Thursday, February 23, 2006

Pox Party

Yesterday, we went to the chicken pox party. Samuel knew that we were going to get the chicken pox, but I realized that he had no idea what chicken pox is. Somehow, that little detail had escaped our discussions about the party. Feeling a little guilty about subjecting him to such an illness without any advance warning, I took the time to explain to him that chicken pox means you get covered in itchy spots for a while, and that he may or may not get it since he was vaccinated, and that it's better to get it now and have a mild case than get it later and have a bad case (very common with the vaccine) or get shingles (also common with the vaccine). He agreed, a little sick now is better than a lot sick later (after realizing that a little sick later was not an option!) My offer to let him sit in the recliner watching movies while being waited on by me when he got sick sweetened the deal.

So, he marched into the party, commited to getting chicken pox... until he saw Connor covered in pox. Suddenly, those itchy spots took on a whole new meaning. He clung to me, huddled in my lap as I sat on the couch, refused to touch the pox-ridden boy, refused to blow the whistle that Connor had just blown (he knew what we were trying to do!), refused to accept a lollipop under the "Connor gets the first taste" stipulation. . . I thought perhaps our visit was wasted, and hoped Connor would cough in his direction. After being reassured that the spots would go away, and that they weren't TOO bad, and that he probably wouldn't get as many as Connor anyway (who had a spectacular case, by the way), he finally relented and accepted the tainted lollipop. Success!

While talking with the other moms at the party about homeschooling and unschooling, one mom lamented that because of the party, she'd gotten no school done that day, and another mom concurred. Then she joked, "Well, Tracy did!" It's true, though. Samuel learned about chicken pox! We also learned how germs are transmitted, and incubation periods, and a little about vaccines. All in all, it was quite educational.

In other news, we are still besieged with signs. Samuel spends most of the day drawing pictures, and then asking me to write captions. Sometimes he skips the picture and just dictates a story for me to write, which he then folds up, writes "4 MAMA" on, and then presents to me to read, as if I hadn't just written it! He is asking how to spell more words, though, and trying to figure out more on his own. Once I get my house cleaned up (hmm, maybe I should be doing that instead of blogging. . . ) I will be able to strew a bit more and leave some reading materials around to encourage him in his new interests. Some things I plan to strew: the books from the phonics program that we got from CHC, other early reader books, alphabet books, lined handwriting paper, and some drawing paper that has space for a picture, and then a few lines for writing at the bottom.

Off to clean!

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