So, the spud got her report card. She got a "D" in Social Studies! A "D"! She’s always gotten pretty good grades, so this would have come as a surprise to us, except we’d noticed that, on the homework and tests her teacher sent home, she wasn’t doing very well. We decided, Fred and I, that the solution was to make her sit down with her history book when she gets home from school, and study for half an hour. Is that unreasonable? We didn’t think so.

We sat the spud down at the kitchen table and informed her of the new rule, whereupon she promptly burst into tears. "It’s not a punishment," we pointed out. "The grade just has to come up." Undaunted, she continued crying. Fred tried again. "We’re notmad at you or anything. We just think you need to learn how to study right." Still she cried. I had to turn my head and bite my lip, because she’s so damn cute when she cries, and I didn’t think she’d care to look up and see me grinning like a goon at her. Fred and I retreated to another room.

"Well, she took that well," I commented.

Fred and I dropped the spud off at soccer practice tonight, and drove around looking at more houses. The problem is, in Madison all the subdivisions offer houses on tiny plots of land. Personally, I’d like to buy 15 acres and plop a big-ass house down in the middle. We talked last night about finding a piece of land and spending the next few years paying it off, then eventually building a house. We both like his Dad and Jean’s house a lot. They designed their house themselves, and you just can’t beat the size, or the layout. But would it be weird to own a house with the exact layout of his Dad’s?