Daily Archives: April 21, 2007

prediction: it’ll all end in tears

conclusion: goodness, Smudgie, you’re good at this predicting lark.

One son strode off, declaring that it couldn’t be done except using metal and the people who set the challenge were stupid. He proceeded to play alone, loudly, in front of us, changing activity every three minutes as nothing seemed to satisfy.
One son persevered, determined to work it out, and came fairly close although still not quite moving the one notch forward in his thinking that would enable him to solve the problem successfully. This son plans to continue tomorrow, having slept on it and thought it through.
No prizes for guessing which was which.

Meanwhile I am re-reading “Next Steps in Parenting the Child who Hurts” which is a fabulous book. Today’s stuff is just typical teenage stuff and live-with-able, but it’s nice to read this book and find that for the other stuff I’m mostly doing the right thing, and it acknowledges that often doing the right thing just isn’t enough. It acknowledges the feelings of guilt and talks you through them, which is also good, especially after someone at church who was really well meaning showed intense lack of understanding of the situation by saying, as is so often said, “Oh, he’s a teenage boy… they’re all the same.. I’ve had boys too but they’ve grown up now and I’ve got grandchildren too. It’s no different”. It’s also good to read something which explains why children with attachment disorder behave the way they do and realise that neither he nor I are to blame… and it was particularly good to discover that considering residential school is in fact a GOOD THING TO DO!!!

Your continued prayers for a place at this school would be wonderful. This morning I caught myself, like Arti, thinking “And God, please make it soon!”

(Since I typed that my old son has come back – he apologised to me and to his brother and has been delightful all evening)

How does my garden grow?

Blasted blackbirds! I had my patio pot looking all smart and ready to go and the bloomin’ birds decided they didn’t like the flowers I’d planted and pulled them up roots and all, leaving them in a neat line on the lawn. Pah!

My lovely friend M (currently totally crippled with arthritis) arrived unexpectedly this morning. Well, it was expected really, seeing as I’d just got into a scrumptiously warm bath with expensive bubbles and a good book and this is the time she always arrives at the door. Fortunately she’s well trained and went straight into the kitchen to put the kettle on while she waited for me to emerge. She came with a wonderful idea – a trip out to our favourite nursery to get a new clematis for by my hedge. I’d been wondering whether buying a more established one might have a better chance of success. Mind you, remembering to water it might help too!

So here I am with a beautiful Silver Moon clematis waiting to be transferred into the pot. I was tempted by another lovely flower too, related to a mesambrianthemum (one of my favourite flowers) but different. I’d tell you the name if I could be bothered to go in the garden and look at the label. Anyway, it’ll look great in my patio pots. The whole garden is beginning to gather steam and be a really lovely place to sit out, despite the lack of grass! And you should see the bluebells (I think I may have to have a wander outside with a camera in a moment).

My brother commented on my sudden enthusiasm for the garden. It’s threefold, of course. Firstly it’s a bit like the urge (easily subdued!) to do spring cleaning – a nesting-style celebration of the good weather and lighter nights after the depression of the winter. Secondly I now find myself with time to spend in the garden just relaxing and enjoying my environment – something I haven’t done in ages. And thirdly, the one that I only realised this morning, is that I seriously miss my Dad’s garden. I find myself wanted to invest in plants which are more lasting than your standard bedding plants which give instant colour but when they’re gone, they’re gone. I want to watch something develop and suddenly burst into flower like my Dad’s peach tree, camelia and jasmine – each year coming anew like an old established friend and giving a cause for celebration. This may sound odd but.. plants you can actually build a relationship with, just as I have with my beautiful old oak tree.

My fingers may not be turning green, but my fingernails are developing a much more earthy tinge!

It’ll all end in tears

It’s a beautiful day here today, so in order to prevent g.b.h occurring as Tiddles and Smudgelet re-enact William Tell without the apple (Tiddles firing tent poles very impressive distances with his home-made bow straight at Smudgelet’s head), I thought they could have a go at the first proper challenge on the Science scheme. It’s a fun one. Using five pieces of A4 paper and 50cm of sellotape they’re to try to construct a platform which will hold a dinosaur (or at least a house brick) 5cm off the ground. The ultimate, of course, is to progress to building one which will hold a person 5cm off the ground too!

This is how it is progressing: Tiddles is lying on the blanket on the lawn with his sunhat over his eyes, barking out orders at Smudgelet. Smudgelet is ignoring him and doing his own thing, which is not yet succeeding. Tiddles is having a paddy because Smudgelet won’t do as he’s told or listen to him. I reminded them that they are supposed to be keeping a record of what they try and how they modify it. Smudgelet asks if he can do the writing. “What, and leave me to make it?” came the reply. “Then you do the writing.” “I’m not doing the writing – you’re the one that likes writing!”

May I make a prediction at this point? And do I need to do a fair test to test out my prediction? I think not….