Monday, November 02, 2009

Parenting Girls

October was a manic month. The family and I seemed to lurch from one big event to the next, and I spent a lot of time moving forward very quickly, permanently in sink or swim mode (which is polite for Not Sodding Coping).

Meals have been crap, all the fruit in the fruit bowl has gone off rather than being eaten, I've got a sore throat, the kids have mouth ulcers, and we are all run down, cranky and over each other.

So, my job over the next few days is to pull things together, and get this whole trainwreck back on track. The house is tidy and clean right now, so at least I can walk around barefoot without treading in cat or dog vomit, poo, or cat, dog or child wee, OR getting a barbie shoe embedded in the sole of my foot - those little suckers are sharp.

Next job is to clear off my desk, ug, who knows what unpaid bills are lurking in there. Not to mention un-filled-in forms. I dragged myself through the forms for Miss Fives Primary school a week or so ago, and now I have a similar, but slightly more evil set for Miss Nearly Four's new preschool. Sigh.

I blogged a while back about the Kindergarten induction we went to. Whilst the kids got to know the layout of their classrooms the parents were sent to the library where we were given the most wonderful seminar on self esteem and resilience in girls.

Hubby and I had been expecting a lecture on homework, teaching to read etc, etc but the only mention of such things was to say that kids are taught using a phonetic system that we would not be familiar with - and actually I was because it was how my mother taught me to read, because that was the way she was taught to read. So when they say new, they really mean recycled.

So, as a result of that seminar I am presently reading Growing Great Girls by Ian & Mary Grant.  Its fantastic, and unlike many other books on the subject, its down to earth and relevant.  It interprets the modern world and tackles tough issues like the effect of child specific marketing, sexualisation of girls in the media, in a practical head on manner.  Stuff that is quickly becoming something that I have to deal with.

I was brought up on a farm in Kent, in southern England.  Secure, protected. I didn't know who Abba was, or Buck's Fizz and the only TV I watched was the adless BBC1 and BBC2.  So when it comes to the reality of being a child in a modern urban environment I'm clueless.

So this book is putting it in perspective for me, and laying to rest quite a few of the worries that have been bothering me.


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