June 15, 2016

Pockets of Time

It’s almost the end of spring and summer is round the corner.

While the Dutch weather has been nothing but unpredictable with the typical rain and clouds on some days, the weather here has otherwise been mostly great since we arrived. We must have brought a portion of the Bangkok weather with us!

The sun has been out on most days; cueing to the restless young souls to come out and play. This has been a pleasant change from the usual soaring Bangkok heat of 35 – 40 degree Celsius almost the whole year round.

Now that our front door opens up to a front yard mere meters away from the neighbourhood playground and wide open spaces with lots of room for kids to run around, it has been harder for us to keep the kids indoors.

There are no suicidal motorists or crazy traffic to worry about. There are no potholed sidewalks or footpath filled with street vendors hogging the sidewalk with open fires to navigate. Only well-paved path and green, green grass of home.

We have our own backyard for us to hang out when the sun’s out and the cats to wander about. We have the kids within our sight when we look out of the windows from the comfort of our home and step outside intermittently to check on them. Otherwise, there would be the neighbours who would take turns to watch out for the kids while they sip their wines from their front porches.

Our little critters, without a doubt are happy to be able to play outside. They insist on it. In fact, they would not even mind if the weather is slightly chilly and/or rainy, insisting and nagging us to allow them to play outside. What’s the big deal, they’d say.  They’ll put on their jackets and off they go!

Unless of course they misbehaved in which they would lose their outdoor playtime, there is just no reason to keep the kids in when there is nothing else going on. Even when the weather is a little crappy (Read: rainy and cold), we would still see other kids hanging out outdoors.

Now, THAT has inevitably make our job harder to reason out with the little monkeys on why they should not be out when they see other (older) kids outside.  Why can’t we go out, Mama? It’s OK Mama. Only water. Can we play outside? Please, please Mama! See! Those kids are still playing in the rain. Their mamas let them play outside, Mama. Let us go outside please. We promise we’ll behave.

Urgggh.  Try reasoning with that!  My ears have gone deaf from all their relentless nagging and my patience running thin from their incessant whining. Not to mention that on some days, I’m just too lazy to stay outside and keep watch even intermittently!

The days in this part of the world are looooong and at 10.45 pm, it is still fairly light with dusk about only setting in. It doesn’t get pitch dark till after 11 pm. And some kids do play longer outside and in my books, way past our kids’ bedtime.

The Dutch Sky at 10 pm

The kids have had to get used to going to bed while it is still light, and they have not put up such a big fuss. My guess is that they would have been tired out after all the time they spent outdoors. Long days or not, the kids still have to go to bed by 7 pm. Sometimes, a little later but not beyond 7.30 pm and by my preference, best to be in bed by 6.30 pm! I don’t care if they are not sleeping till later, at least they are in bed and they will stay IN bed.

Because, after 6.30 pm, I am done with them. Call me cruel, but I am DONE. Because, I’m telling you, after all the hoolabaloos that had happened during the day with them, it’s all bliss and quiet when they both are fast asleep. THEIR play-time is over. Not that I don’t enjoy being with them; I do! but Mama can do other things now in peace. Best.feeling.in.the.world.

We have been lucky with the kids as so far, no matter where we have traveled to and whatever strange and new places we made our beds in, they seem to be able to sleep pretty well. Sure sometimes, it would take a while before they doze off, but unless they are sick, there has not been a case where they would fuss all night from not being able to sleep in unfamiliar beds.

Perhaps all the travelling from such a young age and had flew even before they could even crawl may have played a part to give them that little edge. Or perhaps, they just have my genes of being able to sleep anywhere and in new strange places without much of a fuss. You gotta sleep when you gotta sleep, no!

Whatever it is, I ain’t complaining. They got themselves the right gene pool when it comes to sleep location. When they are asleep, they are asleep. Time to unwind. Best time of the day!

What about you my dear bloggily friends? When (or what) would you define as the best pocket of time in your day?

Posted by:    |    10 Comment
  1. Oh I remember that so well – the bliss of peace after they’ve gone to bed and sleep. I used to be strict about bed time. Firstly as I believe children need lots of sleep – but also, like you – I needed that time too. They seemed to have settled in well.

    • Right? Apart from the quiet and peace, you also know that they are safe and in bed. It’s a comforting feeling. I agree with you – children need lots of sleep (parents do too, apparently! LOL). Like you, I have always been strict with bedtimes too – when did you let go? We have slacked off on occasions when we have errands and visits, and I supposed as they get older, their bedtime will also slowly e delayed…

  2. Ahh… blissful bedtime. Unless your youngest takes an hour and half to fall asleep because he’s coughing so bad he can’t fall asleep (once the humidifier was plugged in though, he slept all night). You’re new place sounds absolutely ideal. I have the problem of calling Crash and Bang in to start getting ready for bed while everyone is still outside. Naturally, they don’t want to come in. It’s great they have such a wonderful place to play now without so much worry from you.

    • I imagine you can resonate with blissful bedtime. LOL. Poor kid…he must have been pretty disturbed with the coughs. Good thing the humidfier helped! Too dusty?
      What do you do when they refuse to come in? So far we managed (threat of binning their favourite toy), but always good to have other tips from other parents to try to get their kids in.
      Imagine that – no traffic, no potholes! 2 less things to worry about. 1 less heart-attack! 😀

  3. I love summer with its long bright days… But then the winter with its early dark evenings is very beautiful too. Tough question, you know… You seem to be happy where you are at the moment and that’s fantastic. Everyone seems to settle in just fine and that’s what you can hope for. Enjoy 🙂

    • It IS a tough question, Sandra. We have yet to experience winter here and thinking about it I;m not sure if I look forward to that or I’d hate it. Only time will tell. I guess we all are a little happier here and seem to settle in. And I can’t ask for me (at least for now!) 🙂

  4. My most cherishable childhood memories are those of playing outside till after the dark, even if dark meant 11 pm 🙂 Of course, this was only allowed during the summer months when school is out.

    • Oh you are a rebel, Jas! 😉 It must have been quite safe then there to be able to go out after dark. That’s precious!

  5. 6;30 in bed .. I call that science fiction 😛
    Well done Super Mama!!! XXX

    • Mostly! I try! And imagine their bedtime used to be 5.30 – 6 pm before they were 2 YO! :p I realise we can’t do that now and vary between 6.30 – (max) 7.30 pm. In bed. I don’t care if they sleep. Hehehehe.


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