Tuesday, July 11, 2006

What my kids taught me


Last weekend Ilham was kinda cranky. Nothing he does seems right, he whined almost all the time. He got frustrated with his younger siblings. He was really unfocused and was slacking on his dishwashing chores. I was kinda angry at him for acting out, so I just ignored him.
We had to go out to the grocery store and I almost had to force him to come with us.
We were in the car on our way back when he asked, "Can we go somewhere? Jalan-jalan, boleh?" (sightseeing, can we?)
"ummmm..." Taufik thought, before answering.
We were driving towards Corniche Road, the street that ran along the beach, and Ilham instantly asked, "Can we go to the beach? please?"
"What do you want to do at the beach?" I asked.
"Let's just have family time" he answered.
So Taufik pulled over and parked at the side of the road and we all went down to the jungle gym that was by the beach. (The kids all said "Thankyou Ayah!" as they got off the car. That was so sweet of them)
Taufik and I sat on the bench watching the kids play while we shared some doughnuts that we had bought at the grocery store. (I had to hold Izani, so Taufik had to feed me).
I saw Ihsan attempt the monkey bar, but he moved too slowly so by the time he was halfway, his arms had grown tired so he let go and fell on the soft sand. He looked at me and I gave him a thumbs up, yelling "good try!" from where I was. He just grinned and ran off to the slides.
Then I saw Ilham at the monkey bar. I was suprised at his agility and strength. His movements were quite smooth and quick as his hands moved from one bar to the other. His legs were adeptly kept apart and swayed to balance his movements.
When he successfully reached the other end, I yelled out a triumphant "Yay!!! That was a great job!!" to him and he gave me the biggest grin I've seen on him all day.
We were walking towards the car when it was time to go home, and I told him that I was so suprised that his arms were so strong. Ihsan complained that his wasn't strong enough, so I told him to eat more rice and practice on the monkey bars some more.
When Ilham got home, his demeanor changed. He was in a better mood, he didnt complain when he had to help with the dishes. He was nicer to his siblings.
Sometimes kids just need to go out. And sometimes all they need is someone to tell them they're great.


Ihsan was picking up tiny bits of these constructor toys they had and they were all over the living room. Some were near the TV cabinet, and when he bent down to pick one, his head hit one of the cabinet doors. He said "Ow!", keeled over and fell on his face.
Still on the floor, he turned to look at me.
"What happened? Are you okay?" I asked, while trying to supress a laugh, coz I was afraid if he would feel hurt that I found his accident funny.
Ihsan grinned and said "I was just trying to get that, and BANG! I hit my head" and then he let out a giggle that made me and Ilham laugh so hard that Ihsan started laughing hard too.
When you can laugh, you can't hurt.


I was preparing dinner, and there was a small pile of dishes in the sink that I had been putting off since after lunch.
Anis came into the kitchen for a piece of cake. I was annoyed and felt a bit bothered by her interruption, but gave her a slice of cake on a small dish anyway.
After she's done with the cake, she placed her plate in the sink and saw the dishes.
"Oh, Bonda, Can I wash the dishes? Can I?" She asks, in the same tone she would use to ask me if she can go out and play.
I hesitated, I thought about how she would not do a good job, but then I thought, why not? If I had to re-wash the dishes, it was something I was supposed to do in the first place anyway.
So I helped her pull up a chair to the sink. I showed her how to pour the dishwashing liquid into the soap bowl. I showed her how to control the faucet. I reminded her to wash both sides of the dishes, not just the top bit.
She asked me questions while she washed the dishes. She asked me why I had to throw away the chilli seeds (So that it won't be spicy for her to eat). Where do all the soapy water go (To the sewer). She asked me her favourite question, "Bonda, what are you cooking?" (Fried Fish). "Oooh Yummy" she replied.
When she was all done, I inspected her work.
I had to re-wash a few of the bigger ceramic dishes, but she did really well with the plastic ones that the kids use.
I said "Thankyou, Anis!"
She said "You're Welcomed!" and ran upstairs to watch her brothers play PS2.
Never underestimate your child's willingness, and ability, to help.

Because of you Sunflora, I made mee kari today...

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