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Coffee Break with Liz and Kate » Headline, » how to solve a multiplication problem

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We’re at T-minus 3 days until the first day of school in our neck of the woods. Which means it’s time once again, to review the dreaded school supply list. Time to start going to bed a little earlier, maybe do a little last-minute studying, time to wish we’d done more over the summer break. Sigh… Time to ask probing questions, like:

  • Are Ticonderoga really the best pencils? (Turns out that  yes, they are. And much to my child’s chagrin, mechanical pencils are still off-limits.)
  • Does our county actually have a large enough stock to supply each child with one large bottle of hand sanitizer?
  • Will this be the year we discover whether or not demerits are issued if we buy a 48-count box of crayons instead of the 96-count box?
  • Is the request for a set of ear buds just a lead up to the near future, when the school list includes a nice laptop computer?
  • Do we really have what it takes to make it through fourth grade while maintaining our sanity as a family?
  • Would home-schooling really drive me that crazy?

As it turns out, some of these questions will be answered tomorrow. Meanwhile, I’ll be doing my nails while I wait to see how the back-to-school shopping trip goes. Because my dad, in a gutsy show of courage, offered to take my son and my nephew shopping. I say,  “never look a gift horse in the mouth”. And why bother telling Dad beforehand that while my nephew’s list has a whopping five items on it, my son’s list has 21 items. That’s right – 21 (twenty-one) items. And that’s just the list from the fourth grade in general. The individual teacher lists have yet to surface.

So maybe it’s time to tweak this year’s back-to-school questions, in honor of my dad’s unflinching bravery:

  • Was his offer to supply shop a knee-jerk reaction? Or did he really think this one through?
  • Will he be able to maintain his own sanity more than 45 minutes in?
  • Will he tell stories of walking five miles to school, uphill both ways, in three feet of snow?
  • Will he still be speaking to any of us after this male-bonding adventure?

I have the strangest feeling that my second set of questions will be much easier to answer than the first. I’m just sayin’.


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