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    November 28, 2011

    Two Entirely Unrelated Topics, Yay Blog Storylines!

    EJ is asleep! I know! I can type with TWO HANDS!!!

    Tonight's first topic: My Name. (Because this website is about meeeeeeeeeeeee!!!) 

    No, really. Did I tell you I am going to Palm Springs in January? With two friends? And my baby? I am going to Palm Springs! ANYWAY. One of these friends is buying our plane tickets tonight and she called me to verify my Official Details. And while I was spelling M-A-R-G-A-R-E-T she was saying, "That is SO not your name. I could never call you that! That is not your name!" 

    AND YET! IT IS! No one has ever CALLED me Margaret, not when they weren't trying to be cute at least. But it's there on all my documents. There were times when I thought I could reinvent myself as Margaret - going to college, for example. A new job. And I sometimes think that if I ever write a book I will splash MARGARET all over the cover. But for right now the Margaret is pretty useless. 

    My mom has a name which is often a shorter version of a long name, BUT. The shorter name is HER NAME. Apparently this drove her crazy all her life, all these people saying, "Now, MILLIE, is that short for MILLICENT?" (note: my mother's name is not Millie) so when she decided to name me Maggie, she also decided I would have the Full Version. 

    (My mother is now reading this and saying, "THAT'S NOT HOW IT WENT" but that is the version of events with which I am familiar!)

    I've never been a huge FAN of Margaret either. I am hearing my name on the playground occasionally (both Maggie and Margaret) and several of YOU have little Margarets... I can say I've never been a huge fan because it's MY NAME, right? Anyway. Where do you fall on giving someone a name no one will ever call them? I mean, it's not like how Lizzie is pretty obviously from Elizabeth (or Millie from Millicent!) and people use both (ish). Then again, it's not as much of a stretch as PEGGY... I sort of like having an Official Version, you know. For when I meet the President, maybe. But I can't ever imagine telling friends and family to call me Margaret. Even when I'm an old lady! (BECAUSE MARGARET IS AN OLD LADY NAME!) (SORRY, READERS WHO HAVE MARGARETS!) (HEY, I NAMED MY KID EMMA! ALSO AN OLD LADY NAME!)

    All right, Topic Number Two. Preschool. 95% of you just fled. BUT STICK AROUND! THIS IS INTERESTING!

    At drop off today, Molly started to cry. She has never cried at drop off. She has not always been super enthusiastic about GOING, but she's never CRIED and I've ALWAYS been able to talk her into it. But today she kept giving me excuses ("Mommy, I have too many coughs!") (except she's no sicker than she was last week or the week before that - stupid all-through-winter runny nose!) Anyway, she was having none of my Preschool Cheer and the tears started falling. Then her teacher came over and picked her up and talked about the fun things they were going to do that day and I quickly slid away. 

    But I stuck around. In the stairwell. Listening to my daughter BAWL. 

    So I kind of tip toed back and looked in and she didn't see me. She was still sobbing, the teacher still trying to engage her and I just felt HORRIBLE. I walked back in and told the teacher I was taking Molly home. The teacher told me she's never seen Molly act that way before (which is good! right?!) and maybe she was sicker than she seemed, or the Thanksgiving break threw her off. 

    It could be one or all of those things, I suppose. I decided not to run the handful of errands I wanted to do and instead came home and did a Christmas crafty thing with Molly. Then she played in the playroom while I used the treadmill. We had snacks. We played with Emma. We walked to pick up Jack and then had lunch. A pretty nice morning. 

    And now I am thinking... what if she didn't go to preschool? I mean, she's not in preschool because I am bound and determined to make sure she can skip ahead to second grade or anything. She's there because JACK went when he was three and ALL LAST YEAR she would say, "When I three, I go to preschool!" I also thought it would be a good break for me, to just have the baby. Also I thought she would LIKE IT. You know, make messes without getting yelled at by her crotchety mother. 

    But... I am wondering if she does? She's never cried until today, but she's never seemed to enjoy it as much as Jack. There are a LOT of kids in her class and most of them are older. She's never super excited to go. Then again, she seems to have fun! She likes her teachers, she likes the projects, she talks about it. Just... not as much as Jack, who really LOVES going to school. 

    Would she be going to preschool at age 3 if she was my first kid? I don't know. Molly mostly likes to hang out with ME. 

    So right now I am strongly considering taking her out. She's only THREE. If she's not loving it, then I don't want to pay for it! And having her home with me wouldn't be a hassle. She's SO much easier to occupy than Jack - plus she always wants to help me fold laundry and she always wants to go shopping, the two things I tend to do during preschool time. Today I even used the treadmill with her in the next room. So it would be fine to have her home. 

    ??????????????????

     

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    It could be any of those things, for sure. That said, preschool at three is hardly the marker for ensuring a productive adulthood. My kid LOVES preschool, and at home he is very, very needy. He also hates shopping, particularly Target, so preschool is somewhat of a necessity for me. Also, he's four, and I think preschool at four IS the marker for adult success.

    I vote for keep her home. She has her whole long life to go to school and work.

    I am for the "name with a formal version." I mean, I named William with the intent to call him Will, but I like that he has an "official" name. Also, you never know what people are going to end up going by. For instance, my brother goes by a shortened version of his last name (my maiden name.) SO much so that if you call him by his actual first name his friends don't know who you're talking about.

    Kalena is 3 and I don't have her in preschool (even though I think she would love it) for a few reasons. 1) I didn't want to come up with the money to pay for 2 years of preschool and 2) I'm pretty sure Will would be lonely without her. But baby #3 will come along right before she turns 4, so I figure that's a good time to get on the preschool bandwagon.

    I like people to have a full, official version of their name too. I know a Liza, who is not named Elizabeth, and it drives me nuts!
    I do like to give my children nicknames, but know they have nice long, adult-names!

    I would take Molly back a few times to preschool to see if it was just that one time, but if she still doesn't look enthusiastic, or is super upset, maybe don 't take her back after Christmas? No law says she has to be in preschool at 3! And that would get rid of your stupid pickup and drop off schedule, right? Maybe she's just feeling a bit left out because she's no longer the baby. Do what you feel is right. :)

    We have a Margaret/Maggie! It is definitely an old lady name :) It was a family name (husband's deceased mother, a couple of grandmas and great grandmas or aunts or something?) so we liked that aspect, and I do like the nickname Maggie. We really only call her Margaret when she's in trouble. heh MARGARET ELISE!

    As for preschool- age three IS INSANE. And a new baby? Throws everything off. My guess is she probably likes school but there are lots of changes at home and she's dealing with all of that in her little kid brain. (My Maggie was 3.5 when her sister was born and yeah. There was some rough stuff.) I'd stick with it for a while and see if it was just a one-time thing. Kids have bad days, you know? And maybe... just ask her? If she likes preschool? Maybe she'll surprise you!

    My sister is Margaret, but we have never called her that unless she was in trouble :) She has always been Maggie. Maggie is one of those people that can pull off just about anything. those purple knee high boots that would make me look like a fricken pirate? She looks AWESOME in! She has a funky amazing personality...who else could wear leopard print and zebra print at the same time in 3rd grade and look amazing...MAGGIE! I think because of that Maggie has never been an old lady name to me, its a corky and funky version of the "old lady" Margaret… So rock it Maggie i think your name is Awesome!!! :)

    Well, we named our son John with the full intention of calling him "Jack," and we do, because to me "Jack" is a nickname and people shouldn't be named nicknames. I don't know why I feel that way.

    As for Molly, I agree with whomever said bring her back a few times and see if it was just today, but if she hates it, why do it? She can go next year.

    I'm usually against the long formal name with the short "real" name. It's probably because my name is sometimes considered a shortened version of Christine, but my parents said, 'If I intend to call my kid something, why not make that the official name?' I have no problem with nicknames that grow organically - my own nickname is actually longer than my actual name, and it's a portmanteau of my first and middle names.

    I feel the same way as Dr Maureen. We have a Tobey, but his "legal" name is Tobias, so he has a formal name to fall back on should he become, I don't know, a lawyer or professor. And like Dr. M, we have a Jack whose name is John (after my brother). My brother actually didn't like his formal name, but my parents never let him adopt a nickname. They were weirdos.

    As for preschool, I personally feel preschool isn't really neccessary for most kids. All I remember from preschool is being taught that awful song, "I'm being eaten by a boa constrictor." But if Molly is, overall, having a good time--maybe she's feeling under the weather and that's why she was upset? my kids tend to get weepy when they're comign down with something--perhaps a couple days a week is a good thing for her.

    My official name is Carolyn, but I've gone by Carrie my whole life. When I tell people my real name is Carolyn sometimes they look at me with crossed eyes like they have no idea how Carrie could be a nick-name for Carolyn. Honestly? I wish my parents would have just named me Carrie and kept it simple because I am never sure when it's okay to sign my name Carrie or when I should use Carolyn? On resumes..should I put my "real" name? or the name I would like people to call me? How official does a document need to be for me to sign Carolyn vs. Carrie? So I feel your pain :-)

    As for Molly and preschool I think you should take it slow. I don't think it's necessary for kids to go at age 3 (or even at all if they are getting the right kind of preparation at home for Kindergarten). Don't let one really bad day drive your entire decision. Maybe for the month of December let Molly guide whether or not she attends. If it seems like she doesn't miss it, and you are happy having her home, than save the money and the trouble and take her out until next year.

    I should add that I am a fan of formal names with nicknames when they are common - like "Will" for William or Dave for David. Heck, I have a Samuel who we call Sam. I just am not a fan of the uncommon nickname like mine (Carrie as a nickname for Carolyn).

    Completely agree with Carrie's comment about letting Molly decided whether or not she goes to preschool thru December before pulling her out for the year.

    Our girls schedules were totally off this weekend. Between traveling and visitors they never had a an actual nap. Also Jo was fighting a cold which she passed to Cokes. So when 6:40am rolled around yesterday and Jo was raring to go to school and CoCo was a dead weight in bed, Jo went off to school and Cokes stayed home. She actually slept in til 10am - which hasn't happened in eons.

    Like Molly, CoCo never seems thrilled about going to school, more so excited about the part that she gets to ride the on the yellow bus with Jo. On her days off she's super easy-going. She'll color and read books and be my helper. Still, the part I like most about preschool for her is that she is finally making same-age friends instead of always being the 3rd wheel with Jo's friends.

    p.s. I'm officially a Kathryn - which I last used to sign my full name when we closed on our house and won't use again until who knows when.
    Still, we decided to give our girls full names (Josephine and Coryn) and use nicknames. Funny thing is people are afraid to ask if CoCo's name is really CoCo or if its short for something.

    I never used to use my full name, except for teachers calling roll, until I got married. And then for some reason I thought my shortened name sounded all kinds of wrong with my new last name. So I went formal. Except, my friends and family still call me by the shortened name. But it's not like they're ever calling me by first & last, because what are they, my mother?

    I thought we were giving Margaret an official name and then calling her Maggie, but it never stuck. We tried Maggie, Meg, and...something else, I think, but now we just call her Margaret all the time. I like it.

    I like having a formal name and a name name. I go by Jennifer in work occasions (which I don't have so much any longer) and Jen in "real life." So I always know if it is a salesman calling on the phone because they ask for Jennifer. And I do not like people abbreviating me to Jen too soon. Which sounds weird because if I meet someone socially, I introduce myself as Jen and expect to be called Jen immediately. But if you are trying to sell me a car and I introduce myself as Jennifer? Do not nickname me without my permission.

    Preschool. I'm definitely on the do whatever is easier camp. If you don't think she likes it and you are happy having her home, I'd keep her home. :)

    My mom's name is Kendra and she was never able to have a nickname so she wanted to name me Jessica so I had plenty of options. Although they wanted to call me JessAnne which is just a nightmare! I always introduce myself as Jessica and sign everything the same, but anyone who knows me calls me Jess. My son is Jacob and everyone calls him Jake so I make a point to only call him Jacob.

    I'm interested to hear how preschool pans out for you and Molly. My son is now three and he wants to go to school very much but I think he's still young and I'm not sure if he would like it past the idea of going. I think he would get to school and have a meltdown everyday when I tried to leave. I don't want to put him in if he's not ready yet!

    Carrie, that makes me laugh, because people in high school tried to give me a nickname. There are no nicknames for "Karen." One girl tried to call me "Carrie," and I objected, because even back then I was a names geek and I knew Carrie was a nickname for Caroline or Carolyn, thankyouverymuch. Karen is actually a shortened, Danish version of Catherine. My parents called me "Kar Bear" which made me gag.

    Fuss is 3 and we don't have her in preschool, but if I could afford it, I totally would. As far as this goes, though, maybe you should keep trying for a week or so to see how it goes? That would be what I would do. Of course, I am fully expecting my daughter to skip away happily with no backward glance when i drop her off for her first day of school (which is what she does for Sunday School and child care during Bible study).

    I was called a nickname from birth, but much prefer my full name, Christiana. Most people who knew me before I graduated high school still tend to call me the nickname (Christi - in a myriad of spellings) but I really prefer my formal name. I switched to it exclusively in college and have never gone back. It's awkward for me when I have to introduce myself as Christi (because of an old association or whatever).
    Our daughter has a more formal name and we picked our preferred nickname for it before she was born and I try to use that occasionally, but mostly she tells me that's not her name and her name is FormalName. I just remember reading a book about a girl who had been neglected by her parents and ended up in a loving foster home where they gave her a nickname and she said that it made her feel loved, like they cared enough about her to create a name for her. So I always wanted to have a nickname for my children.

    Our 2nd daughter (if we are so blessed) will primarily be called by her nickname, as is our son (who is a "the Third" and I wanted a nickname much different from his father's so as to minimize any confusion.)

    One of my sister is named Kathleen, but has gone by Katie her entire life even as an adult. Our younger son is named Benjamin and we call him Ben most of the time but I like him having the option of going by the full name. Just as no one starts calling him Benjy which I cannot stand.

    Our older son was 3 1/2 when he started Montessori and it was a good fit age wise. Our younger son is already asking to go to school, so right now my plan is to start him in the fall as a younger 3. I think he will like being around other kids and then I will have several hours to myself!

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