May 25, 2011

Blue Belts!

My kids got their blue belts in karate last Saturday!

They are so happy. Their test was quite the challenge, but not because of the material--all the kids knew their stuff. If they didn't, then they wouldn't have been invited to test. The challenge was that there were so many kids there! I'm guessing around fifty, all between the ages of five and eight. There were four different ranks, and the groups of kids got smaller as the ranks got higher. The two largest groups were the two lowest ranks, which is where my kids were.

The teachers did a great job of managing all of them, but, really, it was like herding cats. They had a mind to go in all different directions, and keeping them on the same track took a lot of effort. If I'd been running this event, I'd have needed a nap immediately afterward. :)

Out of the twenty or so in my kids' group, I'm guessing there's only two who've truly been bitten by the karate bug. They're the ones who will continue on to the higher ranked belts. They're always so focused on the teachers, doing exactly what they've been told, and trying as hard as they absolutely can to get their technique right. There isn't an ounce of laziness or tiredness in their training.

Oldest is one of those kids, and a six-year-old girl is the other. Youngest tries hard, listens, and trains to the best of his ability, but he doesn't have the focus that Oldest and this other girl have. I wouldn't be surprised if he lost interest down the road. Then again, he's surprised me with much bigger things, so maybe this will be another one. :)

In the mean time, though, they're thrilled about getting their blue belts. They even slept with the actual belt Saturday night. :)

May 11, 2011

How Old Is Too Old?

Oldest still believes in the Easter Bunny. And the Tooth Fairy. And Santa. When he was younger, he used to believe that everything he read in books was real, too: fairies, leprechans, dragons, talking and thinking robots, talking trains, etc. Which, of course, is perfectly natural.

He doesn't believe everything in books anymore because I've explained that they're just stories. Someone made all those things up and then wrote them down--like I do. He knows I'm a writer and that I make up stories, so he made the connection pretty quickly.

But then there's these other characters that are in every day life, like Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. He fervently believes in those, draws pictures for them and writes letters and everything. And I've been contributing to this belief. Of course I have. It's what parents do, because it's fun to have gifts appear from some magical source, and I have fun getting creative about it every year.

But he's almost eight years old now. I know that at least one of his friends figured out the Tooth Fairy, but I'm not sure about Santa or the Easter Bunny. I can't remember how old I was when I found out my mom was behind it all, and I have no clue how it was all revealed. So I can't use this as a gauge for my own kids. I'm a tiny bit worried that my profession as a story teller is working a little too well in perpetuating the belief in these fictional characters, and I have no idea what to do about it.

How old were you when you found out about Santa et al? How old were your kids? Am I being silly to worry about this? :)

May 4, 2011

Stylish Blogger Award

The most awesome Kelly Hashway has given me yet another award, and a gorgeous one at that. Thank you, Kelly!!

So, now, I have to share seven things about myself...hmmm.

1. I love changing seasons, so much that I can't really pick a favorite. The current season is always my favorite, and by the time the next one rolls around, I'm ready for it. Like now--I'm SO ready for spring, but it seems to be avoiding Chicago right now. :(

2. I've never been to Canada. Or Mexico. But I've been to ten other countries around the world, some of them third world (I know, it makes no sense).

3. I've never been to Vegas, but I've been to a zillion other places around the country.

4. I can't stand running. Seriously. I hate it. And yet I love playing soccer with my kids, which is all running. Go figure. :)

5. I love pedicures.

6. I'm anxiously awaiting the day that my kids can throw and catch a baseball so that we can go outside and play catch. I'm hoping Oldest will be willing to try it out this summer...

7. I have wanted to learn a martial art since I was a teenager, and I finally joined a karate dojo last month. Took me long enough... But, hey, better late than never. :)

Now's the best part! I get to pass this award on to other stylish bloggers. :)

If you haven't visited any of these blogs, you should. They are made of awesome! Thanks again, Kelly!!