Good things.

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We had a brilliant parent teacher interview this week.  His teacher had only good things to say about HB.  It was such a lovely change from last year, where I did not even want to go to these things. I am so glad we did move him to the next grade, because HB had flown through the first term, he did not even need the “time to settle” he normally needs.  The school educational psychologist also met with us and said she feels that he needs no more intervention from her, he is settled and she is not worried about him not managing things by himself.
Hubby is back to normal scheduling so at least I am getting his full support again…which I need to get used to.  Yesterday he was reading with HB and I had to hold myself back from stepping and telling him what to do, because I have become used to the autonomy of me.  I did not manage to avoid getting miffed about my afternoon/ evening scheduling.  I get so snippy, it is not great…I need to let it go…because hubby is allowed to have his way too.
On the scheduling thing, I think we have got the hang of it.  A timetable was all we needed.  We wrote up the timetable, stuck it to our chalkboard and all is well.  No more forgetting library day or which uniform it is today.  We have it up there, including the after school activities and which homework and exercises need to be done.  I must say, I fully recommend a spot in the house where everyone can see what is going on.  We have this in the little passage.  It has a magnetic chalkboard the size of a door screwed onto the wall (we made this ourselves for really cheap).  Here we pin up the notices for the week, the timetable, passwords and logins to the apps we use for HB, photographs and just things we need to do.  It goes down to the floor, so it is accessible to HB too. Guests cannot see it, unless they go to our bedrooms and are really nosy.
Now that HB can read, it works even better.  I did not realise his reading skills were that good.  Hubby has put up a note for himself to remember to buy an easter bunny for HB…HB read the note and I had questions this morning.
We moved our Easter egg hunt to this weekend so that hubby is also part of the fun.  However, with the deferred hunt, the bunny was eaten already.
Three months into my diet and I seem to have stopped losing weight…a little demotivated about this, but I did already lose a heap and I guess this is pretty normal.  Most people seem to hit a point where they don’t lose weight for a bit and you just have to carry on and it will be fine.  The positives are that my skin and hair are doing great…I tend to have crocodile skin if I do not apply lotion immediately after I step out the shower, and this year I seem to be doing fine.
We are leaving work at 2 today (and hubby hads the day off)….it feels like such a treat.  We decided to go buy the easter bunny and then fetch HB early from school.
We can take him out to the field to go fly his drone (he really wanted one and hubby and I are also enjoying this little toy…I did not know they came with a camera).
On the work front, I have crunched through my list very well and I can leave early in peace.
So off to do the admin side of my job, nothing too crazy for the rests of the day.  Punching, filing and folding.
PS:  I did this way out design for a client and I did not expect much…but I was surprised to find that they will build my proposal as is.  This is big for me because it is a huge commercial project…not even one suggestion about changing a little here or there, which just about never happens.
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That one about child restraints, again…

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We have had many blogs about this, and I have written some myself too.  This morning I was driving along to drop HB off at school and then I rush through the traffic (hahahaha…in first gear) to get to the office before 08h00.

Episode 1:
I am in the lane going straight and to my right are two lanes that turn right.  Light changes and I start driving, only to find the woman on the right in her large SUV is driving into my lane.  I slow down and look over:  she is busy trying to steer right with her left hand while she is busy with her phone in the right hand.  How dare she put my and my child’s life in danger.
Episode 2:
In the car behind me is a women in a small hatch back, maybe a Ford Fiesta and she has her phone to her mouth, busy talking.  And leaning through from the back is a boy.  Not strapped in. Lady on the phone has her seatbelt on.  So she only cares about herself?
Episode 3:
I am driving behind a BMW SUV and there are two unstrapped children in the back seat…and the man driving is strapped in.  So he is safe, but not the kids who could go flying through the windscreen should we happen to brake suddenly.
Episode 4:
Behind me is a a new Toyota Etios, Sprint, sedan:  In the front seat is a child strapped in, with the car seat belt.  Not a car seat, not rear facing, just the car seatbelt. And I can read in my rear view mirror the sign on the sunshade that has those symbols on it that tell you how you should not use the front seat for a child.  The seatbelt cannot hold them, the airbag will most likely kill them, if it even manages to deploy, because this child was about 2 (she was a mom at HB’s school because I saw her in the parking area doing drop off).
I mention the cars because just to give you an idea of the slice across the financial lines here.  All of those cars have airbags and suitable restraints for children, eg:  isofix anchors, back seats. three point seat belts.  They all can manage to have bluetooth in them too.
We assume, wrongly, that a person who can afford a car, must have access to safety guidelines for children and roads.
Which is worse:  Only strapping yourself in, and not the child or having a 2 year old in the front seat (and because we have one, I know you cannot deactivate the Etios airbags).
I saw this all in one morning!!!!!!!!!!

Making memories.

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We have not had much free time over the weekend and while we still had a birthday party to do the weekend past, I refused to do any playdates or parties for Sunday.

Sunday HB and I packed up our lunch, a set of board games, our picnic blanket and went off to the sandpit.
We are very lucky to have really great public places in the estate we live in.  The play equipment is good, the grass is obscenely green and if you want to swim or play tennis, soccer, cricket…you can.  HB and I just lolled on the grass playing chess and snakes&ladders.  He played a bit in the sand and jungle gym, I drank my coffee, we ate lunch, we cuddled and played “I spy”
It was great.  It has been such a long time since we have done this. We used to stop there every afternoon during summer time.  What happened that we are so busy?
Hubby is working twelve hour days, HB has stuff to do all the time, I am supposed to be working 24 hours, but someone has to make sure we have clean clothes, etc.  My boss asked me to stop sleeping this morning.
We are grateful that we have work, but I think our little family is running all the time, and it feels like a marathon.
I am beginning to think that we don’t know how to stop?  Maybe you get so used to the busyness, that you think it should be like that all the time.
HB just asks me: ” What are we doing today?” He knows we have stuff to do everyday.  The poor child of mine.
If I lost my diary, it would not go down well for me.
Sitting there with HB made me realise that maybe he won’t want to do this much longer.  I am sure he won’t always want to have picnics with his mama.  However, I can give him good memories to look back on.  Everything does not have to be a production and we need to stop waiting for the perfect weather, time, day…we just need to do the now.  It is not always easy to remember.  You are responsible for your own happiness.  I remember with fondness the ad hoc picnics with my parents, or just a drive to the beach (how I miss the beach).
My mom would make sure we bathed and dressed in pjs early.  My dad would arrive home and we would pile into the car to go have dinner at the beach.  We would just sit in the car, but in view of the sea and sand. I know it sounds a bit odd, but we all loved it.
Other times, picnics would be a huge production (and they still are at my parents’ house).  The weather forecast would be checked numerous times, things gathered, everyone would wake early to prep and make food…and there was heaps of food.
Busy bees can still make time for memories and happiness.  Nothing is more important.

Birthday party etiquette.

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Kids birthday parties…it seems like it needs its own set of rules.  I was at a party recently where I was expected to pitch in there and get stuff done, because the parents were totally unprepared.  It happens.  I did not mind doing it, normally, but that specific day I was sick to the point of dizziness and running around hosting a party I had not planned to host was not on my list of things to do.

Do you just turn up and expect to sit down (which is what I was expecting…with maybe a glass of water).
Another party we went to…again, I was planning to sit down because we were told that the kids would be taken care off…instead I ended up spending 2 hours on my feet, taking care of kids because there was no one to do it.  It was one of those activity parties were the parents have paid people to entertain the kids.  It was terrible, because I had worn sandals and I had to ramp through sand and sticks.
Another time, the parents were invited and we were told that they would only provide beverages for parents.  Fair enough…these parties get expensive.  Since the party ran over lunchtime, I made sure that we had an early lunch and off we went….only to find that I was expected to buy my own lunch at the party.  If I don’t want to serve lunch, I make sure that the party does not run over lunch.  I then proceeded to become even more upset about this whole thing when I was expected to have cash (I had not planned to buy lunch in the first place and I just about never carry cash). Then there was no change so I ended up paying R30 more for lunch than I should have.
I just feel that if you are hosting a party then you must provide everything.  I do, otherwise I don’t invite people in the first place.
If you are having a drop and go party, be clear about it.
If you need the parents to stay and take care of kids, then tell them before they get there.
If you expect me to pay for my own food, be upfront about it and say the name of the restaurant so that we know how much money we must turn up with.
If you need help, ask before I get there, and I will tun up early and help you.
I think you must be upfront and clear about the type of party you are having.  You also need to be a host when you invite people over.  You cannot be sitting down having a cup of coffee while your guest are parched running around bundu bashing.
I know I am very fussy about things, but really….this was too much.

I need tea.

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I don’t really have the time to type this blog, but I feel a little at sea.

Work is so nuts right now.  I took over work from someone who resigned and I am struggling to meet the deadlines.  My boss cannot do anything about it. I just have to do it.
My go to thing for stress is tea.  The act of making the tea calms me.  Drinking the tea calms me and I feel better and that I can go forth and do this thing. My tea has got to be specific.  I am so anal about my cup of tea.  It has got to be just so with the correct proportion of milk to tea, with a specific cup which works with a specific spoon.  I also love the sweetness and the correct proportion of milk results in the perfect temperature.
My tea has such specific requirements that with the diet restrictions, I have not been able to produce a satisfactory cup. I am not prepared to settle for less than my ideal cup…so I stopped drinking tea.  If  I cannot have the real thing, I don’t want it.
However, this week has been rough.  Right now I just want that tea.  I know it will make me feel better.
I need to stand strong.