* What's wrong with paperclips?

Oh dear. Keeping up with this blog has been difficult lately, and the longer I wait to post, the more daunting the task becomes because everyday yields more news and stories and anecdotes and I cannot possibly catch up! Oh dear.

Oh well.

So let’s just hit the highlights, shall we? My last post was on Tuesday, but all that carefree reassurance came before the first phone call from the principal. Her number is now saved in my cell phone, so when she calls her name flashes like a warning on the little screen. I should have saved her as “Rio’s At It Again.”

She informed me that Rio had punched 4 kids in the face during recess that day. FOUR?? I imagined some kind of rowdy brawl, like that part in Rio’s new favorite song, about “the mud and the blood and the beer.” Well, maybe without the beer. They frown upon that in Kindergarten.

In fact, it was some kind of game called Guns and Robbers, which, as it turns out, is also frowned upon in Kindergarten. And actually, Rio didn’t mean to punch anyone, or at least he didn’t do it out of anger, thank goodness. Therefore, the principal deemed that since there was no malicious intent, little Hercules would be spared from suspension (this time) and instead he would spend the remainder of the afternoon in his “buddy” classroom (a sort of timeout area), AND for the next 2 days he would spend recess in the principal’s office. OK, fair enough. At least he didn’t get suspended again.

That was my first call from the principal this week. I received another one on Thursday. This time, she was inquiring about some paperclips in Rio’s possession. An awful lot of paperclips, apparently. He told her they came from home, but she was doubtful, so she called me hoping to bust him. I assured her that yes, those paperclips did come from home. As a matter of fact, over the weekend Rio had made a chain of them about 5 feet long so it was entirely possible that he had brought them from our house. She still seemed doubtful, and asked me the same question in about three different ways to make sure she heard me right.

“Are you sure he has access to that many paperclips?”

As if they were bullets or crack or something. Sheesh. Still, I must say that I didn’t even mind her hypervigilance at the time, so relieved was I that Rio hadn’t committed any serious offense. Paperclips? I can deal with paperclips. But I think that principal needs to consider these words:


I mean, paperclips?? Gimme a break.

There was a spring in my step when I picked up Hercules at school that afternoon, so pleased was I with the innocence of his fondness for paperclips. So pleased that I decided to take him to the library. It was, after all, time for the final installment of the Narnia series. And I wanted to get some EZ Reader books for him to read to me, too. So he skipped merrily over to the children’s area and claimed the kitchen play set while I browsed for books.

I had to enlist the help of the Children’s Librarian to locate the sort of books I needed, but all the while I had one eye on Rio. His animated play attracted the attention of two curious toddlers. They looked so small and fragile next to him, I was a little nervous. After the Librarian finished with me, I dropped in to encourage Hercules to be extra gentle with the little ones. One of their mothers was lurking nearby, quietly observing their interaction as well. I smiled at her and she smiled back. She didn’t seem concerned, so I went back to my browsing.

At last, I found everything I wanted and returned to the kitchen to help Rio find his coat and move towards the check-out desk. He did so happily, and as we were leaving a woman smiled at us and asked me, “Does he have any younger siblings at home?”

“No, just a few older ones.”

“Well, I’m surprised. He was just so sweet with those two little ones over there. I was really impressed.”

Rio beamed. I beamed and squeezed his little hand. Yep, that’s my boy! Gentle! Sweet! Would you mind putting that in writing so I can show it to his principal? That would be swell.

I guess that pretty much covers the Best of Hercules for this week. Except for the grand finale, the best news of the whole week:

Rio read a book to me all by himself!

Well, maybe I coached him a little, but you know, some words really are just spelled weird. Yep. He’s a reader now! It’s true. I’m the proudest Mama:) Who cares about paperclips?


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