Tuesday, October 7, 2008

What I hate about Fall

I guess “hate” is a harsh word so let’s just say that there are a few things about the fall I dislike. They have to do with school so let’s just get to them.

1. School fund raisers.

Why do we have to do this year after year? If you have children in school then you can feel my pain. It makes no sense at all. Originally these sales were not designed to raise money as much as they were to instill school spirit. When I was young, we were handed boxes of candy and told to go sell them to make money for the school. I can remember taking my big box of katydids and lugging it door to door and listening to one excuse after another but finally selling them all and feeling good about what I accomplished. These days door to door sales are forbidden so what’s the point? Our children bring home catalogs of overpriced stuff and we parents either drag it into work, and force our subordinates to buy it or we hound our relatives until they cave in. The children have nothing to do with it at all other than bringing the paperwork back and forth. In the end they win some cheap prize like a squirt gun or a yo-yo. That is if they sell hundreds of items which isn’t going to happen in our house.

I am thinking of hiring a lawyer and getting a restraining order out against the school system. "Here take this 50.00 but leave me alone." After paying for these items they can't make that much anyway.

2. School projects.

Before I complain, I have to brag a little and say that I have never gotten below a high B on any of my children’s school projects. That’s right I said it. “I” got all A’s and B’s on my children’s school projects. Now when my oldest son was doing his first project, I thought it was still like it was when we were kids and I let him do the entire project. He did a great job too. The project was to make something dealing with the space program so he made a rocket. He used a shoe box and a paper towel roll and some other cardboard and glued it all together and made a launch pad and a rocket. It looked like he actually did it and I was very proud of him. A few days later we were at school and I saw the projects that “his classmates” did. One particular rocket stood three feet high and had working parts and was made to exact scale. I thought “wow, now that is a talented 1st grader.” I am sure the only part the child did in making that project was to keep quiet while his father was working.
So long story short, I still make my children do their own projects but I make sure they stay on track and that they look professional. You know, like something a child would make.

3. School special nights.

I do enjoy going into school and seeing what my boys are working on but for some reason they always give a lot of homework on those nights. We have been working on a big Egyptian project and tonight it will be on display. I get home at 4 and the school meeting starts at 5 which means that I have just enough time to wolf down dinner and then head out to the meeting. I imagine it will last a little longer than an hour and it will be around 7 when we get back home. Then we have to get homework done, pack the book bags for the next day, shower and get to bed.

This project was a little different too than ones I have previously seen. Along with having to write a story about king Tut and making some props, my son had to write a rap song. With my help, we completed the project and even though I am not a big rap fan I want to see my son perform this masterpiece. He is such a ham I know he did a great job on it. We did it to the music from “All summer long” by Kidd Rock. Maybe I can post a copy of that at a later date.

So that is why I dislike Fall. I am however enjoying this cooler weather. Maybe heading to the mountains to see the leaves change will brighten my spirits. This is a photo I took last year up in the mountains of NC.

Have a great day,


Brooke said...

Okay...you hit the nail on the head with this one. My son walked into school today with his 2 week Plant observation Project that you were so kind in giving us advise on. I am hoping for an A, but a B will be just fine. I have spent about $100 this month on fund raisers between the two kids and they have a calendar full of events. Thanks for your reminder, I will put this all into my calendar. Have a great day, and I love that Fall picture!

Patrice said...

You are toooooo funny and of course very true! I hate fundraisers, I would rather just give them money and tell them to leave me alone!

I had my e-mail wrong on my site, it is a dot net and not dot com! I fixed it, but please e-mail me again, so I can talk about your blog!! Thanks, Patrice

Chatty Kelly said...

How old are your kids? I love your comment on the parents doing the projects. Don't think the teacher doesn't realize this. When my daughter did her first project it was the same scene as your described (One kids was all typed with photo art - come on.) I told the teacher it seems alittle high tech and she said she "knew" who did what. I still let me kid do her own.

As for fundraising - still right there with you!! The school wants us all pile in to a fast food restuarant the same night (a school night) where they get 10% of the sales. I figured out they'd get $10 out of me after the whole year!! (possibly $20). In the words of wise Greg - "Here take this $50 and leave me alone."

Sandi McBride said...

Gosh Greg, I found out this year when my neighbors started hitting me up for stuff that all I had to do was pull out my granddaughter's candy list (form last year) and I got left alone! And I getcha on the school projects...thing is mine never told me about the project till the night before it was due...I got a D once...shameful grade!

Angie said...

I'm with you on that. Let's scrap it all and just go exploring outside with the kids instead, whadya say?

Brenda said...

This post made me laugh! At first when I read the title I was thinking "what could you hate about fall"? But you are so right about all of this. Sadly, my kids fundraisers are still sitting on the counter where I set them when they were brought home two weeks ago.

Katherine Aucoin said...

Fund raisers - check
School projects - check
Special School Nights - double check

Ok Greg, I love Fall, it's my absolute favorite season, but I didn't equate the school stuff that parents like you and I hide under the bed from. Thanks for making fall special for me ;-)

Monogram Queen said...

You know I hate the school fundraisers too. My kid had them in 3K for Pete's sake! Ridiculous. Someone start a revolt!

Sandy said...

Greg everything you mention...hahaha...I'm done with!!

My kids are grown, yeah...

But all those things...you always write in such a way that we can all relate. That's why you're at the General Store.

Debbie said...

I, like Sandy, am thankfully past those days so I only contend with the teens who are still allowed to go door to door. I hate saying no to them but also couldn't shell out $25.00 for this years football discount card. (It was $10 last year)

As for "special" nights, I always wonder why those and many Jr. High sports events start so early that no one who works can possibly get there on time, let alone eat dinner first.

Damselfly said...

I don't know a single parent who actually enjoys school fundraisers. So you're in good company.

skoots1mom said...

wooo hooo, preach it brother!
competition is fun, isn't it??!!

I agree with writing a check at the beginning of the year and being done with it...my child has to make her own money for trips, anyway.

I wonder where your son got his penchant for "hamming it up"...i bet you had fun pulling that together...i'm getting visions of Steve Martin doing KING TUT!
hope it goes well when he presents it.

enjoyed your post!!

Lori said...

Maybe after your kids are out of school you will start to like fall again! :)

Jamie Dawn said...

Everyone talks about how much they love fall, so I got such a chuckle out of your take on the season.
Fundraisers and projects.... Lord, help us!!
I remember those projects that me and The Reverend helped our kids with. You are SO right about how much help we gave them to make sure their projects were terrific. We got good grades too, also, as well.
Our leaves are just now beginning to hint of autumn.
A few leaves have turned a deep wine color on some trees, but the real colors will be on display in about a month. I love it all so much since I spent most of my life in CA where there are not very definite season changes.

Wanda said...

Been there done that!!!! Oh it's so nice to be retired and beyond those school events.

Several times when I would take the box of candy to work, four other employees had boxes too.

This too will pass...Greg...But in the mean time...do you want me to by a box of candy?


Becky said...

Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting on my cuties. We are home schooling so the only "school projects, fund raisers, and special nights" are the ones I come up with. However, as a product of the pulic school system of California I totally agree with you. :-)

Scarlet said...

I can relate to everything you wrote about on this post, including how you felt when you saw the 3-ft. rocket. "Wow, now that is a talented 1st grader!" lol Love that line!

The fall picture is beautiful. I don't see anything like that in this part of the country!

Gnightgirl said...

I'm with you on those fundraisers. My son is grown now, but coworkers bring in their kids paperwork, $12 for a cork trivet, $8 for chocolate popcorn. I'd see those prices at Walmart and flip!

You're right though, the rest of autumn is wonnnnnnnnnderful! Great pic.

just me said...

One year I served as secretary for the PTA. Talk about hair-pulling, and not mine either...

It is so refreshing to hear a parent admit to "helping" their children with school projects. I hated those, and fund raisers, with a passion. I still do. It never goes away, just turns into a phobia or something...

somebody said...