Friday, January 28, 2011

unfair, chess

chess aug

David has been teaching Augustine to play chess. It is thrilling to see his little mind strategize and make a genuine effort to outwit David. He takes great pride in himself when he takes a piece.

sometimes i question how i'm raising my kids. isn't that the plague of parenthood? it's also the plague of being a Try-er i guess. i struggle with this topic in two different ways.

with olive i feel i am failing to let her be little. she has always been the sort of kid who has been on the higher end of age appropriate abilities both physical and intellectual. i'm not being "that parent" when i say this. i couldn't care less if she is advanced or behind or whatever. i'm just being real about her. so when she can do advanced things and socializes well with older kids when she does things that are typical for a 3 year old (whine, not clean up her room as thoroughly as i expect, etc) i get snappy with her if not outright angry when she acts her age and i feel pretty ashamed of this. she is very attached to david and often will find any excuse in the book to get out of bed at night and see him/us. this makes me positively rage after an exhausting day. this is when i am most glad to be married because at least one of us must retain our sanity and calm the other while intervening. well usually at least. i just don't want to make her grow up too quickly in areas she's not ready for. showing restraint is difficult.

augustine has shown a real aptitude for math. his report card indicated that his teacher thought he was above his peers in this area. i never thought i'd be one to be too pushy about this kind of thing but all of a sudden i am All About Math with him. i'm constantly scribbling math problems on everything and offering incentives for completing his worksheets. i do not want to be pushy! i don't want to be that parent who is a drill instructor and i'm sure you're going to all be commenting that "no, you're just encouraging it!" but arg i just am struggling with balancing it. david's side of the family are all very left brained and proficient at math (many engineers!) i have dreams of him going to the local STEM school (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics emphasis) here. i'm sure he could test into the program but again, i don't want to be too pushy with what i feel is right for him. this is where i sharply differ from the chinese mother approach (what is up with that ridiculous mother!?) maybe i am too lax? i have considered that and only time will tell. i really like that we give our kids the comfortable amount of space to figure things out for themselves. i don't outright abandon them to their own abilities but it takes me longer to intervene than a lot of my peers. i guess i feel they, like me, learn better by Doing rather than observing or being told how to do something. i also question how much i am projecting myself onto my kids. which is hello, inevitable, we can only hope and pray that what we are projecting is the healthy and not the dysfunction. right now augustine is sitting next me listening to the beatles, doing math problems, and sipping on earl gray tea. something about this makes me uneasy. like i am morphing him into me and that makes me feel terrible.

anyways, augustine went to his first concert this week, Rain - a beatles tribute on broadway. augustine, my brother jason, david, and my dad went to the gorgeous palace theater downtown for it. i was pretty jealous. david said they went quasi-chronologically through their albums, changing outfits, facial hair, and hairstyles as they changed eras. everyone said it was amazing. augustine fell asleep somewhere around srgt. peppers but he still was thrilled to have gone! today he is sick and i suspect it's from staying up late two nights in a row, one for the concert and another from a late dinner party last night, and in general all kinds of germs floating around. i feel like the entire city is sick right now. so we're playing games and lounging in our jammies all day. well until tonight, wherein i will clean the house and host yet another dinner party.

did i mention that david and i have decided that now that we have a house, that we want to host one dinner party per week. i mean, what is a home if not filled with friends? so far we've stuck with this desire and i hope it keeps up. i want to Use this place.


MamaFeelgood said...

When are we going to get to see some lovely pics of your new abode?
What's wrong with morphing your kid into you? My little one has loved the Beatles since birth. Why not?

madzymoo said...

One dinner party a Week! wow, you guys are like sUper parents! Though, after being semi-alone as far as friends go whilst living in a small and cramped apartment(like us) I bet it would be great to have people over. But with the whole parenting thing... what you're saying is actually comforting to me. I've always worried if I would be a good Mom (in the future) or not, if I'll lose my temper too quickly or what have you, and I Still wonder about these things. I'm being told it's "natural" to think these thoughts and it's "totally different with your OWN kids" ect. I don't know if you all have a Christian radio station up there... klove?
But I was listening to it a few days ago and they were having a parenting chat. Well, more like a "How to figure out your child's likes and dislikes" and "not controlling your child's interests" chat.
It was great I was hanging on the edge of my seat- how crazy is that? I don't even have kids yet.
So they brought up the typical Football Dad you know, pushing his kids to do what HE likes instead of asking them if they even like football. Some of the advice was, buy them colored pencils, see how they react with those, if it's positive, you know you've introduced something to them that they may thrive on forever even if you are not an artist. Or, buy them a camera, get them use to photography, see if they like that, or sign them up for t-ball. If they're not into it, go get a milkshake. :)
Hey, he might decide he'd rather listen to the symphonic ear busting sound of The Beatles rather than Johnny Cash. It's okay either way I think, exposing him to your likes or dislikes. I began listening to Pink Floyd when I was in the 4th grade. Now, I don't listen to them at all because they're depressing and when I was in the 4th grade, I didn't realize certain things I know now. Some rock n roll isn't good as you well know I'm sure. But my Husband and I simply won't do without our Beatles record a-turnin when we have kiddos. ;)
Just make sure your concern doesn't turn into worry. And if it has, pray about it, and the Lord will lead you AND your kids :)
He is awesome.
ps) check out the book "Crazy Love"

jenny mae. said...

haha i dont feel like a super parent (i dont think any parent does). i really love having friends around and eating. voila dinner parties!

ive heard great things about that book!