Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 230

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“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.”

Groucho Marx

Oh, I loved this quote, Spidey!

This weekend I have been talking reading and books a lot, with my uncle, who came to visit me. This is my mum’s eldest brother. My Mamaji. And he lives in Kenya. I haven’t seen him in 18 years, since my wedding,

He’s a very special man to me. Another dad. And someone who has inspired me to read. Both him and my mother read copiously when I was younger, and though life may not allow them to read as much, even in retirement, they are both like me and would rather have a good book in their hand, than an eye on the goggle box, as my mum always calls it!

My Mamaji treated himself this trip, to an All New Kindle Paperwhite, and he brought it with him, to compare with mine, and to discuss book-related matters.

He’s a non-fiction reader more than fiction, and my memories of him are always of him with his nose in a book or the paper. I remember his bedroom in Kenya distinctly, with piles of books lining walls too!

In fact he was nearly a PhD Graduate in the 60s, but due to personal problelms, he never finished it, and it is a regret he feels keenly. He studied here in London, at Queen Mary’s College and Imperial College, both of which his took my aunt, my Mamiji, to visit last week!

There was a trunk filled with his belongings in my parent’s garage. My mum has kept it safe since it was entrusted to her care in the early 70s and she hasn’t dared open it, or get rid of it.

A couple of weeks ago, Mamaji stationed himself in the garage of Pops and Mum’s house, to rummage through his memories. The trunk was filled with all sorts, including a handmade suit of his, some other hilariously 60s clothes and TONS of books. When I phoned mum that day, she was laughing as she told me how he was like a child in a toyshop, delving into the memories of an extremely precious time for him.

I was in awe of his memory.

Even yesterday, as he mentioned the titles of some of the books, and the authors, some of whom had been his PhD lecturers, his eyes glistened with pure joy. He told mum to give the books away, as he can’t take them back, but he also had a ‘small’ list of ones he would ask her to keep, for memory’s sake.

I know I shall be rummaging around in that trunk before they get given away, to get another insight into Mamaji and his younger life.

Before he left, his parting words to me were, “Send me that book of yours when it’s done.”

Another member of my family who has been such a strong, silent support of my writing dream. He was so proud the day my poetry book came out, and I know I just need to do this, get this book published, not just for me, but for all those dear to me, who have so much faith in my ability.

So… tell me, who is part of your silent support group?

Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps  And enjoy your week! ❤ 

47 Years #lifegoals

Today, my parents are celebrating 47 years of marriage.

A goal I aspire to as well.

They are a couple who have shown us how love, understanding, patience and a sprinkle of madness, is the best recipe for marital success.

Wishing them a wonderful day and hope their union may last many more years.

Happy Anniversary Pops and Mum ❤️

Chai And A Chat #24 #ChaiAndAChat

Hey there Peeps! I hope you’re ready … never a quiet one in Ritu-World!

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you – “Week Three – In-Law-less – done!!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you work has been manic (isn’t it always? Life in an Early Years class…) We had Science week, so hyped the kids up with a chance to meet some minibeasts, like ginat Africam landsnails, tarantulas, African milipedes, cockroaches and a snake! Then on the Tuesday, my day started with a panic, as my team leader was off sick, and there was a moderation meeting happening the next day, across the schools in our academy. For those of you that don’t know, moderation is when you compare your judgements about pupils with the other schools, to make sure you aren’t making too easy/harsh judgements about how a child is progressing. I was worrying as I have never done one of these without here there, and the other Reception teacher has never been to one before… blind leading the blind? Yup! On top of that we had planning to do the next day too, which was going to be cut short because of the Moderation meeting. So by 9am on Tuesday, I had gathered moderation information, chased up paperwork, and created a skeleton plan for the following week’s learning. Phew! But thankfully my Team Leader ended up back that afternoon, because she cannot stay at home! So no panic in the end! But the day did not end without a tension headache… oh yes…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that, moderation went well. I kinda feel a lot more confident about these things now, and hope that the experiences will help me further along in my career.
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that the rest of the school week was relatively simple, until my kids decided to embarrass the heck out of me first thing on a Friday morning. Playing up and messing my classroom before the day had even started, arguing and generally making a nuisance of themselves. I ended up blowing my top at Lil Man before he headed off to his school… Seriously? Can children not even keep calm for at least 10 minutes, without causing a storm? BP felt like it rose high!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that, on the flip side, he has done really well in a Maths test, proving that the tutoring we send him for seems to be working! And he is also playing badminto regularly, on top of the cricket, and on Sunday, he was scouted for a Badminton Academy! I am very proud of him and his strengths. (Not so much, his teenage strops and attitude!)
    If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you Lil Princess got me worried this week. I would walk past her room, and hear her shout ot periodically, “Just shut up…!”… Turns out I didn’t need to worry! Apparently she did really well, but I couldnt watch as I was short staffed at the time!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that the weekend was absolutely wonderful with Pops and Mum. They brought a huge box full of my old photos from infanthood to university and I spent a long time perusing… they also found old certificates of mine, and embarrasing school photos too! We spent a long time chatting, reminiscing and talking about all sorts, and I learned so much from them both, about their lives, and customs and traditions in our culture. It’s amazing how I learn new things about my parents every time we sit and chat. Seriously, you think you must know everything about them, and then they tell you things that make your head spin… I hope to share some of the stories one day, on the blog, but I tell you what, Mum could write a memoir, and it would be amazing!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d mention that mum even managed to help me Marie Kondo the heck outta my kitchen which I had been dreading! We stripped countertops, emptied cupboards, threw out of date stuff away, made a (huge) donate pile and scrubbed cupboards and drawers and walls too (bit of a condensation issue in the kitchen) and then put it all back, wrapping up equipment that is used less frequently so it stays clean and generally more organinsed. Feels good, but 8 hours of that andf my shoulders are killing, my body is exhausted and eyes are itching from dust and all sorts! Still – feels GOOD!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d also say we had to sleep on the sofa bed for two nights, as I would never inflict that upon my parents, and I totally appreciated that Sunday night bubble bath that I have made sure I enjoy each week, as part of my ‘self’ word of the year!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know we went a bit spiritual too, at the temple on Sunday, celebrating the birth of a baby in one of Hubby Dearest’s friend’s family. Soul cleansed, kitchen cleansed, body cleansed… just need my mind to be emptied now, though I fear that will never happen!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that official lesson observation week is also this week, so I just need to get Tuesday out of the way, successfully (my observation day) then I can breathe and relax!
  • If we were sipping that chai togetherand possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d mention that this coming weekend, NOTHING is planned – honestly! I hope for lots of lazing around. I need it!

Have a wonderful week, Peeps! Let me know how your week went!

Spidey’s Serene Christmas Sunday – Part 201 –

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“For me, Christmas is about family, loving, forgiveness, compassion, understanding and comradery.” – Anthony Mackie

What a perfect thought for our pre Christmas post, Spidey!

To me that is all that encompasses Christmas, truly.

I hope you all have a wonderful family, and love filled Christmas, Peeps!

merry christmas

Chai & A Chat #7 #ChaiAndAChat

Okay, this week, I am being brave and attempting to try the new Guttenberg editor… Bear with me! 

Right, so the image got there okay!

Now for the news!

  • If we were sipping a chai together I’d sink back into the comfy armchair I managed to bag, and say PHEW! I lasted the week!
  • If we were sipping a chai together I’d tell you school days, especially at the beginning of the week, were kinda manic as we had loads of staff in and out, from sickness, to courses, to ‘moving days’… yes a lot of juggling bodies around to make sure no class was short-staffed!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that Wednesday was particularly crazy, as Lil Princess was suffering from a headache, but wanted to go in. Nearing lunchtime, her class teacher found me and told me she was really not well, so I had to get her things together at lunch, grab my phone which I had forgotten at home, drop her to my in-laws, and get back to set up for the afternoon, oh and eat too, all on 45 minutes… that was fun! Don’t worry, I did eat in the end – food and I can’t be apart for long!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d mention that I had accident #4098 – yes, you know me, totally accident-prone! I managed to step incorrectly on a front doorstep first thing in the morning. my foot went under me, the wrong way, and I totally twisted it, pulling some ligaments… that day I spent in class, on my throne, with an ice pack tucked into my sock, slowly beckoning my minions pupils to me to do the work I required of them. Bless them though, they were all so concerned!
  • If we were sipping a chai together I’d tell you that the Children in Need fundraising day went really well and we raised nearly £350! And here is my dressing up effort, as promised, last week! 
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d remind you that Lil Man was getting his braces fit too this week. The day before the appointment, I got a call from the orthodontists to tell me the appointment I had been given should not have been booked in on that date as the consultant required was not working, and could I get in on the day before at 12 midday? Er, no! I had to explain, again, that as I am a teacher, it is very hard for me to get out of school, as I have classes to teach… so they reluctantly agreed to allow the original appointment to be had, with the warning that if anything didn’t fit, they would have to reschedule, and they couldn’t guarantee a time that would suit me… Grrr! Nevertheless, we got in, and it all fit perfectly. But there was definitely discomfort and pain, and at one point he even squared up to me when the pain got so bad and I was trying to help him… eeek! 
  • If we were sipping chai together  I’d tell you that the rest of Saturday was meant to be devoted to us as a couple and family, as Sunday was our Anniversary… but in the end, I spent most of it with pukey child, as Lil Princess managed to catch some sort of vomiting bug, which, thankfully only lasted 24 hours! It was not a fun day!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that as midnight struck, we romantically exchanged cards, as I had said no presents this time… there was no need to spend silly money on gifts just for the sake of it – a lovely dinner would be more appreciated… this was what I received as my ‘card’…
  • If we were sipping chai together, I’d say that the morning brought more surprises in the form of a well daughter, a son with a sore, but a coping mouth and me being sick! Great start to the anniversary! So, there was no going out, just lots of sofa surfing, with films and books all day, and dry toast! The evening arrived and I was better, but drained… takeaway for the rest of the family! We’ll try to celebrate next week, eh! In the meantime, here’s us on our wedding day ❤

And what of the next week?

  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that I shall be experiencing my first taste of moderating… this is when schools get together to compare how we grade our children, to make sure we are all singing from the same hymn sheet. A bit nervewracking, but bring it on!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you the District cricket trials for Lil Man are officially this Friday! Eeeek!!!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d say that I hope we get our anniversary dinner next weekend!! 

So, what’s your week been like, and what are you looking forward to?

If you want, drop a line in the comments, or even link back to this with a Chai and a Chat post of your own!

Wow! I survived Guttenberg! (It’s not as straightforward as the old, I have to say, I loved the copy old post function for my recurring challenge posts, so, unless it’s hiding somewhere, that will be time-consuming!) I shall reserve judgement yet…

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