Posts Tagged ‘Hannah’

Hannah turns ten

22 Apr

I wonder if Hannah feels at all like this about turning ten…

On Turning Ten, by Billy Collins

The whole idea of it makes me feel
like I’m coming down with something,
something worse than any stomach ache
or the headaches I get from reading in bad light–
a kind of measles of the spirit,
a mumps of the psyche,
a disfiguring chicken pox of the soul.

You tell me it is too early to be looking back,
but that is because you have forgotten
the perfect simplicity of being one
and the beautiful complexity introduced by two.
But I can lie on my bed and remember every digit.
At four I was an Arabian wizard.
I could make myself invisible
by drinking a glass of milk a certain way.
At seven I was a soldier, at nine a prince.

But now I am mostly at the window
watching the late afternoon light.
Back then it never fell so solemnly
against the side of my tree house,
and my bicycle never leaned against the garage
as it does today,
all the dark blue speed drained out of it.

This is the beginning of sadness, I say to myself,
as I walk through the universe in my sneakers.
It is time to say good-bye to my imaginary friends,
time to turn the first big number.

It seems only yesterday I used to believe
there was nothing under my skin but light.
If you cut me I could shine.
But now when I fall upon the sidewalks of life,
I skin my knees. I bleed.

I know I feel a little more like this…

Slipping through my fingers by Abba

Schoolbag in hand, she leaves home in the early morning
Waving goodbye with an absent-minded smile
I watch her go with a surge of that well-known sadness
And I have to sit down for a while
The feeling that I’m losing her forever
And without really entering her world
I’m glad whenever I can share her laughter
That funny little girl
Slipping through my fingers all the time
I try to capture every minute
The feeling in it
Slipping through my fingers all the time
Do I really see whats in her mind
Each time I think I’m close to knowing
She keeps on growing
Slipping through my fingers all the time
Sleep in our eyes, her and me at the breakfast table
Barely awake, I let precious time go by
Then when shes gone there’s that odd melancholy feeling
And a sense of guilt I can’t deny
What happened to the wonderful adventures
The places I had planned for us to go
(slipping through my fingers all the time)
Well, some of that we did but most we didn’t
And why I just don’t know
Slipping through my fingers all the time
I try to capture every minute
The feeling in it
Slipping through my fingers all the time
Do I really see whats in her mind
Each time I think I’m close to knowing
She keeps on growing
Slipping through my fingers all the time
Sometimes I wish that I could freeze the picture
And save it from the funny tricks of time
Slipping through my fingers…
Slipping through my fingers all the time
Schoolbag in hand she leaves home in the early morning
Waving goodbye with an absent-minded smile…

Happy Tenth Birthday Hannah

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Hannah takes on Barbie!

04 Dec

I have struck gold!

My new colleague and friend, 5th grade teacher Tina Bui, likes my children and wants to play with them and take them places!!! So instead of ME having to take the girls (again I might add, once was enough) to wonderful exciting places like Barbie World Shanghai!!! now Tina gets to do it…

Here are some (many) snaps of Hannah striking a pose on her midweek adventure this week. Only relatives need click play… and close relatives at that (read – Nanna Gay) as they are all very, very Hannah! with some Hannah, and then a few of Hannah!

December is here by the way, which is super exciting. In two weeks from now we hope to be sitting in the Donald’s kitchen eating vegemite on toast and drinking coffee watching kangaroos in the paddock and seeing the kids reunite, not to mention Andrew and Simon’s reunion of course… ah, brings a tear to my eye!

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August and September in the Power House

16 Sep

I can’t believe we’ve been back in Shanghai for eight weeks… every day brings us one step closer to the next holiday!!! Roll on October break… roll on Thanksgiving…roll on Christmas…I’ll stop there, the aging process and all!!!

Simon and I went to Bangkok last weekend and spent two nights in a great hotel with our friends Jenny and Tom who were there for a week. It was our first flight together without the kids, our first time overseas together without the kids and we all survived and thrived! School has been hectic this September however the happy group of students I have and the great teachers Hannah and Mimi have this year make it all worthwhile.

Last night we got to go to Mimi’s Open House at the Wonder Center… I love that place almost as much as my friend Amy Hossack loves living at the Links… We were amazed by the school’s set up as always and loved meeting with the four teachers who get to spend 5 days a week hearing our talkative child tell stories and make jokes; apparently her favourite things. We were saddened and surprised by how seriously some parents take the education of their 2-5 year old and it has given me a real insight into the mindset of many of the parents we have here at S.A.S. later on who are so concerned about pushing their child and keeping them busy-busy; that pressure sure starts early. We are just happy Mimi has a lovely safe place to play, be engaged, be stimulated and is learning to love to learn… isn’t that the most important thing? There are some great photos on Sue’s site and heaps of solid information about the Reggio Emilia approach to learning.

Hannah has her first swim meet this Saturday and will be competing in the 50m breast-stroke and free-style. We are excited to be there to cheer her on and then celebrate the day with a b.b.q. after wards. We have a day off next Wednesday for a Chinese National Holiday which will break up the week nicely and then we get to hear Jane Goodall speak on Friday which should be amazing, I am so excited I get to meet this amazing woman, it is her second time here but the first time I will see her at a small lunch and book signing event for 60 people…

Simon is continuing to look amazing and fade away…(not necessarily at the same time) and we celebrate 12 years of wedded bliss this Sunday…Yeah for us. Enjoy 20 short and sweet shots of the girls from the last month or so, no pics of Simmo, he won’t be photographed until he is in the B.M.I. normal range!!!

This week I started my course to become a librarian/media specialist through the same University I completed my Masters in last year, Plymouth State University. I have some work to do this weekend, and every weekend for a couple of month to complete the first course for three credits but it is something I’ve toyed with for awhile, so, onward and upward!

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May in Shanghai

16 May

Well, we have reached mid-May, and you know what that means?

We are 26 sleeps away from June 12th when we take off for Portugal, Finland and Sweden for 7 weeks of Summer, hooray!

There is a lot to accomplish in that time and friends to farewell however the general feeling in the air is a buzz and excitement over long summer days at the beach, playgrounds, sorbet and amazing European tapas and fresh seafood. We will be spending time with Raija, Jussi, Matias and Johannes in their new apartment in Helsinki as well as their Summer cottage that we were so fortunate to enjoy last year; we are very excited about returning there and about seeing Hannah’s friend Johannes that she went to school with for years in Shanghai.

Speaking of friends from Shanghai, as I sit typing this, Hannah is by my side on Simon’s laptop writing her own blog post on the new blog that has been created for her and her best friend Sydney to communicate to the world about their travel experiences, book reviews and whatever else takes their fancy. Their blog is the culmination of a five year friendship that has seen them visiting with each other in Thailand, America, nearly Abu Dhabi and this Christmas, Australia. They have written letters, skyped and e mailed and as parents we see as a great way for the two of them to continue their relationship and encourage each other with their writing, reading and technology skills.

May has seen Mimi in the second month of her schooling at The Wonder Center. We are so impressed with the work that Sue, her teacher, is celebrating there and feel very fortunate to have this sort of opportunity for Mimi just around the corner. She currently attends 5 days a week from 8.30 – 12.00 and come August this will increase for another couple of hours each day with her making and eating her own lunch there. So far she has cooked her own peanut butter, bread and muffins and has a lovely time each morning with the close-knit group of ten students aged a year younger and older than she is. If you are family or just a fan of cute Mimi… click on the link to photo pages and you will see what amazing facilities this place has and why we are feeling so fortunate, it is an early childhood centre’s dream come true.

Enjoy some of our photos and please take some time to check out Sydney and Hannah’s blog one of these days. It is a very exciting project for them and for their parents.

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Hannah Turns 9

11 Apr


Hannah and Harbin

30 Jan

Hannah is on a plane…. I am on the ground…. Tonight is the first time this has happened and it feels strange. I first flew with Hannah when she was about 10 weeks old, just her and I, and we have made about 8 mother and daughter trips together like that since, mainly from Melbourne to Hobart but also a return trip from Australia last year back home to China.

It feels very strange knowing she is up there and I am down here. I said that to Simon but he sort of shrugged it off; it is no big deal for him, he has had nearly 9 years to get used to the idea. Not I!

Hannah and Me

Hannah and Me

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The girls

02 Jun

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Kimbra’s Yangshou Photos May 2009

13 May

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Family Photos

03 Nov

I am just doing a bit of a test run here to see how I go managing two blogs. I would like this one to be for family things as I am taking so many picassa pics of the kids that I can’t really put on my school blog and would like to use this to replace our old mac site

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Home Sweet Home

07 Aug

Hi, we tiredly but happily arrived back in Shanghai on the evening of Tuesday the 29th of July. We were originally scheduled for the following week but decided to bring it forward as it was pretty cold back in Ballarat and we were itching to see our new Green Court apartment. We are not disappointed by our decision. We have had a terrific week back here and are feeling much more relaxed and ready to take on the next year of school.


The weather is fantastic right now and I am going to enjoy the second and final week of being back here and will then be ready to face my new class and colleagues. Hannah has been going off to ‘summer camp- a performing arts camp with the theme “Hannah Montana and Friends” every morning for a few hours this week and is extremely happy to be doing so, she is loving it and I can’t wait to see and hear her final performance tomorrow. Mimi is pretty grumpy unless I am giving her 100% of my attention so that has been trying on all of us. I am sure she is just picking up on the whole “Shanghai = ayi most days and not mum” thing and feeling a bit insecure so I am trying to give her love but the constant whinging is taking its toll. Simon is rapt to be back and is happily setting up his techy things all over the place and getting ready for the year ahead.




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