Saturday, February 06, 2010

On Math and Cabin Fever and Why They Go Together

I finally figured out why God created cold season and winter to happen at the same time: sick kids tend to be less active. Which greatly reduces unnecessary indoor activity when everyone is already cooped up with Cabin Fever because the winter storms outside rage with such a fury, no one can even go out and get their mail for days. Okay, so it's not that bad but it practically could be.

But, when everyone is sick, it doesn't matter that we all have Cabin Fever: we just want to lay around all day anyway. Problem is, we've had a pretty healthy winter this year.

So I got the cold and winter season thing figured out, but now I can't figure out why God didn't make Spring to come say, February 6 instead of March 21. Seriously. WHY does winter get another TWO whole months (or how ever many months there are between February and March) of time in our neighborhood?

To pass time, Landon has come up with a new topic in his conversation. It's called Math. Yeah, you heard that right.

Do I look like a Math geek? I hope not because I'd be a total facade if that were the case.

Math was that one topic in school I got the most trouble over. I even lied over it. Seriously. I don't know why God invented math because the fact is, the invention of math created many more sins for people to commit and fall into. Namely lying. Since math was created, that was the ONE thing I lied about as a child. I was not a lying person even as a little child but when it came to math, it was already so evil anyway that what was a lie or two along with it? Anyway, in case my mom has already forgotten about this particular story, I'll just move on from these vague details and you can pretend I never brought up the math topic. Or how it involved me lying.

Back to Landon and math, every few minutes I hear questions like this....

"How much is sixty-sixty plus one?"

It can be in the middle of supper. Or while we do chores. Or during school. Pretty much, if he's awake, he's asking the answer to another sum.

Sometimes he gets even fancier and will ask, "What's two hundred plus sixty-seven plus ten?"

And then randomly, he'll hold up two fingers on one hand and five fingers on the other hand. A light will go off in his head and he'll day, "TWO plus FIVE is SEVEN?!"

Yeah Landon, that's seven.

Eventually, Alex and Janae joined into it. And I'll hear my 2-year-old come up with a math question. The kid can't even pee in the toilet yet but he'll know his math facts before Winter is up... if Winter ever is up.

Speaking of peeing in the toilet (sorry for being so crude in my language but seriously, we all do it, right? I hope so....), Landon and Janae have taken on a new task. They decided it was time to potty train Alex.

After watching a Potty Training DVD that came in our Huggies box of diapers, they came up with a plan. Randomly, they make Alex sit on the potty chair and he's required to sit there until he produces some evidence that he's being potty trained. They'll both sit on the floor next to Alex and they'll be heard reading books and talking about how Alex should really pee and poop in the potty chair from now on.

When Alex finally squeezes out even the faintness amount of evidence in the chair, Landon and Janae become elated. And then there's a piece of candy for everyone (actually, it's not actually candy but they don't know that) and we all go back to our day.

Several hours later (usually after Alex has had a soiled diaper), The Experts take him back to the bathroom and they repeat the above scene.

They've become so confident in getting him trained that Landon has decided to change Alex's diapers... which I think was influenced when I decided to get tractor-decorated-pull-ups instead of diapers for our soon-to-be-potty-trained boy.

But what really took the cake was when we were packing for our end-of-January-Christmas-trip-to-Wisconsin and Janae informed me of a necessary piece of luggage: The Potty Chair. "The movie said that even when you go on a trip, you hafta take the potty chair," she condescendingly told me.

Winter is doing strange things to my kids. Since when does a 4-yr-old tell their mother what necessary paraphernalia must come along on a trip so the aspiring-to-be-potty-trained 2-yr-old can keep up with his random potty training lessons?

And since when does a 5-yr-old quiz his math-illiterate-mother on math all day long?

I know when: when Cabin Fever strikes and all the kids are healthy. And all they can think about is potty training and math. That's when.


Anonymous said...

My dear friend,
I can very much feel with you...only to a greater extent...try multiplying ALL of that times 10...(oh yeah, you don't do math, sorry):)
Love you, Rachaelle

pat ve said...

Most moms aren't as lucky as you. Just tell Landon that Toby is the math expert. If he can't remember his problems til evening or whenever, teach him how to write them down. You'll need a + - division sign (I'm computer illietrate) and a X. Oh yes, =. You'll need to know 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 and their various permutations. Then LET TOBY DO THE REST. Potty training--keep letting Landon and Janae train him and change him. Hey, you have a good deal going for you. + You are a good writer.:)

Kate said...

Ha ha ha! I feel the same way about that useless, evil form of torture they call math! :)

Jean said...

You are so funny. You sure have it good to have the siblings training the youngest one - whether it is math or the potty.

School for Alex will be such a whiz you better star now finding some new diversions.