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Women of Color #13 - Page 36

post #701 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
Rynna, I'm nervous about private schools too . . . the school I found and like the most is a Sudbury school (or based on the model). What school are you referring to?
Yeah, the one I'd like to send Boobah to is also a Sudbury School: The Circle School. We visited when Bean was younger, but it wasn't a great fit for him. Boobah, on the other hand, would do very well there and I love the values of the parents, staff, and the kids. It was one of the first places we visited while Bean was in his "everything must be pink" phase where everyone was just fine and supportive.
post #702 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arike View Post

Sheila, would love to hang out with you, William and the new baby this summer!
Of course! I'm always around, you know!
post #703 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jannah6 View Post
Looks like we've all been thinking about our childrens schooling. I hope everything works out for you all. I'm thinking about sending the children back to school next year. Actually it was my husbands idea,but i haven't given him a solid answer. The morning sickness has been kicking my butt and most days it's hard for me to get out of bed. I know that I probably have 2 months of this suffering.
I'll be having a c-section in October and there is no way that I'll be able to give the children the schooling that they'll need. So I've decided to send them back to school,maybe. Another option is to send them to another homeschooling mom that I've know since I was little. I think I'll be sending my oldest son to her next year,she's tutoring him in math now and he learns so much from her in just one day. She's always homeschooled her children as well as other peoples kids. She's really great with children and her oldest children have attended Cornell and Harvard. I haven't talked to my DH about her doing the homeschooling,so we'll see. I'm just not really enthusiastic about sending my children back to their old school or any school in the neighborhood.
Arike,I'm right there with you. I want to leave NY,though it has its perks. My kids definitely need more space. We're probably going to be looking into Upstate again.
Is everyone thinking of moving?

I am sooooo tired of where we are but I still love NY. I want to move to one of the outer boroughs and we've kicked around the idea of Brooklyn or Astoria quite a bit. I want a back yard and my own laundry room so bad I can taste it!

I'm tired of listening to sirens all day or some random moron singing outside my corner.

One day, I guess...We'll also have to see what educational opportunities there are for the children. This is the most important thing, IMO.
post #704 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
Exactly!

I'm planning to homeschool but if that doesn't work out, I have a short list of 3 or 4 potential private schools for my boys--none of which I could remotely afford even if I were working full-time. But I know that where there's a will, there's a way. .
I agree!!

I went to a few Mocha Moms meetings where I am and I totally felt left out and awkward--even though everyone was a woman of color. I felt like the only one really working hard to make ends meet.[/QUOTE] Was this your perception or reality? I only ask, because this year I felt in my mind that Andrew was going to be the "poor" child. A few weeks ago, I went to breakfast with the moms of a few classmates, and it was funny to hear parents genuinely lament about their financial situations. There are other moms who are returning to work so, for the same reason as I.

You never know a persons true financial situation, and I would guarantee that half if not 3/4's of the moms there have savings accounts that resemble yours. At the end of the day it really does not matter the income level if yoru savings account is at zero and your credit cards have a high balance.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Arike View Post
I agree on applying to the schools even if you can't afford the full tuition. Money is tight for our family too but I plan on submitting applications for Ari to many different private schools in NYC and letting the chips fall where they may. There is also a bilingual french american charter school opening up this fall that I would love for Ari to go to and that's FREE! Ari will be 2 in October so I still have 3 years (well maybe actually 2 in terms of applications, visits, inquiries, etc...) to figure it all out. I really want Ari to attend a french bilingual school.
We are nearing the end of our first year in French bilingual school, and love our experience. Neither my husband and I speak French, but Andrew has made tremendous progress over the past few months. I had to schoose between the best AMI Montessori school in the SW and French Immersion. It was a difficult decision, but I am happy with our choice.

Many International Schools don't offer FA during the PK3 and PK4 years and only half tuition during K. We spent almost 50% of our income on tuition this year, but I don't regret the decision. I did not want to wait to apply, because there are fewer open spaces in Kindergarten and first grade.

I returned to work to get a head start on nest years tuition and to pay towards what remains from this year, but it is worth it. I know that the experiences gained will outweigh the costs. Hopefully by the time DS qualifies for full FA I will have completed school and have a full time job.

I would alos suggest looking at smaller French ministry schools for PK3 and PK4. These schools offer 100% immersion, while UNIS does not.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Jannah6 View Post
I'm just not really enthusiastic about sending my children back to their old school or any school in the neighborhood.
I thought that you loved their old school?

Quote:
Originally Posted by eilonwy View Post
[color=Indigo]
That said, I'm not one of those people who believes that every parent or every child should homeschool; I'm just not inclined toward a program of shoving elitist attitudes down the throats of children, and every private school I've visited or attended (with the sole exception of the one I mentioned earlier) does just that.
It is unfortunate that you had such an awful experience. Perhaps your children might feel differently.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
Rynna, I'm nervous about private schools too . . . the school I found and like the most is a Sudbury school (or based on the model). What school are you referring to?
Why are you nervous? I loved my private school experience and other than Rynna, I have not encountered anyone who attended both public and similar private schools who feel differently. I do know people who attended religious schools, or other private schools who did not feel as if their education was any different, if not worse, that what they received in public school.

Switching to public school/average parochial school was the beginning of the end for me and something that both my mother and I regret.
post #705 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Draupadi View Post
Is everyone thinking of moving?

I am sooooo tired of where we are but I still love NY. I want to move to one of the outer boroughs and we've kicked around the idea of Brooklyn or Astoria quite a bit. I want a back yard and my own laundry room so bad I can taste it!

I'm tired of listening to sirens all day or some random moron singing outside my corner.

One day, I guess...We'll also have to see what educational opportunities there are for the children. This is the most important thing, IMO.
Yes!!! We were truly planning on a move to DC, but tuition for our son would double. YES, double. I really want to attend Howard, but maybe for a professional program. We both want to leave Houston, and move east, but the cost of living is quite low. Top top private schools cost 30 to 50% less, we could be an awesome Townhome in the city in a great neighborhood for less than $500K or be really frugal and purchase a home that is not quite in the suburbs for about $250K, but I HATE HOUSTON. I love the international environment, but I feel as if I am a double minority. I also miss the progressive black communities found in Atlanta, which are also found on the east coast.

We also love Andrew's school and DH is reluctant to move him now,a nd I understand. When I apply to grad/professional school in two years we will go where I am accepted.

I envy you, Arike and Jannah, and would trade the space for sirens, singing morons, small living areas and a laundromat.
post #706 of 845
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewsMother View Post
I agree!!

I went to a few Mocha Moms meetings where I am and I totally felt left out and awkward--even though everyone was a woman of color. I felt like the only one really working hard to make ends meet. Was this your perception or reality?

-------------------------------
Why are you nervous? I loved my private school experience and other than Rynna, I have not encountered anyone who attended both public and similar private schools who feel differently. I do know people who attended religious schools, or other private schools who did not feel as if their education was any different, if not worse, that what they received in public school.

Switching to public school/average parochial school was the beginning of the end for me and something that both my mother and I regret.
Well, the conversation topics all revolved around things I knew I couldn't afford to do: classes for kids, going to tea and eating out, etc . . . I mean even the houses where the meetings were held. I mean the clothes, the tuition that some were paying for pre-school, the birthday parties. The lifestyle really. I felt out of my league. But, in all honesty, I live in a county of NYS that has some of the highest home prices in the whole country. We couldn't afford to live here if the hubby hadn't inherited the house and we live in one of the more economically depressed towns! Although now that the economy is slower (I know it sounds bad), I thought maybe I'd try again because maybe we'd all be in more of the same boat. Back then, I wouldn't even have felt comfortable talking about buying our clothes at the thrift store . . . because they are the ones who were donating the clothes to the thrift store.

As per private school, my sister went to a private boarding school and I went to parochial school for my whole schooling career. There were issues with each choice and I find that just because it's private doesn't mean that the curriculum will suit my child, i.e. will it be a cookie-cutter curriculum applied to each child without regard for the individuality? Will the only difference be that there will be more discipline or an actual different approach to education? I'm interested in schools that acknowledge and respect the individual learning styles of children.
post #707 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewsMother View Post
Why are you nervous? I loved my private school experience and other than Rynna, I have not encountered anyone who attended both public and similar private schools who feel differently. I do know people who attended religious schools, or other private schools who did not feel as if their education was any different, if not worse, that what they received in public school.
I know dozens who feel the same way. In fact, of everyone I know in real life who attended a private school for any significant portion of their education not one has chosen to send their own child to a private school. I find that very telling.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
As per private school, my sister went to a private boarding school and I went to parochial school for my whole schooling career. There were issues with each choice and I find that just because it's private doesn't mean that the curriculum will suit my child, i.e. will it be a cookie-cutter curriculum applied to each child without regard for the individuality? Will the only difference be that there will be more discipline or an actual different approach to education? I'm interested in schools that acknowledge and respect the individual learning styles of children.
I think there's a perception that because you pay for it, it must be better and that the more you pay, the better it must be. Everyone thought that the exclusive, painfully expensive private school I attended for a while was full of really smart kids. It wasn't; It was full of kids with parents who made a lot of money and who lived in big houses and had everything they could ever want, but they weren't necessarily all that intelligent. I can remember being flabbergasted that they were all so far behind me in math. It was also a tightly kept secret that the students in that school had the worst drug problems and that they developed them earlier than did students in the local public schools. They were the only kids who could afford to have serious drug problems-- and I'm not talking about high school seniors smoking pot on the weekends, I'm talking about eighth graders shooting heroin and snorting coke between classes. In fact, I knew of a seventh grader whose parents traveled frequently and who would hold drug-ridden orgies in their absence. I'm totally serious.

All that, and a curriculum that was decent but not terribly accommodating. They were afraid to grade skip me because I was the shortest girl in my class already, and one of the youngest ( ), they couldn't adjust the curriculum even though it was woefully inadequate to my needs. Socially I was all right, but that was only because I was quickly "recognized" by another girl as "one of the smart kids," and because the leader of that clique was sweet as pie. If she hadn't been such a doll, it would have been an absolute disaster. I had the wrong shoes and the wrong backpack, I didn't have pierced ears nor did I wear jewelry of any kind, and I couldn't care less about school dances. That doesn't even get into the main problem I have with private schools, namely the unhealthy sense of elitism that is fostered, even nurtured, in the students. It's just not a paradigm I can support.
post #708 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Draupadi View Post
Of course! I'm always around, you know!
Yay! I can come hang out on the days I don't have class!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Draupadi View Post
Is everyone thinking of moving?

I am sooooo tired of where we are but I still love NY. I want to move to one of the outer boroughs and we've kicked around the idea of Brooklyn or Astoria quite a bit. I want a back yard and my own laundry room so bad I can taste it!

I'm tired of listening to sirens all day or some random moron singing outside my corner.

One day, I guess...We'll also have to see what educational opportunities there are for the children. This is the most important thing, IMO.
I definitely want to move from where we are now. I would love to stay in Brooklyn if I could find a spacious apartment/house with a yard in a great neighborhood. But money is tight so we have to stay put for the time being. I really am not trying to spend 2,000 a month on a 800 square foot apartment! These rent prices are CRAZY! I like city living but I sometimes fantasize about having a big house down in North Carolina. I guess I am a little bit country and a little bit city, lol. I feel torn about it because I love what NY has to offer but I also miss the space I had growing up in suburban connecticut.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewsMother View Post
We are nearing the end of our first year in French bilingual school, and love our experience. Neither my husband and I speak French, but Andrew has made tremendous progress over the past few months. I had to schoose between the best AMI Montessori school in the SW and French Immersion. It was a difficult decision, but I am happy with our choice.
I am glad to hear that Andrew is having a great experience in his french bilingual school! I am fluent in french and Ari has been doing a french immersion DVD program since he was 6 months old. He has been saying a few words here and there while watching the program. I hope to continue his french language learning at an immersion school. Thanks for the insight!

RE: Private School

I went to private school for K-8 and then by my own choice, I attended a public high school. It was a good school and I took mostly honors and AP courses. I can see the pros and cons in both public and private institutions. My private school was very small and was not very diverse. At the time, I don't think it fostered an elitist attitude but I think things have changed from when I attended. NYC public schools for the most part are hit or miss. I want Ari to be in a school where the parents are involved and care about their children's education. If I can get Ari into the charter french immersion school in Harlem, I would be so happy. If not, private school it is while we remain in NYC. I have been researching areas of North Carolina to move to and the Chapel Hill area has a great public school system. Oh and my brother did private school K-12 and I don't think he turned out any better than I did, lol. Maybe everything evened out when he went to a large public university and I went to a small private all women's college? In any case, I will just say that making decisions about our children's education can be complicated.
post #709 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
Well, the conversation topics all revolved around things I knew I couldn't afford to do: classes for kids, going to tea and eating out, etc . . . I mean even the houses where the meetings were held. I mean the clothes, the tuition that some were paying for pre-school, the birthday parties. The lifestyle really. I felt out of my league. But, in all honesty, I live in a county of NYS that has some of the highest home prices in the whole country. We couldn't afford to live here if the hubby hadn't inherited the house and we live in one of the more economically depressed towns! Although now that the economy is slower (I know it sounds bad), I thought maybe I'd try again because maybe we'd all be in more of the same boat. Back then, I wouldn't even have felt comfortable talking about buying our clothes at the thrift store . . . because they are the ones who were donating the clothes to the thrift store.

As per private school, my sister went to a private boarding school and I went to parochial school for my whole schooling career. There were issues with each choice and I find that just because it's private doesn't mean that the curriculum will suit my child, i.e. will it be a cookie-cutter curriculum applied to each child without regard for the individuality? Will the only difference be that there will be more discipline or an actual different approach to education? I'm interested in schools that acknowledge and respect the individual learning styles of children.
No, private does not mean better, but I would not even consider sending my child to a run of the mill private school just for the sake of a non public school education. Each school will present issues, even those that parents believe are the best fit for their children.
post #710 of 845
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewsMother View Post
No, private does not mean better, but I would not even consider sending my child to a run of the mill private school just for the sake of a non public school education. Each school will present issues, even those that parents believe are the best fit for their children.
That's what I've been saying. Even homeschooling presents issues. It is all about finding the best fit for your child and that's all I'm interested in--whatever form it comes in: public, private or not..
post #711 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
That's what I've been saying. Even homeschooling presents issues. It is all about finding the best fit for your child and that's all I'm interested in--whatever form it comes in: public, private or not..



I could not comprehend your point, quite possibly because my ideas about school choice are sligtly different. In my mind the majority of private schools, public schools are not a valid option for our family. I would not want to homeschool, but would do so before considering public school.

I think that the best fit is found in certain private school, that are able to provide experiences and environments that few public schools can emulate.
post #712 of 845
wow, I haven't been around for awhile! I, too, fantasize about getting away from the sirens and singing fools and having a nice house with a yard, etc. My husband keeps making up timelines in which we will move to the Caribbean, so who knows when and where we'll actually go.

(And Jannah and Arike, have you all been following the rapist/slasher stuff going on in the neighborhood? all bad).

I've gone to a few Mocha Moms things and I had similar feelings. I've also given them my contact info like 3 times and still haven't been contacted, ever, so that annoys me. I think I also just feel out of place in SO many of these "moms" type things. I'm pretty shy, I look younger than I am, generally, and am somehow younger than most of them all the time anyway. The being--or feeling, or being perceived as--younger thing has really been an issue for me with all of this. But I'm 5'2" and sound like Lisa Simpson (it's true, I can't help it and I'll bet Jannah and Arike will co-sign on that fact if they think about it ), it's probably not gonna change that much. I probably should also make more of an effort, though, but it is hard with so much else going on in life to then have to try to put energy into cultivating new friendships that will go beyond "wow, I have a one year old and boy am I sleepy too!"
post #713 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloomingstar View Post
wow, I haven't been around for awhile! I, too, fantasize about getting away from the sirens and singing fools and having a nice house with a yard, etc. My husband keeps making up timelines in which we will move to the Caribbean, so who knows when and where we'll actually go.

(And Jannah and Arike, have you all been following the rapist/slasher stuff going on in the neighborhood? all bad).

I've gone to a few Mocha Moms things and I had similar feelings. I've also given them my contact info like 3 times and still haven't been contacted, ever, so that annoys me. I think I also just feel out of place in SO many of these "moms" type things. I'm pretty shy, I look younger than I am, generally, and am somehow younger than most of them all the time anyway. The being--or feeling, or being perceived as--younger thing has really been an issue for me with all of this. But I'm 5'2" and sound like Lisa Simpson (it's true, I can't help it and I'll bet Jannah and Arike will co-sign on that fact if they think about it ), it's probably not gonna change that much. I probably should also make more of an effort, though, but it is hard with so much else going on in life to then have to try to put energy into cultivating new friendships that will go beyond "wow, I have a one year old and boy am I sleepy too!"
Hi Bloomingstar, I think you look "youthful" but I wouldn't think you were a teen mom or something if I saw you. You look like you are in the same peer group as me and my friends, mid-to-late twenty somethings, some early 30 somethings. I don't know, maybe people think I am young too? I know that in certain mom situations, I "feel" younger and find it hard to connect with the other women. Most of my friends don't have children and I feel like although I am a mom, my style hasn't changed and I still like socializing and I still want to be FAB! A lot of people tell me I don't have that "mom look". I am still trying to figure out what that is...

My DH and I are always fantasizing about moving to the Caribbean. We have many friends there and my husband has some relatives living in Haiti as well as some family connections to Guadeloupe. If we could get decent jobs on one of the islands, we would be there in a heartbeat! But I think with the career I am pursuing by going back to school and the credentials I would receive, I would be limited to US territories, so basically Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. I guess maybe I should start learning Spanish! I just want to get away from the concrete jungle and all the craziness. I did hear about the recent sexual assaults and the slashings going on in our neighborhood. It has definitely put me on edge, especially when I am walking from the subway station in the dark.
post #714 of 845
Thread Starter 
To all living in the area where this rapist is, I'm praying for your safety guys! And hope he gets apprehended soon. Recently, they caught a rapist in my sister's neighborhood and I was so relieved.
post #715 of 845
Thread Starter 
Bloomingstar, most folks think I'm older than I am but when they find out my age, I do get treated differently. It's not nice. Also, I'm usually the youngest mom in all these mom groups.

I do agree . . . I think I've pretty much given up on the mom group thing. I don't really want to go through a whole lot lengths and often times, you're absolutely right, the only thing we have in common is that we have kids!

Now that the kids are older, I go out more on my own to yoga classes, to chant, etc . . . and have made some good contacts like that with folks who are either child free or done raising kids. I also met an amazing mama and her son (who's slightly older) through homeschooling. So yeah, connecting with folks about something other than motherhood has really helped to plug the socialization hole for me.
post #716 of 845
Thread Starter 
I've been a little hesitant to share with anyone . . . I don't know if I'm being silly or what but I'm down to a size 6 from a size 14. I started Weight Watchers towards the end of December. It feels awesome! And was a whole lot easier than I imagined. Now I'm focusing on getting in serious shape (like maybe competing??) which is something more productive (for me) to focus on (as opposed to wanting more kids!).
post #717 of 845
Congrats, Rootzdawta! That's quite an accomplishment.

I'm on a pretty intense "Live the life you want to live" kind of kick right now. It must be treasure mapping time.
post #718 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
I've been a little hesitant to share with anyone . . . I don't know if I'm being silly or what but I'm down to a size 6 from a size 14. I started Weight Watchers towards the end of December. It feels awesome! And was a whole lot easier than I imagined. Now I'm focusing on getting in serious shape (like maybe competing??) which is something more productive (for me) to focus on (as opposed to wanting more kids!).
That is fantastic and so inspiring. I have changed my lifestyle too and lost two dress sizes. While the scale hasn't reflected my loss, I'll take the loss of inches as a measure of success. I exercise almost daily and eat low carb/low fat. I have some ongoing health issues that make it very challenging to lose weight.

Good luck with the next step!! Keep us posted. I am always looking for inspiration.
post #719 of 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by rootzdawta View Post
I've been a little hesitant to share with anyone . . . I don't know if I'm being silly or what but I'm down to a size 6 from a size 14. I started Weight Watchers towards the end of December. It feels awesome! And was a whole lot easier than I imagined. Now I'm focusing on getting in serious shape (like maybe competing??) which is something more productive (for me) to focus on (as opposed to wanting more kids!).

WOW! Congratulations Rootz! That is AWESOME! I know you have worked so hard on your weight loss. I am very happy for you! I think we are in the same boat, although I still want to lose more weight, I really am focusing on getting into serious shape, like six pack abs type shape! Which means bringing my body fat percentage down. I want actual definition and I am also thinking about getting certified in personal training. I can't wait to hear about your new goals in competing! Are you thinking like a Figure Competition? I have always wanted to do that... I am currently using the Bodybugg system (what they use on the Biggest Loser to measure how many calories the contestants burn while counting calories to create the deficit for weight loss) to lose the remainder of my weight/fat while I train for the Brooklyn Half Marathon in May. I needed a program that would help me lose weight while simultaneously improving my athletic performance so I am happy I found the Bodybugg.
post #720 of 845

ugh

I have been dealing with some challenges over the past couple of weeks. My dad went in for a simple cataract surgery. The procedure went well except the very next day he was in intense pain. He saw the doctor immediately who discovered a "horrid infection" in his eye. For two weeks he has gotten injections, drops of very expensive medication all to no avail. Today he sees the specialist who said he needed to have emergency surgery. Fortunately, I had accompanied him to the appointment and was able to ask questions. Her prognosis for him is 'guarded' and she indicated that he has months before they will know if his vision will return at all. We go quickly to the surgicenter where the eye surgeon does a quick examination. During this examination,my dad was unable to see any light at all. The surgeon turns to me and says, "this is not a good sign" and left the room. I read that as an indicator that it is worse than initially thought and that the chance for getting his vision back was hopeless. Of course, that remains to be determined and I'm trying to be hopeful. I'm scared and very concerned for my folks. They are quite active and my dad will have a difficult time accepting the loss of his vision if that comes to be. I told my mom she needs to be prepared for the worst case scenario and though she didn't want to hear that, I'm being realistic.

So while this is extremely difficult, I am more disappointed in my 'friends'. Earlier today I text my childhood friend, whom I've known forever. In fact, her dad was at the hospital with us. Her reply was... 'BUMMER'. WTH? That's all the consolation she has to offer. She lost a relative a few weeks ago. I was emailing, calling and texting her daily to see how they were holding up and all she could say was 'bummer'???

I told another friend when it happened two weeks ago and I've not heard one word from her. She went through a financial crisis, for which I not only offered assistance, but I stayed in daily contact with her to support her through a tough time. No emails, txts or calls from her at all.

I'm angry about my dad's situation but damn, I am pissed at my 'friends'. Michael tells me I'm being too sensitive and that I shouldn't expect people to act the same way I do. Maybe he's right but if you can't count on your friends during a time like this, when can you?

I am so hurt, scared and overwhelmed. It's hard to know what to do because truthfully, there's nothing to be done.
Thanks for listening.
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