We started swimming lessons a few times with D Man but he hated it so much we stopped for a year and a half. We started again a few weeks ago.
Hated it. Hated it.
There was a dude teacher there who was quite simply the ‘toddler whisperer’ so we switched to his class hoping it would be better… hmmmmm, not so much.
D Man liked this guy better, but the crying and clinging like a limpet continued. It was really heartbreaking to watch.
I know you’re thinking that we could have just not done it, but swimming is a pretty important life skill when you’re an Aussie. We spend a lot of time around water. I don’t care if he can’t do freestyle or butterfly, I just want him to be able to not drown.
I took him this morning and we sat by the side of the pool awaiting our turn and he started to get stressed and make a little high pitched keening sound.
Swimming is fun, babe. Once you get used to it, you’ll really love it.
But, Mama, I’m scared.
My heart clenched.
I know, honey, but I promise that you don’t need to be scared because everyone here wants to help you to do this. What’s the scariest bit?
I don’t want to get my head wet. (doesn’t want to mess his hair… get’s that from his Nana)
Cool, we’ll tell your teacher.
I then realised that life is scary, and it’s good to be scared because that means you’re doing something new and pushing yourself. It’s ok to be scared and if you do it anyway, you might get something great out of it.
I told him that. I also told him I’d buy him a chocolate Paddle Pop if he got through the class.
He was a different boy.
Seeing my child conquer fear is not something I’ve had much of yet, but the pride I felt watching him paddle and blow bubbles and smile and laugh without the sheer terror and tears of previous weeks was such a moment of elation for me.
No idea if next week will be as good but a glimmer of the water babe he may one day be was enough to make me persevere.
He earned that Paddle Pop… I earned a sexy roast chicken.
I first experienced the joys of Szechuan pepper at Neil Perry’s Spice Temple. He created chicken that positively made your mouth go numb… mixed with a saketini and my whole head was numb by the end of the night. I haven’t gone that far with this chook.
This level is fine for the kids, in fact, Kiki couldn’t get enough of this, practically crawling onto the table to gnaw the carcass.
That’s my girl.
Yield : 4 adults, or three adults and 2 toddlers
What you will need :
For chicken –
- 1 whole chicken (free range organic is yummiest)
- 2 tablespoons szechuan pepper
- 1 tablespoon 5 spice
- 2 pinches salt
- 2 wedges of lemon
- 2 carrots, julienned or grated
- 1/4 cabbage, julienned
- 2 stalks celery, sliced diago
- 1/3 cup combined of sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and slivered almonds
- 1 packet of crunchy fried noodles
- 1 bunch fresh coriander, chopped
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1/4 white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons caster sugar
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- Sri Racha chili sauce for serving
Preheat oven to 190C
Stick your spices and salt into a mortar and pestle and give them a jolly good grind. Rub liberally all over your bird and pop the lemon up it’s butt.
Drizzle with oil and pop onto a roasting rack. Pour a cup of water into the tray and stick her in the oven. After 45 minutes, turn it over for half an hour before turning it back again. I do this to ensure that the juices stay in, and it crisps evenly all around…. but if you can’t be bothered I totally respect that.
While your chook is roasting, throw your nuts and seeds into a dry fry pan and lightly toast them. Set aside to cool.
Toss all of your chopped vegetables and coriander into a large bowl and mix to combine.
Make your dressing by combining all together and giving a good stir. Add noodles and nuts and dress salad just as you’re about to serve so it retains its texture and crunch.
I am launching my new book on the 28th November. The countdown is on!
Cook Once, Feed All is about making your life easier whilst preparing nutritious and quick food for your family. This book is a collection of family friendly recipes, all accompanied by Danielle’s often funny and charming story telling.
Hailed by Mouths of Mums as the ‘must have recipe book for all families’
To order your hardcopy of Cook Once, Feed All head to the Holsby Shop right now.
You will also receive the Cook Once Feed All eBook (worth $15), plus the new eBook ‘A Bit on the Side’ (worth$5) as a bonus gift in your inbox today.
Three for the price of one, and you save $20.