Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Education & Family

Saturday, November 13, 2010

When I was a young girl, I used to ask my mother "Why does my sister Judy learn things faster than I do?" I always had to study at the dining room table every night. Math was especially hard for me. Judy seemed to "get it" right away. Mom answered "Each of you is different. You're better in some things than she is, too." Through the years, I learned that mom was right.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

As I sit and type this in our Florida den, I am watching a baby gecko caught between the screen and the window. He hasn't been there long, but I know that he has been there before. Every now and then, he comes to visit me.

Seemingly, there is no exit from his perch. I see no hole in the screen and no crack in the window. However, he must have a special place that allows him to escape from his prison.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Those of you who have been reading my column for years know how much I dislike Halloween. For some reason, I have never enjoyed that holiday. I know how much the little ones love getting dressed up, traipsing through the neighborhood, and coming home with a Jack O'Lantern full of candy. I, on the other hand, can't wait for November 1st to come.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

All of us have made excuses at some point in our lives. Whether we are trying to get out of something or into something, we can find very creative ways to explain ourselves. Some of the most hilarious excuses come from parents who are trying to tell the school teacher or principal why little Johnny was absent from class.

Over the years I worked as a school principal, I collected some of the best excuses. All of these were actually written by parents.

1. Please Pete from absent yesterday. He had diah – dyre – dya – the crappers.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

When my sisters and I were young, our mother dressed us alike and we sang together. We even got to perform on the Horn and Hardart Children's Hour from Philadelphia. Our Dad went out and bought a black and white TV just so our family could watch us.

The Wells Sisters traveled to Philadelphia to sing the song "Go Back Where You Belong." It started out like this –

"If you don't like the way that we do things today in the good old USA,

If there's more liberty over the sea, you don't have to stay.

If you don't give a hoot for the flag we salute,

Saturday, October 9, 2010

My grandmother died when she was 55 years old. I was only a child at the time, and Noni seemed very old – old enough to die. Now I know lots better. After all, I was 70 in May. Even 70 is still very young.

However, I am beginning to see signs of my aging. Not just the normal malfunctioning of body parts, aches, pains, and creaks, but a change in the way I look at life, the way I behave, and the things I consider important.

For instance … ….

Saturday, October 2, 2010

When I drove my car into the garage, I saw the note scotch-taped to my hand. It said "Bank." I had taped the note on my hand as I left the library, in an unsuccessful bid to jog my memory about stopping at the bank on the way home. As I pulled the car back out of the garage and headed for the bank, I felt foolish - and frustrated. What happened to my memory?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Many times I get email messages from folks who want to ask a question about education or family issues. I truly enjoy hearing from my readers and try my best to answer their concerns. However, sometimes an email crosses my desk and makes me wonder if anyone can help the writer. This is one of those letters.

Dear Dr. Smith,

I have been reading your columns for a long time now and want to ask you a question. What should a kid do if his parents have fallen down on the job?

Saturday, September 18, 2010

One of the regular readers of this column recently emailed a question to me. She wanted to know how she could encourage her young children to love reading. In this world of Game Boys, Xboxes, and computers, enticing children to pick up a book can be an exasperating experience. I do have some ideas, and I'll share them with you.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

When our grandson Jordan was born almost 21 years ago, our daughter had a dog named Tibet. Tibet was a Heinz 57 Variety dog –mostly Chow, but a large mixture mutt that Jen had bought at a shelter. A loyal animal, Tibet loved Jennifer a lot. He tolerated the rest of us.

When Jennifer's first son Jordan was born, Tibet sensed that something new had entered the house. He sniffed and sniffed at the baby seat. He wanted desperately to be close to the newborn. When Jordan cried, Tibet's ears perked up.