Friday, March 8, 2019

7 Quick Takes about Blizzard Bags, How to Mortify People on Speakerphone, and Ice Cream for Russian History Enthusiasts

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


Our school district is piloting "blizzard bags," which means instead of tacking extra days onto the end of the school year to make up for snow days, the kids just do an extra packet of homework instead.

So far, I love it.

We had our first snow day this week and now instead of dragging them out of bed when it should be their first day of summer vacation, we don't have to! The kids spent an hour or two doing worksheets, and that's it.

Our normal school schedule goes well into June anyway, so extra days on top of that always make me stabby. JUST GIVE ME MY CHILDREN BACK SO WE CAN MAKE PANCAKES FOR BREAKFAST AND GO TO THE BEACH.


Periodically, my 14-year-old and I do a mother-daughter book club. It's not on any regular schedule, just whenever I can finish a book.

Traditionally we've gone out for donuts to discuss it, but she was in the mood for a McFlurry so we headed to McDonald's. When we got there, we realized the decor was really appropriate for a book club.

What has our big family been up to for the last 7 days? Find out in this week's edition of 7 Quick Takes, the funniest weekly recap you'll see out there. #7quicktakes #funny

What has our big family been up to for the last 7 days? Find out in this week's edition of 7 Quick Takes, the funniest weekly recap you'll see out there. #7quicktakes #funny
Odd choice for a fast food place, but all the pictures on the wall were extreme sports so I guess they were trying to cast a wide net.

Overall, I'd give 4 stars for the book club ambiance. Five if there wasn't a couple making out in the corner by the bathrooms.

Which there was.


One of the most unexpected hardships of parenting (to me, at least) is the fact that whenever I introduce the kids a movie I remember fondly from my childhood, it turns out to be moderately to completely horrifying.

The first time it happened was with Back to the Future, which taught our kids several choice phrases we had no idea could peppered so gratuitously throughout a PG movie.

Then we had the bright idea to show them Home Alone, which had the kids crying and covering their eyes yelling "Why is he hurting them like that?!?" and "Turn it off! I don't want to watch anymore!"

And then there was Ghostbusters, which gave both me and my kids nightmares about Sigourney Weaver for weeks.

I was starting to wonder why I didn't grow up to be a total deviant if this was the stuff I grew up on.

Finally, we watched Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles this week and I was pleased to find that I totally loved it. They loved it. Other than a few cusses from angsty Raphael (which I actually do remember from watching it as a kid,) we thoroughly enjoyed it.


It's always a pretty big ordeal to bring little people to my 12-year-old's orchestra concerts, but Phillip was out of town and the 10- and 14-year-olds were out of the house that night, so I had no choice.

I walked in with the toddler, the preschooler, and the first grader and hoped everything would go okay.

We arrived about 10 minutes early and found seats, so I said to the kids, "Let's put our coats down here and then walk around a little so you don't get b-"

"I'm already bored," interrupted the 7-year-old.

It was then that knew it was going to go really well.


Since Phillip was sad to miss the orchestra concert, I tried to take a video of it for him.

I say 'tried' because the kids who were crawling all over me at the concert didn't really care about what I was trying to do.

As a result, the finished video of the concert included copious amounts of rustling, whispered threats, crunching of Cheerios, and times where the camera was totally obscured by the 7-year-old's boots I kept telling her not to put on the backs of the seats in front of us. Also, it looked like it was filmed by the cameraman from Saving Private Ryan.

It wasn't exactly the video I planned to take, but at least it gave Phillip a very accurate picture of what it was like to be there.


My first grader was invited to a massive playdate with five other girls. She had so much fun, and as I was listening to them I began thinking, "We should host these kinds of things sometimes. Why aren't we the fun house?"

After the playdate was over, we arrived home just in time to remember why.

The 12-year-old was playing a game on the computer with her friends while talking to them on speakerphone, when one of the other kids stormed into the room yelling, "Why is every toilet in the house clogged?!?"

That evening, I stopped laughing long enough to relate the incident to Phillip, who just replied seriously, "That's a good question. Why are all the toilets in the house clogged?"


My 14-year-old and her friends are at this moment nailing down the details of a Russian history ice cream parlor and sweet shop. All the treats and ice creams in this fictional shop are named after famous figures from Russian history.

She says her favorite ice cream flavor is Bananastasia Romanov, but if this place were a real sweet shop and I visited, the first thing I'd try would definitely be Vladimir Pudding.

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Anonymous said...

We watched Honey, I Shrunk the Kids with our kids recently and it was great. No real cringiness.

AnneMarie said...

I love the "blizzard bags" idea-that makes so much more sense than tacking on extra days at the end of the year! On a semi-related note, I wonder why the school year duration varies so much from region-to-region. When I lived in Upstate NY as a kid, school never started before Labor Day and it always ended in June. But over here in Oklahoma, it's completely different-one public school district near us is August-May, and another public school district operated on a year-round schedule! (they still get a summer break, but school starts on or around August 1, from what I remember).

I would totally go to a Russian history ice cream parlor, and I really think if your child could make that happen, it'd be amazing.

Rachel said...

I always wondered why "PG" rated movies from back in the day often seemed to have more "not for children" sort of content...and I found out that the PG-13 rating was only introduced in 1984, so there's a good number of movies rated "PG" before 1984 that would have been rated PG-13 if they came out more recently!
The Russian-puns ice cream is too funny!

Jenny Evans said...

I looked that up after the Ghostbusters debacle and it all made so much more sense after that...

Jenny Evans said...

There are pitfalls of the blizzard bag system: it's not a perfect substitute for a day of school, because they give them out at the beginning of winter and have no idea when exactly the snow days will be. Therefore, they're not learning anything new (or necessarily reviewing information they've just learned,) but then again, is anyone learning anything when they're sitting in a classroom for a makeup day at the end of June when their brains are already on summer vacation? Blizzard bags work for me.

Jenny Evans said...

Phillip mentioned that one recently and I'll have to put that on our list!