Sunday, 23 December 2012

No Tattoos in Bethleham


Jack has a glitter tattoo on his forearm that he adores. He got this tattoo a couple weeks ago at a friend's birthday party and it still looks almost brand new.

Jack came home from school today and told me that he wasn't going to wash off his tattoo, they wanted him to but he wasn't going to. Ever curious as to who 'they' is to a six year old I enquired further. Jack has a school Christmas play coming up in a couple days and was told by his teacher that he needed to remove the tattoo before then.
Because there weren't any tattoos in Bethlehem.

Now I have a long documented problem with situations just like this, this is one of my many flaws that I'm trying not to pass down. I would rather Jack learned to pick his battles, at the very least better than I tend to, rather than resist just for the sake of resisting. But I have a bit of a problem with this request, and more so the reason given. In this case I know what the reason is, and it's not a good reason, so it's being substituted for an incorrect reason.
There were tattoos in Bethlehem, as well as every other place in the world, and tattoos were at least a thousand years old by that point. So I quickly verified some facts and armed Jack with them, should the subject be brought up again. An educated stance is always on higher ground.

It's taken me most of my life to accept that a good reason is rarely the reason you get. But you should always demand a good reason, just not necessarily to your dying breath as I'm prone. As far as I'm concerned, an incorrect reason is an invalid reason. Either way I don't feel that Jack should have to get rid of his beloved tattoo because of how it might look with the rest of his mouse costume, certainly not without a good reason.

Now I'm not really trying to cause trouble here, we've enrolled Jack in a CoE school and thus, I'm expecting certain, shall we say, moral clashes from time to time. I don't expect this to come to anything, I don't expect to hear anything more about it at all. But there's a principal here that I feel strongly about and clearly it's important to Jack if he was already willing to make a stand. I want him to be prepared to take the strongest position he can and know that I'm with him.

I am pretty certain that they didn't have Darth Vader in Bethlehem.
But it the films do say it was a long long time ago.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

The Christmas Play

This morning we attended Jacks Christmas play.

It was interesting to see the evolution of the class. Last year the play was painfully stretched to 30 minutes, there were a few tonelessly sung tunes and a script read or shouted out a sentence at a time by the children. The dancing consisted of the kids walking around the stage and waving their arms. The costumes were mostly just variations of painted pillow cases.

This year the singing, while it was backed up with a tape of a children's choir, was much closer to pitch. The costumes were good, the stars looked like stars and the angels looked like angels. The three kings costumes were complete with sunglasses due to the luminescence of the star they had to follow. There were props, scenery and choreography and dare I say it, acting, from the inn-keepers wife especially.

The cast was made up of around 80 children from years 1 and 2 and each of them had a part to play. The play was Jesus's Christmas party, which was a slightly comical take on the nativity scene. Essentially a huge party gradually amasses in the stables under the noses of the surly innkeepers. There were a number of genuinely funny moments. My favourite of which is when Joseph sheepishly disturbs the innkeepers asking for another blanket, baby sized.

Jack was a mouse that got put to sleep by a bunch of angles very early on in the play. He came out and danced in a sleepy way, then lay on the floor for a few minutes, we were very proud. Jack took the roll quite seriously, he practiced the songs at home when he thought that we weren't listening and he warned us that mommy might cry during the last song, pretty much all of his teachers had cried at some point over the performances because of this particular song.

We were impressed, proud and still glad when it was over. Helen didn't cry.

Our mouse.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Santa's clause

Jack has seen Santa a few times already this year. He'll never pass up the opportunity, even though he knows that its not likely to be the real Santa, but they'll pass everything on. Also I think he just likes to talk to someone who's only interest is a list of what Jack wants.

About Santa Jack has it all figured out, he knows that Santa has a lot of PR work in December and can't possibly be everywhere at once, so he has helpers that do a lot of the visits for him. As for who these helpers are, I think he's going with some kind of clones, because they're obviously not elves.

On one visit Jack expressed to Santa the desire for an iPad, by which he means any iDevice that he can play Temple Run on, he's wanted one for quite a while but he's hell bent on getting one this year for Christmas. Apparently Santa assured him that if he was a good boy then he would get one. So now Jack is just the most well behaved boy that there ever there was. You can see him analysing his every move, trying to work out if its good boy behaviour. Jack is pretty sure that this was that real Santa.

It's a little annoying actually because I feel a little like now if we don't get him the device then all of this hard work will be for nothing, but these devices are expensive. Jack keeps going on about when he gets his iPad and so on. Santa, the giver of gifts, has made this deal and we're feeling bound to honour it. Curse these clones.