The Kids (Sept 2016)

So, it’s been a while since I’ve written about the children and their school lives.

Matthew is now in Year 8, the second year of secondary school and fast approaching his 13th birthday. He enjoys Maths, Science, Cooking and PE. He is still not confident with his writing and does not enjoy English but gets through it all ok. He is back on the School football team this year as a Goalkeeper.

James is now in Year 3 of primary school. The school is now an Academy and everything I’ve seen from the changes they’ve made to the school from the staffing, the security, the building – right through to the attitude and feel of the school – has been nothing but positive so far. The school felt incredibly stale in recent months. The teachers had no passion and drive and with 4 of them leaving at the end of summer term, we were more than ready for new teachers and teaching assistants. This has made a huge impact on young James. He is now happy to go to school, he looks forward to lessons and learning every day. He runs in the door with a smile on his face and is currently enjoying his work. His new teacher is a really good influence on him, he is inspired and trying really hard. With that comes the realisation that he can do things that he always struggled with before a little bit easier than he found it before. With that comes confidence and the eagerness to try and learn more. So far, it’s all a win win situation. He’s still behind most of his classmates, still struggles with reading BUT he’s trying so hard and getting better all the time, Year 3 could really be the making of James.

Liam has recently turned 7. That means we have another 5 weeks of having two 7 year olds in the house that aren’t twins.  Liam is now in Year 2 and has the dreaded SAT tests this year to test the school, teachers and kids just where they are under government guidelines in the education tables. I think it’s too much on kids. James really struggled with these but Liam is soaring ahead at the moment. He’s on one of the top tables for Maths, Science and English but struggles with his writing just like his brothers. His reading is ahead and his spellings are pretty good. If only he would spend more time doing them then I’m sure he’d get really good marks at that too. He just sticks with the ones he knows for now and doesn’t work so hard with the learning aspect of spellings. Still, he’s only just turned 7 so I’m not going to turn all pushy parent on him just yet. He has always wanted to learn and thanks to his teacher last year he found his confidence and “happy space” a fair bit before James and has excelled since. This is why I’m hopeful James’s new teacher will take him further this year. Thankfully, Liam has the same teacher this year so I am really confident that he will continue to shine and be encouraged by what he is doing.

As the kids are getting older, I find myself looking back at the old baby photos and enjoying them as babies. I don’t get the yearning for any more.

I love my boys to bits and after the baby and toddler stages, it becomes such a joy to watch your children grow and develop mentally and emotionally. They are such real little people now with beliefs, with opinions, with ideas and dreams and it’s amazing to see them all so different from the others. They are very individual with different strengths and different interests. They really do have so much going on in their little lives that I am just proud to be part of it all.

The baby years are short, the toddler years are short, the school years – well they seem to be flying by too.

I can’t miss my “babies” when I am so in awe and adoration of the children they are right now.

They are strong, happy, compassionate, kind, sharing towards each other. Always help each other. Try to cheer one another up. Try to assist the others. And they are all the best of mates.

I really can’t ask for anything more than that.

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Change of Career?

study

For a while now, I’ve been wanting to do more. More than just be a waitress. Whilst I love it to an extent, it’s not what I’d call a rewarding job. It has no real future and as you get older then, it becomes that little bit less enjoyable.

For a while now I’ve been thinking of becoming a Slimming World Consultant. To 1) Help others who struggle with their weight like I have/do. and 2) To give myself a boost and something to aim higher for.

Then, one night hubby and I were watching tv about Health Foods. The benefits of natural fats, the things that are superfoods. You know the type of thing, when it hit me.

Why stop at being a Slimming consultant? Why not go the whole hog and find a new career in the NHS?

I’ve looked up a few things and I really am seriously considering going to college next September (if we’re still in Suffolk) and studying to become a full on Dietician.

It makes so much sense.

I know about the weight loss side, the diabetic side and the pregnancy and small children nutrition through alot of personal experience and if I can combine the two and work in the public offering help and guidance to those needing/wanting to lose weight or for medical needs then I feel it’s something I can really excel at and it is something I truly believe in.

This year is a little too short notice to begin the courses I need and it would mean giving up my current work to study on a 3 day course which later in the course will be upped to 5 days for placement duties.

I say “If we’re still in Suffolk” for the simple fact, that hubby has been offered a new job. Still doing what he is doing but on a bigger scale and it would mean MAJOR relocation for a minimum of 4 years. Again, I don’t want to say too much for something that may or may not happen but it is very much “Abroad”. That’s all I’m going to say on that for now. The money sounds good, the oppertunity is a once in a lifetime oppertunity but it’s him who finally has to make that decision. He’s the one who has to take on the big job and obviously as a family, we’ll support him whichever way he chooses. We’ll know more about the actual deal in October and then have a big big big decision to make that will affect the future of ourselves and kids – probably forever.

So, watch this space.

 

 

Mum Knows Best…. Right?

Today I was going to write a post on why I adore my hubby so much, but that has been put aside for another time as the day has been enlightened thanks to the postman delivering some good news.

Firstly, the official report on Liams heart scan and ECG test last week shows that their studies show him to be perfectly healthy in that region despite his genetic condition. We were never worried but it’s always good to get a clean bill of health.

Secondly we got a letter back from the Special Needs Coordination team (SENCO) regarding getting them special help in school. I’ve had meeting upon meeting, talks with teachers repeatedly being told that James and Liam are both lagging behind other peers in their class.

SENCO do NOT feel that either of them need one to one tuition. (Punches the air)

They say that having seen me, the teachers and the boys in their learning environment, they are satisfied with the additional help they have had put in place at school and home and can see improvement with their work and learning levels over the past year. This shows they are capable of learning what is needed on the curriculum, they are just that little bit delayed in their learning.

Something we have noted and accepted from the beginning. This something I have always believed to be blown out of proportion by the school in the name of “targets”. I’ve never believed, deep down, that they need one on one tuition, just a little more support in class with certain things and group work being enough of a boost.

The boys probably will never be top of their class but not everyone is.

I don’t want to sound blase or like I am not interested in my childrens learning but there is SO much more to life than education and reaching targets that the government set. What will be will be.

What about their personalities, their strengths? Their personal beliefs, the things that make them individuals. We don’t need a world of cloned children all getting A* in everything.

A lot of adults even now struggle to read and write, at ages 5 and 6, they are grasping that now. Those adults with those struggles still have jobs, they have families. In the modern male orientated, now digital world, spelling and writing are no longer essentials for life. Maths is wasted to an extent. As long as my kids grow up learning how to handle money I will be pleased. There is a calculator on every mobile phone, tablet, laptop, PC. Tills in shop tot up the bill, tell you what change to give.  There is spell check. As for a future doing something physical, then practice and training goes a long way.

The point is, just because the school are keen to point out their issues, it doesn’t mean they will be like this for life. School is naturally hard for some people and they blossom into happy confident adults despite being written off by the schools.

I’m personally pleased with the result. I know they are behind but I know they do their best. That’s all any parent really wants of their children. I’m so proud of my little men and that they are achieving targets even if they are a year late. They ARE learning, they are getting experience and that all comes with confidence. Confidence comes from being told they are doing well. Something I’ve always always encouraged in all my kids is masses of praise and over the past few months they have changed so much.

They are so much more mature, settled, happy to follow tasks. They have the concentration, they appreciate the praise and in turn become more confident and stronger in their ways.

Maybe sometimes I may be in a little bubble and don’t see the same problems as the teachers. Maybe sometimes I do get very defensive over my children and don’t always listen. I just tell my boys to do their best.

Even as a mother, I still make mistakes, I get things wrong. I just want to know that I’ve done things to the best of my ability – this is as an adult so for my kids to be making the effort to do what they can, whatever the level they are at fills me with such pride!

The future now, again, rests with the school. The extra work they are doing IS giving out results. The school is doing it’s part and it’s working. It’s if this bond gets broken when the issues will arise.

As much as the school irritates me with all this, I still firmly stand by the fact that if I didn’t think the school were doing what was right for my boys, then I would simply take them out of that school and enrol them in another primary school. Overall,  I am satisfied with the school, I just don’t like the way parents are made to feel failures and have to jump hoops to get the school to look good. But I guess that’s the way it is.

So finally, to recap. Liam is healthy and neither James or Liam need special education help with a one to one teacher. Through knowing my children inside out, my inner gut instincts have been proven right yet again.

Mothers Day

Today it is Mothers Day here in the UK so it seems the ideal moment to take a few moments to reflect and be thankful for the little people that makes this day worth celebrating.

11043044_10152655816791034_2319868471006634976_nWhat more do I need to say than these are reason my for living.

My reason for getting up every morning….early….far too early.

My reason for wanting to work, wanting to provide more for their future, our future.

My reason for fighting through tough times.

My reason to live well, lose weight, strive for a healthy active household.

My reason to provide a comfortable, clean, enjoyable homelife.

My reason to better myself.

My reason to be proud of my actions, to be proud of what I have achieved and what I have helped raise into lovely young men.

My reason to live by a moral code I would have taken for granted in the past.

My reason to look at life from a far away perspective, to nurture, to care, to encourage through life, to love, to help, to nurse, to educate, to admire.

These are my kids and these are just a handful of thoughts on how they mean so much to me.

New Job

I’m back in the world of being a working Mumma! Hooray.

It’s still part time, it’s only a little cleaning job assisting my friend who has left a big local cleaning company to go solo and after a couple of weeks with her client list growing she has decided to expand and I am the new assistant. Hooray.

My James is in her son’s class so it will only ever be working between 9am and 3pm as we both have the same school drops and pick ups so couldn’t suit me better.

We go round some lovely houses doing basic cleaning jobs. Bathroom, kitchen, polishing and hoovering living rooms, hallways and bedrooms. It’s not that strenuous and it’s nice working in different places. I had my trial day yesterday and rather enjoyed it.

Next week I will be getting more hours, possibly set hours and quite likely a couple of clients I can work for on my own as opposed to being in a pair like we were yesterday.

One of the houses we have is a private house that is rented out for weekends as a holiday home. I can easily do that on my own in a couple of hours after dropping the kids at school once or twice a week while my boss does another job then we can go off to further jobs in the day.

Whilst the pay is a little lower than what I was on before, I am happy that it’s guaranteed money. 10 hours (though I’m hoping for more 20 hours once we can take on yet more clients) of lesser money is still more than 0 hours of maybe having work sometime soon. It doesn’t work for me. I’d rather have a little something regular rather than wait to see if something happens soon. So whilst I did love my other job, I’m going to have to contact them today and turn down the hours I was supposed to be doing in 10 days time. The thing with zero hours is that technically, I am out of contract so I don’t have to give any notice whatsoever but because I am a decent person I will give as much notice as possible.

2015 appears to be shaping up ok so far. I’m happy. There are a few changes happening but the changes are mostly positive from my perspective and I feel this could be a really good year for me personally. Let’s hope it lasts.