The temptation of bacon, homelessness, and spelling

Elizabeth’s vegetarianism on the weekend involved having just a little bit of bacon to go with her sausage and egg at the buffet breakfast. I think she’s finding bacon too tempting to resist. I didn’t say anything because I want it to be her decision. I personally find bacon and sausage a bit repulsive now that I haven’t eaten either of them for more than a decade. I suppose I also associate both things with pigs: animals that have at least the same level of sentience and self-consciousness as a dog and I would never eat a dog.

Meanwhile Daniel came face-to-face with his first homeless person in Edinburgh. We caught the train there on Friday night and walked the 10-15 minutes or so to the hotel passing a couple of homeless people on the way. There are homeless people in Aberdeen too but for some reason this is the first time he really noticed them. Maybe because it was cold and dark and he was tired after a long day followed by the train journey and he was subsequently able to understand the harshness of a life without a home. Then he chastised us for not giving the man any money. We were weighted down with luggage and just wanted to reach the hotel but Daniel was quite cross. So the next day he gave some money to the next homeless person we saw.

Daniel has always really struggled with spelling. He never learnt phonics and has difficulty sounding out words. We’ve tried lots of things like word searches and interesting spelling activities but whenever I quiz him it seems to end in tears. A couple of weeks ago I got desperate and spent a couple of pounds on a spelling app. This one lets me record my voice saying the word which Daniel can then play later. But what makes it good is I can choose to have the word flash up on the screen when Daniel presses play. It only flashes on the screen for 2 seconds but for some reason this has made a huge difference to Daniel’s interest in spelling and the results have been good. He has gone from getting 0/10 in the weekly spelling test at school to last week getting 10/10. I love technology.

14 Replies to “The temptation of bacon, homelessness, and spelling”

  1. It sounds to me like you are raising great kids, but that’s not much of a surprise.

    I’m interested in the app, what’s it called?

  2. Wow, well done with the spelling app. It can be really stressful when kids can’t do something, because they feel stressed about it.
    Weirdly, none of us really likes bacon, even the rampant meat eating second daughter! If I were to turn vegetarian, the thing that would do for me is the skin off roast chicken.
    I love buffet breakfasts in hotels, just because everyone in the family enjoys it so much. I think they make for lovely family memories.

    1. Buffet breakfasts are the best. We all love them, especially the kids. I’ve never seen them eat so much as at a hotel buffet breakfast 🙂

    1. Thanks! He was pretty chuffed with himself and the best part is that it has built his confidence.

  3. I was going to ask you the app name but I see Sandy did it for me above.

    Great to see Daniel improving. I think very few things are more satisfying for us, parents, than to see their children do things they couldn’t do earlier.

    1. It is very satisfying to see children accomplish new things. The spelling is a particularly big deal for us because Daniel has had so many problems with it.

  4. That’s great news about Daniel’s spelling. Who would’ve thought that an app would hold the key to his success! That was sweet of Daniel to care about homeless people.
    As for bacon, have you ever thought of trying the vegan kind? It looks pretty much like the real thing. I don’t have a clue how it tastes.

    1. I do buy the vegan bacon and the kids love it! I just need to get hotels to offer it at the buffet breakfasts …

  5. Bacon and coffee are two things that, to me, smell better than sometimes they taste. Done well, ok but it can be misleading. While we are on the subject dear to our debate, Rachel, do you eat oysters? I was intrigued when a friend told me they were of for vegans as, having no central nervous system they don’t feel pain any more than say a cabbage. Is that so? I’m intrigued. Happens I’m allergic to the little puppies so I couldn’t even if I wanted to.
    And high fives for the spelling. But I’m more impressed with his reaction to homelessness. Well done him and you for helping him be aware. I only wish we could do more. Crisis at Christmas is nearly 50 years old sadly and is more necessary than ever.

    1. Yes, I agree with your friend. I don’t object to eating oysters and other shellfish. I would also eat insects. I don’t base my decisions on what to eat and what not to eat on some arbitrary line like species membership. Instead I think what’s important are qualities like sentience, self-consciousness, and the capacity for pain and suffering.

      It was Daniel who wanted to donate to the homeless man. We didn’t bring it up – he did. But we did explain that the man was homeless and what that meant. I don’t believe in hiding the truth from my kids.

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