Monday, June 16

On Parenthood

So here are my ideas on fatherhood on Father's Day. Kids need as much freedom as they need discipline and structure. Madeleine, for instance, is aware of my index finger on her forehead at all times telling her this or that. sometimes she needs a break. As long as the Shakespeares are in my eye-sight generally, they are free to run around bezerko as long as they don't bother me or another adult.

I expect Madeleine and Eitan to behave properly, of course, but am more pre-occupied with their best efforts. I watch them on the pitch, at the playground, by the pool and in the classroom. This seems a bit CCTV I admit. My aim, however, is to encourage them with great affection while supporting an interest. Ok, swimming might just be a residual from my unfulfilled college-years but as I tell Eitan: "consider it cross-training for your football." We shall see if the aquatics sticks. My guess is probably not.

Expose them now to everything and let them decide. School takes up the weekday while activities the afternoons and week-ends: guitar lessons, football practice, swim-team, performance class (Madeleine), Spanish (Eitan), art-yard (Madeleine) and tennis. This is for sure more than I ever did at this, or any age, but I expect them to eventually chose what counts . For them. At least I can hope.

Fun should be at the centre of it all dude and yes, mainly thanks to Grace, I goof a lot. I have re-found my silliness and am often on my hands and knees tickling, barking, farting, pinching and laughing with the sprogues. They love it, I love it - why not?

Don't spoil the brats. At their age now, everything a demand: ice cream, candy, toys, magazines, toys, boxes (Madeleine), football cards, ice cream, and on and on. My three favorite words, which are known well Dear Sir: "No. No and no." Eitan's super-fly Manchester United shirt, which cost a small treasure of £27 and saved from his allowance and chores, purchased by him with no help from me. He wears the thing every Saturday.

Spoil the brats rotten. Ours are away from grandparents and so miss their love, attention and wisdom. While there is no substitute, we do go over-board on occasion. This does not necessarily mean material crapola, though sometimes crapola it is. More often it is being there for school-trips, sitting around football practice, letting Eitan stay up until 10PM to watch a must-see ManU match, bring Madeleine home a box (which she asks for every day). Time is what counts and sometimes we have to do double without our extended family.

Anyways I thought my parents and in-laws might appreciate this missive and so here it is.