Archive for March, 2011

Brownies

Eliza

Eliza has graduated from Rainbows to Brownies. Four weeks in and she is still in mufti, awaiting her chance to take the Brownie pledge. She’s learnt the words that require ‘allegiance to my God and the Queen’, and reads the Brownie introduction book in bed at night. There seem to be more games and less craft than Rainbows and Eliza has already experienced a Brownie disco. She has called one of the leaders ‘Evil Owl’ – not an abusive elder, but a mispronounciation of Eagle Owl.

Robin

L met Robin’s teacher for a de-brief on his first two terms of school. All is going well and he appears bright, active and happy.  L was shown a letter that Robin wrote at the teacher’s suggestion when two balls were kicked into a neighbours garden. He managed a ‘sorry’ and some faltering explanation of balls over the fence. His first literary production.

Gabe

Over a week of constipation and paranoia about not going to the loo ended with a medication assisted trip to the toilet. Gabe reported that he had ‘the sorest but happiest bum in the world.’

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3am at the hospital

Eliza

After several days and nights of coughing, Eliza appeared in our bed with breathing interrupted by coughing. L had already said she thought Eliza had asthma. Conscious – but tired – that both Gabe and Robin had ended up in hospital with asthma and that we have no medicine prescribed for Eliza, I decided she needed to go to hospital. I helped her into clothes and then to the car. Minutes into our journey and Eliza seemed less ill, but I pressed on. At the hospital, she sat on my knee as we waited to be seen and then with the nurse, coughing as proof of why I had taken us there. We weren’t deemed an emergency needing A&E care and so went to the duty GP’s office. We waited watching middle of the night tv. Eliza was calm and well-behaved. Eventually we were seen by the doctor who examined Eliza and offered no prescription, just the consolation of a vague diagnosis of viral asthma  – a bad cough. We drove home at dawn.

Gabe

Several times most nights, Gabe enters a phase of intense, adenoid scorching snoring. It doesn’t seem to relate to his posture in bed, but some independent tightening of his airways.

Robin

L bought off Robin with a green, sound and light emitting light sabre. With lighter mornings, Robin had been waking and coming to our room, where he fidgeted and sniffed through the last hour of our sleep. He was challenged to five consecutive nights of staying quietly in bed until L or I got up. The incentive worked, but with the threat of back-sliding to the earlier routine, the threat is now that the light sabre will be removed unless he can continue to stay in bed until a reasonable hour.

Double gold (again)

Gabe

Gabe returned to the Liverpool Performing Arts Festival at St George’s Hall as part of the school orchestra and recorder group. The latter won their competition, facing no opposition whatsoever, with Colonel Bogey and Calypso Carnival. The orchestra came top of their group, winning a distinction for playing Tordilion and The Sound of Silence. L and I got to see the school assembly celebration performance. The music was precise, controlled and really arranged and played with real sophistication.

Robin

Pancake day drove Robin to distraction. Because of his egg allergy he wasn’t in the group that made pancakes on the first day. Furious on leaving school he turned on L: “It’s your fault, you growed me.” With forbidden pancakes made at home, he kept up the bad temper for the rest of the day. Back at school, he finally had pancakes that he could touch, made with our soya egg substitute, and found he liked them.

Eliza

The new year at gymnastics has seen Eliza performing forward rolls on the beam and hanging from the wall-bars with her legs stretched out parallel to the floor. Her favourite new manouevre is the kick-over. From a crab position, she kicks her legs up and over, flipping herself over and landing the other way up on all fours. Initially the crab was with feet elevated on a support, or sofa when practising at home. But, with concerted practice, the kick-over is now essayed with her feet starting on the floor, on a level with her hands.

Mummy’s birthday

Gabe

Gabe decided to buy L a birthday present and that it would be a ring. He endured my advice/protests that Mummy would really like something that he made for her. He searched on Amazon (“cheap ring”) and selected a silver ring with three jewels. It arrived in time, was handed over to L on her birthday morning and won a look of genuine surprise.

Eliza

Eliza too wanted to mark L’s birthday with a present. She was in and then out of Gabe’s plan. She settled with home-made cards full of affectionate wishes and also a baby gorilla. L had seen one on tv and said how much she would like one. So Eliza made her a finger sized, pale paper baby gorilla.

Robin

“Rubbish” is Robin’s exclamation of disapproval. School, tea that varies from his narrow range of preferences, unfavoured clothing and L’s redecoration of his room all earn the cry. So insistent was his rubbishing of L’s painting of his bedroom walls that she responded to her critic and painted the second coat in the dark blue he wanted. “Rubbish” is also his (unwarranted) self-criticism of his reading, football, drawing, etc.