Thursday, July 31, 2008

Safe Career for Ben

A couple of months ago Ben brought a DVD home from the library called "The Big Space Shuttle." It was part of an adventure series that taught kids about things like airplanes, aquariums, submarines, etc., and Ben really loved it. We started to play space shuttle and astronaut every day--Ben had a white oversized Canucks jersey he inherited from Tyler and Trevor, as well as a big white bicycle helmet he inherited from Sister Morsten. We made glittery stars to hang on the wall (so we could see them as we "flew" past) and rearranged the furniture to make our space shuttle. Ben started to say that he wanted to be an astronaut when he grew up, and I started thinking about how exciting that would be--for Ben have a Ph.D. and then go through the space program and travel through space ("The Big Space Shuttle" was quite thorough in explaining how to become an astronaut!). Then we went over to Grandma and Grandpa's house, and that was the end of the dream.

As most of you know, my dad does not like anything adventurous (you could think of him as kind of an extra-tall hobbit). He never really wanted anyone to leave home for any reason when we all lived there, and is still known to say, "Why don't you just stay here?" on the rare occassions when we are dropping our kids off for him and mom to look after. So, when Dad heard that Ben wanted to be an astronaut, he told him all of the terrible things that could happen to someone in outer space (all those science fiction shows he's watched over the years . . . Ben didn't have a chance!).

After that, Ben started saying, "I don't want to be an astronaut; it's too dan-ger-ous." I tried to explain that by the time he went into space he'd know what to do, and that most astronauts are FINE and live long, healthy lives--but there was no persuading him (my logic was no match for the vivid images Dad had painted of spacecrafts blowing up).

A couple of days later, Ben said, "I don't want to be an astronaut; it's too dan-ger-ous . . . I want to be a fire fighter!" I couldn't help but laugh, since fire fighting is one of the more obviously dangerous careers, but I just said, "That sounds like a very brave thing to be!" and went on with my day.

I told this story to Mom, and she reminded me that ANY profession can be dangerous. She brought up the office workers who died in New York City, and I started to think about it, too, and realized that no profession is really safe! You'd think teaching would be one of the safer careers, but EVERY DAY that I taught at BCIT I worried that a student would bring a gun to class (I even had nightmares about it). A landscaper like Jason could get hurt by power tools . . . and anyone driving to work is in danger of a car accident. Maybe Dad was right: we shouldn't leave the house! But then there are always earthquakes. . . .

As I was thinking about this, I heard my dad talking to Ben about becoming a doctor . . . and I thought that sounded pretty safe :) What do you think? 
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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Biker Ben

Ben has conquered his fear of riding a "big-kid" bike! Early in the summer he fell off of his training wheel bike and really scraped up his knees. After that he would only ride his tricycle, even though the friend he plays with outside (who is a year younger) rode a "big-kid" bike with training wheels. I felt kind of sad for Ben, even though he always had fun . . . and he could go REALLY fast on his tricycle. I would ask him if he wanted to practice on his big bike, but every time he'd say no. Mom even bought Ben a new helmet and some knee/elbow pads, but he would only wear them for a few minutes, and when I could coax him to ride the big bike, he'd go as slowly as possible around the parking lot--and only once around each time. Then yesterday evening we heard kids riding bikes outside, and out of the blue, Ben said, "I want to practice on my big bike." I had him repeat himself at least three times so I could be sure I was understanding correctly, then we went out and he started to ride. And then this morning, even though it was raining, he wanted to go out and "practice" again! He was riding faster and faster, up curbs, down curbs . . . and then he asked, "Can we take the little wheels off now?" I told him we'll have to save that for another day. . . .  
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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Janae's Shopping Cart

I couldn't figure out how to put two pictures onto one blog! Anyway, here is Janae with her shopping cart . . . she's very attached to it :)
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Second-Hand Smuckle

Today Jason and I decided to go to Mom and Dad's favorite store to see if we could find a book/toy shelf for Janae's room. Well, not only did we find the perfect shelves (I should have taken before-and-after pictures so you could see how much of a difference these shelves make!), but we also found some books for Janae (50 cents each), a "shopping cart" for Janae for $2 (she screamed when we took it away from her to pay for it at the store), and a pair of jeans for me (also $2 . . . and to think that not even a year ago I spent almost $80 on jeans at the mall--that I didn't even like once I got them home!). I'm starting to think Mom and Dad are onto something :)
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