It’s been ages since….

R turned 5 in April but before that she started Reception class. The first few weeks until a couple of months later she still held on to my legs like a limpet because she did not want to stay at school on her own the whole day. In the end she playfully pushes me out of the gates, says goodbye and off she goes to play with her friends.

She started out at not being confident at reading and writing even though she could. Towards the second half of the school year she was reading her favourite stories. Reading in the car, signs. In October last year, she made her first shopping list and we went to the shops. Slowly but surely ticking all the things on her list.

R still loves drawing, scribbling notes, colouring and making up stories in the car or at home. We still play I spy with beginning letter sounds, she still loves noughts and crosses with Daddy while out for a drive (mostly on our way back from our trip to Granny and Granddad).

At home, she picked up a baking book once and that was the beginning of many weekend baking afternoons. She still chops the veg with me and she cooks stir fries now. R happily puts the rice cooker on or put together ingredients for a loaf then puts the bread machine on.

Everything has gone leaps and bounds in many aspects. That includes swimming, tumble turns, dives and more dives on her own. We went to the beach for a week. It took her two days to get used to the open water. We spent whole days on the beach just playing with sand and swimming. We rarely went up for a rest in the bungalow.

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We are in Bangkok for the summer and she is very proud to be able to finish a page or more of the workbooks that Daddy picked up from the tip for pennies. I did not realise that she would be into workbooks on her own. It is part of getting more and more independent.

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This week she voluntarily practised pedalling her bicycle and today she came up and said that she could cycle on her own. I asked her how she felt and she said very happy.

In the mornings she gets up at around 6am and goes out the balcony then back in for books or games. R just walks around the room quietly and finding what she wishes to do before breakfast. I hope that when we go back to Devon it will be the same.

We only have 11 days left in our trip and back to our chaotic life back in the UK. Cinema, boat trips, Japanese food, shopping and a little temple hopping to do before that dreadful flight and we will definitely look forward to our next trip here.

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Daily (nearly) activities

Christmas is in the air or shall I say just round the corner. R has decorated the Christmas tree with daddy that we borrowed from her grandmother. It is a real tree and it has grown a lot from last year.

We made our own salt dough, cut them with the existing cookie cutters and dried them on top of the wood burner. It took overnight to completely dry the dough and we did not need to use the oven which might have consumed kilowatts of electricity that would worry a pea-brained person.

The next morning R got up early,  painted the cookies and left them to dry all day. I should take a photo of the cookies on the tree meanwhile here is a picture of R reading by the tree.

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R picks up a book/s anytime and finds a place to read. The room in this photo is not as tidy as we always talk or practice but it is always a joy that she likes to read.

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This is our first attempt at baking Filipino rolls called pandesal. The recipe we followed is from http://www.kawalingpinoy.com/2013/12/pandesal/.  She helped to knead and form the dough and patiently waited for them to come out of the oven. For the rolls I replaced butter with cooking oil and it still turned out well. It was a big hit to both daddy and R. Apart from adobo this is the only other Pinoy food that R knows the name of. Pandesal will be on the table more than once a month from now on.

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Hanging clothes, using clips or commonly known as sipits in our house and putting on socks have been regular activities for R. As these activities all develop concentration, refine motor skills and independence they will constantly be part of her day.

Language wise daddy makes up lots of stories and R sometimes fills them in. She asks her dad incessantly for stories about this girl who goes on adventures. One of my friends who called this week spoke to R. To get to the point she said R’s voice is like a little girl’s as she is but her sentence structure is like an adult’s. I take that as a compliment but somehow thinks that she needs more time with little people her age to have their input. There is no harm in being informed but does she miss out on things that children her age talk or go through is sometimes a question that pops up in mind.

The preschool is on holiday for Christmas and New Year which means R will mainly be at home. That will be two weeks with us then we will have a think if she will go back to school for two weeks before our holiday next month. To pay for 7 classes and only go to 2 of them is a wasting money I think and the fees for the 5 classes which she will not go to I can buy some Montessori Math or Sensorial materials with. My materials for her is minimal and I regret not making more but it is very time consuming. If I hear that every thing is expensive a big block is stuck in my heart and mind and cannot think of making even one material.  It really is a battle. Will the will to get over this come upon me? Decisions.