Thursday, 27 May 2010

Friends...

Yesterday, my lovely girlfriend came over for tea, along with some coconut ice she made from the recipe in the Frankie Sweet Treats book. She is 6 weeks pregnant with her third child, I am so excited for her, she has the cutest family ever and they are all so excited about a new baby!

Later, I made some cupcakes for my other dear friend to thank her for looking after my boys and puppy while we flew to Sydney for an important meeting. Our vintage Kenwood is still awaiting repair, so I pulled out the old Sunbeam and I was really impressed with the results, I think it might actually beat the Kenwood for cakes. Ooh I do love vanilla cupcakes, I have heard one or two people saying recently that cupcakes have 'had their day', but blah to that, I've even heard people saying that the word 'lovely' is on the way out!!! I don't think so, you can never have too much loveliness in your life, especially when skies are grey.

Today was Jim's turn for a playdate, his girlfriend Pip (on the left) visited. Bliss! Don't they look quite the happy couple?

As for me, I popped into the oppy next to our building on a whim as I locked up for lunch and I found this vintage painted wooden breakfast tray for $5. It's going to feature in my market display this weekend.

But guess who climbed aboard while I was taking a photo?


Ok, so everything looks rosy in my week, but there have been very sad times too. I told you last year about some minor bullying that my youngest son was experiencing. It seems it has raised its ugly head again. The same boys, a different issue (this time it's not his long hair, it's the fact that he's only lost two teeth, go figure). He was in tears last night, his words were "I'm stupid, I'm odd, I'm six and I've only lost two teeth, no-one wants to play with me and everyone hates me". We've reassured him, hugged him, told him how wonderful and amazing he is, but what else can we do? It seems the only way some kids can deal with other people is by putting them down, I guess it is all to do with parenting. My older boy is thick-skinned, he's experienced similar behaviour from these same boys and he doesn't seem to care much what they think, but my little one is very sensitive. Made worse for me by the fact that he is SO quirky, wondrous and open to the world. It's heartbreaking. Any advice is welcome please.

I hope you are enjoying your week - don't forget to treasure your true friends and don't let anyone tell you what's 'in' or what's 'rad' or how you should be, just do what you love and be yourself. xxx

20 comments:

Clara said...

Firstly I love the teapot in your first pic...!
Secondly, and more importantly, I am so sorry to hear about the resurgence of bullying. Your son sounds as if he'd be well suited to a steiner school, so if there's one near you, and you don't mind sending him to a different school to your older boy, it might be worth a look. Ours are all enrolled in the steiner school here in Tas and its amazing - so encouraging of individuality and supportive of the child becoming who they really are. Lots of creative expression, and consequently very little bullying.... Really hope you can help him, sounds like you are doing all you can by being such loving parents, Clara x

Cuggles! Kids said...

You poor things, it must be heartbreaking watch your baby experience such nasty behaviour. Mine's not at school yet so I'm afraid I can't offer advice, just a virtual hug, from one loving Mum to another.

Panda said...

Oh god, bullying is the thing I dread the most about my son going off to school next year. He is definately the "quirky" kid that doesnt fit in and will no doubt be on the receiving end of many taunts.

Apart from sorting it out in the school parking lot with the bully's parents, all you can do is to instil a solid sense of self-worth in your kids. Explain to him why the other kids might behave that way. Or try a different school. One size does not fit all when it comes to school environments.

Leah Grace said...

Yes that is heartbreaking :(
As a victim of bullying all throughout my school years I really feel for your little boy. Have faith that your love and support will help him believe that he is special and build his self-confidence. My heart goes out to you!

Lilli boo said...

Hi, I had to comment on this post..such a lovely start (I love the word lovely, it's quaint). Then I read about the bullying incident. My son was victim to a child's bullying tactics in Prep. So we held a meeting with the school Principal and the child in question. They were asked to discuss their feelings. When my son was asked if he would play with this boy he said a defiant "NO" to his face and the Principal acknowledged to the young boy that no-one likes to play with a bully. It worked! The two boys became friends. My son had asserted himself in the face of this boy and he also learnt the consequences of his actions swiftly. No on was interested in if they continued to behave this way. It's a simple example and may not suit your situation. However I do believe that teacher/Principal intervention where they intiate it with an open discussion with the parents attending can be affective. I was witness to this situation and also became friends with the boy's mother in question too...a very positive outcome. Just a thought if you don't want to change schools.

Buttons by Lou Lou said...

Well 'lovely' and cupcakes are never going to be out for me!!

There are so many important lessons we know as adults that we want to pass on to our children - but how? Such an important but difficult part of parenting. I'm not quite at that stage yet but all the best. So much of self confidence comes from home so sounds like you have that part covered. Poor little thing.

See you on Sunday. Lou.

sandra said...

Well, I still think cupcakes are lovely!

Josephine Tale Peddler said...

So sorry to read about your little one's experiences at school. I know how heart-breaking it would be for you to have to watch him go through this. You've already had good advice and I bet you are doing what you can with the school. Thankfully, most schools these days are proactive with bullying. Not like the bad old days when I was a student. All I can say is sometimes the sensitive misfits who don't fit in grow up to be the most amazing, creative and successful adults. He has a lovely family and he will get there. xx

grounded pleasures said...

Firstly, Harry is absolutely adorable!!! Oh what a cutie!! I am so jealous.

Secondly, he is six. Write a note asking to speak to his teacher and then ask whether they are talking about bullying and being friends at school in class. It's important at that age that they are discussing these sorts of things, and just asking his teacher nicely will make them do a refresher session. Worth a try! :)

sarah barnett said...

Kids can be so cruel sometimes... Your poor little man. He's utterly gorgeous and perfectly normal. I hope it all passes soon.
Just for the record, my six year old has only lost two teeth and he only lost them two weeks ago. And I am 37 and I still have a "baby" tooth that is never going to fall out.
x Sarah

Katy said...

Well I am all for saving lovely and cuocakes! I use both all the time so I would be lost without them. My daughter is 3 so we haven't really had to deal with too much bullying - but she is currently at pre school at montessori and I am looking at putting her in maybe a montessori primary or waldorf primary just to be with like minded kids as she doesn't always 'fit in the box' - but that may not be an option. Hopefully the bullying passes - what about the teacher or parents of these kids? Have they got anything to offer?

Susan L (lily40au) said...

That oppy next to you is so good.

Kim said...

Hi there,
Firstly, I LOVE your blog!!!! Secondly, I LOVE your stuff!!!

Thirdly...I'm so sorry that your lovely son is going through some difficult times. I can thoroughly recommend homeschooling:) We follow a natural learning approach to learning and my son is thriving. He's never been to school and is now 10. I hear there's lots of great homeschoolers down in Victoria. All the very best to your son ...I think he might need a cupcake..or two....:) xxx

Vanessa said...

Hi
I follow your blog and last week bought some goodies from Lark. I live in Sydney so unable to visit the store.

I'm writing about your bullying issue. As a teacher and as a Mum who had a "sensitive" son bullied throughout primary school I have the following advice to give you.
There is a fantastic book that I had shipped from the US which was invaluable as far as practical advice and practical strategies (for your son) went. I'll try and remember the name and get back to you.
Also children only spend about 18% of their time at school so it really is his home life and the support he gets from you that will get him through this time. Listen, cuddle and keep going back up to that school to get this under control.

But I can't emphasise how much the home stability and nurturing is to the support of your son. Also plenty of play time with other friends kids where he is accepted, to bolster his morale will help also. I'll find out the name of that book and get back to you. I'd also like to tell you my son who suffered terribly is now 19, completed school and has a job in IT. He's still sensitive and all the other things that the kids picked on him for. But he made it through and is a beautiful human being.
But believe me I know the anguish you are going through - I lived it for years.

Vanessa said...

The name of the bullying is Easing the Teasing by Judy freedman. I notice you can still buy it through Fishpond. Hope this helps.

Vanessa said...

Sorry, I meant to say the name of the book is Easing the Teasing by Judy Freedman. I have a sick six year old sitting on my lap.

m.e (Cathie) said...

ohh Allison, I don't know what to say, ours aren't yet in school & I fear the time that they do & we have to face such scenarios. I hope you can have a chat to the teachers & as someone else said ask if they discuss such a topic in class. goodluck!

and by the way...cupcakes will ALWAYS be lovely!

Betty Jo said...

Hi Allison,
So sorry to hear about the insidious bullying at your son's school.From experience I believe total support from the teacher and principal should be sought straight away. This may mean round table discussions with all the boys and caring positive strategies given to all concerned.A pro-active approach from the school is so important.I hate hearing young people complain how their school just ignored bullying and caused them unnessasary anguish.
And all the love and support you can give from home goes with out saying.

Good luck at Matildas today, Lark will be the hit of the day !

Chantelle said...

I don't have much advice but I do have an ancedote

When my husband was in primary school (actually just near daylesford, in Ballan) he was teased by one particular boy. I'm not sure what about but my husband was tall even then with bright red hair and glasses so I guess he stood out! He asked his father what he should do about the bully and his father told him that bullies don't like themselves, so next time this boy teased him to tell the bully that he's a really great guy. So the next day when the kid started to tease him he just told that him he was a really great guy. It stopped the bully in his tracks and he went around for the rest of the day telling everyone that he was a really great guy. He also never teased him again.

Hope things are sorted out soon so your son can enjoy school again.

Carly said...

Sorry this is such a long comment...

Wow, Allison, I *really* feel for you and your gorgeous boy. Putting my teacher hat on - Lilli boo had it right; you really have to get on to the school and ask for a meeting with the principal/vice principal, the class teacher and the children (or ringleader?) and their parents. Hopefully this will resolve things (or at least make a start), but either way you should be able to get a feel for a) how the school deals with bullying, and b) whether there's any chance of these boys improving with support from home. And taking my teacher hat off... having grown up in a country town being bullied myself, and looking down the barrel of school next year for my eldest boy - long-term bullying will shape who your son becomes. Do what you feel is right (or least bad) for your lovely boy, and don't be afraid to throw your weight around at his school (or get your mr to) until they do their job and sort it out. I don't know what the schooling options are in Daylesford, but in the unlikely event that the school doesn't come through, could you walk away? As adults, we wouldn't stay in a workplace where we were bullied - I don't think children "build character" from being stuck in unsolveable bullying situations.

All my best best best wishes - you are obviously a wonderful mum and he is a lucky boy to have such a loving home. I know that the love of my parents was a huge comfort for me when I was bullied! I'm sure he will be absolutely fine - in the meantime, cupcakes...? Hope you and your beautiful boy had a good weekend :)