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540th Friday Blog Roundup

So the Wolvog just finished his first online college class.  He audited it instead of taking it for credit because I wasn’t sure he’d be able to keep up.  But he did, excitedly chatting with his fellow students on the class forum and taking his exams at night.  It was super cute and sometimes I snapped pictures of him while he was trying to work and then screeched, “you are so cute!”  He got really good at ignoring me.

The only problem came when he got to the final project.

He dragged his heels because he wanted it to be spectacular.  He kept coming up with ideas and summarily rejecting them.  The clock kept ticking closer to the deadline, and I advised him that satisfactory-but-turned-in beat spectacular-but-not-turned-in.  It was finally a few days before the due date and he started working on coding a game.  He finished it with hours to spare except for a small glitch.  He sent a message asking for help from a fellow classmate and went to baseball practice.  When he came home, the answer was waiting, and he fixed the project.  Completed, at last.

He went to turn it in and discovered that he was locked out of the class.  The due date had been a half hour earlier; the time zone listed as one 5 hours ahead of our own even though the college itself was 3 hours behind our own.  He couldn’t turn in the project and would have to accept a zero, lowering his final grade from an A to a B.

He asked me to email his professor, and I did, explaining that I’m writing because I’m his mother and he’s 10 and lacks the ability to negotiate that power dynamic.  He is accustomed to a school situation where his mother can mosey into the classroom and speak to his teacher if there is an issue.  And I also explained that he would have to accept the consequences if it was impossible to turn in the project.

The professor was sympathetic but ultimately couldn’t bend the rules.  The due date was the due date.  Even though it was marked as a zero, she still gave him feedback and praise on the project, and I think he left the class feeling good about it overall.

I think letting him experience that was important — not the class, I mean, but having your hard work not counted due to lateness.  I don’t think he’ll procrastinate like that again.  He gets that the stakes are raised as you age, and that there will be times in the future where he will have to set aside other fun things to buckle down and get something done.  That he may sometimes need to settle on an idea that is satisfactory instead of waiting for something spectacular to spring up in his brain.

I think it’s a good sign that he’s looking for another class to take in the future — either in person at a local college or online again.  It means that he gets the idea that he’s going to be held to a standard and he gets to choose whether he rises to reach it and reaps the benefits or not.

Plus he’s still promising me that I can move to wherever he goes to college in the future so I can still do his laundry and cook his meals and tuck him in at night.  Hoping the ChickieNob chooses the same city if not the same college since she has that plan, too.  Though I’ve been told that I need to stop screeching at them, “you are so cute!” and covering them in kisses while they’re in class.  Online is fine since their classmates can’t see.  But in the classroom?  So embarrassing.


STAR WARS COMES OUT ON ITUNES TODAY!  Um… yes… we set aside a gift card we had to purchase all 6.  One needs to be able to carry these things with them in their pocket at all times.

Isn’t that mid-blowing?  It used to be such a big deal to get to see the movies at home on a VCR.  Now I can carry all of them in my pocket on my phone.


Stop procrastinating.  Go make your backups.  Don’t have regrets.

Seriously.  Stop what you’re doing for a moment.  It will take you fifteen minutes, tops.  But you will have peace of mind for days and days.  It’s the gift to yourself that keeps on giving.

As always, add any new thoughts to the Friday Backup post and peruse new comments in order to find out about methods, plug-ins, and devices that help you quickly back up your data and accounts.


And now the blogs…

But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week.  In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:

Okay, now my choices this week.

I Try: The Additive Property of Happiness has a fantastic post on BlogHer this week busting her top three infertility myths.  It’s nice to have words going out to a more general audience instead of preaching to the choir, and I can see the post being shared over and over again across the Internet.  She’s invited people to add their favourite myths in the comment section, and I encourage you — if you want your words to travel outside this community and hit a more general population — to add your myth in the comment section ASAP.  It’s a great chance to spread a little more understanding into the world.

Searching for Our Silver Lining has a post about choosing to pick up heads-down pennies, superstitions be damned.  I love how she has taken bad omens and turned them around, writing, “Before our final treatment cycle, Grey informed me that we were black cats as others viewed us harboring bad luck. And yet we continued to persevere, choosing to live and exist without apology.”

Lastly, No Kidding in NZ has a post asking you to treat yourself as well as you would treat others, especially when it comes to infertility and loss.  If you have uttered something cruel to yourself lately; told yourself that you need to suck it up or get over it or that you’re not “woman enough” or that all of this is your fault, you need to read this post.  Run, don’t walk, over to her blog.

The roundup to the Roundup: Wolvog learns not to procrastinate.  Star Wars is out on iTunes.  Your weekly backup nudge.  And lots of great posts to read.  So what did you find this week?  Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between April 3rd and 10th) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week?  Read the original open thread post here.


1 Ana { 04.10.15 at 9:32 am }

I love that whole story about the Wolvog and the college class, and how you stepped in, but gently. Reading about your awesome kids and how you parent older kids feels like a privilege. I hope some of it sinks in and comes out when my kids are that age…

2 Turia { 04.10.15 at 10:04 am }

I’ve just finished reading The Opposite of Spoiled, by Ron Lieber, which makes exactly the same point with regards to money: let your kids make mistakes in a low-stakes environment. I think you handled the situation with the Wolvog brilliantly. And I’m glad his enthusiasm wasn’t curbed by the zero. (And way to go, Wolvog, for taking a college course in the first place!)

3 Amber { 04.10.15 at 2:23 pm }

Wow! So impressed with the Wolvog and taking a college course already! I’m also super impressed with your email and response to the professor in regards to missing the deadline. What a great lesson for the Wolvog to learn. Sounds like he handled the situation very maturely.

4 loribeth { 04.10.15 at 8:46 pm }

I am impressed — first, that Wolvog is tackling college-level courses!! — and second, with you & his prof for how you both handled the situation. I’m glad the prof stuck to her guns about the deadline — it’s a good lesson for him to learn, earlier vs later in life — but also glad that she added some encouraging words.

5 Mali { 04.10.15 at 9:41 pm }

As with the others, I am impressed – with Wolvog, with you, and the prof. It gives me hope for the future! And tell the twins that by the time they’re in college, I’m sure you’ll have grown out of screeching “you’re so cute!” Besides, being an embarrassing parent is part of the job description, isn’t it?

Thanks for mentioning my post – I may do a follow-up to that one too. But I wanted to mention Savannah’s post about a (harmless) but satisfying way to vent her emotions. I wish I’d thought of it. http://because-i-cant-have-babies.blogspot.co.nz/2015/04/draw-your-infertility.html

6 Shannon { 04.10.15 at 10:06 pm }

I absolutely love that the professor didn’t allow his final project to count, but still gave him feedback on it. What a great life lesson to have at this age.

And Star Wars! Hooray!!

7 earthandink { 04.11.15 at 12:10 am }

So I remember waiting in a line that went around the block and then some, in New York City, to see Star Wars. I don’t even know why I was in New York City (apparently on May 25th, 1977 if Wikipedia is accurate), as I didn’t live there then. But I remember that line.

Enjoy them being this age and wanting you around. I hate to tell you this, but by the time they’re in college, well, they may say something else. (When my son was 10 he told me I was the smartest person he’d ever met or who ever lived. Who. Ever. Lived. But I have apparently lost IQ points since then.)

You, the professor, and most especially Wolvog all handled that well.

8 Andy { 04.11.15 at 7:23 am }

I love the idea of keeping Star Wars in my pocket… what a weird world we have built! Happy Friday

9 Justine { 04.11.15 at 2:40 pm }

The Wolvog is brilliant. 🙂

On behalf of the institution of higher education, I thank both the professor for not bending the rules, and the Wolvog for being willing to accept responsibility and move on. I write more excuses per day than you could imagine … I play the role of the mother in the classroom. And I wonder sometimes what happens to our students when no one is there to step in …

10 Lori Lavender Luz { 04.12.15 at 11:11 am }

Congrats to the Wolvog for learning….and learning.

And why does the last paragraph in that section of your post make me think of this?

11 Tiara { 04.12.15 at 12:01 pm }

I love the experience & wisdom the Wolvog gained from this lesson! Good for you for guiding him through it in the way you did!

Do you remember seeing Star Wars for the first time? Of course you do. So do I. And then it was a very long time before we’d get to see it again! So amazing that now we get to keep it in our pockets! Can you imagine going back in time to your self as she walked out of that theatre & showing her your phone with Star Wars on it!?!? Mind blown!

12 Mijk { 04.13.15 at 2:57 am }

Out mantra in this:done is beter then perfect. It is afamilything here…..

13 BattyNurse { 04.14.15 at 8:00 am }

Ok. Wow. He’s 10 and took a college class? I’m impressed.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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