This year had a lot of things happen in it, world-wide, as is always the case.
Being more selfish here are the things I remember, in brief unless there are comments/questions:
- I learned more Finnish.
- Lots of things with our child.
- I helped teach him to swim.
- He learned to tell the time with an analog clock/watch.
- I took him to a circus for the first (only) time ever.
- He cut his hair for the first time in six years.
- He spent his a birthday with my parents, in the UK - His languages skills were on top-form, understanding the various UK accents.
- And another with family here in Finland - Where he watched me roll, naked, in the snow after sauna, and then he asked "Daddy why you did that?"
On the topic of Finnish I'm getting pretty damn good at understanding, albeit less good in speaking. Finnish is all about the suffixes, so:
- A car
- My car
- In a car
- In my car
- With my car
- From a car
Most of this is regular, so you can be childless via the "ton" suffix - lapsiton is "lapsi" (child) "ton" (less). The hard part in communication is thus twofold:
- Knowing the word you want to use, be it car, cake, spoon, or smile.
- Getting the appropriate suffix for the use you want.
Our child turned six recently, and most of the year was spent doing things with him, for him, and to him. He's on the verge of learning to read (English and Finnish), he's interested in maths and completes little puzzles freely and happily. He likes to help with Sodoku, for example and not just the child-versions.
In the past couple of weeks I let him play Super Mario & Super Mario Bros 3, on a NES Classic, and he dies constantly, with a smile on his face. But he does love to tell me what to do when he watches me play!
He's learned to ice-skate, and ski, and almost learned to swim. (I'll say he can swim 3m inside a pool, without aid, but then he starts to sink.) We've got a couple of regular rituals with each other - including going to sauna every week or two, and other similar things.
He's gotten more interested in helping me cook, and his mother too. (My wife and I live in separate houses..)
I guess the next big milestone will be him walking to school by himself, which will start next year. As things stand I wake up early, go over to his house, and do all the morning-things, before I take him there. I expect I'll still want to go there, give him his breakfast, his medicine, and help him get dressed. After that I guess I kick him out, and he makes his own way there.
Happily the walk to school is a few hundred meters, and doesn't involve crossing any roads. But of course it does bring other complications: if he's not collected, and walks home himself, then he needs a key to one/other house, and there's the potential need for a phone to say "I'm late", "I'm lost", or us to say "Where are you?".
Anyway .. interesting year .. good year. Despite everything else.