A popular teaching tool among young child educators is the “class pet” or “class toy”. Sometimes it’s a live animal such as a turtle or snake or hamster. Each child gets a chance to take the pet home for the weekend, care for it and bring it back to school the next week. In other cases, it’s a toy like a stuffed animal.
The latter was the scenario for us last Thursday as I picked-up GMan from preschool. I peeked into his bag and there was “Freddy the Frog”, a cute, green, stuffed frog who was coming home with us to share in our family’s adventures. Freddy had previously gone home with children who had taken him to parties, to restaurants, even to the polling booth for early voting! (Tangent….hmmm, who would Freddy have voted for?)
Unfortunately, Freddy found our family at the most inopportune time. I was sick. DB was out of town, at least until late that evening. We stopped at our usual afterschool hangout but I was in such a haze that I didn’t even think to have GMan pull Freddy out to join us. I don’t believe Freddy even left the backpack until the next day.
Oh, and the next day, actually that day and the two that followed it, I was either in my bed or on the couch. And DB was fairly preoccupied with making sure that the kids and I were adequately taken care of. Then there was the unfortunate throwing episode Friday night. GMan had rescued Freddy from his confines only to start tossing the poor, cuddly amphibian up in air and letting him land splat on the floor. When we told GMan to cease such behavior, he chucked Freddy across the room where he landed on top of the laundry pile. GMan promptly lost his “Freddy priviledges” and poor Freddy was once more confined to the back pack.
I have to back up a bit and explain that Freddy comes home with a book. Each family writes down their adventures with Freddy, complete with pictures. Monday came and we had not had one single adventure with said frog. Much less a photo op. So I called the teacher and explained our illness & discipline related dilemma. She encouraged us to keep Freddy a couple more days with the hopes that I would be feeling better and that GMan had learned his lesson about how we treat our friends.
Clearly Freddy’s middle name is Murphy.
To his credit, the GMan did well with his second chance. I, however, did not. Still sick and using what little energy I had to get my editing work done and to make sure that the we could still find the kitchen and have clean underwear, I was in no condition to contrive any “adventures”. This is what GMan and Freddy did:
Played games on the Internet
If you’ve kept up with me this far, well thanks, I appreciate it! We’re up to Wednesday night now. The frog and the boy have been best buds for 48 hours. The book, well, it’s still blank. When we arrived home from church, I hastily pulled out the camera and clicked off a few photos. Yes, that means the above photos were all staged and taken within 10 minutes. After everyone had been put to bed, I downloaded the photos and quickly printed out a few of them. But what to write?
Dear Miss “A”‘s class. GMan’s family is boring and the boy will probably be a baseball pitcher one day judging from the fast pitch he used when he threw me across the living room. Also, woe to the next family who gets me, you’ll probably end up getting typhoid fever.
Well, I did what needed to be done. I sugar coated the truth! I pretended like Thur-Sun didn’t happen and we started over with Monday. Freddy came to stay with our family at a very opportune time because he proved a faithful companion while Daddy had to take care of Mommy. Our lack of exotic outings allowed Freddy to rest from his previous adventures and just spend time getting to know GMan. Freddy was exposed to numerous learning opportunites while he played on the PBS Kids website with GMan. And Freddy really hopes that Mommy gets better soon!
Now you have, as Paul Harvey would say, the rest of the story!