Dad's blog

The elevator story

This infamous elevator had once trapped shoppers for hours before they could be freed.
“Do you remember the time the doors closed and I was inside and you were outside?” I asked my daughter as we stepped into an elevator together the other day. She laughed and replied, “Yes, how could I ever forget that?” It was a long time ago, so the incident must have seared itself on both our memories, even though we can laugh about it today.

Are we there yet?

A 10-day holiday when you’re an adult flies past, but time seems to drag on forever when you’re a child.

A 10-day holiday when you’re an adult flies past, but time seems to drag on forever when you’re a child. The car journey from our farm to the beach, where we spent most of our family holidays, always felt like a cross-continental trek. My sister and I learnt to look out for particular landmarks along the way to reassure us that we weren’t merely spinning on a hamster wheel on the road to nowhere – but we still asked the annoying “are we there yet?” question.

The happy pastime

We need imagination to make things happen and reading fiction is a great way to inspire it.
I fell in love with reading as a child, which is why I still enjoy a good book today. Admittedly, I read lots of comics growing up, but this developed a desire to read for pleasure, to enjoy reading as a pastime rather than as a tedious task. And it stuck.

Animal love

Cats get to enjoy the company of children, who also learn to love the animals.
Children have been reading aloud to cats at an animal shelter in Pennsylvania, USA. This innovative programme at Berks County Rescue League sees children from the ages of six to 13 years old visiting the shelter to practise their reading skills and to spend time with attention-starved felines. The idea is that the cats get to enjoy the company of children, who also learn to love the animals.

Love to watch them play

What they really want more than anything in the whole world is for you to let them know that you love watching them do whatever it is they’re doing.

Children instinctively want their parents to watch them doing stuff. Just before they joyfully jump into the pool and create a mini tsunami, spilling water all over the place, they’ll shout for you to stop whatever it is you’re doing and watch them perform their rendition of the human cannonball. “Daddy! Daddy! Look at me!” Jump. Splash. They’ll run into the lounge while you’re engrossed in a book or a game on the telly and shove their latest drawing under your nose.

Responsible parenting 101

We all make mistakes as parents, but a story like this takes the cake.
Police pulled over a car in Bloemfontein the other day that was driving erratically. Behind the wheel sat a 10-year-old boy on a cushion. No seatbelt on. His father was sitting in the passenger seat drinking a beer and there was also a baby in the car. Apparently, the young boy wanted to drive and the father agreed to it. After cracking open a can of beer, of course. He was fined R1 000 and the car was impounded. Are you incredulous reading this?

Lemonade and the future

I live in an apartment complex inhabited by a number of families. Every now and then I hear a baby crying at night, which brings back distant memories of that particular parental challenge.
I live in an apartment complex inhabited by a number of families. Every now and then I hear a baby crying at night, which brings back distant memories of that particular parental challenge. So glad that’s in the past. And I often see young children from different apartments playing hide-and-seek in the courtyard or other games that don’t break windows.

Big steps

Only one out of eight matrics going into the job market this year will find jobs.
In 2002 my daughter went to big school for the first time. I love looking at the photo of her dressed in her too-big school uniform with a beaming smile on her face. In what sometimes feels like the blink of an eye, she was sitting her matric finals. That’s twelve years of homework, assemblies, sports matches, friendships, car pools, parent-teacher meetings, bigger school uniforms, school fees, tests, exams, hopes and dreams. Oh, who am I kidding?

The marrow of life

It was a stark reminder of our mortality and the importance of good housekeeping, in every sense of the word.
My parents have settled into the steady routine of their retired lives. They walk their energetic dogs on the beach every day and they do all their own housework, which keeps them active and in relatively good health. But there’s no escaping the fact that they’re now officially senior citizens.

Farewell to innocence

Much as we’d like to, we can’t always shelter our children from the hard realities of this world.
My daughter is almost finished her matric finals. She didn’t take dramatic art as a matric subject. If she did, she would have had to describe in her final exam how she’d stage the rape of a baby using a loaf of bread and a broomstick as props. The exam question has caused quite a stir (revulsion is probably the better word), and rightfully so. We live in a society where rape is more than an infrequent horror, even for young children.
Syndicate content
 
Customize This