Friday, November 16, 2012

Little things, big things and the things between

It's the first day of the year end holidays. Since the June Holidays had been such a  busy time with so many travel plans, I am actually loooking forward to a fairly homey December break.

Ofcourse,  Anjali has a long list of things that she wants to do and yesterday evening, when she came back from patti's house, she immediately set to making a bucket list.

She got tired of writing halfway through, as Sophia was having a lot of fun simultaneously working on her alphabet glue book, so I wrote the other half of the list while the girls dictated, and then put relevant illustrations on the page. Some projects are simple - write to santa. Some are hard: grow a caterpillar. Some are essentially places to visit - wild wild wet, zoo, bird park, west coast park, science center (Sophia wanted to see the dinosaur and illustrated it)

Out of the alphabet glue activity, Sophia went to the corner of the room to the book case and was quietly cutting her magazine out. After ten minutes, she came out with three pictures.

"These are finger puppets mom!", she said.

I got to hand it to that kid for creativity. I taped the finger puppets to their hands.
 In the meantime, I was working on this. The softtoys were getting on my nerves, piled up in a corner of the room in big plastic bags. Plastic bags are somewhere up there in my shovel list under cigarettes and rude people. So I am embarking on a project to replace plastic bags with cloth/ cardboard, rattan and other natural materials. It is a hard battle, since plastic is so ubiquitous.

On Diwali day, Anjali made what she calls a straw skirt for Sophia. The idea is that they would go to the library prom wearing straw skirts - Anjali will wear her Hawaiian skirt and Sophia will wear this. Sophia is not entirely agreeable to the plan though. She wants to wear her Russian outfit. I told Anjali that I will sew for Sophia a top and shorts like she has. The  library prom is on 24th though and I dont know if I can put that in with all the other projects in hand.

About the skirt, its rather brainless really. I cut some tulle into strips and Anjali knotted it around a cloth hairband.
I am very thankful that my children take happiness in the small pleasures of life. They probably got it from husband. Kids love to explore and as adults we are rushing. When we are at home, we are stressed about going out, and when we are out, we are stressed about returning home. Its not the case for kids. The simple lessons matter a lot to them. 

Yesterday, after ballet, the girls spent about half an hour walking to the busstop - basically exploring the small hill next to patti's house. Its not a hill really, just a elevated grassy slope on top of which is a hedge. Behind the hedge is patti's apartment. We usually ignore the slope, but for the five year old and the three year old, it is full of hidden treasures - tree roots to walk along, slopes to slip down, some muddy patches from yesterday's rain. Some covered manholes to run from one to the other. 

It was good fun and resulted in a rent stocking. Ofcourse, husband was rather annoyed by the stocking - it was new, but Anjali cheerfully agreed to do housework and earn money to get a new pair. She has to earn five dollars by next week or wear the rent stocking to ballet class. 

 For me, this vacation is about making. i have a long list of play projects to implement, to think of implementing and to plan for. There is a vague idea of setting up an experimental science center at the home, complete with a few books on experiments and some relevant instruments. Along with invitations to play every day and every evening.

This is the invitation to play this morning - home made cloud dough.

 The girls were so engrossed that they didnt even look up when i left for work.

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