Friday, July 30, 2010

Adelaide seminar trip: humble and inspired!

So, I'm at the end of my second day on campus. I've had interviews with both my superviors, attended a seminar, a literati group, a poetry workshop... In short, it's been like drinking from an oasis!

Hearing others talk about their projects has me itching to get stuck imto my story! Speaking of which the feedback has been AMAZING and suprising to me. Several people commented enthusiasticly about how well they connected with my Lily, and how real she is on the page.

My main supervisor was really enthusisstic about my change to first person present and said it suited the story well and has provided so much more depth to the narrative.

Honestly, I've felt completely humbled by all the praise, i wasn't expecting it because i didn't feel i'd put enough effort into the writing to merit this kind of response at all.

I've also been gifted with some great insights of things to work on and emphasise, and ideas that will flesh out different aspects of the plot!

I just wish I could get to Adelaide every fortnight for seminars and groups!

Here's a bit of a scary revelation though... I have to have my thesis novel and exegrsis ready for final review by my supervisors by mid-October, so I'mready to hand it over to the examiners by the end of October! I've got 11 weeks to finish in!

*cue Jaws music*

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Family Code of Conduct Contract

I've been wondering if writing up one these isn't such a bad idea.

I saw this idea on a show - laugh, if you will - "The World's Strictest Parents".

I would like to think Dave and I as the parents in this household, the leaders (in the sense of showing the way, not dictating to the kids) of the house, could just model respectful, considerate and co-operative behaviours and our children would follow suit from that modelling.

The truth of our family life just doesn't reflect this, and so I've found myself wondering of late if a family contract - that we all sign, that is equal for everyone in the household from oldest to youngest - might be a good idea.

The contract would cover such things as:
  • Communications - how we speak to each other and communicate our thoughts and feelings. What language we use. How we listen to each other. How we address difficult situations in particular where high tension might arise from opposing understandings.
  • Our environment - how we care for and treat our environment on a daily basis, how we share the care for our environment.
  • Our possessions - how we care for our possessions, how we share them, borrow them, disseminate them (if we no longer want them or wish to trade them for something else).
  • Time management - how we get things done and have fun together as well. How each of the children get some one on one time with each parent in an agreed on period of time. This would also include such things as agreeing on eating together at meals, or organising specific times during the week when we can reconnect as a family.
These would be the broad areas and then within each area there would would be sub-area. Each family member would receive their own contract to sign and there would have to be some discussion about what goes into the contract so that we all have a say and can agree to abide by it. There would also have to be consequences for breaking the contract (for each family member) that everyone agrees on.

My thinking here is that if we can all agree on a code of conduct, a mission state, a family philosophy, then we have a solid ground from which to work and something to refer back to when things get tough. We've been winging it with regard to family life for many, many years and I've got to say, it's good when it's good, but it's not cutting it when things are tough and I don't like how we all treat one another - there seems to be a lack of cohesion that I find worrying...

Anyway, will discuss this with everyone at dinner some time this weekend and see if we can draft something soon...

Friday, July 23, 2010

The moment I knew I wanted a bunch of children...

Watching The Muppet Show was somewhat of a religion in our house when I was a child, and one day the following act came on and from that moment I KNEW I wanted a whole brood of children... Yes, obviously, I'm somewhat massochistic...


This has been a true story from my childhood.

The fourth child...

This blog post is a blatant steal from the fabulous Kate at Picklebums post from today...

In this family, you know you're a fourth when...

  • You're big brother hands you a lolly/piece of chocolate/thickshake/Coke! and neither mum or dad even blink an eye...
  • You fall off a chair and bump your head and no one comes running (sad but true) unless you scream blue murder.
  • You've heard "1, 2, 3, 4... Ok, everyone's here" so often that other people think you're a precocious counter when you mimick it...
  • Mum and Dad don't creep into bed silently or complain about you taking up all the bed like they did with your brothers, but spend far too much time in the wee hours lamenting at how soon it'll be before you want your own bed - and you have to slap them to remind them YOU'RE TRYING TO SLEEP HERE!
  • Mum doesn't carry you in a sling or backpack because her shoulder has gone bung from carrying your second and third brothers into their third years of life.
  • You don't answer to one name, but four - usually called out as a medley...
  • You cheerfully wave mum off at the door and wouldn't know seperation anxiety if it dropped on you from on high because you're never without an adoring entourage of entertainment.
  • You already know how to play hide and seek (properly) when you're 10 months old...
  • You have the patience of a saint and the scream of a banshee and know just when each talent is applicable.
  • You were 'in arms' and your feet didn't touch the ground for the first 13 months of your life but your mum claims she held you the least of all her babies.
  • When your feet finally DID touch the ground, you RAN to keep up with your big brothers - you were between 1 and 3 months older than any of them when they took their first step.
  • No one can ever remember how old you are, everyone swears you were just born yesterday and shouldn't be able to walk yet (and you're turning two in 3 months)!
  • Silence wakes you up.
  • Your best clothes are judged on whether they're a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th pass me down and how 'practically new' they still look!
  • When you do something AMAZING it's not because it's the first time you've done it, but because three other people didn't actually do it before you!
  • Most of your photos are taken on mum's iPhone because she's too busy to drag the DSLR around with her everywhere...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The great things about homeschooling...

My kids go to school because they choose to go to school. There are definitely benefits to their father and I that they make this choice - all those hours in there day where they are occupied without any input from us, and the time we can spent with the younger two (soon to just be the youngest), and yes, we even get time to ourselves to just... Think...

So, I'm not going to sit here and pretend that I hate that they go to school. I don't hate it, in some ways I love it. They seem to love it, which is great.

But...

There are things about school that I do hate, that often make me wish my boys didn't want to go to school.

Today is a perfect example. They come home and Erik hands me the notice we knew was coming... He'd told us a couple of days ago that one of the boys in class had asked the teacher if they could do Masterchef in class AGAIN. They did this in the last term of last year and again in the first term of this year. Each student was allocated either an "always" food or a "sometimes" food option and told to bring something to school that they'd made at home with their parents. This was across all the 3/4 classes and woven into the curriculum through various means (talking about health, doing maths, writing etc.)...

Both boys got "sometimes" food both rounds. So, we made cakes and muffins etc. x4. Baking isn't particularly expensive, even for 50 odd people... There was a bit of "competition" that filtered through to us though, in terms of comments about who liked what foods, and who had brought what fantastic creation to school. There was a bit of pressure to perform, although I'm sure if we'd complained about that, the teachers would have argued that this was not at all the point of the exercise. I don't mind cooking, and was grateful we didn't get "always" foods either time, because savoury dishes are always more expensive to make (especially as they have to be vegetarian for the 2 vegos in the class) and harder (I've mentioned before my absolutely LOATHING of cooking, haven't I?)...

Anyway, as we had already dispensed with Masterchef 2010 back in March, I was under the false impression I could breathe freely knowing it probably wouldn't rear it's ugly head for another year.

WRONG!

So, today's notice read that we would only be asked to make "always" meals this time, and there would need to be enough to share between 25 (which seemed to imply people hadn't provided enough in the past), and the meal needed to be vegetarian, of course, so everyone could partake of it... There was an added point about providing a $1 for the purchase of plates and cutlery.

We're not giving consent for Erik's participation in this.

  • Cooking for 25 people is expensive.
  • Cooking a vego meal, when I hate cooking anyway, is more challenge than I'm willing to take on.
  • Having to constantly watch the calendar for when it's our "turn" so we don't have to pull something out of thin air the night before is stressful.
  • Cooking something that other people will like and eat (when I'm no cook) is stressful.
Of course, saying no to this project is also stressful...

And this is what gets me about schooling versus homeschooling. We cook with our kids anyway. It's not like because we aren't consenting to participating in this activity that Erik will miss out on cooking with us. He won't. He's been cooking with us for years.

Schooling in Australia is supposed to be free. It simply isn't. It's not even equitable. If we don't consent to him doing this activity, he'll miss out. Each day while the other students eat what their peers bring in, he won't be able to participate because we didn't consent to cook for 25 people. Just like he couldn't participate in the farm excursion last term (because we didn't have $50 for our two children to go, and wouldn't even have it to pay off over a few weeks), which led to other class activities he couldn't participate in. They won't go to the school camp either, unless we get some sort of regular income in this house before the end of August.

Our kids are missing out on so much, it really makes me wonder why people think homeschoolers miss out. In formal schooling in Australia, it's definitely a USER PAYS system. So much of the so-called curriculum requires parents to shell out extra money (even though the legislation says that we don't pay for curriculum).

The great thing about homeschooling is every day life is all about learning! Every activity is a learning opportunity and you don't have to pay extra to do it again "at school". You're family's participation isn't compared and rated against other families. You cook, because you need to eat, not because you need to impress someone else's child with your cooking prowess...


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I want an iPad because I'm lazy...

I've sat here in the warmth of my loungeroom, in front of the tv, in the company of my husband and written - written another chapter of my manuscript - on my iPhone... It's a bit of a slow process only because I have had to type out letter for letter using only the indew finger on my right hand. For a touch typist, this is S L O W going... But I'm lazy and I like to be warm and to have company while I write...

It was really frustrating though when I high-lighted everything I'd type to get a word count and then accidentally deleted it all!

And this is why I want an iPad. On an iPad I'd have all the same creature comforts but I could touch type and resurrect my work so much faster...

Oh, for an iPad...

Silly me...

I don't know why I always dread sitting down to write my manuscript.

I just sat down for the first time in 11 months to start work on the second draft. It was fun! It took about an hour to write the first chapter of 1000 words. I didn't sweat blood or fall apart as anyone might have thought I might from the effort I've put into procrastinating against doing this.

Why do I fight this so much - this process that feels so natural to me when I give over to it?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Nourishing the soul...

The word "soul" tends to conjure up images of religious pursuits and this blog isn't about that, so my apologies to anyone who reads this and is disappointed.

After many months of doing little else but study, work and parenting, I've been feeling spiritually run down and unenthused. This week, however, there has been a huge turn around, and the things it took to make that change were so simple, really, I thought I'd share...

I've booked a trip to go visit my parents and attend a class with fellow Masters students - the thought of connecting with people, in real life, that I only usually get to interact with via the internet or phone is thrilling. There is so much to be said for exchanging physical contact with another person through a hug, or eye connection or the instantaneous connection of a smile. Even though the latter two could be achieved via a program such as Skype, I think the lack of immediate bodily energy exchange depletes the experience of it's ability to restore the soul. It is my philosophical believe that the soul and the body and inextricably linked. Each cell in our body also comprises of a soul-cell which we shed and transmit to others through proximity and physical connect - something the telephone and internet doesn't allow.

I've also organised to catch up with my brother next week, if possible, which is something we don't do enough of. I think it's good for him and for our family to constantly remind ourselves that our tribe extends beyond ourselves and we, therefore, not alone.

I've booked tickets to the Melbourne Writer's Fest. This is significant in two ways. First, I've been interested in going to the Fest for many years now. As a writer, I really NEED to go to the Fest to connect with other writer's, both novices like myself and professionals who have cracked the "getting published" code! I've never had the courage to overcome my neo-agoraphobia enough to just do it. Until this week, that is. I now have 6 tickets to attend 6 events, on my own. I'm nervous, but I'm also very, very excited!

The second way in which this is significant is that two of the events I'm going to are talks by Jostein Gaarder, the author of "Sofie's World", a book I read nearly 20 years ago. This book moulded the my philosophy of soul-body symbiosis! Needless to say, I was THRILLED that Gaarder would be attending this particular Fest, the first one I was ready to attend!

I'm planning on booking tickets to go to the Melbourne International Film Festival. Dave introduced me to MIFF 13 years ago, and I've gone almost every year since - except last year, if only to see one film. I love movies and hardly ever go. More than the movies, though, I actually just love going to the Festival and mingling with the crowds - yes, odd for an agoraphobic - because there is such a strong sense of "thinking". I can FEEL people turning new ideas over in their heads when they go off to see the works of fresh new directors, or indie directors, or foreign language directors, or documentarians. So much more than what you get with most "entertainment solely" focused films that make the rounds...

Letting loose with friends. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to dress up and let loose with friends for most of the day! Dave kindly stayed home with all the boys (for which he is my hero!) so I could just go out and have fun! Amongst other things I got to go to the Esplanade in St Kilda for the first time ever, and even though I'd left my run a couple of decades late and was amongst the oldest people there, it's was fun to recall the days when I go out all night long and dance to loud music in dark halls and drink bourbon and coke (ooooh, does that make me ever so slightly bogan???). I got to reconnect with a much younger (and far more clueless) self for 30 minutes or so (before retreating to a nice, relatively quiet, better lit cocktail bar).


I'm going to go see Simply Red. This came up last night, just as passing conversation, and now the plans are in the works to go see a band I used to love with a friend of a friend who I don't know that well, but who I've socialised with occassionally over the years! I'm pretty excited!

All these things feed my soul and cause me to feel good about life and my place in it.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Emotional Neoteny... We all have it.

I just read this term this morning on a friends facebook homepage (Hi!)...

It's a fascinating twist on the concept of neoteny; the sexual maturation of an organism which is still in the larval or infant stage physically.

Emotional neoteny would then refer to beings who appear fully developed physically but still in the infant state emotionally. Late bloomers, childlike, or perhaps childish - depending on whether you're amused or irritated by them.

As an emotional "late bloomer" with a child who is emotionally childLIKE, I think I can really relate to this term (perhaps that's not a great thing to admit???).

Oddly enough, though, while I think many adults retain a lot of the pediatric emotions, especially people who have experienced trauma of some kind early in life (which impedes emotional development in that area, often leading to low self-esteem in that particular area), I had been of the belief that some people Id encountered throughout my life journey were beyond childish (in particular) responses.

I always admired people who were seemingly level headed, worked through their responses before reacting, weren't aggressive, or passive aggressive and had all-round good self-esteem.

The problem I had was, as I got to know these people I admired so much for being everything I thought I needed to be - the more I got to know them, that is - one by one they all disappointed; sooner or later, each of them over-reacted to situations I thought were "no big deal, really" either involving other people, or myself, and I felt disappointed.

Recently, as I saw this happen with a couple people I'd idolised for their emotional stability I suddenly realised I'd been extremely unfair to these people.

Many, many years ago, my mother said to me that I was highly idealistic and that was unfair to other people. With regard to her own self, she said my expectations of her as a mother were so high that she could nothing but disappoint me. She said I'd put her on a pedestal and the problem with pedestals was when people fall off them, they have such a long way to fall that it upsets everyone involved.

EVERYONE suffers from emotional neoteny to some degree or other. Some of us have a board full of buttons that need only nudging before we're over-reacting and tantruming on the floor like a two year old. Others only have a few buttons which hardly ever get pushed because they're very careful to avoid situations where those button are open and vulnerable, but when those buttons get pushed those people become as infantile in their response as anyone else.

I started out with many, many triggers for my emotional neoteny. Very slowly, I'm figuring out what they are and how to either work through my response (learn to not personalise everything said to me in a particular area) or to avoid situations which push my buttons.

The internet has provided some doozy situations where I've just not been able to meter my response to having my buttons pushed. I've pretty much stopped participating in forums except very occassionally, and then only in forums where I really don't personally know the people I'm interacting with; so I can be fairly sure they're not having a go at me personally (yes, I have a lot of work to do yet). I've recently, and for the second time, disengaged with all my personal friends on Twitter (so, if you're a personal friend and are still following me but I don't seem to be responding to anything you say, it's because I can't read it) because I find it too difficult to deal with loaded emotional situations via the 010101 system. I've deleted every blog I had besides this one.

Growing up is hard to do. I'm not sure the net helps people grow up as it seems to be a place where emotional neoteny is encouraged. Reading someone ranting is much more exciting than reading someone's rationalized and metered response. Emotions are often narrowed down to "like" and a variety of emoticons (which, let's face it, just can't possibly represent the full range of emotions people feel). The net is really very emotionally reductionist, and that's the issue toddlers face; they have a very reduced ability to fully express what they are feeling, which mostly just leads to frustration and tantrums.

And this is the world our children are encouraged to engage in. A world where everything is either LOL, PMSL, ROFL, :), :D, *like* or :(, :S, EPIC FAIL.

I think emotional neoteny might rapidly become epidemic and there will be far more people with full boards of buttons (like myself) to deal with and far fewer people with just a few carefully moderated buttons...

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Why I'm ambivalent about pursuing a career in children's services...

I love working with children and i believe in our ever detached society where far too many children spend far too many hours in child care from far too young an age, there is a dire need for carers who are consciously emotionally responsive, respectful and reliable.

Sadly, it seems I'm a bit shallow. Here's what happened today that highlighted for me why I'm ambivalent about pursuing a career in children's services...

I was at the hair dressers and as they're wont to do, he asked me if i was having a day off from work. I told him I'd just finished a course, but was still working on another course and was hoping to start work really soon. He asked what sort of work it was, i said it was in childten's services and as many have done in recent times he said, "Oh." in that kind of way that suggests they think you're pretty much a babysitter... I quickly added that children's services is what I do to pay the bills. He then asked what my other course was and I told him a Master of Arts in Crrative Writing and thst I was writing a novel, to which he responded brighly, "Oh! You're a writer!"...

There it is. Being a writer just sounds more impressive than caring for tomorrows doctors, prime ministers, and celebrities...

I admit, I felt kind of dirty because I all but agreed with this guy that writing was far more appealing than children's servives. I'd said - wait for it - it's a good thing I like kids! Just call me Judas!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

OMG! I've become one of THOSE women!

The other week I was sitting in the last day of class in my Cert III in Children's Services and the teacher had organised for a rep from an agency to come and speak with us about signing up. The rep was very encouraging, but made a point of stating that there were minimum standards for being eligible to work for the agency and we would be required to undergo a double pronged interview process whereby we'd be pre-interviewed over the phone and having successfully passed that interview we'd be invited to attend their offices in South Yarra and undergo a more formal interview and subsequent induction, assuming we met their requirements.

I immediately thought, oh no! I need much more professional clothing for all of this! LOL - priorities!

Then she said they required all their staff to have a minimum of Certificate III in Children's Services and with that First Aid, Anaphylaxis and AT LEAST 80 hours experience in childcare settings. Luckily, we'd all ticked all those boxes.

Then she told us we'd need a Resumé tracking back 5 years of employment...

Uh-oh!

I tentatively put my hand up, "Ok, so do you get a lot of applicants who have been stay at home mums for many years?"

"Yes, we do, but just being a mum doesn't qualify you to work with us, you have to show you've worked with children other than your own, either through paid employment or voluntary work"...

Ok, I can tick that box, too, but notice how she assumed I meant women who HADN'T trained to be children's services workers, when actually I meant women who had been OUT OF THE WORKFORCE for many years...

That's when I realised, I'm one of THOSE women! By "those" I mean, the stigmatised, "Oh, she's only been a mum for many years now, she's deskilled, not valuable to us anymore..." I'd become the kind of woman that I - in my own mind, shame on me - actually thought of as a bit *old*, a bit *wet*, a bit *faded*!

How on earth did that happen? I ask, especially, because, well I'm turning 39 this year - which also seems old to me - and I just don't feel OLD, or WET, or FADED! I feel more on top of my game now than I did when I was (apparently) a vibrate 20 something!~

Hasn't society caught up? Haven't we progressed past the idea of women losing their shine the moment they give up work to care for children. More to the point, how could *I* think like that and then not realise that was *ME* I was lumpinig in with all the middle-aged housewives... LOL, jokes on me, I guess!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Wow!

This morning it has really dawned on me that i've finished the first half of 2010, and now it's time to get a move on with the second half of tjis year.

In the next six months my energy will be devoted to finishing my Masters and working. It'll be as full on, if not moreso, than the first half of the year, the only difference being that i will have much more say in how each day or week pans out... I'm quite looking fotward to it really, even though the typing process can be really tedious and working will be nerve-wracking at first!

I'm going to Adelaide in about 2.5 weeks time (only for two nights) to audit a seminar - and possibly present my own manuscript - with other Thesis writers. Honestly, deep down, i'm beside myself with excitement at the prospect of hearing about othets writing (and maybe even getting feedback on my own)!

So anyway, today feels like the start if an exciting and challenging journey!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Anger is Fear...

Today a friend told me I've seemed angrier of late. I laughed it off and said that, in actual fact, I've always been this angry, and if anything I've been trying to be less angry in recent times because I don't to be an angry person, or to be thought of as an angry person.

On reflection, yes, I have probably been an angry person for a while now. Anger is an emotion that is a direct response to fear. The correlation between fear and anger is very close. The angrier a person seems to be, the more fear they feel, the more threatened they perceive themselves to be.

Fear affects people differently, in some people it cause a flight response. Some people become unbelievably keen to please when afraid, they'll do anything to deny the threat they are feeling, to suppress the fear with a smile and a pleasant tone and a willingness to do just about anything for anyone, especially anyone who has the power to alleviate their fear. Society likes people who flee when afraid.

In other people, like myself, fear causes a fight response. Society sometimes likes the fight response, fleers like it if the fighting angry person is fighting on BEHALF of them as well. However, the fight response can actually CAUSE a lot of fear in others, which sometimes makes them flee, and sometimes makes them fight back.

A person who responds to fear with a fight response, will become more and more defensive and aggressive as their fear mounts.

So, yes. I'm a fighter. I get angry when I'm afraid. It's not attractive, it doesn't oil any social wheels.

Another problem with us fighters. People think we're strong, hard, able to cope. People think we don't need anyone, ever. We might be tell people we don't need anyone (that is a defense which is solely to help us cope with the intense fear we feel). People might think we're impermeable and therefore don't need understanding or gentleness.

When fleers are afraid, they response to fear often causes people to want to protect them. When fighters are afraid, their response to fear at first causes people to believe they'll be fine without help and later that they don't deserve help.

Yes. I guess I've been angrier than usual of late, I'm been far more afraid and feeling far more vulnerable in the past year and a half than at any other time of my life. There has been no safe harbour in this storm for me to shelter in and I've felt very much alone and afraid with the burden of keeping my little family of six emotionally and materially afloat. So, when you think I'm angry, imagine how afraid I am.

Talk Back Radio...

We used to listen to the radio a fair bit, you know, BC (before children). After they started arriving though, the radio listening habit withered considering - partly thanks to little inquisitive minds and fingers destroying our stereo and various portables until a few years ago we stopped listening altogether.

Then, just recently, we bought Erik and Luey their own radios for their respective birthdays, and around the same time, Dave brought out his one remaining, somewhat mangled, tape deck radio player and set it up on top of the fridge in the kitchen...

In the past few weeks we've listen to a great many fascinating shows and discussions from a lecture on economic sustainability around the world, to traveling writers who had a surprise bundle of joy come join them on the grey trail around Australia... It's been really nice reconnecting with this old, but not yet outdated, form of information dissemination and entertainment.

When we gave the boys their radios, we thought they'd listen to the music stations and it never really occurred to us they'd listen to the talk back...

Then this morning I was having a second breakfast with them boys when they told me they'd both (in their separate beds, with their separate radios) been listening to a discussion about pocket money... U-huh, let me clue you guys in here, just a moment, my boys don't GET pocket money except on very rare occasions...

Apparently, not only does it appear that other children their age get REGULAR pocket money, but they apparently get between $30 and $60 a WEEK! *cue bright expectant eyes*

Hmmmm, yeah, so talk back radio doesn't only appeal to old fogey's like us...

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Happy 11th Birthday, my boy...

What can I say? He's 11. I so often hear people say they just don't know how their children got to be so old so quickly, where has the time gone? I don't feel this way at all! I think that is because I'm such a different person to the person I was 11 years ago when he was born! Mostly, thanks to HIM!

Soon, I'll be getting a tattoo that is about him. Oddly enough - some might say - it'll be a butterfly. Butterflies aren't particularly masculine, and I think maybe he'd prefer my tattoo honouring his presence in my life were something like a tiger or a an eagle, but tigers and eagles aren't symbols of transformation and Erik's arrival earthside transformed my life - and me in the process.
He used to need me. This child needed me more overtly than any of my other children have needed me. I once saw a kinesiologist who told me - with great concern written all over her face - that he needed me too much, that he and I were too closely intertwined. At the time, I laughed her off, obviously she didn't understand attachment too well. Her words should have been a warning to me, because within weeks of visiting her a massive disruption occur in mine and Erik's relationship that has rippled through to the present.

I think he needs me less these days. At the same time, I worry more about this child of mine than any of my other children, and I worry about my impact on him. This self-consciousness is one of the ways in which Erik has transformed me over the years.

He is on the cusp. He is still so much a child. So innocent and wide-eyed and optimistic. A doctor once told me Erik is the kind of child "we all want", he is innocent and trusting and vivacious. I love these things about him, even though they also make him vulnerable in a world that is cynical and often hard and unforgiving.

However, a good friend once read his natal chart and said he would conquer his many challenges and this would make him self-assured, charismatic and insightful - I am beginning to see the glimmer of those traits emerging in my, now, 11 year old.


Saturday, July 03, 2010

Things I know...

  • Agencies asking for professionals who are leaders in their field, will have no such applicants because THOSE people already have jobs!
  • When you feed your children delicious, nutritious food, they'll whine about what's for dinner, but when you tell them it'll only be 2 minute noodles and packet soup this week, they'll whoop and cheer they way you would over the previous week's menu...
  • Finishing a stressful course is anticlimatic.
  • If you tell your 4 year old he can only have a dog when and if his dad DIES, said 4 year old will LOUDLY make plans for AFTER DAD DIES while on public transport...
  • Inspiration never comes to those who wait...
  • If you buy 39kg of bananas in preparation to go on a banana feast in your first fortnight of being raw vegan, you'll be giving away loads of bananas and bake a lot of muffins and make milk based smoothies that first week.
  • Winter is cold, into the marrow of you bone cold, can't get warm except under the shower cold, difficult to motivated yourself off the couch in front of the fire, COLD!

Teenagers and the failing parent...