On the cuteness front, Grace has taken to eating her dinner in super-quick time, and then looking wistfully at ours and saying "I wish I had some more....". Luke is
a sucker for this generous to a fault, and always hands over a bit of his, so yesterday, when I gave the kids a fruit plate to use up some bits and bobs from the fridge, he looked across at Grace's one and a half strawberries and said "I wish I had a strawberry....". Quick as a flash, Grace handed one over, and absolutely refused to take it back. Luke had to eat it in the kitchen as he....... removed the dust from his eyes! It is nice to see that modelling rather than enforcing generosity does actually work though; we have never forced the children to offer their belongings to others, but we have tried to model sharing and taking turns, and it's good to see that as the understanding grows, those kind of behaviours do develop naturally.
This morning Grace bounced into the bedroom saying "I got dressed myself, mummy - I chose all my own clothes and I sang myself a love song while I was doing it". It may sound ridiculous, but these are the achievements I am proudest of my kids for; developing the inner strength to boost their own self-esteem and learning to have empathy and concern for others. The academic stuff will come; I can see them picking that up and running with it every day - the thirst for understanding is to great for them to do anything else, but I can't help thinking that the self-awareness and concern for the world are the seeds that need to be gently nurtured and not knocked out of them by the academic pressures put on small children in nurseries and schools now.
All summed up, I feel, by Grace's artwork for the day....