Friday, March 30, 2018

A couple of stories from Kien

I can't believe how quickly these last couple of months has gone by for Kien being back at school...and then we will be finished with this first term! He hasn't written anything for this blog recently, so here are a couple of stories. The first he wrote today on the iPhone, and the second was written a week ago.

​When I went swimming

​Yesterday I went swimming. I went in the deep pool. First I practiced diving. Second I practiced getting into a boat safely or if I didn’t do it right the boat would sink.

Koala in Mars

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Art and life

My child oscillates between being delightful and being a down right thorn in my side. OMG, this weekend!! Not sure what's going on with him but he's been so fragile; having a meltdown because he didn't like the hotpot restaurant we went to last night, and then bursting into tears multiple times today because his iPod kept crashing from the stupid game that refused to load. It's enough to drive a parent to alcoholism, I tell you! So as I sip my Bloody Mary on a Sunday afternoon I'm letting him spend all of his points on watching youtube because I just am too tired to nag.

This afternoon, getting him to practice 5 minutes of keyboard was like extracting teeth. 5 minutes! I was rewarding him with 1 point for it too! That's 20 minutes of device time, or 1/3 of $2 if he want to save for Beyblades (3 points = $2). I think I'm extremely generous with the earning of points. But no, when Kien is going through a non cooperative phase the moaning and the groaning can make you feel like your ears will bleed. But this is life, right? As adults we also go through phases, and sometimes we also feel that the amount of effort it takes to, say, do a day's work at our job isn't worth the stress for the $. But if you want to eat, have a house, go on holidays, drive a car, and be able to afford hobbies then you just have to suck it up. The points system I've put in place for Kien is trying to teach him about this - well that's what I'm hoping its teaching him...there ain't no free ride. Either that or he just thinks I'm really mean. He has asked me why his friends can get to use devices FOR FREE. I told him I didn't care what his friends get or doesn't get because I am not their parent. He thinks I'm being unfair. So my natural response to that is unfair, kid. Get used to it. Now go and empty the dishwasher and that will earn you a point.

The other day I was emptying his book bag and found a certificate he got. I didn't get around to asking him abut it. This afternoon I was tidying up the dining table and found the certificate, so I asked him to let me take a photo of him holding it for this blog post. He was like, "oh, when I got it in assembly they also made me hold it to get photos taken."
"What? Why didn't you tell me?"
"Because it was a surprise", he said.
"And you were going to tell me, when?" Do you think he'd give me one photo with a decent smile after our conversation?

At the end of the year the school always does an art exhibition where the kids get to choose a piece to showcase. This is Kien's submission for last year.

The reason I haven't talked about this before is because Kien actually lost the artwork at the end of the year when they were cleaning up. Don't ask me how he could lose something so big - it's an A3 drawing stuck on heavy weighted paper to form a border. Anyway, we thought it was lost forever but then it showed up all of a sudden in his classroom at the beginning of the year. I was so happy when I found out it wasn't lost, because he had actually taken out the top prize for the 7 year olds category.

He was rewarded with $25 voucher at the local book store.

I asked him to explain to me all the details in his drawing. Oh boy, I think that's an entirely different blog post, all to do with nuclear weapons, saving villages and meteors. Yeah, too much for a Sunday afternoon frivolous post.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Mangawhai lifestylers

I recently joined a private facebook group - Mangawhai Lifestyle Property Community, to learn a thing or two. The group is a relatively newly formed one, and last Sunday we went to a meet and greet brunch at one of the member's home. They had organised a local fellow to come and tell/show us all about summer pruning of fruit trees. It was fascinating and we learned so much. Plus strolling around on the beautiful property in the sunshine on a lazy Sunday afternoon is such a joyful experience.

There were a handful of kids of various ages, but only 2 that were 8, and they basically struck up a friendship immediately. They both ran around and played with the dog for the first hour, then they joined the other kids in the pool, then they got changed and ran around some more, climbing trees and playing in the willow glades.

They have exchanged email addresses so we'll see if they stay in contact.

In the late afternoon we stopped by our property for a brief checkup. Jef and I were up in our Totara glade and when we looked down we saw Kien had (obviously) climbed up on the container and was sitting there merrily.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Saturday cricket

The season is almost over. As sad as that may sound it means that we adults get our Saturday mornings back, and Jef doesn't have to rush home on Thursday evenings to take Kien to practice. We want Kien to do team sport because it teaches him commitment, team work, bla bla bla...but in him doing extra curricular activities the reality is that WE have to be committed too, and that means no lazing around in bed on Saturday mornings after a long week at work. Oh, the sacrifices!

Last Saturday the club game was held in Kohimarama. They had a really good match, and the Grafton United Cricket Club Y3 Panthers won their second game for the season! It was a great win too - Auckland University Cricket Club Y3 Crocodiles scored 84 runs vs the Panthers with a massive 124 runs.


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