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ElizeElvinFoxRyder - Mozzies aren't on lockdown


MrsVan

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Mozzies aren't on Lockdown

Yes, I know, they are insects and don't know better. Just like the monkeys in our back garden, they are wild animals and don't know about lock down. Just like some petty thieves in the area - they don't understand (or adhering to) lock down.

I'm not going to say much about Corona. I think all has been said, that could have been said by now. I'm trying to find the lighter side of the situation. ;)

 

So I'm sitting on my stoep, enjoying sundown with a steaming cup of coffee, minding my own business, and this reckless, arrogant mosquito zooms around my head! The gal of it! Doesn't he know about lock down? A couple slaps later I realised that I have instigated a rebellion, because a horde of mozzies joined their first comrade, and were having a feast. Me. I realised then it was time for Ms ElvinFoxRyder to come out of retirement (or an impromptu holiday of sorts) again, to face these mozzies down!

 

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There is always something to be thankful for!

 

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Here are the ways I'm going to try to outmaneuver the squadrons moving in.

  • Move! Don't be an easy target.
    • BW exercises two maybe three times a week.
    • Walking (inside our property), OR Mowing the lawn.
  • Cleaning: Don't leave them any space to lay eggs in any watery areas.
    • Clean the house, clean out any watery depths (even as shallow as the dogs' water bowls), laundry... you get the gist. All together five days a week.
  • Sleep: Keep up the energy levels to continue the good fight.
    • Go to bed between 21h30-21h45.
  • Weightloss: Make a smaller target, less sweet blood. Not so appetizing.
    • Weigh and measure on a Monday. I've already lost 10kg+ since November. Trying to reach under 90kg this challenge! 👀
  • Count the Gifts: Stay positive!
    • I'm literally taking a (calendar) page out of the book A Thousand Gifts, and trying to find 3 things they ask for every day. Since the world-wide Corona lock down has brought our emigration plans to a halt (temporarily), I need to find and stay positive with the situation. Not just point out the negative that happen. So nevermind the mozzies, nevermind the criminals, nevermind the government, I'll try to find three things every day to rejoice in, or be thankful for, or just notice.

 

To be continued...

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Mrs.Van Starting from Scratch 🦸  👱‍♀️

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Monday:

 

  • 3 Gifts uncovered: This was a bit difficult.
    • eMagazines that I received from friends for this lock down. I sort of 'uncovered' the gift when I opened the files?
    • Compost that Rosy dug up and 'uncovered'. Yeah, not really happy, but it's good soil! It is a gift for our garden. Her black face after digging in it, not so much.
    • Brandt saw an old photo from a friend on Fb, in which his dad (Brandt's) was the rugby coach, and the head master of the school. Brandt's dad died when he was 7 or 9 years old, and he has rarely seen photos of his dad. It was a great moment for Brandt, showing the photo to the boys, and the feeling I got to see Brandt's happiness - that was a gift. Uncovered or not.
  • Move: BW exercises-
    • Burpees 10x (taking long to do)
    • Band rows 20x
    • Reverse lunges 10x
    • Mountain climbers 10x (because the boys have to do them, and they complained and said we give them all the difficult stuff to do, but can we do it ourselves? Yes, I can!)
    • Abs roll out 20x
    • Stretches
  • Cleaning: Compost bin, kitchen, normal morning duties (beds, dishes), shower.
  • Sleep: In bed by 21h00. Then couldn't fall asleep due to MOZZIE zooming around!
  • Weight loss: 92.7kg and lost cm in all the measured areas.
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Following along. 

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22 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Following along. 

Always glad to have you here.

19 hours ago, Tova the Vibrant said:

Hi Elize!

 

Get them buggers!

Funny Mosquito Gifs And Animations | gifopotamo.com

Get them! And cats don't know about lock down either. I think we can excuse animals, just not mozzies. They should know better! *evil grin*

So great to see you.

19 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Defeat the mozzies!

*HOOZAH!* We'll get them down! But alas, last night one mozzie kept me awake. Tonight I'll use the citronella wipes on my hands and neck. I don't want to use that electric mozzie liquid thing too much as it gives me very bad sinus.

 

-----------------------------------

I updated Monday's goals above, above. The BW circuit (as in my goals above) takes me about 15min. to complete. I'm not trying to build muscle, just maintain what I have. The boys are doing their own circuit every weekday which includes the following:

  • 20x star jumps
  • 10x burpees (with pushups and proper squats)
  • 10x lunges
  • 10x mountain climbers
  • 30x crunches

Brandt does his own thing, which includes what the boys does, just a couple sets more, and at least 30min. to 1 hour cycling on the bicycle (on a training stand). Basically every day.

 

It's been relatively quiet around the area, which is a good thing. We are slowly but surely getting in a routine with Brandt also working from home. Early morning 8h30- is his online time to chat to clients/colleagues about work. Then he works and connects whenever necessary to do his job. We start school and sit on the stoep for the first half hour. Then move inside where I have the whiteboard.

 

For the next three weeks I have to help Rocco with his fencing (keeping to his normal schedule of fencing on Tuesdays). We're going to change 'Bad Guy Bob' (the punching bag) into a fencing dummy. We don't have fencing clothes, he'll be an unwilling participant.

 

Then on a Wednesday they each have to complete at least one Lego building project (of which I have to take photos and send to their teacher). They have a whole calendar page of ideas, which she gave, to choose from.

 

Otherwise not much of anything. It is blessedly quiet most of the time. At the moment I'm enjoying this mini-vacation as much as I can. Not thinking emigration stuff, that brings on stress! We're taking it a bit slower/easier on emigration stuff, in the sense that Brandt still applies, but... basically waiting to hear the verdict after these three weeks, as NZ Prime Minister has hinted that countries will still be in a no-fly lock down 6 months to a year down the line.

 

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The skeeters haven't shown up here yet, but I can sympathize.  There have been a few leisurely hikes that ended up being runs through the woods because I couldn't take their buzzing and biting.

tumblr_m6w8alZ5ux1qeygi9o3_250.gifv

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 There is something wrong here. I posted a piece, with this photo, but the only thing that showed was the photo!?

Take Two...

To use Rocco's words, "We have rehabilitated Bad Guy Bob, and he is now Fencing Partner Bob." Yip, our old punching bag that we used to learn kicks and punches for self defense on, has been given a new life. A 'new man' with a not-so-stable, and still dangerous career as Rocco's fencing partner. It took only two lunges from Rocco to annihilate the first version of FPB, so we had to take another dab at putting him together. Dog blanket, old jacket, helmet, sword! Let it not be said we sent him to fencing unprotected! This second version seems to be holding up. Rocco said he'll rather practice for 10-15minutes every day, than one 1 hour lesson a week. Who am I to complain about that, as long as he gets his stab at fencing practice, I don't mind having this guy on our stoep :D

  

fencing bob.jpg

 

 

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4 hours ago, Sloth the Enduring said:

I’ve been here a long time, I can’t say I’ve ever seen a mosquito challenge.

:D I'm here to serve.

3 hours ago, Chris-Tien Jinn said:

The skeeters haven't shown up here yet, but I can sympathize.  There have been a few leisurely hikes that ended up being runs through the woods because I couldn't take their buzzing and biting.

tumblr_m6w8alZ5ux1qeygi9o3_250.gifv

 

See, it is about high time that someone took the mozzies on! Although we are going into autumn, they haven't gotten the message yet to retreat. It's humid and with rain still falling every now and again, they have enough place to breed. The only time we have almost no problem with them are July and August.

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Mrs.Van Starting from Scratch 🦸  👱‍♀️

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Sorry guys. Internet was ok-ish on Tuesday, but up and down on Wednesday.

Report for those two days, although it was quiet-ish.

 

Tuesday:

  • A gift heard, held, hoped for
    • All the "I love you" 's from Adam and Rocco. They've been saying it daily.
    • Brandt and I have been hugging daily as well. Every morning when both are up, we tend to meet in the kitchen. Then we hug.
    • Not sure... life is pretty much great/good at the moment. Quiet, no rush, at home. But I do hope Corona does away soon, that lock down isn't extended (because of how it affects everyone - people struggling to make a living, coping, and the usual, that we can emigrate.
  • Move: Nothing.
  • Cleaning: Floors, dailies, kitchen, toilet, bins! They actually came to collect the refuse!
  • Sleep: In bed by 21h00, but was woken up a couple times through the night because of cars driving past that shouldn't be driving. And police sirens.
  • Weight loss: Next Monday.

Wednesday:

  • 3 Gifts round:
    • I've been enjoying pitted, Morello cherries in juice with my cereal.
    • Round roasted coffee beans! In any kind of mug... round or square. But maybe enjoying it too much. Brandt drinks a LOT of coffee during the day.
    • Our biscuit/rusks tin. Not so much for me, but for Brandt and Adam. They are constantly at that tin!
    • For me, the round sun at sunrise... I've been enjoying watching the sun come up the last three mornings.
  • Move: Nothing.
  • Cleaning: Little bit of dusting, normal dailies, laundry. Laundry is half what it used to be, because no work clothes!
  • Sleep: Went to bed by 22h00.
  • Weight loss: Next Monday.

There's been break-ins, but not in our immediate suburb. There's been accidents, but not in our immediate suburb. We could hear the police and ambulance sirens rushing down the main street because of the quietness.

We didn't have a restful Tuesday night because of activity in our suburb. Then was woken up at 5am Wednesday morning by voices talking in the street. Turned out to luckily only be municipal workers fixing a burst mains water pipe in the street. We at first watched quietly from the house, because the two guys stood next to the truck talking, not doing anything. So Brandt went to talk to them. By 5h30 the digger came, by 10h00 they stopped working. They only work during late afternoon, the night, till early morning. We had water, the rest of the street, not so much because of the rain tanks. Some people in the street also have tanks, but there were no mains water during the day. They came again last night around 7pm and seemed to have finished covering everything up by 9pm. It will take months before the road is tarred again.

 

Brandt had to step in with the boys yesterday. They were just not listening to me when trying to go on with school work. Math specifically. He took the lesson over and had them working on the desks next to him. They worked. We've got new rules now: you do not have the privilege of going on the computer every day. You will work for it. If school work and attitude has been to my liking, then we'll allow you to play on the computers during the afternoon and evening. If you don't do your Lego projects, you will not play on the computer. If you don't do your exercises, or fencing practice, you will not be on the computer. I think I'll have to keep myself to this as well, specifically w.r.t. exercises. Although I couldn't mow because of some much needed rain.

 

Mozzies are strategically absent and most probably planning their next assault.

 

I slept late this morning (Thursday); only got up at 6am. Brandt had already made coffee. It was nice to have coffee in bed. On today's gift list is 3 Gifts white.

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On 3/31/2020 at 4:41 PM, ElizeElvinFoxRyder said:

Dog blanket, old jacket, helmet, sword! Let it not be said we sent him to fencing unprotected! This second version seems to be holding up.

 

He looks kinda like a post-apocalyptic zombie in a helmet. Definitely someone you'd want to keep at bay with a sword. 😉

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On 4/2/2020 at 1:58 PM, The Hero of Time said:

 

He looks kinda like a post-apocalyptic zombie in a helmet. Definitely someone you'd want to keep at bay with a sword. 😉

Well version 1 didn't last too long. Two lunges only, then we had to rebuild, repin, rethink. Version lasted a short practice session, and is still hanging on the stoep, but on the outside of the security gate. Now I don't have to open the gate and he doesn't swing around so much. The poor person who walks unwittingly onto the stoep in darkness and confronts this... thing! He'll get the fright of his life! *insert evil grin here*

 

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Thursday:

  • 3 Gifts white:
    • Milk!
    • Marshmallows, especially wrapped in chocolate in the form of a marshmallow egg. ;)
    • Tipp-ex (correction fluid?)
  • Move: BW
    • Burpees 10 (they were very hard for some or other reason);
    • Band rows 20
    • Reverse lunges 10
    • Mountain climbers 10
    • Abs roll outs 2x10 (but I could actually feel my abs working to pull my body back to the start! Less back ache too)
    • Stretches... no... needed to quickly get up and do something (can't remember what), then the boys took over the exercise mat, and that was that.
  • Cleaning: Dailies only, little bit of dusting. Some weeding in Breeze's outside cage.
  • Sleep: Went to bed by 23h30 only. New game (Life is Strange) which I became totally engrossed in, with the boys sitting next to me saying, " Rewind time! Rewind time! Do that over, quick, save her...!" You get the idea. What I absolutely hate about this game is the amount of swearing. Really people, you have other words in your vocabulary.
  • Weight loss: Next Monday.

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After starting the new rules w.r.t. computers and gaming in the house - and Brandt getting up about their math attitude the other day, (especially) Rocco's attitude has changed some towards school work. No moaning. They climb in and work. We are still taking long. It is as if the boys are writing slower because they know we don't have to go out, and thus they wouldn't have to finish it on their return. But... they've been doing it, and listening properly! A whole lot less explaining and repetition.

 

I'm struggling a bit to organise how to fit everything in that the fencing coach has sent this week to 'teach' Rocco to do in fencing. If I sit down and read and discuss all the theory (how a fencing kit was put together from the start till nowadays), it will take at least two hours! That doesn't yet include practice. We've done it in spurts over three days (half an hour to an hour each day - just the practice, not the theory yet!) which is way more than the normal one hour per week. So how does she fit it in? Or am I just being super zealous in trying to get all done? She sent the theory on penalties through this afternoon, but it's for next week.

 

The boys also built their two Lego projects, but I was the 'bad teacher' telling them that yes, the first attempt was ok, but not good enough. They built something really simple and basic which even a 6yr old could manage, and I told them in no uncertain terms that I expected more. They were not happy. But, after some moody comments and an hour or two passing, they've moved all the Lego boxes to the front (we now do school work on the stoep table every day), and showed me the 'new' handiwork. It was much, much better. I took photos and said I'll send it on to their Lego teacher. Gave them each two marshmallow chocolate eggs for their work. And for myself for patience.

 

More family/boys issues... or just skip if you don't like soapies/stories.

Spoiler

 

I'm also having a battle of wills with Rocco. Since turning 11 about two weeks ago, it is as if a switch was flipped in his head! He is at times so rude! Uses bad language that he heard online and in games, interrupts when we are talking, teasing and emotionally bullying Adam! Adam of course doesn't stand for that, and punched Rocco one or two times. I've now forbidden Rocco to play games that have bad language in them for the next three days (including online games) to start with, and took him short on his general attitude and manners. He almost laughed in my face! I've never had this from Adam, but then Rocco is a totally different character. He did however rethink his attitude when Brandt turned around in his chair and looked at him. That was all he did. Rocco apologised, looked at the floor, and just sat there. He is definitely pushing those boundaries! So we are back at "you have to earn your privileges and we have to be able to trust you to keep to our house rules."

 

One thing though... while I was playing that new game last night, the boys again surprised me with their reactions to some of the situations. Your choices affect the way the game turns out/ends. And this game (other than how I thought it would be) seems to be full of choosing between right and wrong (language, drugs, groups, bullying...); every single time there was a choice to be made, both of them urged me to choose the 'right' choice. At one point they were very vocal about this one girl doing all the rebellious, bad things, then blaming it on others and getting angry if they did not take the blame for her! Making them feel guilty that she ended up in trouble. Even the girl's mom made such a comment. I nearly uninstalled the game right there. Adam pointed out correctly that she thought the world owed her, and she was treating people like they were in her debt. Bad mouthing others, while she was the one acting out. So... yeah... they can clearly see those things, yet Rocco is acting rebellious too, and pushing those boundaries. He thinks he can just charm his way out of punishment. Be extra charming and loving for a bit, then all is forgiven and he can go on as if nothing has happened.

 

 

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I’m convinced too much game time, whether it’s violent or not, turns on the rude switch in kids. This is based on the n=3 data at my house. I’ve made yelling at mom an automatic no discussion lose all video (games and shows) privileges offense. But I’m mean so...

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21 minutes ago, Sloth the Enduring said:

I’m convinced too much game time, whether it’s violent or not, turns on the rude switch in kids. This is based on the n=3 data at my house. I’ve made yelling at mom an automatic no discussion lose all video (games and shows) privileges offense. But I’m mean so...

Nope, I don't think you're mean. Sorry, just left a long reply to someone in your thread w.r.t. gaming and groups, etc.
When your kids lose all video privileges, for how long does it last? I've never really had this problem with Adam, maybe once or twice in the beginning? I really think gaming has a worse influence on Rocco. But he is characterwise a totally different kid to Adam, so I need to treat them differently. I've been lenient with revoking privileges before, because they tend to compare what I do with the one to what I do with the other. But a punishment to one child might be a lot harsher if given to another child of a different temperament? Or am I making more of it than it needs to be? Example: I scold Adam and it is absolutely horrible to him, and you can be sure he won't do it again. I scold Rocco and he'll give me a look, turn around and next time, do it again. So his punishments should be different to those of Adam's.

 

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I wish I had chocolate marshmallow eggs.

It varied. With Stepsloth he needed to detox and it went until he had a whole day of being nice to his mom (don’t get me wrong, he was a nice kid, but teens...) and it usually took a few days. With Slothboy it’s the rest of the day plus the next day. With Slothgirl we just need to say, “It sounds like you’re about to lose iPad privileges” and she’s able to straighten herself up.

I don’t know why, but the kids tend not to yell at me. Sounds like it’s the same with Brandt.

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I think Sloth has a good point about how gaming effects behavior. Since your son is 11, maybe also I your discussions with him, try to help him think about how it affects him. Also, I homeschooled my son all the way through high school and I loved it. That said, there are a few drawbacks. One is that as a boy reaches puberty, he starts to want to  set apart his independence from his mom. Of course, that can come out in the wrong way. But part of that is good. And with you doing all the teaching right now, that might be amplifying that situation. Is there a way that Brandt could teach a subject, or be more responsible for it. Or just have some time on a special project just they guys are working on.  Or maybe  take out one of the school subjects while you are on lockdown, and have him do a special project of his own, that is  less driven by mom? 

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On 4/4/2020 at 3:45 AM, Xena said:

Parenting is hard and I have no useful advice (the cat doesn't listen to me, but I'm ok with it). I'm glad you have chocolate marshmallow eggs to help you through it!

Don't worry, our cat doesn't listen to me either. And if I dare get up from my chair, he instantly takes it over! King in charge!

Marshmallow eggs are the best! They lift up my spirits for a bit (distracts me while I drink in the flavour), but they also have zero advice about kids! Who'd have thunk? :D

On 4/4/2020 at 4:06 AM, Sloth the Enduring said:

I wish I had chocolate marshmallow eggs.

It varied. With Stepsloth he needed to detox and it went until he had a whole day of being nice to his mom (don’t get me wrong, he was a nice kid, but teens...) and it usually took a few days. With Slothboy it’s the rest of the day plus the next day. With Slothgirl we just need to say, “It sounds like you’re about to lose iPad privileges” and she’s able to straighten herself up.

I don’t know why, but the kids tend not to yell at me. Sounds like it’s the same with Brandt.

Rocco never swears or screams at me. It is usually at Adam. Then I hear and scold him for it. I scold Adam too, because most of the time Rocco looses his temper because Adam is bossing him around. I usually just talk to the two. Scold them, hand out punishment or an opinion and then we move on. This weekend I had them talk, and talk, and talk about it. And the biggest issue is this thing about Adam bossing Rocco around! Rocco picks up the swear words in some of the games, and when he totally looses his temper he uses it, otherwise he doesn't. The only other problem seems to be some form of envy/jealousy of Brandt and my relationship? I'm thinking on this. I'll talk more below.

 

Both boys have a very healthy respect for Brandt. He has only once given them a hiding when they were smaller, and he told me that even a soft hiding from him, would be too hard, because of his strength, so he never ever have given them a hiding again. He also doesn't raise his voice. He only has to look at them as if he is cross and they sort of cower. Quiets up right there.

On 4/4/2020 at 4:11 AM, Elastigirl said:

I think Sloth has a good point about how gaming effects behavior. Since your son is 11, maybe also I your discussions with him, try to help him think about how it affects him. Also, I homeschooled my son all the way through high school and I loved it. That said, there are a few drawbacks. One is that as a boy reaches puberty, he starts to want to  set apart his independence from his mom. Of course, that can come out in the wrong way. But part of that is good. And with you doing all the teaching right now, that might be amplifying that situation. Is there a way that Brandt could teach a subject, or be more responsible for it. Or just have some time on a special project just they guys are working on.  Or maybe  take out one of the school subjects while you are on lockdown, and have him do a special project of his own, that is  less driven by mom? 

We've had many such discussions, because of friends who acted out, or cheated in games, and I used that as example of how it affects a person in real life. Also the general perception you form of a person who swears a lot. It is very difficult to look past the swearing, to see the real person inside. As I mentioned to Sloth, Rocco doesn't swear or scream at me. It is usually at Adam. Adam's natural leader abilities (or something) are coming very strongly to the forefront, and Rocco is on the bottom rung of the pecking order (in his mind) it seems. When I hear him ordering Rocco around, I stop him immediately. I'm trying to impress on him that he should first look at himself, and his responsibilities. This is the one thing that drives Rocco crazy, and has him furious. But then he definitely exhibits bad behaviour/attitude that he picked up in games. Further on your comment in my ramblings. Thanks, I really appreciate your thoughts.

 

My thoughts on Rocco, the situation... rambling thoughts from the comments: In spoiler for space. Sorry, my thoughts are all over the place, I don't want to try and order them too much, because then I loose track of it. From one thing to the other, as it hit me...
 

Spoiler

 

Rocco has definitely been pushing the boundaries, in refusing to do school work, or stating flatly that he won't eat this food, or that. Won't go to bed at their regular time. He will play this or that game. His attitude towards the school work - but it is just to get out of doing work, wanting to play more games. Or he'll complain the whole time while picking up the dogs' food bowls if I ask him for help. After Brandt 'helped' with math last week, both told me this morning that they'd rather me do it my way, and they promise they'll listen and concentrate. Brandt also doesn't have the patience for it. Where he fits in is when they ask him about topics like history, specific wars, machines of war (planes, trains, engines, guns...), or modern technology, biology, science. He will also help when we do the physical, practical things (wires, lights, circuits...). And he also sat in when we learned about music last week (specific topics from the music encyclopedia - that was balalaika, Bach...) He discusses a lot of things with them, but outright teaching, nope. He would be great with them when they are older and they have to do project work, a lot of research and figuring things out for themselves.

 

The two boys also work alone on the Lego. I just give my opinion in the end. I don't tell them what to do, or how to do it. They pick a project from the table, and go about it. If they ask for advice, I'll try to give it, but I specifically try not to interfere or direct them, because they have to start getting used to handling projects on their own: thinking through the process from start to finish - planning. They've started doing that in Lego too, but they always work as a team. So I let the two boys be the team, and leave them to it.

 

I bought them a game on building computers - the hardware of computers. We don't want them to learn on our physical computers in case something goes wrong. That could be too expensive an 'experiment'. This is simulation-like, and I was thinking of introducing it when we finish this Lego course end of June (finally! It's been 2.5yrs). I could let them at it now, let them play around in the sandbox version. They are very keen. I thought of what @Elastigirl said, to take out a subject for now, but I'm not keen on doing that. We are only busy from 8h30-12h30 usually. The only subject I might drop for now, could be music (but it is only 2x 20min. a week approximately), or maybe reading from "The Living World of Science", but they really enjoyed it last week (both subjects actually). It ended up in discussions with Brandt, and went down the 'rabbit hole' with music, listening to Swedish musicians playing rock music in a band, using a balalaika! of all instruments. They love it, and Rocco usually ends up dancing. Brandt also joined us in these discussions, taking a break from his work. I just think school work doesn't take up that much time and they have enough time left in the day, for all kinds of things they want to do.

 

I overheard Rocco telling a friend on chat, I think it was Saturday night, that they aren't allowed to play on the computer early mornings anymore. I couldn't hear what the friend said, but Rocco's comment was in the line of no, they have to earn the right to play, and he actually likes it, because it makes him feel like he's done something right. Got it right and now he can really enjoy playing. They spoke some more, but I tried not to listen/eavesdrop further.

 

I think Rocco is also struggling with not having other people around. He is definitely becoming frustrated in that regard. I've sent him out to climb trees, the climbing frame, run around with the dogs, which he's done! He needs to be more active, and he likes having people around. (Yes, they still have to do their exercises every week day morning too). He's been wanting to hug us all, a lot more. Coming right up in our faces. Trying to kiss us through the day. So I'm trying to accommodate that, but it is also difficult for me. I'm trying to assure him of my love for him. I had a bit of quiet time by myself Sunday afternoon, and spent a lot of it thinking about this ^^^ reaction of him. At one stage he came to lie on the bed next to me, playing with Zuzu, talking to me every now and again. Then Brandt came to stand in the door, and we started chatting, and immediately Rocco got up and in my face! Literally between Brandt and me, trying to get me to focus on him, and ignore Brandt. I had to told him to move. And that was when it hit me... whenever I had to scold him for interrupting, bad manners, being rude to me or Brandt, it was when Brandt and I had started chatting. He always comes in between us. And I can't fathom why. I am not neglecting him with regards to attention. He has been extra affectionate of late (both Brandt and Rocco actually), so I don't know whether he is sort of jealous of Brandt? But why?

 

Since we had the big scolding/fall out/fight, and I had the two boys sit down and tell each other straight what bothered them, things have been easier. Rocco and Adam have been playing like the best buds! Don't get me wrong, Adam tried to order Rocco around three times today, "come pick this up, bring my lunchbox for me, come make your bed..." but I took him short. First pointed out that the thing needing picking up was right next to him, and he had accidentally dropped it from the table, not Rocco (was a paper of Rocco's), so he should pick it up. Rocco also wasn't his servant or errant boy, to carry his lunchbox around after him (Adam). And lastly, I asked him whether his bed was made up properly? Because if I went in to the room right then, and found that he was moaning at Rocco, while his own bed was not as neat as he expected Rocco to have his, then I was going to strip both, and make him make up both beds! And next time Rocco gets upset with Adam because of this bossing him around (screaming and swearing), he (Adam) is also going to loose computer time, and he will have to play Rocco's servant for the rest of the day. And it's been quiet and peaceful for the rest of the day!

 

 

-------------------------------------------------------

We've had mostly good internet connection throughout the weekend, receiving emails every now and again, but was hit by an influx of emails this morning, which seemed to should have been delivered from Saturday! One of the emails was a book I was to proof read for the author handing in today! Luckily it was three short stories, of which I've proof read two previously. So I finished the new one late this afternoon and sent it back to her with my excuse. I'll quickly read through the two older stories tonight, and if anything has changed, will send her in any typos I find. I've been struggling to concentrate, so it's been a schlep.

 

It has otherwise mostly been quiet, but other than mozzies not being on luck down, the Opportunistic Thieves are also not on lock down. We heard another volley of shots last night. Not close to us, luckily. The message on the crime group however, did only come through this morning. An attempted robbery of a person/house. The dog unit went after this guy, and he is now IN lock down. Yeah! K9 for the win! There's also been more armed robberies, but not close to us. It would be interesting to see, after lock down is lifted, whether the crime rate had abated at all during this time.

 

And when I went grocery shopping Sunday morning, I found that a lot of the serious potholes in our main street into the suburb, those you can loose a wheel in, had been filled in. There are of course new potholes, but smaller. But some of those bigger ones have been there, probably 6 months or more?! Anyway, almost back to straight driving. And I enjoyed the time at the shop. I sang softly to the music playing (rock and pop from 60s-70s), people were smiling, very few people, and freshly baked goodies! It just felt good. Maybe I miss going out a little bit, but it makes me realise how bad this is on Rocco, as he is very much a people's person.

 

Friday-Sunday:

  • 3 Gifts at 11am, 2pm, and 6pm Sunday
    • 11am: chocolate eclair! Freshly baked from the supermarket bakery! It was delicious. Not so good on the scale reading, but it was worth it.
    • 2pm: Brandt and I had a lovely, leisurely chat and laugh, about all kinds of things.
    • 6pm: Brandt was cycling on the stoep and called me urgently. A huge hawk had sat down on a branch not 10m (10yards) away from us! It was beautiful! I love birds! As I came out on the stoep, it flew off to a telephone pole across the street. I went halfway to the front of the garden, and stood to one side of the tree, to watch the bird. It suddenly flew up, and came around the tree from the other side! It nearly collided with me (that's what it felt like!), but about 2m (2yards) from me it made a sudden swerve (head over tail :D ) and flew back. I think I surprised it as much as it surprised me. But it was amazing! That was a huge gift for the day. I think it came after lizzards scurrying in the freshly mowed lawn.
  • Mowing: Sunday - 2h30-4h30pm Wasn't too hot, and because of autumn, a lot more shade. But now I also figured out how I'm abusing my right shoulder when mowing. It's the way I turn the lawnmower around using only my one arm. I'll have to concentrate on changing that. So yes, my shoulder is still hurting now after mowing yesterday.
  • Cleaning: Dailies only. Kitchen and a bit of bathroom.
  • Sleep: Friday was around 22h00, but Saturday and Sunday was before 21h30. I was asleep on my feet Sunday by 21h00.
  • Weight loss: -

 

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Mrs.Van Starting from Scratch 🦸  👱‍♀️

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It sounds like Rocco might be an extrovert and could simply be starved for interaction with other people than the three of you all the time.

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"By the Most-Righteous-and-Blessed Beard of Sir Tanktimus the Encourager!" - Jarl Rurik Harrgath

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You are a good mom and you  are very intune with your boys. Rocco's problems right now may be just his stress of dealing with it. Not only the  lack of friend time, but also the fact he is getting old enough to process that things are stressed.  Maybe  you just need to help him navigate that and how to deal with those feelings without lashing out at others. Maybe just talk about how when we are stressed and  under these circumstances, we all feel a bi of anger, and that is normal, but we have to remember that we need to love others, and find other ways to work through that

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On 4/3/2020 at 6:23 PM, ElizeElvinFoxRyder said:

The poor person who walks unwittingly onto the stoep in darkness and confronts this... thing! He'll get the fright of his life! *insert evil grin here*

 

It would be worth having a movement-activated, night-vision camera just to capture this moment. 😉

 

18 hours ago, ElizeElvinFoxRyder said:

people were smiling, very few people

 

It's funny that making people slow down seems to have made them friendlier.

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I have no real advice but a lot of support.

 

Growing kids is very hard!  one thing that is particularly difficult is the way brothers (sisters) treat each other. there always seemed so much rivalry (in our family)!  like many other people are saying I'm impressed with your love and determination.  it takes a certain quality of love and mental strength to really raise kids right.

 

I always felt a certain irony about it;  one moment really being tough and giving my kids stern consequences for their actions then sometime later really quietly sad that I had to be that way to them.  but if there is no strength for consequences- there is bad, bad ends for kids that let negative emotions dominate their actions.  IMHO; too much of the violence and problems of the world come from this very thing.

 

even within your country; corruption, sectarian divisions, racism. all allowed to grow by the government, and dysfunctional families.  (is this too political?)

 

anyways. Peace be to you Elize. your a good mom and your kids are lucky to have you.

----

I'm happy to hear that you've found such a willing dummie for exercise!

 

I think its brilliant!  

 

a new guard against the gathering 'muzzie' hoard....

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On 4/6/2020 at 9:04 PM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

It sounds like Rocco might be an extrovert and could simply be starved for interaction with other people than the three of you all the time.

I think you're right. The whole self isolation situation happened in the week of his birthday,  and then only 4-5 days later we went into lock down, and he hadn't been out since before lock down. I think you're definitely right about this. Missing people, friends, other than us. He has been chatting online to some of the kids he plays games with yesterday and this morning, and is much happier. I'm also keeping an ear out to what Adam says to him, so that I can nip his fault finding of Rocco, in the bud.

On 4/7/2020 at 12:09 AM, Bouncer_the_Lovable said:

Finally caught up! Has been too long Friend!

 

Despite the issues you are having with Rocco, you are helping to see what he will need for himself! At least you have the internet for some connection outside of the family, but can still find difficulty. 

 

 

I've been thinking that I need to look up your thread. Thanks for coming over.

Thanks, yes, I'm trying to think of other ways that he can reach out to friends to connect and chat. I'm now allowing them to go online early again (before school work, before Brandt starts working). Some of their overseas friends are on early for us, late for them (USA, Russia, Australia), and he had a good chat with two of the kids in USA this morning.

On 4/7/2020 at 1:12 AM, Elastigirl said:

You are a good mom and you  are very intune with your boys. Rocco's problems right now may be just his stress of dealing with it. Not only the  lack of friend time, but also the fact he is getting old enough to process that things are stressed.  Maybe  you just need to help him navigate that and how to deal with those feelings without lashing out at others. Maybe just talk about how when we are stressed and  under these circumstances, we all feel a bi of anger, and that is normal, but we have to remember that we need to love others, and find other ways to work through that

Thanks so much EG. I don't think he realises that he is stressed, but he was definitely unhappy. Just like me he jumped to the conclusion that it must be how Adam is treating him. Time is going by so fast (it seems), that I forgot that his birthday has only been just past (2.5-3 weeks) and it was in the same week that first isolation started and then lock a couple days later, lock down. He had hardly been out except for a day here and there during isolation.

On 4/7/2020 at 1:54 PM, The Hero of Time said:

It would be worth having a movement-activated, night-vision camera just to capture this moment. 😉

:D That would be a priceless photo! We have the movement-activated light, just need to get a security camera linked to that.

On 4/7/2020 at 1:54 PM, The Hero of Time said:

 

It's funny that making people slow down seems to have made them friendlier.

Not all, but some definitely. Others are too scared to even talk over the fence, due to the strict rules and penalties being implemented. Well here anyway. I think people are slower, seeing what/who is around them and actually reacting instead of continually thinking of what else needs doing.

On 4/7/2020 at 2:57 PM, TGP said:

I have no real advice but a lot of support.

 

Growing kids is very hard!  one thing that is particularly difficult is the way brothers (sisters) treat each other. there always seemed so much rivalry (in our family)!  like many other people are saying I'm impressed with your love and determination.  it takes a certain quality of love and mental strength to really raise kids right.

Thanks for the support. I really appreciate it.

I asked Brandt how things were in their household growing up, as he had a younger brother and sister, but he just shrugged and said he couldn't remember. He thinks it's normal and I should just let it go, which made me wonder whether he, as the oldest, ordered his siblings around?

On 4/7/2020 at 2:57 PM, TGP said:

I always felt a certain irony about it;  one moment really being tough and giving my kids stern consequences for their actions then sometime later really quietly sad that I had to be that way to them.  but if there is no strength for consequences- there is bad, bad ends for kids that let negative emotions dominate their actions.  IMHO; too much of the violence and problems of the world come from this very thing.

I thought just this morning (after another situation with Lego project, and attitude) how ironic or quickly situations change: one moment Rocco was upset, then a little bit later was hugging me and saying how much he loved me. And believe me I had to be strict and stern. But things are alright now again.

I think in part a lot of kids are also being raised to have rights, but not to recognise that responsibilities go hand in hand with those rights. And yes, with choices and actions comes consequences. Absolutely. That is one thing I'm absolutely scared of for my two; if they wallow too much in the negative (emotions, actions), it will drag them down, and their reactions to the negative things happening to them, could lead them to act in a way which they wouldn't have, had they learnt to think through situations. Consequences to actions and choices. Responsibilities. Rocco can really wallow in negativity or self pity at times.

On 4/7/2020 at 2:57 PM, TGP said:

even within your country; corruption, sectarian divisions, racism. all allowed to grow by the government, and dysfunctional families.  (is this too political?)

Don't worry about stating political insights. I just don't want to dwell on it too much, because then I become too negative and nowadays it is just difficult to get myself out when I'm in the pit. The political situation is definitely a big cause of all the chaos and criminality (and general dysfunction) that goes around. It plays a major role. If the president and ministers (the leaders of the country) can commit crime and get away with it, why can't others? It is sad but currently supported by stats, that Corona and lock down has brought down our country's murder rate. I read a post about it on Fb, but looked up stats now. From April 2018 to March 2019 it comes down to ~57 people murdered every single day. Since Corona lock down started +- 2 weeks ago (let's take 12 days, not including today), only 13 people died of Corona. That's ~684 people murdered the year before last in the same 12 days. And a shocking 700+ murders committed throughout the year, were by children (or seen as children due to their age <18yrs).

It's our responsibility as parents to look after our kids, their upbringing, how they'll cope in society, their mental health. But sadly I think it is falling rapidly everywhere in the world. We probably just see more of it, due to our country's situation, size, and population density. The kids here are definitely growing up with all the bad things in their face.

On 4/7/2020 at 2:57 PM, TGP said:

I'm happy to hear that you've found such a willing dummie for exercise!

 

I think its brilliant! 

Fencing Partner did his job yesterday. He lost, but is still in one piece. After fencing practice Brandt sparred a bit with Rocco. They had a blast. Brandt took an old broom stick handle we have, and used it as a sword. First Rocco had to get through B's defenses and then B had to get through R's defenses. The best thing of all was when Rocco grabbed Brandt afterwards in a huge hug and thanked him. Told Brandt it was the greatest thing ever, and asked whether he'll practice with him again on Thursday. So yes, I think @Tanktimus the Encourager is spot on that Rocco is missing interaction (I think of all kinds).

 

----------------------------------------------------

Monday & Tuesday:

  • 3 Gifts Nailed together / 3 Gifts waited for: I didn't think about it on the respective days. :(
  • Exercise: Shoulder aching on Monday. Tuesday just blah.
  • Mowing: No.
  • Cleaning: Yes - floors, compost, bins, dailies, some kitchen, shower, some dusting (boys did the bedrooms).
  • Sleep: Monday night on time, Tuesday very, very late.
  • Weight loss: Monday morning 93.6kg bloated. Tuesday morning 93.0kg not bloated. No measuring.

I actually overslept this morning. For some or other reason I set my alarm for 6h30 this morning, and not the usual 5h30. I woke up around 6h20, still tired obviously because of a late night. Tuesday was cold and rainy the whole day, and the night was icy cold (for us - and no ice). I actually took out my 'long johns' (thermal underwear/sleepwear). Today the sun shone a little bit, but high was ~21C, and then it clouded right over again, and now the cold (and rain) is coming in again. Autumn is here, and winter is short on its tail. I'm happy to report that the mozzie wipes are working, and they are not giving me sinus. The coils are working too, but very strong and are having all four of us struggling with sinus. Even Brandt!

 

Not much more. I have a short time at night to be on the internet, as Brandt is now hogging the line during the day for work (which I totally understand and I know he has to work, or we won't have any income come May). I'll try to visit your threads sometime during the week.

 

Hope you are all ok, so far.

Love and hugs.

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