Wednesday, 21 January 2009

On the day the USA celebrated the inauguration of their 44th President

Our school work was very flexible, lose and relatively non-existent today because I was hoping to watch the US Presidential Inauguration on TV this morning. Broadcast started at 5.30am (NZ time), so I knew it would be a long, long day. I'd already had a long night too, because tama 1 woke up three times I think it was. I'm not sure what disturbed him; I can only guess it was due to the heat of the night, but because he kept getting up, I would have to steer him back to his bed again. Not only tama 1, but of course, tama 3 decided he must also wake up more often than usual last night. How is it that babies have a sixth sense about things? They instinctively know when you want to do something out of routine, don't they? eg get up to watch the inauguration at 5.30am!?!

Now, I'm not here to get on my political soap box. I simply mention the inauguration because I wanted to embrace history-in-the-making. The fact that Barack Obama is the first African American President alone, as well as to be inaugurated the day after Martin Luther King Jnr Day AND in front of a crowd of over a MILLION people !!!! AND in freezing temperatures !!!! I just had to see something like that. We have a population of 4.1 million in New Zealand, so that means a quarter of New Zealand's population were present. That, to me, is just so mind-blowingly unbelievable. What it must have felt like to have been a part of that crowd!!!! "Wow" is all I can say!!!!

One thing I was particularly impressed with was Barack Obama stumbled swearing the oath. That made him seem more personable, more real - more human if you like - to me. Being on the other side of the world, people and events in the USA can sometimes feel very far removed from reality so little hiccups like that remind you that it really is a live broadcast afterall, and that he is very much a human afterall.

{I am also impressed that he swore the oath
on the same bible that Abraham Lincoln used.
How awesome is that?!}

Anyways, I'm not here to discuss whether I like the man or the politics he represents. The simple fact of the matter is, today was a hugely monumental event in American culture and is/was most definitely history in the making. I may not have ever watched an American Presidential Inauguration before, but by golly, I'm glad I did from my corner of the world.

Many bloggers were immediately to their blogs posting verses from his speech and giving their .02 cents worth. All power to them. I'm glad people feel strongly enough to voice their opinions. I love American patriotism. Sometimes I wonder if we Kiwis have nearly the same kind of patriotism ...

Back to school chat now ...

Having viewed this morning's television events, our schooling was very much a muddle afterwards. It didn't help either that tamāhine 1 scraped her foot on the deck and somehow managed to get four very large, very nasty splinters in her feet.

The bulk of our school work was mathematics. Tama 1 finished his double digit worksheets so I taught him some Roman Numerals. That was easy and a lot of fun.

[As an aside: I made full use of our unfinished house today ... as we have no gibbing in the kitchen, I wrote with chalk on the timber frames I = 1, V = 5, X = 10 etc!!!! Hey, not everybody can graffiti their walls for school eh?! hee hee)

Tamāhine 1 had a stab at double digits once she completed her mathebook worksheets also. She's been adding double digit plus single digit, but as we started back to work this week, I wondered if she'd be able to grasp double digit addition. Although it required a lot more concentration, and we used the Decimal Street and blocks for visual aide, I think she coped very well. In fact, I would probably say she did better to understand without my clumsy attempt at visual aide!!! Hei aha.

Well, other than swimming ... before the splinter episode ... that pretty much really was the way our school day panned out.

May I just say, I am very proud of my boys too. Tama 1 was just gorgeous how he tried to cheer his sister up. He spoke calmly to her and even tried to divert her attention by telling jokes or making silly gestures to get her to laugh. I didn't have to ask him to do anything, he simply came forward as the compassionate brother that he is. Tama 2 was also very delightful, he tried his very hardest to look after his little sister and brother. Honestly, tama 1 and tama 2 made the situation so much easier for me to perform the "surgical removal" and hopefully slightly less painful for tamāhine 1.

Big, big hugs and kisses to my helpful young men.

The following clips are from this afternoon's 'dip'

Tama 1 has been swimming the width as shown above for a few weeks now.
So I asked him to try swimming the length today ...

Gaining the confidence to put your head under water
is one of the biggest hurdles yet one of the
greatest accomplishments

I'm almost positive that this time last month he wasn't swimming
with his head under water!!??

I fully intended taking video clips of tamāhine 1 and tama 2, but I'm afraid I ended up trying to juggle the babies whilst holding the camera and I simply didn't succeed. Oh well, 'tis the beauty of having our own pool ... I can simply try āpōpō (tomorrow) !!!

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

Oh, one last thing .... I spoke to my friend whom I thought was coming to stay last week, and, well, um, I better not jump the gun here, but if I simply say "best of luck for Saturday, fingers crossed cos I know you'll get it" ... I'm pretty sure she'll know what I mean, lol.

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