It’s the last day of the kids’ summer holidays today. As with all these sort of things, it seems to have gone on forever, and yet also it seems to have passed by in an instant. Covid ruined a lot of the grand plans we had, but we still managed time away as a family, time away with friends, and yes, that little mini-break towards the end of it all.
And even then, it’s worth noting that sometimes not doing anything at all is just as important as doing anything at all.
I have grudgingly set the alarm for foolish o’clock tomorrow morning. I’m not looking forward to it waking me: I’d happily forgotten that that kind of time existed over the last 6 weeks.
It’s been nice.
On the plus side, I am looking forward to a little more rhythm and routine back in my life. Even though I am busier during the school terms, I find that I can also still get more done simply because I have deadlines and a bit of a schedule. And hopefully, that will include a bit more exercise, which I have been putting off because it scares me I’ve been waiting for the kids to go back to school. And because it scares me.
Last year was a tough one, but a good one for the kids. Here’s hoping that 2022 will be better in every way.
It’s Monday the 18th of January. Notable for a couple of reasons.
It’s my Dad’s birthday. Not specifically a 2021 thing – it’s happened many (many) times before on the 18th of January. Happy Birthday, Dad!
And it also marks the return to whatever passes as some sort of normality this year as well. The kids have gone back to school (don’t ask me, because I don’t know) and I went for my first run in ages. This is because they need to learn stuff and I need to sort out my lack of fitness.
I’m not expecting the school thing to last – at least not in person. That would be foolish and dangerous (and potentially a bit naughty, too?). But our two are now well-versed in the art of online learning, and I expect at least some of that to get done over the coming weeks.
We now have two High School kids. And if there was ever something – aside from one’s lack of fitness and the realisation that you’re not that far behind your father – it’s having both your kids in High School.
And so a gentle 5+kms to get me feeling a bit younger (and hopefully thinner, eventually). Hot stuff (the run, thanks to the prevailing meteorological conditions, not me), but it felt good. Even the beagle had fun. I’ll keep you posted on my continuing progress.
Even though I had to get up worryingly early this morning, I’m still feeling positive about today and the fresh starts that we’re making.
Back to school day. Officially. The whole school. No more online stuff (except in very exceptional circumstances). Perspex screens. Masks. Sanitiser. Social distancing at all times.
But school – or at least as close an approximation as they can make of it.
Now wash your hands.
The house is so quiet. The kids would normally be working anyway, but it’s still eerie. The beagle is confused and keeps checking to see if there is anyone around the corner doing their Geography or Maths, and then weeping when there isn’t.
Because they’re not there. And thus, the beagle has required several (or more) beagle biscuits in order to quell its repeated concern. The beagle is now sleeping next to me as I type this, but I’m fairly sure that we will be doing the search/cry/biscuit routine again shortly.
I have a feeling that the kids will be knackered when they come home this afternoon. It’s not that they haven’t been working hard at home for the last six months; just that Real School is going to be much more physically taxing than online home school.
The good news for them – us, everyone – is that we’re just 9 weeks away from the start of a much needed summer holiday. Of course, we don’t really know what we’ll be facing by that time Covid-wise, economically or socially, but at least it’s something positive (like a ray of hope, not like a disappointing diagnostic test result) to aim for.
Right now, I need to go and collect the first child and see how the day went. Fingers crossed for a good experience.
Since the schools were closed on Wednesday 18th March 2020, with this rather optimistic line in the official letter…
Oh, how we laugh now. In a hollow, washed-out, distressed kind of way.
…our kids have been learning from home. School has slowly been getting back to some sort of normality, although the classes are still running on a rotational 1-day-in-1-day-out basis, but there has always been the option to continue schooling from home and we’ve chosen to take it.
However, it has been decided that* one of them should head back to the classroom.
So, after a break of 169 days, one of them is heading back to the classroom tomorrow.
It’s a mix of excitement, nervous anticipation and a flurry of organisation here. She’s been at the school for almost 9 years now, but this will be different to anything she’s experienced there before. That said, the school has been amazing with online lessons, communication and even support with videos and letters about what to expect upon returning, so I have high hopes that she will be just fine.
And so we cross fingers, hold thumbs and pray to the great flappy-eared beagle in the sky that it all goes well.
School’s Out For Summer. So sang the less-attractive-than-you-might-think female vocalist, Alice Cooper.
It’s been a long, long year, with highs and lows throughout, but (and staan terug because this is one of those proud dad posts) I’m a very proud dad today. Again.
Earlier in the week at the primary school prize-giving, our daughter got awards for her academic performance and overall effort. Add this to a Grade 2 singing exam triumph and a ‘best in the category’ Eisteddfod performance earlier in the year and she’s done really well.
And then today, the boy, fresh from representing the school at the Regional and International Science Fairs, came out with certificates for effort in Maths, improvement in History, Art and Design & Technology and excellence in ICT. He’s done brilliantly, especially after a little dip in term 2.
And just in the last few minutes, I’ve received a faultless end of year report for the girl and right now, I’m feeling pretty good about what we’ve raised here.
I’m looking forward to more academic (and other) successes next year, but first – finally – I think they’re both due a well-deserved holiday.