Monday, 21 December 2009

The pitfalls of parenting with non-performing progeny

I acquired some black 'skinny jeans' for free from the local swap shop and ds1 has been living in them for a fortnight now. For the first time ever we have found a pair of jeans that actually fit his legs (and almost his waist when hauled in with a belt!). When teamed with a hoodie and with his long dark hair hanging out he looks like some youff or some mini punk rocker! As he says, 'I'm practising being a teenager'.

It's very cute. Cute that he's playing at being older than he is. Testing it out without having to live it. Yet. But it does make me realise how fast my just-11 year old is growing up and how soon things around us will all be changing. We are on the edge of unknown territory and I'm so hoping that the path over the cliff edge is gentle and with a mild gradient!

At the home ed group on Thursday some of the children put on a Christmas play. Not my children though. Public performance and my children don't tend to mix. Not that I haven't know, encouragement, gentle persuasion, bribery, and-er-shoving to the front of the stage, stapling their feet to the floor and running away. (Yes even attempts at Pushy Mum persona have been to no avail).

I sometimes wonder how many plays and performances I have sat through that included other people's children, (but not mine). Ds1 sobbed and screamed through 4 years worth of nativity plays at nursery, finally managing to get on stage in his 5th year as a king, (chucking his present at the baby Jesus and legging it as fast as he could off the stage!). Ds2 managed to briefly trudge across the stage as a Gruffalo one year at the Christmas preschoool play, but his first was also to be his last performance. And dd? Well she refused to even entertain the thought of being in a Christmas play. And having the wisdom of a tired mother of 3 I didn't try to persuade her otherwise.

So there I was on Thursday, yet again watching other people's children performing in a play. It would be rude not to watch of course, but without sounding uncharitable I'd much rather watch my own children doing something. Wouldn't you? Another parent in a similar predicament tried to reassure me. 'Well there's a distinct lack of my children up there too,' she said. And then we consoled ourselves with the thought that at least our children hadn't disrupted the play. No, they'd actually been quiet, hadn't wrestled each other to the floor, walked in front of the cast, made rude noises or shouted. We have such low expectations, but, you know, sometimes you just have to give praise where praise is due (and hang on to the small blessings because there aint any big ones coming soon :) )

At the same home ed group we made some Christmas garlands. Dd threaded some popcorn. Well, to be acurate, she supervised me threading popcorn...sometimes I wonder if I have 'slave' tattooed in invisible ink on my forehead (only visible by children). Anyway, back to popcorn string; I was just thinking it would be a nice addition to our Christmas tree, then I turned my back for a minute. When I turned around I saw...

Needless to say, it didn't make it to the Christmas tree :)

We woke up on Thursday to find this:

No, not a child with an oversized mother-knitted crazy jumper!

I mean the snow! Yes snow! Ok, I know it's only a little snow. But it's still snow.

And here are our chucks wondering what all that cold white stuff is (the smaller one at the front is the 'chick' we hatched this year)

So just a little sprinkling of snow. Most of it melted, but a few patches remained, turned icy and hazardous and then topped themselves up with some soggy sleet today. So it's slippy out, but not really snowman material yet. It's funny to have snow so near to Christmas, unusual, kinda nice, in an unexpected way.

So are you all ready for Christmas?

I tackled Tescos today and it was manic, frenzied. 'But there's still 4 days to go yet!' I wailed (not out loud you understand, because then they'd find out the truth about me). I had to stock up on some birthday tea items for ds1 tomorrow and thought I'd get most of the Christmas food at the same time. Big spend. And it's only us to feed. How does that happen? Ah well, at least we'll be able to live on wine and crisps for the next 10 days. A balanced diet.


globeonmytable said...

Hi, the growing up thing is fine really, just extra strops and extra interesting conversations, all within the same hour. It'll roll off your back soon enough!

The mum-of-a-teenager-amnesia is helpful, I move on from one event to another and forget what on earth the previous problem actually was.

Having more than one child is good too, instant distraction.

Big mamma frog said...

It feels like entering the unknown because the 2 oldest are boys. I know what it's like to be a teenage girl, but a teenage boy?! Yikes. And they do start to take up a lot of space don't they? lol.