I just need this post, for me.

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I will do the party post, I just need to collate the photos…I promise ladies.  Today I want to talk about something else that has been at the forefront of my mind.

There are all my blog posts about the school and educational psychologists, etc.I have been through it all.  The school said, we listened and then had to make the best decision for our child.  I will not allow anyone else to decide for us.  It is hard to decide and stand strong in the face of a “professional opinion”
We had a long meeting with the school principal, psychologist and teacher.  I aired all my unhappiness and the way in which things have been going and basically it was a meeting for the principal to cover her staff.
Hubby and I were clear that the contrast in the school services and the services we paid for was miles apart, hence we have no faith in their abilities.  We thanked them for bringing HB’s “deficiencies” to our attention. I also made it clear that they were lying about some stuff and I had had enough about this.
HB will progress to the next grade.  We have had him tested, he is receiving support for his “deficiencies.”  He is above average academically and between the private educational psychologist, and as parents, we know he is emotionally ready too.  For the sensitive child we have, keeping him back another year may not be the best thing.  Only you as the parent can know your child holistically.  Only you will understand their intricacies, their sensitivities, the things that make them happy and the things that make them sad and scared.  Do not be overwhelmed by all the professionals out there telling you the type of person your child is and what they think your child needs.  I am not saying ignore and not listen.  You should listen to all the separate pieces of information, but at the end of the day, make a decision you know is best for your child.
We have carefully thought about this.  Any delays related to sensory issues, have not translated to the academics.  He is not missing out on school work because of these apparent sensory issues.  Also, he is receiving therapy for these things, every single day.  The emotional problems cited by the teacher has only happened with the teacher.  Not ever at aftercare, not ever for the month he spent at another school over the holidays, not ever at home or anywhere else, but that teacher’s classroom.  In our opinion, the sooner he is out of there, the better.  I am sure she is an excellent teacher, but she is not the right fit for my child.
We will not be forced by any of them because they tell us their business is children and they know what they are talking about.  They have attached a label to my child and now that they cannot say he is behind academically, they say he has emotional problems.  Not sure what they are, but they are there. I advise, keep notes of every single meeting you ever have.  Write them down, because we as parents become emotional and forget. Just rite it all down.  Write down how you are feeling.
I know holding children back an extra year in Grade 0 works wonders for many children.  I was one of those kids that waited to go to school because of a late birthday.  I flew through school.  It was a breeze.  But socially it was always a problem.  I will not have HB have to do that when it is not entirely necessary. In his case, I do not think it will benefit him.  It is not as if they are going to create a special academic programme for him.  He is already becoming bored with some of the current programme, so what will happen next year when it is all the same thing?  He is just going to end up being a child with behaviour problems. he is going to act up because he is bored.  He is going to be upset when his friends move on.  I know he will get over it eventually, but why put him through it in the first place.
Be strong parents.  You love your child and your decisions come from a place of intense love for these little human beings.  Listen to the educational professional, but stand strong in your love and do the best thing for your child.  Your child is not a statistic, your child is not a number, your child is yours to love and protect.
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The pre party post.

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The party is almost here.  I have sewn and glued so many things. So what do we have:

All the tablecloths are done and I shall iron them tonight.
Ninja masks done.
The picnic blankets are completed.
Sweetie guessing jar is done.
Photobooth done.
I caved in and made a pinata last night, as hubby actually wanted one.
Hubby is done with the ninja ball toss
The cake layers are baked and will be put together on Friday night. Hubby has been so efficient.
Pizza ordered. Hubby once again.
Pizza labels done (found a great free TMNT font)
Centre pieces are almost done.  Balloons will finish them off on Friday night.
Hubby made all the sweeties and they look brilliant. I am very impressed with his confectionary skills. ( He is a trained confectioner, but works on the management side for the last few years).
HB’s clothes for the day…he wanted a TMNT costume…but I actually did not make it,a s I forgot in the day of the terrible headache.  However, my sister sent him a mask and we bought the turtle shell.  I am opposed to weapons, even as toys, however, Hubby says we should get him the plastic sword.  Not sure about it still.  He does have a costume, but it is a winter type thing and will not work in the high heat we are already having.
Things to do:
Glue my labels onto the party packs.
Clean house…there is play sand and cardboard shavings in the little corners.  This is hubby’s job today as he is home and I love him so much. (the domestic lady abandoned us for a two day a week job so we are on our again).
Get beds ready for my parents who arrive tomorrow morning. I have already done the clean linen.
Cook lunch for Friday, tonight (so my parents have lunch ready while I am at work tomorrow).
Fruit and fresh veggies to be shopped on Friday evening as we cannot really get them any earlier…or maybe tonight…our fridge, shop fridge, should be the same.
Get out all my serving plates.
Balloons and more balloons to be filled and hung in the trees on Saturday morning.
Confirm the jumping castle today. (well it is done, but I need to make sure)
Send out security codes and map pins on Saturday morning.
On the RSVP’s…five people did not bother to reply.  I was expecting more to just forget.  So 5 out of 30 is not bad in my books.  I have made extra party favours, etc for the unexpected. Though no one can get in without a security code.  In Gauteng you need a swipe tag, code or ticket to get in everywhere. It is crazy this world we live in.  We live in a place where you need to get through a boomed guard entry point where your drivers licence and car disc is scanned, and they still take a picture of you and the car. Then another coded gate pad and then  your house door.  It is nuts when I write it out like that.
I will make up a private post with pictures for anyone who is interested to see them.

Breathe and get over it.

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We have been through endless drama with the school situation.  We forked out oodles of money to get private assessments, not just money, but time…endless hours.  And now the school educational psychologist mails me a questionnaire and tells me that she is working out classroom strategies. When there are 60 days of school left, this is when she chooses to get off her butt.  I know what happened.

I complained to the teacher that she has done ZERO…and really, what are we waiting for?  The teacher told her and she quickly decided to send me some questionnaire she downloaded off the internet.  I have no faith in her abilities to help my child in any way.  It has taken her so long to do anything and she insists my child is “behind”…and nothing concrete to support that.
We paid all that money to the private educational psychologist, she did proper standardised tests, wrote us a report, sat down with us and discussed that report.  She also offered encouragement and the way in which we can move forward.  She was clear in all her feedback, not this wishy washy maybe stuff the school psychologist gave to us.
All her email served to do, was make me upset about this all over again.
I said to her that HB will have no more tests.  He is moving to the next grade and I want nothing more tested.  She can work out classroom strategies.  I am curious as to what she is working out, because I actually think the teacher is the one needing the coping strategies, not HB.
I know I am sounding like a crazy mama here, but I am so over this stuff.  I want to hear nothing against my child.  I sat there and listened to it for half a hear…now I am done.
And I think it is time I had another word with the school principal, because this needs to stop.  I have the paper and tests to prove that they are talking hogwash.
DEEP BREATHE!
Moving on, the party prep is going well.  The masks took way longer to complete than I anticipated, however, they are complete.  I have the party packs to complete, because I did not have a chance to get it done over the weekend like I thought.
Hubby has the cake under control and the ninja balls.
I also managed to get my photobooth and bean bag toss game sorted out. I breathed in a whole lot of glue fumes getting them done, but they look great.  I am please with it.  All the cups, plates, etc are bought and neatly packed, ready to set up outside. I am impressed with myself.  I feel like I have things under control again.
We will stop by to organise the food this evening.  Hubby will check up on the tables and chairs to ensure that we have no issues on Saturday.  My cousin has offered help to set up the picnic.  I am looking forward to this, especially my parents.  I have lived outside their house for eleven years now, but I still miss them and I still call their house home (hubby does not understand and is always offended that I still call their house home…but that explanation is another blog).

Parenting rewards.

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Yesterday I had one of those terrible, nausea inducing headaches.  The kind that makes you want to pull your hair out, because pulling your hair out would be less painful.  It was so bad, that I eventually had to pop a blue pill (they are really strong and always knock me out within twenty minutes).  I normally would not take that when I am alone with HB but I could not stand the pain.

I set up the TV to stream Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse cartoons, left out snacks and juice and then lay on the couch next to HB.  I also messaged Hubby to let him know I was going to fall asleep.
HB has instructions to wake me in an emergency.
I also left the front door open.
I am paranoid about sleeping when I need to be watching HB.
I fell asleep…HB was fine and I awoke with less pain.
While I was asleep, I felt HB come over to me.  He brushed my face and forehead, brushed back my hair and gave me two little kisses on my forehead and said: ” I love you Mama”
He thought I was fully asleep. Then he went back to his seat and continued to watch his cartoons.
These little moments are to be treasured and lets you know that you are not all bad at this parenting thing.

Party planning mode.

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We are in full party planning mode.  Jumping castles, chairs, tables and balloons.  It is mostly organised by now, but I think it has turned out bigger than we expected.  We have enough accepted invitations to make up a decent party.

I really need to get my act together and finish hemming tablecloths and blankets.  Hubby and I have very different ideas about what it is we are supposed to do.
As far as I can think:  The kids hardly ever eat at these parties, they do not sit at the table and they just run around on a sugar high for the most part.
Hubby thinks we should set up a kids table…I say no because they only sit there to sing happy birthday.  I think we should have one table without any chairs around it.  Set up all the sweeties on it, and the kids can come grab whatever they want, when they want.  I will throw down a few blankets so they can sit if they want.  Hubby thinks they need chairs, I do not see the need.
I decided the following:  A sweetie table, a drinks table and then the food.  The adults can sit in chairs under the trees.  For me that is enough.  I do not think I really need to do much more.
There will be a jumping castle, a ball, some games, sweeties and food.  I do not want to stress myself out.
HB is looking forward to his party.  I have not yet told him that my parents are going to be there too.  I will save it as a surprise for him.
The party will be busy and not a proper family celebration, so we have planned a camping/fishing weekend on the following long weekend.  We all love the camping (I do not enjoy the ablutions so much, but I can do it for a weekend).  We have never caught any fish, but we like being outside, sleeping in a tent, cooking on a fire (there is also an electricity point per camp site).
I have my list of party things to be done.  I wanted to do bunting, but I cannot think of a way that will be quick.  I think I will stick with weighted balloons hanging in the trees.
I am starting to look forward to this party. It is turning out way bigger than I thought, but it will be fine.