We stood on the stairs, waiting for the bell to ring. It was 2:59, the end of a very long day. Their excited speech echoed through the stairwell. It took all the energy I had left to keep them in line and not screaming.
I was talking to one student when I looked up a few steps. Ms. Fruity (self-proclaimed nickname of one of my third graders) turned and pressed her face against the cold white stones of the wall and sniffed. “The wall smells like fart.”
“Who wants to get wet?”
It didn’t really register right away. I was across the room at my table finishing taking attendance and Cam was sharing some tiny dolls during morning meeting. I heard her say it, but it didn’t register until…
I looked up and Cam had the tiny doll in her hand, squeezing it as her arm swung from left to right. As her arm moved, a steady stream of water hit everyone sitting in front of her. I got up, moving across the room to stop the water. But, she was ready. Before I could get there a second doll, a second stream of water, more screaming.
Surprisingly, not one child moved or complained. She did, after all, ask them first… “Who wants to get wet?”
I carried my almost four year old nephew as we walked out of his brother’s jujitsu practice.
“Why do you have crayons in your ears?”
“Oh…They don’t belong on your ear. They belong on paper.”
Hmm…Don’t know what to say to that one…I guess you’re right? Good thing he wasn’t looking for a response, he was too busy shouting goodbye to all the other kids!
Merriam-webster defines island as, “a tract of land surrounded by water and smaller than a continent” or “an isolated group or area; especially: an isolated ethnological group.”
In my family, island describes the place where everyone congregates. That place in the middle of the kitchen that is always crowded, the opposite of isolated. The island is the setting of so many slices of life, including today’s…
“I have so many blackheads!” my sister complained while sitting at the island.
“Well, they say that you can put egg white on your face, then cover with tissue, it will dry and pull out the blackheads,” my grandma said.
“Oooo…Can I put egg whites on your face?!” As an older sister, of course I was jumping at the chance to put eggs on my sister’s face!
Jackpot! My grandma got a few eggs, cracked and separated the egg whites. I got the tissues. My grandma got me a brush and I got to work.
As I was painting and layering tissue, our other sister asked, “Have you tried this before, ma?”
“No, I saw it on Facebook,” our techie grandma replied.
Turns out you can’t believe everything you see on Facebook, it didn’t work. However, it was a lot of fun for me to put egg on my sister’s face! So it was a win! 😝
Crack! They kept cracking, with the occasional successful drop. We were trying out our first attempt at our creations to keep the raw egg from cracking. I expected them to crack, it was our first trial after all. I guess I should say I expected them to crack on the ground. I should have known better…
Students were all around the blacktop. Wandering. Celebrating success. Sulking because of failure. Waiting for their turn to drop.
And then JJ came up to me. “Ms. Bless. Ms. Bless!” I ignored him. I was talking to another student. “Ms. Bless. The egg cracked.”
“It’s alright. We are going to try again next week.”
“No. It’s getting in my shoe. It’s cold.”
I looked at him for the first time. His expression wasn’t exactly disappointed, more uncomfortable I would say. His one leg was in an awkward position. My head tilted to the right reflexively and then I understood….
The egg was in his pocket. It cracked. It was dripping down his leg and into his shoe…
“I told him not to put it in his pocket, Ms. Bless. He didn’t listen.” Mitchell said shaking her head.
My best friend growing up spent a lot of time at our house. My sisters and I baked often. My friend – not so much.
One day we decided to make something – no idea what. My friend was mixing the batter with the old brown hand mixer, when my sister says over the sound of the mixer, “You know you don’t have to hold the bowl when you do that.”
“Really?” my friend responded.
Before I could stop her, she let go of the bowl. The bowl spun. The batter spun, quickly moving further up to the top of the bowl. Within seconds the batter was flying out of the bowl and onto us, the counter, the cabinets, the floor…
Funny thing is, I don’t remember cleaning it up. Sorry, Mom!
We sat in the booth, enjoying a rare dinner out together. But Troy kept looking over to his left.
After a while, Troy voiced his confusion. “The kids are sitting at a different table?”
I turned to look. He was correct – there was a large group sitting at two tables, one full of adults and the other kids.
As I turned back to him, I could see he didn’t understand. “Some people do that – have a kids’ table. At holidays at my grandparents’ house we always had a kids’ table in a separate room from the adults,” I said trying to explain away his confusion.
It didn’t seem to make a difference. He still stared at the divided group. Eventually saying, “I don’t understand. Why wouldn’t they want to sit together?”
I looked over at the two tables, then back to my beautiful son. “I don’t know, Troy. I don’t know.”