Cure for the Common Cold

Cure for the Common Cold

Today, it was cold out.  Same as it always seems to be.  This morning as I waited with my daughter for the bus, it was 27 degrees F and with the wind it felt like 14.   I had on my running gear because I did want to go for a run, because it’s suppose to snow tonight and given our city’s track record, it could take a long time before it’s safe to run after a snow!  

I drove home from the bus stop, and gathered my running gear.  I put on my fingerless gloves and sat on the sofa while I took my phone out of its normal protective case, placed the phone, ID, and house in my awesome fanny pack.  And then I sat there shivering under a blanket waiting to get warm enough to go back out there!  It was SO COLD.  I just can’t even.  Cannot.  Even.

After deciding I would never be warm again, I cued up the evil 10 Pounds Down Better Body Blast and started the workout, gloves, hat, scarf, and all.

It took me until the last two minutes to shed enough layers to be dressed the same as the instructor!  That was a tough workout, and it was before illness made me take a few weeks off.  I definitely was not cold by the end of the 20 minutes!  I was pleased that I was able to finish every single second of it.   Even if my body isn’t changing and the scale isn’t really cooperating, I can feel that I’m stronger when I do these workouts.

And my moods are better.

And we save on our heating bills.

At any rate…  I do have something on my mind today other than the pain I will feel in my gluteus maximus tomorrow.

We’re coming upon Standardized Testing Season.  I must have been in denial about the level of intensity these tests have taken on.  Fortunately we have another year until my oldest is tested but I’m firmly against these high stakes tests.

Here’s a great post about just how all-consuming these test are:

Time’s Up | Yinzercation

It’s basically two months out of the school year.  And all the months leading up to these tests.

I remember standardized testing when I was younger.  It was maybe three days and as far as I could tell, we weren’t prepared for the test specifically.  We were just taught the things we needed to know. Today, kids KNOW about these tests and what happens if they don’t do well, individually and as a school.  I know a lot of kids in PA and elsewhere who are anxious about these tests!

And for what?  So a big company can administer a test that doesn’t help teachers improve at all?  So the results on a meaningless test can be used to show how ineffective public schools are?  So for-profit education companies can “rescue” these students?

I find it really outrageous and disheartening.  I was shocked to find out that there’s big money to be made from doing this testing, and that there’s lobbying going on.  I’m very naive but I figured it was just bone-headed politicians making bad decisions.  Which it is… but it’s not JUST that.

It makes me really sad that basically the entire school year leads up to these high-stakes tests.

Next year we will have to decide whether or not our daughter will take the PSSA.  We would have to formally opt out and there is a religious exemption.  And, I do have an ethical objection because I think these tests are administered for the primary purpose of finding public schools lacking and dismantling the public education system in favor of for-profit schools, and I think that’s just wrong. And I think that aligns with the first UU principle of affirming the worth and dignity of every person (not just those who can afford it).

On the flip side, I feel like our daughter will do well on the tests and won’t have any anxiety because she’s freaking fearless about everything, and that the parents who object will predominantly likely be the parents of the kids who will do fine on the tests, and that will hurt the schools. Unless the movement reaches critical mass, I am afraid of what it will do to the schools.

And even if we do opt her out, her instruction will still be geared toward passing this stupid test instead of learning all the actual things.

In short I definitely need to learn a LOT more about this issue and I’m really glad that I will be able to have the time to think about it a lot and, if I know myself, and I think I do, talk to nearly everyone in Pittsburgh and beyond about what they think I should do.


But, in the meantime, I have big plans that include going to Target for Pull-ups and laundry detergent, and then to the post office… because when push comes to shove, even if all the problems in the world are solved, there will still be butts to wipe in my life!  Always, always, butts to wipe.  And that’s OK.  My kids have extremely adorable tuchases.  Tuchi?  Butts.  They have cute little butts.

I’m just hoping that I can get all my tedious errands run without a phone call to pick up a sick child.  My youngest was sent  home yesterday because he just seemed “blah” but he was basically fine.  I sent him today and I’m worried that he’ll turn out to be really sick.  But REALLY, we need to get into our routine again.  Because tomorrow we’ll probably have a snow day for what will turn out to be 1-2 inches of snow, and spring break is in two weeks.   And there will go our routine.  Oh well.  It’ll be nice while it lasts!

  •  Cardio: 20 minutes
  • Words written: 1000+
  • Weight: 145. Must have been the greasy sandwiches I had for dinner and then ice cream I had after the kids were in bed!
  • Job I Don’t Want: Meteorologist (I feel like they are sort of in the same boat as public school teachers.  Just give the audience what they want, whether or not it’s meaningful).
  • Deck Check: Road Trippin’, Red Hot Chili Peppers (Californication).


2 Responses »

  1. Snowfall totals overnight are now up to 6 inches for Pittsburgh. I’d be surprised if there is school tomorrow. If we get 6 inches I’ll probably work from home.

    • Two inches. Snow day. Mark my words.

      The bad thing is that I was supposed to volunteer in the 2nd grader’s classroom tomorrow, and I missed the past 2 Wednesdays, and tomorrow it’s supposedly her “fun” day 6 when she has fun stuff in the morning instead of math.

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