Just to clarify

While out running this morning (calf was still sore but towards the end of the run it improved and feels fine now so fingers crossed it’s okay) I was thinking a bit and realised I needed to clarify one thing. Chris is busy at work but he’s still usually home between 4 and 5pm three days a week, by 3pm or earlier one day a week and only after 7pm one day a week. He leaves at about 7.30am, occasionally earlier so really he does see a lot of the girls and weekends he hardly ever goes in and if he does it’s just for a quick check and the girls love to go along. He was moaning that at his recent annual congress all the cars parked around his one were Porsches and Jaguars,etc and here we are terrified to buy a Fortuner but I did tell him that I’m sure the Porsche and Jag drivers (he knows them both) had not just run the Otter trail, have every weekend off and spend so much time with their families.

As one always hears, not many people get to the end of their lives/careers and wish they’d spent more time at work. Not that working hard is a bad thing but if you can work enough so that you can live comfortably, enjoy your work and still have time for exercise/hobbies, socialising and your family then I think you’re doing well.

On Saturday we had 2 couples over and both are expecting twins. One couple already have 2 girls (exactly the same age as our 2) and they’re having identical girls while the other couple had are having a boy and a girl (no children yet). Very exciting but I am eternally grateful I got to have mine one at a time.

This week I need to finish off my Santa Shoeboxes. I got an 8 year old girl and a 13 year old boy. The boy wasn’t too difficult (sporty stuff) but I’ve struggled with a gift for the girl. I have settled on jewellery/ make-up type stuff but am still not 100% sure, I’ll go tomorrow when Ava is at school and I can think properly. Having to buy clothes for a boy finally made me realise what all boy mommies complain about – there really is nothing much to buy for boys. In Woolies there was actually not a single 13 -14 year old pair of shorts, none I had to go to Ackermans to get something and couldn’t find anything at Pick ‘n Pay clothing store either. Can’t actually believe there are already Christmas trees up. My girls CANNOT wait to put up our tree. Ava and I quickly popped into Spar after dropping Zoe at school and she looked at the tree and said very sweetly, “such a beautiful tree mom” with a massive grin on her face. She then spotted all the mini Lindt chocolate snowmen, Father Christmases and reindeer and decided they were a very good idea. I’ve told them we need to wait until their school concert which is the 23 November, hope we last that long. There is a shop in PE that sells the most divine decorations and I can’t wait to get a whole lot of stuff there. We got a huge tree last year and this year I want to get more stuff for the rest of the house. We’ll have to extend the garage or I won’t have any place to store it all after Christmas!!

Today I realised how much some professions are taken for granted. My mom (gran, aunt,etc.) were all teachers. I wanted to be a teacher but my mom said that I shouldn’t as I was too clever??? I have a very good friend that is a junior primary teacher and worked as a remedial teacher in London at an exclusive girls’ school for a few years. She started teaching again this year (filling in for a lady that was off for 9 months after having triplets) in Grade 1 and although she’s off for this term she’ll be going back next year in a permanent position. She was nervous to leave her children (little girl has just turned 4 and their little boy was just over 1 when she started) but once she’d settled in, she loved being back. She’s an excellent hockey player so also got involved with hockey coaching. Her husband has recently got an amazing new job (working from home for an overseas company) and so she doesn’t need to work but she really wants to. Anyway, I’m completely getting off the point. At school Zoe recently did letter land and she is desperate to learn to read and write. She can recognise and write all her letters but not actually read. It’s so starnge, I know how to read but I don’t know how to teach someone to read. This friend was explaing that in the UK they use a phonetic way of learning to read while in SA we use sight learning. The phonetic way is better as it teaches you the “rules” which is better for spelling and for children who might have reading difficulties. Sight learning is fine for 80% of children but for the other 20% it isn’t and those 20% can obviously be missed and might lose out forever. This friend has a whole phonetic reading syllabus/program which I can borrow to teach Zoe but she gave me a few pointers when she was visiting this morning and I do have one set of phonetic reading books already. I did a bit with Zoe while we were reading this afternoon and it’s amazing how quickly they pick stuff up. The mere speed with which she learned letterland was astounding – all 26 letters are assigned a character and have a little rhyme. They did one letter a day over a couple of weeks and she knows them all, no repetition needed. It blows me away, we definitely get stupider and stupider, why on earth our poor kids are only sent to school at 7 astounds me, my little 4 year old is such a sponge now it just feels wrong not to teach her the stuff she is desperate to know. Anyway, it was just so amazing listening to my friend explain everything and wonderful to see how much she obviously enjoys teaching these children, how much pleasure and satisfaction it gives her and what an incredible difference she makes to each and every child that is lucky enough to land up in her class. Not many people can change the livs of 25 little people each and every year. I know my mom is/was also such a teacher as many people I’ve met have told me that she was the best teacher they ever had. I saw a bumper sticker one day which said, “If you can read this, thank a teacher.” I know just as in every profession, there are good and bad one’s but I really believe that the teaching profession has to be one of the most important one’s and they deserve so much more than they get (tricky when some are incompetent,lazy,etc. I know). If every child in SA had access to teachers like Nina every year, SA would be a very different place. How many other professions have the power to change a country? Wish I had a magic wand some days.

 

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3 Responses to “Just to clarify”

  1. Marcia (123 blog) Says:

    Quick coaching question for you – why do/ did you feel the need to clarify? I don’t think you have to explain a thing to anyone LOL

    Loved the update on the previous post – a little glimpse into your life.

    I think I know the Christmas shop – if I lived in PE I would also shop there a lot!

  2. zamom Says:

    The Christmas shop is actually J&A not the one at Moffett-on-Main. J&A used to be in the Valley behind Newspaper house (nice and close) but have now moved to Willow Rd off Circular Dr (miles away) but probably a good thing!!
    The clarifying was kind of to myself because I just realised that although he’s busier he’s still around a lot (something he loves to remind me of all the time!!)Just in case he reads this.

  3. cat@juggling act Says:

    Oh my gosh yes, having your kids one at a time is certainly easier.

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