Technology. Sometimes it is good. Sometimes not so much. Our son’s school uses a system called Gradelink. Through it we can check his assignments (most, the Social Studies teacher does not post them there), we can check the lunch menu to see if home lunch is required that day (shoyu chicken is a no go for some reason) and we can set up grade alerts. Basically the system allows you to set it up so that it will send you an email every time your child gets a grade that is above or below the threshold that you choose. I get alerts when my son gets a grade below a “C” (I do not condone a “C” but we have some tough math issues that we are trying to work through so for math, a “C” can be all right). I get alerts for grades that are higher than a “B”. Some days, there are a lot of alerts. Like yesterday.
Yesterday was a banner day for super bad alerts for science. It started sometime in the afternoon. One “F”, two “Fs” and more. I think the total was five. The science grade went from somewhere around a B+ to a “C”. Thing is that I knew that he had done at least some of the assignments that the teacher thought had not been submitted. My son, after a bit of an anger issue where he blamed the teacher, emailed her and they are going to meet to sort it all out. He calmed down and took responsibility. I had told him that any “Fs” mean a loss of all screen time. I think that is what he was really angry about.
And then, he was over it. He declared that it would be family game night instead of finishing up RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 5. He baked a batch of chocolate chip cookies for me using my mom’s recipe. They came out great. Then he made dinner for us for one night this week (we cook weeknight dinners on the weekends). He chose a vegetarian recipe from the Portlandia (another of his favorites) cookbook that included mushrooms, quinoa and kale. I helped a little but it was mostly all him. He even toughed out mincing the shallots even though he was quite teary.
For dinner, we ate Thai food that we had picked up that morning at the temple in Pearl City. They cook and sell food that is very authentic. Then the three of us (his dad too) played a couple of rounds of Uno, and Old Maid and Dr. Who Clue. I don’t think that I won any of the rounds but we had a really good time. After his initial irritation about no screens, he recovered wonderfully.
Lastly, I had asked him to write a short note to my mom to put in a box we are sending to her. He is lending her a series of graphic novels. She had read one that he brought to NY over the summer. He thought that she would like to read the rest. On loan, of course. He wrote the note before leaving for school this morning. I decided to take a look at it after he left for school. He got down to business explaining that the books are on loan. He told her that he missed her. He missed her dogs. He missed my sister. But it was the closing that really got to me, it was, “love you terribly”. It wrenches me up and squeezes my heart. And I know that this one, fell super close to the tree, in a really good way.