Saturday, April 14, 2012

Bean Earned his Yellow Belt

Bean's first belt test for Tae Kwon Do was today. He's been looking forward to testing for a couple weeks now and has been really practicing his form. It paid off because he earned a yellow belt and I felt confident that he really earned it and it wasn't a formality. 

At the last test date when he knew his friends were testing he said, "I hope everyone moves up a belt." I responded that I hope everyone tries their best and if that deserves a belt, then I hope they get it, but if not, then I hope they don't give up, but try again next time. This seemed like a perfect time to remind him of the importance of trying your best, but that you don't always get credit for effort but sometimes you have to earn it by showing mastery or at least improvement. I also wanted to re-emphasize the value of perseverance, which we do a lot anyway in our house.

Here he is sparring. 

I wish I recorded what his sparring used to look like. He would hop all over the place, run away from his opponent or turn his back on him or her. He was also slower and less agile. Today he was fully engaged and diversified his kicks. He did all four that he knew, but I started recording after he had already done some others. I'm surprised they didn't have him do his poomsei, because Bo and I have really seen some improvement there. I might need to have him do it and I'll just record it.

In the meantime, look at this proud little man in his yellow belt :)

Lemon frozen custard to celebrate...cuz it's yellow
Update from Monday April 16th:
Today was his first day of class as a yellow belt. He got to state his name in front of the class and give everyone a high-five. 

Today also goes down in history as the first time that when I asked the question, "How was Tae Kwon Do class today?" he said "Great!" In general, his response to most questions like that is "good" despite the fact that Bo and I discourage the use of that vague word. It's it's like pulling teeth to get any clarification or descriptions about it too. He said today's class was great because he got to learn new things and he specifically mentioned a new yellow belt kick. Eureka! Has he realized that if you pay attention and focus you can actually have fun learning something new from someone else? Time will tell.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Tey's Words: Sweet and Sour

Several friends have told me that they find my "things my kids say" posts on facebook to be pretty hilarious, especially if you know my kids. I'm so glad people find it as funny as I do. Sometimes what comes out of their mouths is just so darn sweet too. Those quotes don't always make it on here because they are so short and random, but here are some from Tey I've been collecting.

After spending ONE night at his grandparents and wanting to come home the next day I asked him if the missed me. His response, "I didn't miss you, I just wanted my mommy."

While riding in the back of the van singing Cosette's Castle on a Cloud from Les Miserable "There is a lady dress in white, holds me and sings me a lullabuy...(then makes up his own lyrics)...I don't need a lady, I need a mommy..."

While the kids were playing in the playroom I overheard Tey try to convince Bean, "Mommy knows everything." Bean didn't buy it unfortunately.

I knew there was a good reason for recording these quotes in a draft post over the past couple months. I needed it as perspective today to stand in contrast to the harsh words barked by a frustrated and tired Tey during a fit right before naptime, "Why do you do everything to make me sad?!" 

He needed perspective too and he got it as I reminded him that today I took him out for pizza, we spent the afternoon at the park, and oh yeah, I taught him the commutative property of addition. 

Tey and I do math on the bathroom mirror a few mornings a week
Perspective, it was what we both needed to cool down that heated moment. A couple minutes later he apologized and we were snuggling in the rocking chair exchanging words of love while Bean and Mei cuddled on Bean's bed. 

Only with kids can you have the worse insult of the day hurled at you unprovoked, followed soon after by genuine reconciliation and a scene of complete bliss, like heaven on Earth. Oh, it's never a dull moment over here.