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Child appeared at our bedside last night.
 
Child: I can't sleep because I keep thinking about asteroids. 
Me: what about zombies?
Child: I have never seen any films about them, so I don't really think about them. 
 
Long pause.
 
Child: Plus, they move really slowly.
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I have a running thread on my Facebook page. It consists of snippets of funny conversations that I've had with my nine-year-old daughter, such as:

Child: Nobody has head lice at school anymore, apart from the small children in reception class.
Me: Why do the reception kids have lice?
Child: Because they are savage. 

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Hmmm

8/10/13 10:28
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My 6-year-old daughter's choice from the school library. "it's interesting" she explained, and seemed a bit disappointed that we weren't similarly interested. Actually it is interesting for reasons she doesn't understand. It's a time capsule from the 1980's when Di was still alive and the public still idealised the Royals as one big happily married family. Her school seems to have made her into a monarchist and converted her to Christianity. Maybe she'll marry the two and graduate as a full-blown Papist. 
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Well, no and yes, sort of. Here in Britain it has only really caught on in recent years, an American cultural import. Pumpkins aren't even native to Europe! As a child in Hong Kong I was more exposed to it. The English-speaking community there were more US-oriented than 'back home' in England, and the norm in Hong Kong is to embrace any excuse for a festival, regardless of origin. In fact, upon returning to England as a teenager in 1986 I was quite disappointed by how lame the Christmas decorations were. Hong Kong does it better.

Anyway, I now have a three-year-old daughter, and so have rediscovered Halloween vicariously. Our housing estate is traffic-calmed and well-disposed towards children, and generally participates in trick-or-treating so, in a few hours, I will sally forth with the child to extract chocolate from the neighbours. Hoho.

I've bought glow sticks!

As a festival for adults, I don't quite see the attraction. I mean, dressing up as a skeleton? Yawn. It's just yet another excuse for boozing.
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Just to reassure my readers that my silken friends are not neglected or dead. Rather they are besieged. Lying low, literally. The child likes them a lot. That's the problem. If I remove them from the protection of their bunker she squeals with delight and approaches ineluctably, hands poised like a crab's claws, bellowing "HELLO GERBILS!" with painful volume, forcing them to flatten their ears against their heads. Generally, therefore, these days they get played with after she's gone to bed, in the company of far less dangerous interested older children or Italian doctors.
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I was leafing through a collection of old Richard Scarry stories with my daughter and couldn't help noticing that a rather fanciful story about an anthropomorphised panda in Hong Kong includes a fairly accurate impression of the old Kowloon station building, which was demolished (apart from the clock tower) in 1978.

Art

10/2/09 12:03
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My daughter keeps demanding "drawing" and has covered many pieces of A4 with scribbles of varying complexity and slowly evolving form. I think scanning them will be a good way to store them for future reference. This one is a special experiment though. Instead of giving her a new sheet of paper every time she asked for one, I just gave her the same sheet several times, and allowed her to build up the layers, like Jackson Pollock.
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My daughter's dolly this morning, covered in frost and looking rather unsavoury.
benicek: (Default)
My wife is working today, so I'm in charge.

This was my plan for the second half of my daughter's morning:
  1. Go on the swings.
  2. Have lunch.
  3. Go to sleep.
I got as far as stage one, but then she fell asleep in the swing.

What do I do now?
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My daughter in Brighton the other week. My friend took this picture on his phone. It was a very exciting day, the first time I'd taken the child anywhere by myself unchaperoned by mummy. She survived without being lost or trampled.
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My neighbour used to avoid buying ice cream for her six-year-old daughter by employing a very simple method. She told her that when the ice cream van played its tinkly little tune that this was a signal it had run out of ice cream, and that it was telling all the children to go away until it had been resupplied. Her daughter believed this until she was five years old when she finally worked out that she'd been duped.

However, she still believes that all the electricity in their flat shuts off between 11pm and 6am. Sooner or later she's going to realise that she can watch TV late into the night, but for the timebeing it works.

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Got up at 4.30 this morning to take wife and baby to the airport for their flight to the Czech Republic. Oh what sweet revenge that was! Waking the baby at 4.30! Hohoho! Not being able to read a clock I think she thought she'd overslept somehow. She scrunched up her face, unable to account for this strange tired feeling in her head.

At the airport the check-in girls (I think they were Poles) took a shine to her. They peeled off a huge sticker saying "FRAGILE - handle with care" and put it on her tummy, and then gave her a "heavy load" label to put round her wrist. Both quite appropriate I thought.
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Yum.

1/4/08 12:20
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Yesterday I gave the baby some slices of pear to feed herself, which she did with enthusiasm. She couldn't manage the last piece however, so I ate it for her, economical piggy that I am.

But, as I swallowed, the back of my throat burned most unpleasantly and I was left with a foul but oddly familiar taste in my mouth. What had the baby poisoned me with? She stared back at me, innocently, and then continued playing with a small pool of transparent vomit which had escaped my attention. 
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I came home and found the flat empty and this ancient-looking booklet next to the Czech-English dictionary. I thought it was rather cute. My wife worrying about the baby and struggling to translate this museum piece, which she must have borrowed from my mother at some point.
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Something I've just noticed.... when madam stays at home and looks after the baby it is called 'housework' or 'childrearing', which is a fair description of what she does. However, when I stay at home and look after the baby it's called 'a day off'.
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Oh dear, the baby is ill. She looks like a rabbit with myxomatosis. She doesn't know this though and is continuing to carry out her normal baby duties of opening cupboards, tearing up paper and so on, oblivious to her puffy eyes and face glistening with snot and tears. 
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benicek: (aaaaaaaaaarg!)
I'm getting quite good at the bread making now. I baked two more loaves yesterday and another today. Each is successively fluffier and nicer as I have learned, by trial and error, exactly how long to bake them and how much sunflower oil to use to make the dough looser.

I fell asleep this afternoon and dreamed that I could see the baby struggling in a large pile of flour, but was unable to help.

Maybe I'm overdoing this bread thing.

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