Friday, December 1, 2023

7 Quick Takes about Strep Throat, Nerf Darts, and Ways to Protect a Child's Innocent Ears

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


Over the weekend, my family members continued dropping like flies from strep throat. The last one standing was my 12-year-old, who leaned over during the first 15 minutes of church and whispered, "My throat hurts." Luckily we only live a few minutes away, so it wasn't a big deal for me to bring her home and come back.

I feel like a pharmacist every night slinging around antibiotics, and washing medicine cups and syringes is my new part-time job, but mostly I'm just relieved to finally get this out of the way. The whole family should have just shared a fork at dinner two weeks ago when we first got the 9-year-old's positive strep test and gotten it over with. 

At least none of us are contagious anymore.


At church I was sitting next to my 9-year-old when a Nerf dart fell out of his pocket. "Can I put that in my bag?" I asked, and he reluctantly handed it over. 

I slipped it into my purse and was about to turn my attention back to the service, he quietly reached back into his pocket and produced another 8-10 of them. 

Trying not to laugh, I took them and added them to my bag... and then he dug in his other pocket and gave me a second huge handful. 

I just want to know what he was planning to do with all of those if I hadn't confiscated them.


My 12-year-old was getting ready to go somewhere and her belongings were scattered everywhere. 

"Can you put your..." I began, but I got distracted by something else and trailed off in the middle of my sentence.

"... stuff in a bag?" she offered.

"Yeah," I said. "How did you know I was going to say that?"

"I'm psychotic."

I thought she was making a joke but then I actually did have to explain the difference between 'psychic' and 'psychotic.'

In related news, I put some Vaseline on my 7-year-old's chapped lips and he asked in all seriousness, "Why do I need gasoline on my lips?"


My kids had a day off from school this week and I decided I should organize playdates. I am extremely terrible at that. I'm such an introvert that it barely occurs to me to schedule time to see my own friends, letalone other peoples'.

But every once in a while I start to feel I should encourage my kids to have active social lives, since they're even more introverted than I am, so I did it. I organized three playdates at our house for my three youngest and encouraged my oldest two to invite their friends over, as well.

That means that in one day, we had 5 playdates for all 5 kids living in our house. Introvert me was exhausted. I know some people have their kids' friends at their house all the time, but those people are not me.


My kids have been playing this computer game called Geometry Dash. So far it's seemed like a perfectly appropriate game for kids in every way, but recently my 7-year-old reached a level where a skeleton appears on screen at a certain point in the soundtrack and yells, "Oh, damn!"

Not knowing the word 'damn,' my 7-year-old was totally oblivious. How would you handle that?

What I ended up doing is telling him that the skeleton is saying "Let's dance!" and now everyone is happy.

A few days later, I saw my 15-year-old take a different approach. My 7-year-old was watching him play and whenever the skeleton popped up on screen, the 15-year-old would yell "Yahoo!" to drown it out so his little brother wouldn't hear it.

Also valid.


As part of their Christmas initiative, my church created this random service generator on their website:

It randomly assigns you a way to help, a person to help, and a deadline for doing so. I did it and got "an act of compassion for my neighbor down the street within the next 3 hours." 

I actually forgot to do that but I'm totally calling her in the morning because I've been meaning to do that for weeks.


Scrolling Facebook, I stopped to watched a video of a mom blogger I know professionally. 

She was ranting about how she kept getting unsolicited advice from people to touch up her gray hairs whenever she posted a new video to Facebook, and I didn't realize my 2nd grader was standing behind me listening until he piped up to ask: "Why would somebody tell her not to make her hair gray? That's how bodies work."

Anyway, I'm with him. You don't need to cover up your silver hairs. That's just God's glitter.

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