Monday, 30 January 2012

A Four Point Lesson!

Most children try to get out of School Sports Day – Not my sports loving, second born Deep Waters, aged 10yrs in this story. He’d been sick for a couple of days so I’d kept him home to get well, but he was determined to be better for Sports Day. Deep Waters never gets sick. He is affectionately known as, ‘Iron Guts’ in our family, cause he never gets sick. But School Sports Day morning, still not quite 100%, he begged me to let him go.

Given his eagerness & determination, somewhat reluctant, I let him go. 

That night as we recalled the events of the day, asked each of the children how Sports Day went. Deep Waters, the introvert in our family of raging extroverts, pipes up enthusiastically, telling us that he had placed in 4 events that day, gaining a point each event for his team, Bribie!

 “Which team won”? I asked. “Bribie, by only 4 points”, says super excited Matt, “so if I didn’t go today, Bribie wouldn’t have won!” 

My little statistician had worked it out! That his participation had mattered, his 4 point contribution was the winning margin. He didn’t come first in any individual race, but by simply participating he added points for his team. 

Made me so grateful for this lesson learnt by a School Sports Day experience, every bit counts! That it’s not all about winning an individual race, but in teams, it’s about our contribution, our part added to the collective that can give the competitive edge.
We all learnt something that day from Deep Waters.  

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Honesty in the little things!

Shopping for school shoes just recently in 'back to school frenzy', we happened to walk past (and tried to avoid) the Surf Life Savers who had parked themselves in the middle of the shopping centre selling tickets to one of their prize homes. Having just spent a large sum of money buying black school shoes for my four, knowing what was still yet to be spent before the day was done, walked past very determined not to get sucked into buying a ticket. However one Life Saver did catch my eye and motioned me over, rather than go over, with my 4 in tow, made a rather loud, flippant comment that I had no money left after just buying 4 pairs of black school shoes! And kept walking.

Thought nothing more of it.

Until we got home after a very long day of purchasing uniforms, bags, haircuts. As we walk into our kitchen with all the school stuff, Miss astute 13yr old made a comment on how much more money we spent after me telling the Life Savers that I had no more money! My surf-loving 16 year old added insult to injury by saying how much we as a family depend on the Surf Life Savers because we spend alot of time at the beach!


My seemingly flippant remark, had been noticed! My children were keeping me accountable! It reminded me again of how the unassumed 'little things' we say often reflect dishonesty vs. honesty. Not such a crime some would say, it's just a little 'white lie'. But how much better an example to my children would it have been if instead of avoiding the Surf Life Savers, I had stopped briefly, given a small donation and thanked them for their incredible volunteer work to not only us as a family, but to the majority of Australians! 

Instead I modelled stinginess & dishonesty rather than gratitude & generosity!
Be careful what you say as a parent, it has more impact than we often like to believe! My children teach me to be a better parent!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Knotted Shoelaces

What inspires us? People? Events? Tragedies & triumphs? Any and all things can. I guess it's often if we are willing to let the little things, the mundane inspire us, not just seek the great and grand. Does it happen per chance or is it Divine intervention? That I don't know, but what I do know is that many things inspire us and this blog is a humble endeavour to capture those moments grand & small, how to cultivate the art of cherishing our children....

Inspiration for this blog/book was an epiphany moment when my eldest was 5yrs old - he's now 16yrs, so it's only taken me 11yrs to realise that the internet can help me be an 'author' of a blog rather than a book. 

So the story starts......running very late for pre-school one day, Mr 5yrs asked me to untie his shoe laces! A very ordinary event, simple request. In frantic motion I wiggled those laces with an obvious annoyed and distressed look on my face because Mr 5yrs says, "you'll be so glad Mummy when I'm all grown up and you don't have to worry about my shoe laces"! 

It was like a slap in the face! All of a sudden I was transported to a day when he would be 17yrs old and it's midnight and he's not home, wondering where the heck he might be, and of longing for those knotted shoelaces! I ditched the annoyed attitude and hugged him tight, the knotted shoelaces didn't matter anymore,nor did I care if we were going to be late for pre-school!

This began the journey of wanting to cherish every moment of my children's lives. I chose to have 4 children, wanted 4 children and am blessed beyond measure to have 4 healthy, happy kids that love life, love learning and love me! Don't get me wrong, we are not a perfect family, far, far from.....

So here it is, a blog dedicated to my 4, and to other parents, single like me, or not, who find themselves struggling at times with the huge responsibility that parenting is and other times delighting in the pithy & quirky, joys & laughs, great & small that parenting brings.

sugar and spice and all things nice