This is an area to discuss the things I've done to support my relationships with my two children, things I've discovered about different forms of school in the United States and New Zealand, and any other random things we've done together.
There are a lot of things I really like about living in New Zealand. Affordable Health Care. Laid back school systems. The fact that even though it's close to Australia, not every living thing surrounding you will kill you. However, it's humid. And with humidity comes bugs.
Bugs freaking everywhere. Ants all over the place (picnics are a bitch). Cockroaches chilling on the sidewalk. Cicadas twerking in the trees and giving me headaches (I honestly wonder if they killed all the birds. I actually miss the birds). Flies and freaking mosquitoes. Daddy long-legs hanging over your head in every structure that you can imagine. And people are totally chill about it. Like freaking hippies livin' and lettin' live. And I'm a psycho for twitching out every time I feel a hair touch my bare skin on my shoulder and start swatting the air with a broom everytime I go into my garage to grab my bike. I also don't care if I spray every mother f*ing bug I see with whatever will kill it fastest and cackle in delight as they die.
I honestly don't understand how so many of the Kiwi homes I visit are totally fine leaving their un-screened windows wide open and living as one with the bugs. Every once in awhile we get a fly or two in the house and I go on a psycho manhunt with the flyswatter it took me half a year to find in this country (aka my best friend). And I go to a friend's house and they have spider webs in their bay windows and eat right next to it, with some gnats hanging out around the food in their kitchen and act like it's cool. It's not! It's gross! I'm flummoxed.
Our latest issue with Kiwi lifestyle has been in the form of the kid's checkups at the beginning of the school year. I was asked by the GP if I've de-wormed my kids. To which I looked at her and said, "Like a dog?" She calmly explained that because kids in NZ walk around barefoot all the time, it's a good idea to de-worm them in case they picked up something walking around. Not too worried about that: my daughter likes her bare feet, but she still wears her shoes a majority of the time and my son still can't do the bare foot thing. However, she also asked if we've been doing our weekly lice checks and washes. I said no and she warned me that it's fairly common for lice to go around the schools. A lot. I said OK and went on with life.
Guess what? My daughter got lice. I found it because she wanted to cut her hair in a pixie cut and I was playing with her hair while we were waiting around in the mall for her appointment. And a bug crawled out of her hair. I flipped my shit. Cancelled the appointment, ran to the closest pharmacy, got a family-size bucket of lice shampoo and went home. And, if any of you are a nurse, you know what happened next. That's right, I sanitized the hell out of my house.
I know, lice aren't bedbugs. But they might as well be.
I couldn't sleep for two days. I actually think I gave myself a migraine from using too much lice killer spray in our house (warning label says too much can cause "neurogenic side effects"). But I can guarantee that there are no freaking lice in this place. No sir.
Doesn't mean I'm not sitting her itching my head like crazy just because I'm writing this. F*ing bugs.