When the girls and I get home from work and from school, inevitably the homework comes out. I have it, they have it, and you can bet each of us would rather do something else. I have to admit that I prefer working on a story to doing dishes. I have to do dishes at least five nights a week. U.G.H.

Kid 1 is a natural scholar and often her homework is done before we get home. Kid 2 is a creative and artistic child. You’ll find sketches of animals where math solutions should be. Both are brilliant and talented, but I have to say mean things to get them to finish: “NO ICECREAM!” “NO ICECREAM!” “NO ICECREAM!”

I don’t know what else to say. Any suggestions?

For two little girls who spend half their lives bickering at each other, they also exceed at distracting each other into fits of giggles. I try so hard to let it slide, slide, slide, but inevitably I have to say something like, “You have too much to do to be FARTING AROUND!” Imagine. More fits of giggles. Well, I’m committed to not using bad words, so I endure and I let that particular F word do its job amusing the girls.

I revel in being a Mom. For more than 35 years, I never thought I would be. I never wanted to be. It was all about me and that was just the best thing ever. But parenthood puts the entire globe into perspective. You become every child’s mother. You care about the ladybug that came in with the basil. Tenderness becomes your strong suit.

My kids surprise and disappoint me with regularity. Heck, I surprise and disappoint myself. I watch them experience the same thrills and frustrations I did. I want to help them avoid the worst, but I realize I cannot be on their Secret Service team forever.

My husband takes them to school each morning because I’m on theBus at dawn and in town before they even get out of bed. It’s a relief for me. If I telecommute, I join them. But it’s very hard for me. I want one more hug, I want to tell them one more time how much I love them, I need to say “be good!” “pay attention!” “get a sticker!”

I’m always quiet when I walk away. They are my jewels.Earrings by Sister-in-Law Susan

By lavagal

Hawaii Kai wife and mom. Melanoma Stage 3a Cancer survivor. English Language Arts teacher, English Learners Coordinator, and Paraprofessional Tutor. Super sub teacher. Dormant triathlete. Road cyclist and Masters swimmer. Gardener. Mrs. Fixit. Random dancer. Music Curator. A teenager trapped in an aging body. Did you know 60 is the new 40? It is.

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