Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Back to school

Sunday dawned, and with it a return to sole parenting as Husband took flight for work.
While he flew into a cyclone zone, our house quickly turned into one too.
You see, the Little Dude has taken on the mantle of being Man Of The House while Daddy is away very seriously.
So in addition to the usual household detritus of toys, colouring books, paints and discarded food wrappers littering our home, there have been nails and screws and bits of wood as C. put together not one, but two bookshelves for me
Awesome! Now if only I could get him to tidy his room…
In other news, the kids finally went back to school today. Yes, it’s been a long summer holiday, and while we’ve had fun, I think we’re all ready to get back into the routine of school again.
And unlike so many of our Aussie friends, who have apparently spent the past few weeks up to their elbows in contact and name tags, our relaxed Kiwi school staff have told us not to worry about it until this week, when we can pick up everything we need in a tidy little box. No contact or coverings required. Genius!
Their first day back started with a Powhiri, a traditional Maori welcoming ceremony for all the new students, teachers and parents. Many of the women wore colorful skirts or sarongs, and we all took our shoes off for the duration of the ceremony. Afterwards, parents, teachers and school officials greeted each other with a hongi - the rubbing of noses or a Maori kiss.
When it was time for me to go, there were a few tears from the Little Princess, who desperately wanted to come too. But one of her teachers took her by the hand and when I looked back to check, she was skipping alongside her.
Personally, I’ve had the hardest week I think since we moved here. I don’t know if it’s that the excitement of birthdays, Christmas, New Year, and our holiday in Oz has worn off, or a combination of all of them, but I’ve felt a bit flat. Of course, it doesn’t help that husband is away for a few weeks, and my arthritis has obligingly flared up.
It's times like these that the negatives of moving overseas really hits home. With our closest family across the ditch in Australia, together with a network of friends and neighbours, there's really no one I can call on if I need a break, especially when K. is away.
Luckily, we have a long weekend coming up with Waitangi Day on Friday, and Kyle’s boss’s family have asked the kids and I over to their place for fish and chips on Saturday. The rug rats are also twisting my arm to take them to the museum or the movies - or both! Hmm, that will depend if they sleep in their own beds tonight!
Anyway, hopefully I'll soon have booted the blues and be back to normal (well as normal as I'm going to get anyway!)
Can't talk, building. Missy lends a hand.
And below, the finished product (As you can see it was hot work - shirt came off)
A healthy breakfast for the big Grade 2 girl - though: 'It's not as good as Dadda's' she pronounced mournfully.
"Mum, do I really have to stay?"

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