Oh.

Huh. I googled "Elizabeth Gilbert" to see if she's given any interesting interviews I could listen to whilst washing dishes. Instead, I found out that she's divorced from her husband and is now living with her girlfriend Rayya.

Huh. I guess that qualifies as "interesting" :).

The Dog, flying

Going through the photos has made me realise just how many shots like that I have of her.




A thank you note

I will be dropping a letter off to preschool next week, along with a plate of food. I am certain tears will be involved, but heck with that. We'll wipe.

There are many things that matter in a preschool to me.

I want a place that I can walk into and think, yes, I like the feel of this place.

I want it to be light and airy. Artwork proudly displayed on walls and hanging off drying hooks, intriguing projects going on on tables.

I want it to have a large backyard where my kids can play and ride their bikes. I want them to be able to get dirty, if they want to, and for the preschool to be the sort of a place that encourages them to get dirty, if they want to.

I want a good ERO report - to see that other people, too, think that it’s a good preschool.

I want to see a wide variety of children who all get to feel that they are important, and that they matter.

I want teachers who I like as people. I don’t need to always agree with them, but I need to understand what they are doing, and why they are doing it.

I want to see that at least some of the teachers have stayed at the same preschool for years, and that they enjoy coming to work in the mornings. I want to see them have the opportunity for regular holidays and time off work if they are ill.

I want my children to look forward to going to preschool. I want to see them ask, “Preschool tomorrow?” when I am tucking them in bed at night, and for them to get giddy with excitement when I reply, “Yes, we’ll go to preschool tomorrow.”

And all these things are important. They all contribute to what I think is a good preschool.

But the most important thing is that my children are loved there.

I have been able to say it to several teachers at this preschool: “Thank you for loving my kids.” I love that I am able to say it.

My kids know that they are loved here, that their thoughts are important and that they matter, and it’s what I want a preschool to be like. [preschool name] has been just that for my family, for which I am very, very grateful.

I will be driving to Southland next week and won’t be able to be here when you say bye to my children for the very last time (their dad will be doing the drop-offs and the pick-ups), but I wanted to bring in this plate of food and a thank you letter to just let you know how important you have been in the lives of my family over the last two years, and how grateful I am that you are doing this job.

Preschool teachers have a very large impact on the lives of people, much more than I think they get credit for in New Zealand. But I do hope that this letter will serve you as a little reminder that just as you’ve loved my children over the last two years, so have I loved you for loving them.

Thank you.

Maria

Talking about Svalbard

I spent another evening at the Radio New Zealand studio tonight, feeling marginally better about being interviewed than last time, but... not great :P.

www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/nights/20160927

But I live and I learn, and it was cool to do it! If anything, it kind of made me wonder if I should try making a podcast someday. We'll see. For the moment it's just about focusing on getting things ready for a move to Invercargill, and one day it'll get more relaxed again, but... not yet.

We'll get there :)