The big old Moon

-When I’ll grow up, I will be a pilot and I will take you to the moon, mama!
-And back?
-Of course! What a silly question! Grown ups can’t live on the moon!
Silly of course, because I don’t know yet which version I like more. The mermaid story or the astronaut one. What if I upset her on our journey and she leaves me there, all alone on the Moon?!
I have to remind myself to buy only books about appropiate occupations, like superheroes, or fairies or … mermaids.

Important things children do

I prepare some materials for the activities I want to do with her today. I print some images and drawings, I trace contours on a cardboard and I apply adhesive tape on it.

Little miss is watching cartoons on TV. Even if she knows some of the episodes by heart, she pays a lot of attention. She likes some of the characters so much, she tells us all about their adventures, with lots and lots of details. She loves to tell stories, every little adventure becomes a fascinating story when she tells it.

I do not know where from she has this gift of storytelling, her mother is an engineer!

The publicity break starts and she comes to inspect the work table:

– Oau, how cool! You did this? she asks, turning the piece of cardboard I’m working on. And all of this beautiful drawings! We will colour them later, ok?

– Later, tomorrow, whenever you like!

– I told you, later, now I can’t! I have important things to do, children things!                                  

I don’t dare to ask her what important things she has to do, I’m afraid she will start telling lost of household chores. Like she did the other night,  when she told her father what she did all day: she dusted, made muffins, eat them, watered all the flowers (we only have 5 or 6 pots with flowers), washed the laundry…

– Oh! What important things you have to do right now? I say after a few seconds I need to gather the courage to ask.

– To watch cartoons, to organise missions with my superheroes team, I have important things to do, mama!

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Family Day

Family is that feeling of complete safety and belonging. Is where you can relax after a hard day of work or where you can recharge your batteries. It is mother’s hug when you see each other after classes. Or playing in dad’s hair when he comes home from work and a tiny voice, the most precious voce in the world, tells him: Dada, you should shave, your kisses are hurting my cheeks!

Family is home, in your own house or it is someone very far away, but still close to your heart. And which, with just one word, makes you feel like everything is alright, even if to you it seems the world around you is falling apart. Family is not only the people that have the same name you do. Family is everyone who supports and encourages you to go further, even when the obstacle is big and you can’t see anything beyond it. Family is like a big invisible mechanism that helps you go go through everything, to enjoy the happiness and cry the sadness.

For the little ones family are all the people dear to them. The ones they feel comfortable with, they play as much as they want and share stories about moon, and star and everything in between. The ones that have time to discover all the surprises life had prepared for them. The ones that encourages them to move further when the fear had blocked every movement. The ones they laugh with, eat ice cream at noon or a big bowl of popcorn at ten o’clock in the evening.

The ones that tells them that is okay to make mistakes sometimes because nobody is perfect anyway.

Family? Family is each one of us and all of us together.

 

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Earth day 2020


I talk with my 5 year daughter about Earth Day, we read some books we have about it. Then, in a sad kind of voice, she begins:
-If I would only knew that this bad virus will come, I would have had the space racket repaired. That way we would celebrate it’s day by going around it or maybe to the Moon and back.
I say nothing. What can I say I wonder? She continues:
-The racket with wich I came from the little Moon, remember? It broke when I landed. It was green and had no.2 painted on it. Mattew has the one with no.1, it is red. But now we have to celebrated here. I will draw something nice for it, a cake and some flowers maybe.
-Well, after all, I say, the Earth is our home, no? I think it is nice to celebrated it at home. Giving it a chance to recover a little from all the damaged we have caused it.
-Oh,no! The Earth is damaged too? Like my space racket?! This is the worst news and the worst day! Is not a happy day anymore, mama, you ruin it!

Calul lui…Carol I

Ne plimbam prin “centru”. Nu ne-au inghetat inca nasurile, asadar copilul doreste sa afle detalii despre una, despre alta.

-Ce e ala? Un cartof sau o nava spatiala?

-Un cartof.

-Cum a ajuns cartoful ala acolo?

-Nu stiu, tati, cred ca l-au urcat cu macaraua. Sau poate mai intai l-au prins de stalp si apoi au montat toata piesa acolo.

-Cum au montat-o?

-Cu macaraua.

-De la masina de pompieri?

-Nu, o macara folosita in constructii. Cele de la masina de pompieri nu pot ridica greutati asa mari.

-Dar cartoful ala e gol, nu e greu.

-E gol, dar este foarte mare si este din metal, metalul e greu.

-Metal? Ce este metalul?

-Pai uite, capacul asta de canal pe care calci acum este din metal, stapul ala este din metal, monedele sunt din metal. Hai, ca tu stii ce este metalul.

-Astea nu sunt grele. Monedele mele din pusculita sunt usoare. Si cartoful nu e din metal, amuzantule!

-De ce este pus pe stalpul ala? Si cine l-a murdarit cu vopsea rosie?

-Este un simbol. Cartoful este stricat, reprezinta oamenii rai care ne-au condus inainte. Stalpul alb reprezinta noul, suntem noi, poporul roman dupa ce au plecat oamenii rai.

-Si inainte de hotomani au fost oameni rai? De ce nu ati iesit si atunci cu vuvuzaua sa ii dati afara de unde lucrau ei?

-Se pare ca mereu au fost oameni rai care ne-au condus,nu? Noi eram mici puiule, eram copii. Si atunci nu aveai voie sa spui nimic rau despre cei care ne conduceau. Dar pana la urma au iesit oamenii in strada, chiar aici si au reusit sa ii dea afara. Dar a curs si sange. De asta au pus momumentul aici, sa nu uitam. Se numeste Monumentul Renasterii.

-Cum arata macaraua?

-Nu stiu fetita. Era o macara normala, cred.

Mai facem cativa pasi. Nu ii este ei inca foarte clar cum a ajuns cartoful ala acolo si de ce. Dar renunta la subiect. Primeste raspunsuri prea serioase. Ajunsa langa statuia lui Carol I, is inalta privirea in sus si zice incetisor, pe un ton ghidus:

-Tati, calul asta are un fundulet amuzant si tare dragut!

Rompozee

Rompozeele au reprezentat, de cand avea copilul 3-4 ani, orice forma geometrica mai complexa decat un romb: pentagon, hexagon si tot neamul lor. Si asa le-a ramas numele, chiar si rombul intra uneori in aceasta categorie.

-Uite mami, o masina ca a ta, cu rompozeu!

-Da, iubire, sunt multe masini marca aceasta!

-Si tati are una! Si masina vechie a fost asa! Si bubu are! Si bubu celalalt are una! Oau mami, toti avem masini cu rompozeu! De ce? Si eu vreau sa am o masina cu rompozeu cand o sa cresc mare!

-Asa s-a nimerit, sa avem toti masini marca asta! Tu poate ai sa vrei altfel de masina cand o sa cresti! Sau poate oamenii nu vor mai merge cu masina atunci, se vor teleporta sau poate vor zbura.

-Nu mama, nu! Eu nu o sa zbor! Eu o sa fiu pompier si o sa conduc o masina de interventie cu furtun si scara! Care o sa fie cu rompozeu!

Traditii de Anul Nou

Este ziua fiicei mele, nascuta in prima saptamana a anului. Iesim din casa si ne intalnim cu unul dintre vecinii nostri. 

La multi ani! ne ureaza el. Intram intr-un supermarket, unde si vanzatorul ne ureaza La multi ani!. Apoi in farmacie, unde toate cele trei farmaciste ne ureaza, pe rand, La multi ani si un An nou bun.

Copilul, putin emotionat si fastacit, intreaba:

-Tati, de unde stie toata lumea ca astazi este ziua mea?

Ilustratie de Katrina Lange

Evolution 101

We dance. “Follow the leader” is the song. She knows the choreography from the kindergarten. I ask her if she knows what it means.

-I don’t know! What?

-You have to do what the leader does.

-Leadel? What is the leadel?

-The chief or the boss.

She stops. She doesn’t know what to say and now is thinking. After a few seconds she declare:

-Mama, in our house you are the boss! Not me!

Photo by Jeff Smith

To the educators of the world

Dear all,

You have chosen one of the most difficult and yet most important jobs and you made it your passion and your art. One that you practice all day, with patience, commitment and devotion. It is also the most beautiful job in the world because your role is to shape and prepare for life beautiful and innocent little humans, pure and untouched yet by the ugliness of the world. For them you will always be the first and the most important teacher, the first to guide their journey to the great unknown, the Universe! You are the light in the darkness of not knowing if they are enough or not. Of course they are, but they still need your kind reminder.

To all of you, thanks for all the love and affection you give!

Illustrations by Kevin Henkes

Driving lesson

It’s a sunny yet cold morning. We walk in a fast pace to the car, maybe we will warm up a little. Suddenly she stops and with a happy voice she says:

-Look mama, this is daddy’s car! Can we go with it at kindergarten? Please!!!

-Baby girl, mama doesn’t know how to drive daddy’s car!

-I will show you how, I know!

-You do, don’t you? How come?

-I saw how daddy does it and now I know.

-…

-You go sit in the driver seat, press the round button and the car starts moving. It has a sensor, you know? When there is no more space, it beeps. Then you stop, flash your signal and you go! And go straight ahead, then you make a right turn, then a left one, you go a little more and you arrive! You park, push the round button and get out of the car! See? Is so simple, mama! What do you say? You want to try?

-So simple hah? I don’t have to do anything else…

-Well, you do, of course! You have to put your seatbelt on, but first you have to put my seatbealt on and you have to press the pedals. You push the pedals and the car goes vrum, vruuum. You don’t push them, the car stops. You want to try, mama?

-I don’t really want. But is a good thing that you know how, if we will ever need you to drive it…

-Mama, I am a child! I cannot drive daddy’s car! Come on, hurry up, it’s very cold and I will be late for today activities.

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Driving lesson