Friday, January 24, 2014

January 22nd

Harriet had horse riding scheduled into her vacation schedule from very early days.  She was thrilled at the idea of trail riding through the countryside at a gentle pace with her friends from school, and even more thrilled when we woke to find an overcast, slightly drizzling morning.  Perfect weather for it.  After we negotiated getting out of the car, negotiated going through the gate, negotiated going up the stairs, negotiated sitting down while I filled out the permission forms and negotiated going back down the steps and finally negotiated going back out through the door, I drove Ted over to his friend Chris' house.  Ted had insisted on wearing his full school uniform over there, although he did put together an outfit for me to take so he could wear different clothes "for when I'm eating".  Wise, indeed.

Our visit did not start well.  Apparently Chris had been so excited about Ted's visit that he had been carefully and thoughtfully compiling a group of toys and costumes that may be of interest to Ted.  Upon arrival the opportunity to wear a clone trooper outfit was immediately jumped upon with relish; but for some reason the appeal rapidly vanished, to be replaced by an hour-odd long process of disinterest in each other's respective interest.  So, as one child showed an interest in...oh...let's just say lightsabers found in a well-hidden are of the toyroom, the other would eschew said interest and complain bitterly regarding the other child.

Sometimes I find it can take a while for younger children to find their groove to play together well.  And so it was on this day.  I think it was more the fact that Ted had just reached a saturation point of demanding and inconsiderate behaviours over the past few days that I found him to be particularly grating on this occasion. 


As it was, the prospect of show managed to inspire a group effort for short while.  You can see that Chris was a little over it after a while.  And since these seem to have become the holidays of the interminable show, I am similarly feeling a fatigue of performance I thought it woudl be difficult to reach.  But reach it I have.

However, as is often the case, the best unifier of play was water.  It always is water, isn't it?

And even better than just water alone is the added thrilling prospect of water with limitations.  The boys reveled in the opportunity to saturate the back glass doors, each other, and the open windows of neighbours.

You may remember that Ted had a friend over to explore these very concepts just last week.  My friend and I watched with a growing trepidation at their vigorus attacks at the door.  Sure, the doors were designed to be exterior doors.  But somehow the focused, intense pressure of a hose on just that one tiny diameter was enough to send our hearts lurching up high.  At one point we just watched through interlaced fingers, to quell our growing concern.

Broom versus hose.  Luckily Ted had brought that extra set of clothes.

Leaving the home was, shall we say,  less than elegant.  In fact it took around twenty minutes on the front porch, required me to come back up stairs and literally peel my son off my friend (oh no, not embarrassing at all) and then spend the next ten minutes after they have all gone inside and closed the door to 'negotiate' on the front step of your friend's home with your screaming, crying, yelling son who has passers-by and people across the road looking on anxiously to assess whether they need to call authorities.  Seriously.

We returned to pick up Harriet and found that the trail riding experience with the horses had not been exactly as advertised.  For one, they had been ponies, not horses.  For two, they were not out on any trails, they were undercover in a stadium.  Three, they were led around at a walk in said stadium  And for four, there were five children per single pony.  Besides all of these disappointments Harriet was still in even spirits.

At dinner we discussed the disclosure of the children's teachers and classmates. Harriet has a teacher she had for half a term last year, which she was happy about.  Ted did not receive the teacher we were hoping for.  Again - watch this space.  And overall the class allocations for our little preschool group seem to have divided us all up over the three classes.  Teddy and Chris, however, are in the same class. So it looks as though future water attack activities are in the future.  I'll bring the scuba gear.

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