chukichi

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Tag Archives: tae kwon do

Saturday, in the Park…ing lot

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I am sitting in my car at 8:34 AM—cigarette lighter fan going, ice cold Diet Cokes within reach, listening to Spotify, typing on my laptop on a desk that attaches to my steering wheel…  What a time to be alive!

Why yes, my car *is* dirty.

Now, I’m not sitting in a random parking lot like a creep; I’m sitting in the parking lot of a local middle school like a weirdo.  My Saturdays for the next 3-4 months will be occupied with taking Josh to his Korean language class.  Yeah…Korean.

NewsflashI’m not Korean.

Neither is my husband nor are either of my children.  I am a firm believer that kids learn better when they actually want to because I’m one of those kinds of hippy nerds.  You know, the correct kind.  Of course, he was completely uninterested in my 5 years of high school and college Spanish that I’ve completely forgotten.  Japanese was briefly considered which would have been awesome, but he is, if anything, a practical old man in a young man’s body and chose Korean based on his 6 years of tae kwon do.  He has a variety of instructors that are fluent and excited to help him practice and he also reasons that if he ever has the opportunity to study at Kukkiwon, he should probably know how to communicate.

I’m almost 4 times his age and he has his shit together better than I do.  Fucking hell.

So that decision lead us to the Korean language program recommended by his Grandmaster taekwondo instructor.   It’s the same school that his own children attended so you can’t really get a better recommendation than that.  Every Saturday we leave the house by 8 AM so we can eat breakfast and make it to class by 8:45; class ends at 12:15 PM.  We study daily throughout the week and when I say “we”, I mean I observe that he does his homework and studying and sporadically suggest he watch a YouTube video to check pronunciation.  I was able to highlight some words in a Korean-English dictionary for him.  I’m helping.

This class started on August 10 which just so happened to overlap with his tae kwon do black belt ceremony.  See?  So much has happened since I last blogged for real!  He tested in May of this year and the weeks leading up to his exam involved extra classes throughout the week and double classes on Monday nights.  It was also expensive, at least, what we consider expensive.  It was practically spit-take expensive, but completely worthwhile and necessary.  Could you imagine how shitty that would have been to say no to such a milestone?  Hey, I know you spent *literally* half of your life working up to this, but I’m going to take this opportunity to stop supporting your goals.

Oh my fried chicken!

The hardest part was waiting for the official confirmation that he would be promoted—all test results are sent to Korea and reviewed and approved at Kukkiwon which took about 8 weeks.  His first day of Korean language class was cut short so we could attend his black belt ceremony where I cried for LITERALLY the entire time.  I’M CRYING RIGHT NOW BECAUSE THAT’S MY KIND OF PROUD MOM CRAZY BULLSHIT.

I know that it might seem weird to just sit outside for three and a half hours, but I’m about 40 minutes away from home based on traffic so it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to drive him here, drop him off, go home for an hour or so, come pick him up, go back home.  It just feels wasteful for both time and gas.  There is a Sam’s Club right down the street, and an H-Mart not far from that, so at least when I need to shop, it’s convenient.  I’ve been spending most of my time doing lesson plans and research but now, I’m trying to use at least part of this block of time for Me whether it be writing, working on some perpetually unfinished craft project, or simply napping.  Honestly, at first I felt a bit like a martyr for “selflessly” sacrificing my Saturday mornings for my offspring but that mindset was, at least for me, true mommy blogger virtue signaling bullshit.  I fucking chose this, happily and freely.  I don’t have brat kids that beg or guilt me; in fact, quite the opposite.  Josh spent quite some time really considering what he wanted to do–tae kwon do 3 days a week, swim two days a week and now this class for the entirety of his Saturday morning.  He purposefully declined joining the demo team at TKD so that he could focus on what was already on this plate.

If you’re unaware, a demo team is exactly what it sounds like:  a group that demonstrates all of the cool, choreographed showy moves.  We went to a local tournament this year to support some of his classmates and ever since he hasn’t stopped talking about how his school should re-start their demo team so he could join.  Sure enough, they decided to re-form and he was really torn.  Demo team would have meant one more evening in class for a total of EVERY NIGHT OF THE WEEK doing something.  He made his decision based on my boundaries, his own time restrictions, and how it would impact his family, not just himself.  Again, what even is this child!

Luckily, I don’t have to worry about Robin wanting to learn Korean—as of right now, she says she wants to learn Italian so she can understand musical terminology better.  GREAT.

Stuff that happened, Part 2

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March through today has been pretty much all about Josh.  Good things and bad things and then good things again.  One thing I’ve decided is that I will be blogging less about him because he’s now at the start of that transition into manhood.  I can’t tell you how much I hate that word, manhood.  Not because of the actual word, but because it means my baby is not a baby anymore.  He hasn’t been a baby for a long time.  I rationally know this but he’s my first born and I’m weepy as fuck.  So let’s get on with it then.

All of these hyper sensitive emotions are because my baby son just turned 10 years old.  Double digits.  One decade.  One year closer to being out of the nest.  This should be a happy thing!  I am happy and blessed to have a perfectly healthy 10 year old son!  I am a total ass for being weepy about this and yet, here we are.

I’m super into Ansatsu Kyōshitsu and just binge read the whole series.

The birthday was fun for him but also fun for me to plan and execute.  He made this year a hard theme for me:  Blizzard Entertainment.  Not just one game, but all the games.

Challenge accepted.

First, the quests:

Time to go on an adventure!

Before we go any further, you can download the “LifeCraft” font right here.  I want to use it for everything, but oh well.  He had 10 quests with a total of 3,650 experience points.  One for each day of his life.  I’m not crying.  Not at all.

Magnus Finnegan Chesterfield also turned 2 years old this year. 15.1 lbs.

Since there are no party supplies actually licensed by Blizzard for any of their games I had to make do with my Macgyver-like skills.  Okay, maybe not Macgyver, but solidly mediocre art skills:

Overwatch and Hearthstone painted wrapping paper. Not pictured: Starcraft, WoW, D3, HotS.

Hearth Stones, Apexis Crystals, various mis-colored potions.

My crowning achievement!

Seriously, though, that fucking cake.  I had to get two 10″ pans which was basically two boxed cake mixes (I’m not a from scratch baker, sue me).  The top is actual icing from a company called Edible Prints on Cake.  It’s literally not literally magic.  If I can do it, anyone can do it.

For posterity, here is my 10 year old baby son opening his presents.  Wearing the pajama pants that he wanted his mom to make him.  Because one day he won’t want handmade things from his mom.  Who won’t want family parties anymore one day.  Who won’t want Magic cards and Attack on Titan swords or Star Wars light sabers.

*sigh*

The next big Josh thing to happen was that he quit his Tae Kwon Do school.  He quit about a week before he was to test from 2nd level brown to red belt.  It was only late summer when he joined the newly formed Black Belt Club and we paid out a ton of money for a new uniform, new gear, and a new higher monthly tuition.  His new instructor left (was practically forced out) and a new-new instructor was somehow amazingly ready to go within two weeks.  How convenient.

This entire year so far has been trying to adjust to the new teacher and his new methods but frankly, it just wasn’t going to happen.  There was absolutely no discipline in the class so the other kids literally –yes, literally– would run around and yell and scream and do whatever the hell they wanted to.  No reprimands from the teacher, nothing.  We went to the coordinator and discussed the situation and she told me “I’ve never seen him teach” so she’d have to look into it.

What.

Who hires someone that you’ve never seen teach?  We even showed her video of the stuff that Josh has to put up with to which she responded ‘unacceptable’.

Well no shit, Sherlock

Now, I don’t want to project my emotions or mental lunacy onto my children, but I can honestly say he was becoming depressed over this whole thing.  The boy who used to practice every day and was always so eager to go to class and learn was gone.  He wouldn’t eat, he was moodier than usual, withdrawn, and most importantly, he didn’t want to go anymore.  A total 180°.  He would gladly not go which used to be the ultimate punishment.  I won’t say much more because we’re still dealing with the whole thing but we made it very clear that he was quitting the school, not the sport.  The day we said “if you want to quit, you can quit”, he made a face akin to hearing that he was going to Disney.

We toured a few other schools but I think we’ve found a place that he will fare better at–it’s literally everything we wanted and it’s completely amazeballs.  The Grandmaster used to train the South Korean military, so there’s that.  It may be a couple of months before he can even start but he actually said he didn’t mind since he knew he was going to a much better school.  Could he be any more wonderful?

MY BABY

 

Something to Talk About

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3 Months!

Everything has happened, so let’s have a photo dump:

1. Halloween happened and it was awesome.

Ghost Bride and Harry Potter

Ghost Bride and Harry Potter

Moaning Myrtle married Harry Potter?  Nah.  I asked Robin what her back story was and she said her father murdered her right before she got married.  What the fuck, kid.

My BABY in a WEDDING DRESS.

My BABY in a WEDDING DRESS.

Her dress is a Cheapos Thrift find for either $5 or $10.  I can’t remember now.  I believe it’s a size 4, so lots of alterations.  I appreciate how the kids seem to be taking turns wanting homemade vs. store bought costumes which makes me very grateful.  My wrists are 99% now and I can do things.  Without pain, even!

Now I have TWO strong hands.

Now I have TWO strong hands.

2.  Joshua became a Cobra Kai.

Serious kid is serious.

Serious kid is serious.

Okay, maybe not.  His uniform has sleeves, so he can’t be Cobra Kai.  Yet.  He joined the intermediate black belt training, tested for his second level brown belt (red is next!) and started weapons training.

I’m particularly proud of how dedicated he is.  $200 of his own money went to paying for gear (weapons, bag, pads).  He is getting $25 a month back from Mom and Dad, but he made the initial investment.  He’s more mature and responsible than I am.

3.  There was an election of some sort which I deem completely unnecessary for discussion here.

Regardless of which side, your vote didn't matter.

Regardless of which side, your vote didn’t matter.

4.  Robin started with a new violin teacher.  She’s also now in a 1/4 size violin.  She also had a birthday and it was all good.

“hair crayons” are exactly what they sound like.

5.  Christmas!  I honestly don’t have any good pictures of the kids from Christmas because I’m an asshole I guess.  But I have the next best thing:

Santa is shorter in person.

Santa is shorter in person.

His elves are adorable jerks, though.

His elves are adorable jerks, though.

It has a HOOD!

It has a HOOD!

He couldn't care less that is has a hood.

He couldn’t care less that is has a hood.

6.  We had a blizzard and it was horrifying.

Behold the wrath of Mother Nature!

Behold the wrath of Mother Nature!

In case I didn’t feel crazy enough, I’ve decided to do ChÜberlist 2017 – The Year of the Slug.  It’s already a couple of weeks late so I’m off to a great start.

I'm getting ready, 2017.  Time to get serious.

I’m getting ready, 2017. Time to get serious.