Tuesday, November 8, 2011

November Stories

My mind was a blank when I opened this to blog. There's always that question of what's happened with the Clan that anyone else would care to read about. When you look at your life from within it doesn't seem that interesting, the day to day monotony of school runs, work, deciding what to make for dinner. I want to blog about holidays and adventures, conquests and discoveries, but they rarely seem to happen. Or do they?

I always tell my students that any story can be compelling if you tell it with passion and you have an interest in it yourself, that the small epiphanies are as captivating as the big ones if you put your love and excitement into them. 

So here's our week, hopefully told with passion.

Halloween is almost a non-event in Finland, but our music class decided to give a small nod to the day and suggested people wear costumes and then told an appropriate story. Not many put their kids in costumes but I managed to dig up something for the little Weans. 

 The Dread Pirate Bumpshie

I have no idea what the story was really about as it was in Finnish, but it had a troll, a witchy looking crone, a cat, a dog, a woodcutter looking fellow, a boy and a cake. It started out a bit like the Little Red Hen and ended up like a game of hide and seek. Foo was captivated at points. He even managed to sing parts of Hämä-hämähäkki (Itsy, Bitsy Spider) which I had spent the past afternoon learning myself and singing over and over again.

He's beginning to understand bit of Finnish. At the Halloween party which was held where his playgroup is he picked up a toy airplane and randomly shouted 'lentokonen' which is almost lentokone the Finnish word for airplane. He has a lovely teacher who's Hungarian and speaks little Finnish, but much more than we do. She's been saying the Finnish word for his favourite things, so I'm sure he'll come out with more and more as the months go on. 

She's also figuring out how to keep his attention long enough to get him to do some arts and crafts type things. He finds it very hard to sit and focus on stuff like that and because his fine motor skills are not great he's not very interested in it. I suggested drawing a picture of something he likes for him to colour over. So we're finally getting a few pictures to bring home.

It's a Triceratops, of course. He's done a pumpkin as well.

And finally we made our first fire in our new home, and smoked the place out. The boys loved it, so we'll have to try again. I think we put the fire too far forward. I'm only used to burning things outside, so this is all new to us. But it will be nice as the weather gets colder. 

The changing of the clocks back has hit us hard in terms of light. When I go pick up Mousie from nursery at 4pm the sun has set. Everyone has started leaving front porch lights on and their curtains open at night, so the streets don't feel so dark and miserable. It's strange coming from societies where everyone pulls their blinds as soon as the sun starts to set to keep people from looking in. The Finns are nosey, so they're not worried about that. Having light streaming out from the houses makes the walks home in the evening much more comforting. Like the Jack O'Lanterns of Halloween to keep the long, terrible darkness at bay.

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