last

today was abigail’s last day of kinder. it seems a bit hard to believe she could be ready to go to school already but if you ask her about it she will tell you with great excitement just how ready she is.

she keeps telling kristian that she won’t see him anymore when she goes to school. she means that she won’t see him when they would have both been at kinder and on they days they wouldn’t be at kinder but stephanie is at school, but the way she says it makes it sound like he will not see her for days or weeks at a time once school starts. poor kristian.

P1020263

i worry a bit about how she will handle school, and the presence of so many other kids. she has so many little … quirks, ‘ocd’s, preferences.. sometimes I just can’t imagine her being able to adapt. at kinder, to a certain degree, her uniquenesses could be worked around, tolerated, but it doesn’t always work that way at school and I see the potential for her to become very upset by something that matters only to her and other people see as so trifling that they have no time to accommodate her eccentricities.

i wonder how much of this concern is warranted because I know my daughter and see many of the same reactions to certain types of situations that i have… or do I dread her going to school because I am mistaken about how much like me/us she really is and I am preparing for her to react the way i would when in actual chance she might be totally fine. I really hope that is true!

tired now, Coherent in theornong!!!

what i tried to write there was that i was tired and hopefully i would be coherent enough to finish the entry in the morning :) it took me several tries to just get the last line that good, before that i couldn’t even tell what i had been trying to write.

abigail

last

an excellent thing

A few weeks ago when we were in the pool, Abigail did something that was a new achievement in her water/swimming learning process and we told her that it was excellent. Excited by her own greatness that day, when we announced that it was time to get out, she demurred, saying she just wanted to “do one more excellent thing.” Since then, “excellent thing” is kind of the ‘official’ terminology for any new milestone.

Kristian was doing excellent things today. We have two pools that we go in often – my mum’s, and the one here in the complex we live in. My mum’s is small and not too deep – Abigail can stand up by herself in it but for Kristian it’s still a bit of a stretch. In the one here there is a shallow end and a deep end, and there are several steps and a ledge that you can sit on. I’ve noticed he seems to be much more at ease and confident in our pool, particular with the steps that he can stand on himself and hold onto the edge of the pool for security.

One of the things Abigail learned when she had swimming lessons was how to jump out to us from a step or the edge, as a prelude to us getting further and further away and her actually having to swim rather than just jumping and being caught. Kristian’s seen us doing that with her and has decided he should have a turn a few times, but with him it’s more of a lunge than a jump and he’s pretty much touching you the whole time. Today, though, he was fearless! He was actually jumping to me from the step and one time, he was in such a hurry to do it “agin! again! shjump agin!” that i wasn’t fully ready for him and he went fully under the water before I caught him. Standard operating procedure in unexpected events such as this is to immediately launch into gushy, over the top praise about how clever that was and how great they did and all that. Usually you can distract them from getting upset and then they forget that they didn’t quite like it since they didn’t expect it and they want to do it again because you thought it was so cool. So I did that. It worked. So then I purposely started letting him go into the water and getting his face and head wet before I lifted him up. He was fine – so long as he could hold a ball that we brought to the pool with us while he jumped. He wasn’t into it if I suggested it might be easier if he put the ball down. Ok, weird, whatever.

A bit after that is when I noticed: each time he came up out of the water, he carefully held the ball in both his hands and wiped his face with it. It’s a plastic ball, so it’s pretty much useless as a tool with which to wipe the water off one’s face, but that’s what he was doing. I laughed out loud and caused Daniel to ask what was so funny, so I explained and Kristian was kind enough to demonstrate again, which kept cracking me right up. What a dork.

As if that wasn’t enough excellent stuff for one day, though, he then moved on to “sitting jumps” to me from the edge of the pool, again going right under the water. I was amazed! Half the time you take him in the pool he just about tries to climb up your body, as if the water is too cold for his delicate little boy bits. (He’ll tolerate just his feet dangling in.)

Stephanie will be doing an excellent thing tomorrow: it is the first day of school for the year and she will be starting grade three. I have consented to accompany her to the classroom, since she asked, even though I don’t really want to because a classroom filled with kids and their parents who don’t know where they should be sitting or putting their stuff and they are all making chit chat about what they have been up to is really not at my list of ideal places to be at 8.30 in the morning. And also, since next year I won’t be able to accompany her to the classroom to do all that stuff – I’ll be busy accompanying Abigail to her first day of Prep.

(A couple of weeks ago we were in a fabric shop and a woman who worked there was straightening all the shelves of fabric, and talking to Stephanie and Abigail while she did. She was asking Stephanie about school and Abigail decided to interject that soon she would be going to school with Stephanie too. The woman chuckled and shook her head and said that she didn’t think Abigail was big enough for school yet. Stephanie explained that “soon” is “a year away” and she’s in kinder at the moment. My mum and I were talking about this later. She said the lady was right, Abigail isn’t “big” enough for school, but she is nearly “old” enough. (And then I again started worrying about how I will ever manage to get a school uniform to fit her.) … (Any one know where to get growth enhancing drugs..?))

I thought I might also mention that it has been abysmally humid the last few days, making the temperature seem much hotter than it actually is. And I am so over it.

an excellent thing

helping bring books to kids

A short while ago, there was a note in Stephanie’s school newsletter about the Scholastic Bookclub. The woman who had been organising and co-ordinating it for the school had decided she didn’t want to do it anymore since her daughter is in grade 6 and will soon be moving on from that school. So they needed someone new.

In a moment of community minded generosity, not to mention extreme bravery, I rang up and enquired about it. Turns out that I was the only fool to do so. I mean that only jokingly, of course.. the fool part. Not the part about me being the only one, because I was.

My motivations here are not entirely non-selfish. Stephanie always wants me to come to excursions or sports days or easter parades (and those are truly the worst). I cannot sit through more years of Little Peter fucking Rabbit bla bla bla sang terribly out of tune and out of time. And having an internal brain paradox as part of me wants to yell at them and remind them it’s not “easter”, it’s completely the wrong time of year, and besides that, it’s another stolen pagan festival. But I simultaneously feel glad that I don’t have the balls for such a stunt, because Stephanie would surely die of embarrassment and hate me forever.

Anyway. I figure that by performing this worthy service to the school, I more than make up for all of those type of events that usually involve other parents and watching children do stuff that I just don’t care about. And also, there’s the books thing. I think that reading is important and I remember having the Bookclub forms from when I was in school and how much everyone loved getting them and getting books. So to be able to fill my quota of school-related duty by helping with something that’s valuable to children is a bonus too. That I can do most of the work at home and that it involves minimal contact with other people: fan-fricking-tastic.

Another random perk I have discovered? They send you thousands (ok, not thousands. but lots) of return envelopes that you don’t need. These can be re-purposed by certain little persons who are right into mail and envelopes.

helping bring books to kids

wrong point

I read this article in the newspaper: Classmates see footage of girl’s sex act which explained how a video circulated around to most of the students at a school, via their mobile phones, of a girl “performing a sex act on a classmate”.

There was a bit at the bottom of the article which really annoyed me though:

Parents said yesterday the incident underlined the dangers of mobile phones in schools.

Sorry? It has NOTHING to do with the “dangers” of mobile phones in schools. Mobile phones are designed for communicating and sharing images, videos and sounds. Kids are designed to gawk and take interest in the personal goings on of other people that are not necessarily any of their business. The video could just have easily been made with a webcam or digital camera and emailed around between all the students, or even posted on the web. And then what would the danger have been? That kids can be exploited online?

It seems that the incident, to me, highlights the dangers of not teaching your kids to respect other people. So that maybe they would think twice about forwarding around such a video which clearly should be a private matter between the girl and boy involved. Or maybe the danger of not educating your kids about what people are really like. For Christ’s sake: if a teenage boy wants to make a video of you giving him a blow job, OF COURSE he’s not going to be able to keep it to himself. So maybe try teaching your daughter DON’T LET ANYONE MAKE VIDEOS OF YOU DOING SEXUAL THINGS. It’s not rocket science, people.

wrong point