Little Man was always a cautious child.
He didn’t start walking until 17 months – and then he did it perfectly. It was as if he practiced at night in his cot when nobody was looking and didn’t reveal his skills until he’d nailed it. That’s my boy – not a huge risk-taker. He has never really been one to climb every (okay, any) tree or jump into rough-housing with the boys. He was always terrified of open staircases, high platforms and long slides at the playground. Riding a bike was not something to even begin contemplating until he turned seven and even then, it was – how do I put this delicately? – interesting. My gentle boy was always far more at home with his feet firmly rooted to the ground, building genius constructions with Lego, blocks and Zoobs.
Every time we’ve ever gone to a fun fair, he’s politely, yet strongly declined offers to go on the scary rides (and by scary, I mean the kiddie-coaster) and been more than happy to watch as we’ve put our lives on the line.
In stark contrast, Hubby and I are scaryrideaholics. We even went to Disneyworld on honeymoon (romantic sunsets on deserted beaches are so overrated, people). So, you can imagine our delight when this week, at the Perth Royal Show, Little Man suddenly (and out of nowhere) expressed the desire to go on his first ever scary ride. I had to stay on the ground (grumble) with Baby G while Hubby, Miss M and Little Man got on the ride and this allowed for some excellent photographic opportunities.
We probably should have known better and rather initiated Little Man into the world of scary rides with something tamer, but he did choose this and you know what they say to do when opportunity knocks… Read the rest of this entry
Last night, after I made my 3 children frothy hot chocolates, my seven year old son approached me. He said, “Mum, you say all the time that you aren’t our servant, but you kind of are.” Mmmm, interesting. I asked him why he said that. He replied, “Well, servants are people who serve other people, right? They cook and clean and do all kinds of things for other people as their job, right?” I grudgingly agreed, not really liking this conversation very much at all.
He continued, “Well, there is a problem then, Mum, because you act like our servant because you wash our clothes and cook and fetch us from school and help us with homework, and clean our rooms sometimes even when we were supposed to. You do lots of things for us kids but we don’t have money to pay you, so that means you do it for free. That’s really bad, Mum. It means you are a slave!”
I was gob-smacked. What a thought. Deep breath, Michelle, deep breath.
The number one reason I yell at my kids is mess. They generate mess at a fascinating rate and it infuriates me. I seem to spend all day, every day cleaning up after them.
Today, I paused. I looked around with a fresh eye, and for a minute I didn’t see the mess at all. I saw joy.
The blocks all over the floor held hours and hours of my son’s learning and success. The dress-ups strewn all over the carpet carried my toddler’s giggles and fairy princess dreams. The books, haphazardly stacked in the corner housed cuddles and quiet time, fast running out as my nine year old steamrolls towards adolescence.
Today I didn’t yell.
Today I giggled and cuddled and reveled in the fleeting childhood of my three amazing children.
Dishes can wait.
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