out to pin them to my porch until the parents come. Foolish me, I left the paint on the table while I did this. In my own defense, there were several older children in the house, three of whom are teens. I should know better. Teens, when involved in their own activities, are every bit as oblivious to their surroundings as toddlers.

Thus, when I return, a laughing Zach greets me at the door, his dancing green eyes nicely set off by the daubs of red paint decorating his cheeks, chin, nose, and upper lip. “Mahwee! I paintin’!” He holds his hands up to me, intending to show me the paint brush he’s waving, but also calling my attention to the great ruby swathes sweeping down both arms.

He’s a festival of red and white. Oh, well. At least he’s patriotic.

June 30, 2005 Posted by | commemoration, crafts, holidays, Mischief, Zach | 10 Comments

Inverse Definitions 2

George has let Arthur play with the truck he brought from home. I comment George on his “good sharing”. Wanting to share in the praise, Arthur pipes up.

“I’m good at sharing!”

I like to give praise where earned, but, to be frank, Arthur has a ways to go on the sharing front, and I never give out false praise. I try to be kind in my response. “Well, you’re learning to share. You’re getting better every day.”

Arthur knows he’s being short-changed, and will have nothing of it. “No, I’m good at sharing!” he insists. “See? I’m sharing George’s truck!!”

June 30, 2005 Posted by | Arthur, Developmental stuff, manners, the things they say! | Leave a comment

The “Why’s” have it

Arthur:  Why do I have paint on my hands?
Mary:   I gave you paint, and you’re a messy painter.
Arthur:  Why did you give us paint?
Mary:   So you could have fun. Did you like the painting?
Arthur:  Yes.
Mary:   Well, then. Mission accomplished!
Arthur:  Yeah!!

June 30, 2005 Posted by | Arthur, crafts, random and odd | Leave a comment

There Are Limits

George approaches me, his little face tipped up, blue eyes wide under his dirty blond flip of hair. (My kids, incidentally, call that upswept bangs thing a ‘whoop’.)

“Mary, I got boogers.” Not one of my favourite things to hear, but I am, as I’ve said before, A Professional.

“All right, my dear. Here’s a kleenex. Blow.”

George performs an exceedingly ineffectual little puff, which I suspect came out his mouth, anyway. He confirms its inefficacy when he says,
“They’re still in there.”

“Well, George, you blew and they didn’t come out. I think that’s all we can do about it.”

“No-oo!” he is insistent, perhaps even a little indignant. “You gots to get it.”

I give him a look, let a beat go by so he’ll understand that what I’m about to say is a complete and absolute non-negotiable.

“George? George, I don’t pick noses.”

June 30, 2005 Posted by | eeewww, George, the dark side | 2 Comments