The difference between boys and girls

November 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

At 6 years, it’s simple. Girls can. Boys can’t. At least with fine motor co-ordination.

(Helping out at the school while kids make Christmas decorations. )

The girls take the sheet of paper. Pick up the scissors. Cut along the lines. The boys stop. Hit each other. Put the paper on their heads. Fight over the scissors. I help them, show them where to cut. Show them again. Get a new piece of paper. Start again.

Girls waiting patiently for next instruction.

Ask the girls if they know how split pins work. Some do, some don’t. Show them all. They get on with it.

Go back to boys. Start them off cutting again. Decide scissors and staplers should not be allowed into a reception classrooms when boys are around. Think these can be classed as dangerous weapons. Along with black widow spiders and soccer balls.

Girls waiting patiently for next instruction.

Help girls staple the hats on. Check that everyones names are on. Girls move onto next activity.

Go back to boys and the cutting. Start to show them spilt pins. Manage to get the message across by using words like “open and smash it!” Correct a few split pins. Wonder at the joy they’re having over the “smash” part.

Finally move onto the name part. Very few names. Very very few names spelt right.  Wonder if I should be going through the pile correcting the incorrectly cut legs, arms, and heads. Or the incorrectly inserted split pins. I am in no way a perfectionist. Decide that since they’re happy with their work, who am I to change anything. They’re happy and proud and that’s what matters.

Go outside to watch the boys expertly kicking a ball around. Yet, I’m insanely proud that age 6 Talia finally managed to catch a ball.




Talia caught a ball!

October 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

Ok, so this seems like a completely arbitary post. Which 6 year old cannot catch a ball. Well, until today, my 6 year old couldn’t catch a ball. Every report from school we’ve ever had has been “can catch and throw a ball – not achieving”. And it should have had a counter “not interested” as well.

However in order to help her with her ball skills we have done two things:

1) visual therapy

2) broken a very fundamental rule in our house. You are not, under any circumstances, allowed to throw any toy not designed for throwing. And certainly never inside.

The rule stems from Talia throwing her toys in the biggest fits of temper as a toddler. Toys were confiscated and placed on the fridge until the next day.

Recently, with no furniture inside, Talia and I have been playing throw Lilly the frog (stuffed toy, not pet). And she’s been catching her quite well. Today we swapped and threw a ball. And for the first time ever I saw my daughter actually catch a ball that was thrown to her. Not just thrown into her waiting hands. But thrown at her. Proud mommy moment.

Whether its the visual therapy we’ve been doing, or the fact that kids do develop at their own paces and her gross motor skills are catching up, well,  I don’t know. But she caught that ball. Yay!

Almost 4 yrs and still throwing tempers

October 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

Tonights have been going on for an hour and a half. Eventually I am standing my ground refusing to reheat bean bag that was thrown out the room. refusing to get a small plastic blow up cushion from the bin she insisted on throwing away, refusing to re-tuck her in for the umpteenth time. So Squidge turns to me and shouts :”I hate it when you’re being stubborn!”


Tasty chocolate detours

October 21, 2013 in Uncategorized

Talia: “Mom, most people don’t think so, but you’re the best mom in the world”.

Oh, thanks. Not sure what she thinks most people think.

We were telling our own stories this evening. Girls chose a character, I start off, and they tell the story. Squidge chose a pegasus. We decided pegasus was going to run (fly?) in a race. The race was going very well until Pegasus saw some chocolate and veered off the race track to eat it. If Squidge had her way, her horse would still have won the race. I suggested that she didn’t win, but was a happy horse none-the-less. I’m not sure what this tells me about the mental health of my three year old, but in true three year old fashion her horse gets distracted by chocolate as easily as she does. I hope she still wins some of life’s races even after taking interesting and tasty detours along the way.



my kids…

October 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

Squidgey: “ag, why am I being so naughty today?!”

Princess Talia: “mom, please feed me, my nails are wet” (waving hands around)

Squidgey started off our grateful list yesterday. And didn’t stop. She must have listed absolutely everything around her. When it was (finally) Talia’s turn, Talia starts off hers by saying “I’m grateful squidgey has finally finished!”





October 9, 2013 in Uncategorized

Squidge: When I grow up, I want to be an artist, a florist, a farmer. Oh, and human.

Moving day has come and gone

October 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

And we are now living in the shell of our house. All our worldly things (save a few very important objects) are on a boat to Tasmania. So far the girls seem to be handling it well… although I suppose it all seems so distant and such a foreign concept anyway. We’re still in SA for a while. I keep thinking I have time, and will have time, to say goodbye to all my friends before I leave, but I know we’ll get to the last day and be rushing around madly trying to do last farewells.

Talia is still struggling with her feet. We’re back in AFO’s, the plastic insteps that correct her walking gait and make her walk heel toe, versus on her toes the whole time. I sometimes wonder if our clubfoot journey will ever be at an end. Poor child also needs to do eye excercises (low muscle tone), finger excercises (again, poor muscles) and leg excercises. In her last school report, her “marks” were all high, except for her gross motor skills. ..ability to balance on a beam, hop on one leg, catch a ball. I wanted to take a red pen to it, scratch it out and write.” Yes, she can’t do those. But she can walk. And surely that should count for something.” But I didn’t. and I know her teachers know about her deformity. It’s a problem when you assess kids based on the average.

I often tell my kids how much I love them. I tell them too that they know I love them because I do things for them. We chat, we bake, we cuddle, we tickle. All these things show I love them. It occured to me that my kids show me so often that they love me to. And its difficult to remember this when they’re screaming they hate you (because you said no to ice-cream), or when they’re throwing a temper (because you told them to behave), or when they’re just being difficult and stroppy. Squidge is my little bee. She insists on picking flowers. But its her way of giving me something – she gives me flowers to show she loves me. Talia shared her bean bag with me the other day when I complained of tummy ache. She willing gave up her hot bean bag to make me feel better. We often go through life not feeling appreciated, and actually we’re missing all the little signs of appreciation we get each and every day. the flowers picked, the pictures drawn, the cuddles offered, the songs sung. Our kids are giving us the only things they really can, and infact the things that are worth more than anything.

On the flower note, we’ve actually decided that we’ll need to buy Squidge a nursery or florist when she’s older. If I believed in re-incarnation I’d say she was really a bee in a past life.



The things they say…

October 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

Talia (during the stranger danger talk): If strangers knew how annoying I can be, they wouldn’t kidnap me.

Squidge(trying to delay bedtime): Mom why do we have foreheads. Me: to keep your brains in. Squidge: oh I forgot.

The good and the bad….

September 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

Squidge: “You know mom, being a kid is hard. you don’t get to go to work.”

Squidge: “Mommy you’re so beautiful! When I’m big I want to marry you!”

Hubby and Squidgies teacher talking about how “shes really come out of her shell”. Squidge pipes up “but I wasnt born from a shell!”

And then Talia:

Talia: “I know why babies cry. It’s because they don’t like the mothers they’ve been given”.

And another

Squidge: “When I’m big I’m going to marry Daddy”.
Talia: “You can’t. When you’re old enough to get married, Daddy will be old and wrinkly. And you can’t marry someone who’s old and wrinkly”.







Out of the mouth of babes

July 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

Talia: I’m worried about the flight. me: why? T: what if we’ve forgotten something? me: we buy it in jhb. T: what if you’ve forgotten your patience? you can’t buy that.
Squidge on “breaking the stapler” (just opening it): “oh dear, I REALLY in trouble now!”