Browsing "Parenting"
Jan 7, 2011 - Culture, Life, Parenting    No Comments

Moving ahead!

Maths with Mrs Wall.

Mrs Wall is the Maths Co-ordinator for Georgia’s school.

On our way home from school, after a long first week back to school, we were making plans for our weekend when we met Mrs Wall leaving school.

“Oh, has Georgia told you, we had extra lessons today?” she said.

“No…” this had certainly piqued my interest.

“Oh, she’ll tell you more about it, I’m sure,” Mrs Wall added walking off.

Thankfully, she did turn around and say, “Georgia came to my Maths sessions and we did some Maths together”.

It turns out, Georgia is one of two children, in her class to be sent to Mrs Wall to ‘do Maths’. The other children are apparently from the year above. And when asked what she actually did in those sessions? Played games!

Sounds like fun…Way to go G!

What an acheivement!

Jan 6, 2011 - Culture, Parenting, Philosophy    No Comments

In the blink of an eye…

… Christmas tree went up 
… presents started gathering under it
… the snow came and stayed for a while (beautiful but oh-so-cold at -6 degrees!)
… angel Georgia spoke her lines “…and we thank you all for sharing in our very special nativity” perfectly
… the last day of term came
… the snow that had not really melted, came some more  (I suppose we technically got snowed in when a door would not open – thankfully we have two – doors that is) 
… the presents hiding under the bed, managed to get dressed in some wrapping paper to join the other presents under the tree
… Christmas eve came, stockings were put up (unfortunately Santa was not welcome 😉
… friends came over for food food and more food
… New Years Eve arrived!
… and then New Years Day! 
… Welcome 2011!

I know it’s rather belated but Have a wonderful Year ahead everyone!

Is there really a Santa Claus?

Santa Claus

Santa Claus

Georgia recently asked me this and I had to hesitate for a minute to contemplate. It was not that I did not want to disappoint her by telling her that Santa Claus did not exist, it was what I should tell her after I told her the TRUTH that Santa Claus is just a dressed up man.

Before you report me to Social Services for depriving my daughter a wondrous magical childhood, let me explain….

Read more »

Dec 13, 2010 - Parenting    No Comments

Thinking of Rosa…

I found out today that my friend Rosa’s little baby Isaac who was born prematurely has passed away.

I have not seen or spoken to R for years and years and we have only just connected through Facebook again. It was also on Facebook that I saw her first photos of baby Isaac; the same place I posted my congratulations and where I also read that Rosa had lost baby Isaac.

There seems to be some disconnect with all things happening as is usually the case when news is so constant, immediate and very virtual. The fact that we are 6000 miles away from each other, probably explains a lot.

Still as I thought of Rosa, I realise how grateful I should be. We have been have challenging times with Georgia recently. She is without a doubt a very bright, happy child, yet she is equally strong willed and stubborn. She knows what she wants and when she wants it, and it often feels as if we are constantly being dictated to by a 4 year old (although I’m sure it’s not entirely true!).

So today and for everyday moving forward, I will remember to hold my family a little closer and tell them that I love them.

Rest well sweet Isaac.

Our love, thoughts and prayers to you and your family Rosa.

Dec 11, 2010 - Food, Parenting    No Comments

Festive profiteroles

Since Georgia started at school I’ve tried to make an effort to contribute to school events when I can.

So when it came to the turn of the Reception class to hold a cake sale I knew that I was going to contribute what I hadn’t decided was what that contribution would be or whether I would cheat and buy it from the shop (!)

And so I kept thinking and thinking… And I spent so long thinking that on the day of the cake sale I still hadn’t decided. Worse still there were so many things on my to do list that day that once the computer was on time just flew by and Finally at 1pm… I knew I had to decide the cake sale was starting at 3!

The toss up was between muffins – quick and easy or profiteroles which for some bizarre reason I absolutely love making apart from the slight challenge of not having cream to fill the profiteroles!

So there it was, I managed to make 18 profiteroles in an hour DH kindly got the cream from the local shop.

I’ll have to admit making profiteroles under pressure wasn’t easy the first batch of mix didn’t turn out right it was like pancake mixture instead of the firmer texture it should have been so thankfully I had enough of everything to make another batch!

They smelt so so yummy but that’s all I had … Smells 🙂 it was tempting to buy some back from the cake sale but Georgia isn’t a fan of profiteroles and she did the choosing.
So we went to the cake sale with …

Close up they looked like…

And we came home with …

All in a days work 🙂

Dec 7, 2010 - Parenting, Philosophy    No Comments

A Tale of Two Schools….and having a choice to make.

Choosing a School

I have been meaning to write about this ever since G started at her ‘new’ school, and that was back in September!

In between we’ve had the ‘New School’ experience, the Malaysia-n trip and now we’re in the midst of all the Xmas festivities I realised that I had better write about it before the year ran out!

Choosing a school can be as easy or as hard as you like it to be really, and at the end of the day, the child is still going to get an education (good or bad – is relative). We all want to do what is right and what is best for our children and so we make the effort and visit schools, talk to teachers, head teachers, other parents, listen to friends and relatives and basically anyone who has an opinion. But at the end of the day – the choice is your own and only your own to make.

I suspect it’s actually quite easy if there was no choice and there was only one school, but as we live within the catchment area for two, both very good, under-subscribed schools – it becomes a bit more complicated.

In signing Georgia up to the nearest nursery (attached to a school), rightly or wrongly convenience was completely the basis of my decision – it was a 5 minute flat walk away. If you like me, have grown up being driven and driving everywhere (blame malaysian weather!), and have a very reluctant walker for a child (I wonder why?) you would understand my motives. Still…it was a nice nursery and she absolutely loved one or two of her teachers, and that was nice.

There were however always sneaky little things that quite upset me. The children seemed to have to ‘fight their corner’ a lot. Sharing although emphasised verbally – never seemed to be practised. I noticed a change in behaviour in Georgia in that she used to be very sharing and giving and after a while she stopped and started to be more selfish and wary about sharing. I used to think it was a growing phase and time and time again we would keep telling her that visitors won’t take your toys home – but the message never really got through.

By this time, I had assumed that that was the way things were going to HAVE to be, and that that was the cultural difference. Fighting your corner, or standing up for yourself was always something associated with the Western culture, the submissive, respectful, silent accepting Asian never quite behaved like that! That is until I was convinced to actually go and have a look at the OTHER school!

And what a difference! Yes it is a church school (no we are not christians nor are we religious in any way) but it was amazing to see that with less than 1 mile between the two schools, you would not imagine two more different schools.

The children are actually happy going to school. Their teachers love and care about them and try so hard to make everyone feel welcomed. Georgia’s, now Class Teacher said to me “We have the best children in the World in our class!” I felt like hugging her there and then!

The children among their peers are so friendly and happy and they are always so concerned about their little friends and they willing share everything and take turns!

It sounds like quite the model school doesn’t it? Except that on paper i.e. ESTYN (OFSTED equivalent) reports, this school isn’t Outstanding, it’s only a Good, but in my experience and in talking to all the other parents at this school. No, it’s not perfect, there are computers that could work better, more space for the classes would be good, an enclosed outdoor space that the school could call it’s own would be fantastic, BUT the bottom line is, the children are happy there!

I’m happy that Georgia is there….she makes a big fuss about not wanting to go every morning – but that’s another story!

I suppose the lesson I’ve learnt is that there are Outstanding schools and there are Better than Outstanding schools, the question is whose list are you ticking off? If it’s your own, then you must be going down the right track. My criteria was a school that was going to treat my child as an individual, help her acheive all that she could with enough challenges to keep it exciting yet not too much that it would overwhelm her, and for now, I’m happy with my choice.

Are you? What were the things you looked for when looking at schools?

Conversations with Georgia: Noah's Ark

Georgia mentioned that she saw a video clip about Noah’s Ark in school yesterday, so this morning I asked her…

Me: So what did you learn about Noah’s Ark yesterday?
G: Noah?
Me: Yeah…
G: Noah …..washed all of the BAD people away! (She explained this complete with actions – with a ‘wooshing’ motion)

It was actually quite funny….but the conversation carried on.

Me: Are you sure that was Noah?
G: Yes…wasn’t it?
Me: I thought it was supposed to be God?
G: Oh yeah…maybe it was.

Now….was that REALLY the reason for the big flood? Because I’m sure we could use it in some countries 🙂

Feb 19, 2010 - Conversations, Parenting, Random    No Comments

Conversations with Georgia: Have a baby?

An on-going obsession in our household is with babies, so Georgia pretends to feed, change, dress and basically anything you do with babies, she does with her Dorothy (a.k.a Thumper). So although it was not surprising this conversation took place, it was still nonetheless very sweet.

Georgia looks at me very intently and then says:

G: Mummy, when you were a baby, and you grew up, did you just decide to have a baby?

Me: Umm…yes

G: Well, I’m going to have a baby too!

Me: That will be nice….