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Ah, Halloween. Where parents seem to forget how harried they were at the previous year’s Halloween, and stupidly, agree to host this year’s party. I refer to myself of course. I suppose I did actually seek to do it the hard way. Instead of keeping the group small, I had a total of 15 children aged 3-6 in my home. Look, you smug-parents out there who are sipping your cuppa whilst smirking thinking “well, she sure had it coming”, just stop. Yes, I got carried away. But it was a great success, the decorations were fantastic, I found a Halloween Atmospheric Music App, had some pretty awesome food displays, like this one :

Little Pumpkin had too much candy and threw up

3D Giant spiders!

But what I struggled with most was engaging with the 15 children, which I had to do to organise the party games. Come on already, I’m a mum right? Plus, I sing in a band, I sing in front of hundreds of people (disclaimer: the pub we frequently gig at holds a maximum of oh, I don’t know, 30 people?). Plus I teach pilates, I am used to giving instructions and have people do what I tell them to do. Right? Of course the answer to that dear reader is a blaringly loud WRONG. I’ve decided to randomly list the differences between teaching a group adult pilates class with say 10 participants, and the Halloween party I hosted with 15 kids. Here goes.

  1. You don’t threaten the group of adults that you’re going to turn them into a bunch of frogs if they misbehave (this would make sense if you realised I was dressed as a witch).
  2. You don’t use the word “pelvis” or “pelvic floor” with the kids, although some kids yesterday used the word “Penis”.
  3. You don’t tell the kids to “breathe in and relax”. Rather, that’s what you’re telling yourself during the two hours.
  4. If done incorrectly, a pilates participant could experience some pain in executing the exercises. The kids however, inflicted the pain on each other with a huge amount of pleasure.
  5. In a group Jumpboard class, I encourage the adults to jump. I do not encourage the 15 kids to jump on my sofa, they do so on their own, and may I say, with gusto.
  6. In my adult pilates classes, I teach them to Roll Like A Ball. The kids were kicking and throwing balls, not a gentle roll in sight.
  7. Normally at the end of the hour long pilates group class, I get a round of applause and a thank you. Kids I realise, don’t applaud.
  8. Sometimes, in the pilates classes there are some grunts and huffs and puffs. Yesterday, there was an awful lot of screaming, shrieking and shouting.
  9. No matter how hard I work the adults, they never cry. Ever.
  10. I’ve never threatened to withold the candy from my adult attendees.
  11. The adults never run around showing their willy to the other participants (see #2 above).
  12. I’ve never once used the phrase “I’ve known you since you were a baby so I feel I can tell you off, young man” to any pilates attendee.
  13. Kids don’t listen. Full stop.

While compiling this list however, it struck me that there were actually some similarities between the groups as well :

  1. Everyone gets dressed up for the occasion. Pilates attendees in Lululemon, kids in their finest character attire.
  2. Everyone looks a bit dishevelled at the end.
  3. Everyone’s on a high – the adults on endorphins, the kids on sugar.
  4. There is a vast amount of competition in both sectors. In Pilates they compete (silently of course) to see who executes the moves perfectly, while the kids compete to see who can stuff the most amount of peanut M&M’s into their mouths.
  5. Oh, and actually, no matter how hard I try in pilates, there will always be someone who doesn’t actually listen.
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