Cry Thirty

The worst time of the day at our house is after the kids come home from school and before dinner.  The kids are tired from school, they all want my attention, there is usually homework to be done, dinner to be made, and general ensuing chaos.  A friend of mine calls this time “cry-thirty” at her house, and I have adopted that perfect moniker for ours as well.

At cry-thirty at our house tonight all of the kids were doing homework and I was trying to work on editing photos. Mr. Wizard and Sassafrass both had math homework.  Little Man is in preschool and doesn’t actually have homework, so I gave him an “assignment” involving writing his name and making some shapes and letters just so he could be busy and feel like part of the group.

This is how our group work time went:

Mr. W.: “Mom, what’s 4493×78?”

Me: “I’m not doing your work for you, figure it out.”

L.M: “Mom, should I write big or little?”

Me: “Well, your paper’s not that big, so probably little”

L.M.: “Like little letters?”

Me: “Yeah.”

L.M.: “NO! My first letter is big!”

Me: “Oh you mean uppercase and lowercase?”

L.M.: “What? No, not case.  I’m talking about letters.  Not cases.”

Sass: “Can’t I do this later?”

Me: “No.  It’s a church night.  You need to get it done.”

L.M.: {waaaaa} “I don’t know HOW to make a ‘J’!”

Me: in my head “Oh my God, I just wanted to keep him busy….” aloud “I will help you.  Don’t pick your nose please.”

Mr. W.: “I don’t even know why I have to do this.  I already know how.  This is stupid.”

Me: “Please go get a tissue.”

Sass: “I’m not doing this!  I can do it later. I want to do it my room.  Mr. Wizard is breathing too loud.  I hate homework. Little Man!  That’s my pencil!  Can I just go downstairs?  I hate this!  ”

Mr. Wizard started laughing. “She’s losing it.”


Then Sassafrass proceeded to push her paper and pencil off the table, cross her arms and glare at everyone, Mr. Wizard kept laughing, she started crying and ran up to her room.  After 15 minutes of me ignoring the nonsense, she finally came back and easily finished her homework. Mr. Wizard finished his, and Little Man was still concentrating on his triangles and rectangles.

I shipped Sassafrass off to play with a neighbor so that I could start dinner and try to avoid the fighting that usually occurs while I’m making dinner.

When she came home, I asked her what she did with her friend.

Sass: “We played school!”

Me: “School?”

Sass: “Yeah, we did math. It was fun!”

She did math.

For fun.



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