9 Months…

No, not talking about pregnancy… Nothing like that around here. It has been over nine months since I actually last posted here. I have all the best intentions, but if I am writing, it has tended not to be blog entries, but I should change that. A lot has happened in the past nine months, including the first birthday of little Pixie Pie (pie number 2).

Thoughts that I have about entries, that I will get to;

– Hot Undies Run – and exercising in general

– The family evolution

– Writing… I wrote a book… but it is not close to publishable.

– Random bloggy stuff

Let’s just hope it does not take 9 months for me to get to any of that.

Rethinking Everything…

So I am way behind on blog posting, if you have not already figured. Back over the labor day weekend, which was a little while back, we took a weekend away. Up to lovely, sunny Dallas, and more specifically to a hotel on the outskirts of DFW.

It was an education, or a rethinking education conference. Really it was an unschooling conference, which is a form of homeschooling, one based on a child led learning. Focusing on what the child wants to learn, and not measuring yourself strictly against arbitrary goals that society set. Children all learn at different speeds and in different ways, and the traditional school system teaches children more how to take tests and less on learning skills that are relevant to real life. There is one thing that school really does not do to my mind, and that is prepare a child for the real world.

The conference basically took over the whole hotel and it was incredible to see how the kids acted more than anything. There were some great panels and sessions that we were able to attend, but with the two young ones our time was really focused on them and the sessions took a second place, but watching everything and everyone was in a way much more educational. The best part of the weekend was watching how Pickle Pie started to open up and make friends (having her fall out of bed, and slip in the bathroom and crack her cheek on the toilet was certainly one of the lower points… but she was fine). One night she even said to Mum mum ‘I want to make more friends tomorrow’

Loved seeing that. Loved.

The other thing that was great was the people. From a wide spectrum of society and approaches to education and life. We made friends with a lot of people, and regardless of if we follow a unschooling methodology to education, we will be looking forward to the conference next year even just to see the people that we met this year, and to meet new people.

We are on a journey at the moment and trying to determine exactly how schooling will look for the girls, and what it will look for Mum mum and me. Our head is currently closer to going with homeschooling of some sort, but if we go it more solo, or work together with a co-op of some sort. We are walking down a particular path, but the great thing is that we can stop and have a check internally at any point and if we want/need to change we can do. The biggest thing that we need to determine and keep in mind is simple.

‘What do we want the girls to get out of schooling, and what skills do we want them to have as skills when they leave home’

Parenting is tough

I should be writing about how I got dressed up as a superhero (And not just any but Supergirl) to run in the blazing Houston heat this afternoon, but I can’t. I don’t care enough right this second.

Pickle Pie spent the night with Nana and Bubba last night and came home after I left for the run. As I was being dropped off home by a fellow runner, Mum mum was pulling out to take her over to Ama & Kong Kong’s.

A couple of hours later we get a call. Pickle Pie had been running, fell and hit her teeth. Her front teeth were bent in. Rushed home she was and calls to dentists both near and far. Luckily our neybor is a dentist and after a consult with the on call for our regular dentist he was able to straighten them back. Pickle pie was a trooper, was a super brave girl, and was back off dancing and playing shortly after the procedure (sans pain killers) was complete, and scaring the beejeebers out of us with every move she made. Last I heard, she was in a Chinese restaurant eating soup. Wow… Her strength in that situation amazes me.

Everyone who has had kids knows it is not easy, and tonight was a sharp reminder of that for me. Any of the adults would have taken the pain for Pickle Pie if we could, but we could not, and all we could do was help her deal with it.

Pain is a part of life, although it is sometimes too much part of the central part of out lives. It is around us all the time, and we all have to deal with it at some point. Physical or emotional, we endure and move on. I wish I could stop my kids from ever feeling pain of any kind, but even if I could I know I should not. Pain helps remind us of our boundaries, and I guess there are some that say that if you don’t feel the lows and the pain that you will not feel the highs… Not sure how much I believe that, but regardless… Letting her go and do her thing is always hard, but doubly so tonight.

Parenting is hard, I understand that better everyday, but I would not trade it in for anything. I am incredibly privileged to have to beautiful healthy kiddos… And look forward to everyday I will have with them… I will be there to pick them up when they fall, to cuddle with them when they are sad or in pain, and to join in the joy when they are happy. My kids are my life. Not all of it, but a large part of it. I don’t live only for them, and they certainly do not live for me, but I will happily tag along for the ride to help guide them and support them, and to watch them grow into the awesome women I am sure they will be.

Tomorrow will be better and i will get around to posting about the hot undies run… But for tonight I hurt because my kid hurts. She just deals with it better than me I think.

Bayou Segway Tours…

From Houston Segway Tour – July 26, 2011

 

Houston is a city that a lot of people either love or hate. Some just don’t get the attraction. We do… or we likely would not be living here. That being said, there are a lot of areas of Houston I have not taken the time to really visit, and the bayou area around downtown is one of those. You don’t realize how much there is to see, and some of the history of Houston (e.g. Allen’s Landing… Which I never knew of and would never have known to visit) that is easily accessible.

http://segwaytoursofhouston.com/

Due to a great deal through GroupOn my Cuz and I took a Segway tour of downtown Houston, focusing on the Buffalo Bayou area and theater district. It was a great tour, and one I would highly recommend, if you are visiting or if you live here. Some good history, some sights of Houston that not everyone sees everyday, and the chance to speed through Houston on a Segway.

Riding a Segway to me is like a combination of Wii Fit and Skiing. It was a lot of fun, but took a little getting used to, especially when it is in training mode as getting it to slow down feels a little tricky, but they are very responsive so moving around things is pretty easy.

We both had a lot of fun, but I would recommend (on top of a camera with a wide angle lens if you have one) a little backpack with some water, as there is no where to store a bottle of water if you bring one. Here are a couple of photos from the tour.

I was not sure how the tour would go given that we were to be outside for two hours in July, but after getting going on the Segways, it was really very pleasant, and between trying to take the sights in (and get some photos) and messing with the Segway, I never really noticed the heat. The breeze you get while on the Segway really makes it feel very enjoyable. A tour that I highly recommend.

Houston Segway Tour – July 26, 2011

Pickle Pie Celebrates Turning Three…

From Pickle Pie – 3rd Birthday Party

 

Wow… three years… Yes, second post on her birthday, and there could have been many more. We helped celebrate her third birthday with family and friends over the weekend. Hiring out the party room at Star Pizza and providing nothing more than some pizza, some drums, some free space, and a little time… and kids are happy, and parents get a little space to relax (at least I hope they did!).

From Geehan Family – 2011

As an additional benefit, we also celebrated the birthday of Pickle Pie’s Kuku and her Dadawa (Daaadddiee Waddie). Everyone had a good time, including our new little Monkey.

From Pickle Pie – 3rd Birthday Party
Pickle Pie – 3rd Birthday Party

UPDATE – Fixed issues with the photos after I changed the permissions on the gallery…

My Little Caddy (or will it be the reverse?)

Pickle Pie has always seen me watch and be interested in golf. We have a little toy club at home and a putter that my dad got at a conference, that breaks down and can be stored in a decorative box. She loves to play with both, so it has come as no surprise that she would repeatedly say ‘Daddddyyyy… When I bigger, I go pway golf wid you’.

Over the weeked, as a present just from me, I took her to Golf Galaxy. After wandering around the store with no one offering to help, we finally found the junior section. This is what we walked away with;

 

From Geehan Family – 2011

I had then planned on going to BestBuy to look at the Kinetic… but Pickles had a different view… Nope… Memorial Golf Course it was. We got a small bucket of balls, and I managed to hit one or two… but the main reason for being there was;

 

From Geehan Family – 2011
From Geehan Family – 2011
From Geehan Family – 2011

Pretty good form, although she is dropping her shoulder, which will not help her get the best contact, but we will work on that… 🙂

We then moved on to the putting green, where her approach of guiding the ball towards the hole was innovative, but maybe not part of the USPGA rule book!

 

From Geehan Family – 2011
From Geehan Family – 2011

It was a hot afternoon, but we both had a lot of fun. BestBuy, and a look at the gaming options there would come another day…

From Geehan Family – 2011

Milestones

From Geehan Family – 2011

So it is always the big milestones that people talk about with their kids…

  • Sleeping through the night
  • First time they Roll over
  • First food
  • Crawling
  • First Steps
  • etc, etc, etc.

But to me it seems it is the unmentioned milestones that have hit home a little more. First time Pickle Pie stayed over with either grandparent, using the potty more and more, without accident, and so many more. This really hit home yesterday. Pickle Pie dragged me out of bed shortly after 7am to go play in her room, builing buildings with her Lego Duplo, and playing with shape puzzles. I then heard Pixie Pie, and so went to get her out of bed… Breakfast was then processed for Pickle Pie. By 10:30 I handed Pixie back to Mum mum (who was just stirring from bed) and took Pickle Pie out to Home Depot. She slept a little on the way there and then fell asleep on the way back… staying asleep for an hour or so.

The rest of the morning/early afternoon was spent recaulking the bathroom. It really made me realize how sloppy a job the contractors did when building the house… caulking the outside of the shower door sill, but not the inside (resulting in a deep green algae like substance to be growing on the caulking), caulking over cracks in the grout instead of fixing the problem itself, etc. Pickle Pie did help out, but then got distracted by her sister.

Anyway, back to the reason for the post. We went over to a friend’s house to hang out, as she was just recovering from surgery. She has two wee ones, A girl of four, and a boy who is 1 1/2 weeks younger than Pickle Pie.

Given that I work all day (yes, I do actually work), I tend to miss out on a lot of the play dates that happen, so have not seen Pickle Pie’s interaction with other kids all that much. That being said, even Mum mum was surprised at her yesterday. Within minutes of arriving the kids were calling for Pickle Pie to come play, and soon after they disappeared into a bed room, coming back out, at full speed, each with their own cape. Round and round the house they ran. Mum mum joined in, resulting in a terrified Pixie Pie. Dadawa then took over, resulting in a terrified four year old (I still have the touch it seems!). Yoga was then practiced, and all around fun had.

We then headed out to grab a bite to eat before going to Capoeira.

I was surprised, proud, and a little sad to see how quickly Pickle Pie is growing up. She is such a little girl now… Not an infant, not a baby, but a little girl.

Oh yeah, and we ended the night with her having a bath in the sink in the kitchen. Started by her wanting to wash her hands, then scrub her fingernails, then wash her feet and scrub her toenails… all resulting in the photo below;

From Geehan Family – 2011