Sunday, November 28, 2010

I love my tall kid!

Stylish went to bed leaving the light on in the rumpus room, so I went in to remind her to switch it off and she was writing in her diary. She invited me to sit down and she read me some entries. I was so moved when she read me the entry from the night Angus was born, it was so funny, and so joyful that I was crying happily while she read. Although I did not give her the gift of a birth, I have given her the gift of being part of a birth. I know that, should she choose to have children, they will be born at home. I'm so proud of the young woman she is, she's smart, funny, helpful, thoughtful, and she can also be the complete polar opposite of all those things but ... she's a tall kid, we expect that.

Lately she's been taking more of an interest in her appearance and her taste in clothes is quite fluid. One week she likes flowery flowing things and the next week I have to fight her to get her into anything but skinny leg jeans. I refuse to buy the hideous skinny leg things, but if she takes her pocket money to vinnies and buys them herself I grit my teeth and cope. I find myself really liking some of her clothes and really detesting other items. The amusing thing is that if we go shopping together, everything I show her is AWFUL and results in multi syllabic use of my name ("mUuUuUm, omg you're SOOOO embarrassing!") but if I bring home the same item a week later she is often grateful, and happy to try it on with 50 possible accessories.

It's funny how we love our kids little and wish they would never grow up, but at the same time we burst with pride at all their new stages.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Hey, like stop dissing teenagers, like!

As the mother of a child entering the teenage years head first, I've decided to share some of my feelings about the way our society treats teenagers. We spend years forcing children to be independent, forcing them to sleep on their own, use the toilet, feed themselves dress themselves, sending them away from us for six hours a day and many other historically odd practices. Yet as soon as they hit twelve or thirteen and want to flex some of their independent muscles we start wishing they were babies again.

As a whole, society has unrealistic expectations of teenagers. People literally can't stand them. I have heard countless people complain about the behaviour they have witnessed teenagers exhibiting in public - or at home, but what people seem to forget is that teenagers are not adults, and expecting them to sit quietly, politely conversing. on the bus when there are members of the opposite sex present is insane! You may well be tired out from your day at work, and concerned with relaxing, but this is hardly the fault of the teenagers you encounter.

What people forget is that teenagers are just children, tall ones, pretending to be grown ups. No one batts an eye at a two year old pretending to talk on the phone or cook and serve food, so it baffles me that we don't grasp the need of adolescents to play. Play grown ups, with boy friends and girlfriends, play responsible people, able to confidently make their own decisions, play dress ups (in skinny leg jeans and makeup) and play at navigating their way successfully through life. When you see them engaging in loud, obnoxious behaviour, try to remember that they're probably on their way home to eat the food their parents have cooked, have their clothes washed (although they often don't see how dirty they are) and "chillax" on the sofa watching Channel V.

Another thing that strikes me as absurd is the way adults demand respect from a bunch of tall kids with raging hormones, that they offer no respect to in return. Respect is a two way street! I remember when I was a teenager I would sometimes encounter older people who were simply rude to me because of my age. Why on earth should a teenager behave respectfully whilst they are being judged and disrespected? Keep in mind that an adult struggles to maintain equilibrium under such circumstances, what skills is a teenager in possession of that enable them to respond calmly? I think rule number one of living in harmony with teenagers is RESPECT! Try to stifle your laughter at their undersized jeans and over sized sun glasses until they have left, eh?

If you have kids then you have probably realised that one day you will have teenagers. Try to look fondly, or at least with more compassion, upon teenagers when you encounter their strange play. Chances are that they aren't doing it solely to irritate you, chances are that they're trying to impress you with their astonishing maturity! Respect them, simply because they are people. and all people no matter their age, deserve respect.

Monday, November 22, 2010


MUM! I found your pasword mwah-haha, and I find out you put that embarrasing cable car photo up! AHH! DELETE IT or else! Currently drawing you a new frog, but that may stop! HUMPH.

DELETE IT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Frogs, for a change

Here is some art Stylish has done lately. She's doing a very large project at the moment, documenting lots of Australian frogs and drawing pics of them all. Can't wait to see the finished product!

She is so good at drawing frogs she just copies the picture, these are not tracings.

We love natural learning!

Spikee is really loving reading! Tonight we made him a dinosaur book. We printed out lots of pictures of dinosaurs and he coloured them in and cut them out, and I typed and printed "This is a " and then we glued it all onto paper and stuck the pages in a clear sheet folder. Now he reads it and points to all the words. He's very pleased with himself.

We spent the day building our hot house, and I can't wait to get a veggie garden up and running again. There's so many REAL, USEFUL lessons in growing food. We've also added some chooks to our family and there have been many opportunities for learning there! It seems that this is the perfect state for natural learning.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Unlearning in Antarctica

We've been in our new house for nearly three weeks now and there has been no shortage of unlearning. We've done renovating, acquired chooks, explored the town and surrounds and had a ball reconnecting as a family without time pressing down on us.

Stylish took to ripping up carpet and pulling out nails like she'd been doing it all her life. Then once we'd varnished and moved our stuff into the house she went faster than greased lightening to where she'd been hearing frog calls. She was well versed on the Arctic legalities pertaining to her favourite amphibians, and spent a good chunk of her pocket money buying a tank to house four Southern Smooth Froglets. She confidently informs me that the name is deceptive because they are actually bumpy and their scientific name is ..... I forget. Today we had a plumbing emergency which required the rose bush out the front be ripped up, it was then that we discovered two nests in it. One with tiny silver eye babies getting ready to fledge and the other with nearly ready to hatch blue / grey speckled eggs that are jumping about. We waited and waited but their mothers didn't come home so we seem to have acquired some new albeit temporary family members. Who knows if the eggs will hatch, I'm doubtful, but apparently they're black birds and they're a real pain so we are trying not to feel too bad.

Spikee has developed quite an interest in reading and is starting to recognise some words by sight and remember others when they're in an early reader book I found at the tip ship. He's also cemented counting to ten and is getting more confident reading the numbers. He's really taking to life in Antarctica and for some unexplained reason is starting to try a couple of new foods and on the whole eat better. Must be all the fresh air! The training wheels are off his bike now (one got lost) so that's another new thing, he's a little nervous but he'll be fine soon enough. His geography fascination continues and we have been playing cricket with a small rubber globe ball. He's just a happy chappy at the moment!

Angus is very chatty and can roll over (but he's not sure how). Soon enough he'll be up and crawling and we'll be baby proofing again!