I often forget how enormously important food is to foster children.
And then something happens and it hits you right between the eyes.
Last Bank Holiday we took ours to the seaside, and it was a great day. The weather was on our side, there was a sandy beach, and enough wind to buy kites and fly them. Sandcastles were built, followed by trampolining, then paddling. Then we went round the local interactive dinosaur museum. Snatched a bite of lunch at a beach-side cafe, then on to the playground (flying fox, excellent.) From there they had a go on the go-karts, before going on the Pier and spending a few pennies on the amusements.
On the train home, I wrote out one of those tick-box survey things like you get wherever you go, and asked them, just for fun, to mark the day.
I did one too, as did partner. You had to mark in order of what was best (1) down to what was least best (10)
Walking up the hill back to the Station
My partner and I both had the Go-Karts at number One, followed by the Kites and the Dinosaur Museum.
They all had "Lunch" at number One or number Two. They all had "Walking up the hill" at number Ten, so there'd been no misunderstandings.
It wasn't a fancy lunch. One child ordered children's sausage and chips, another a grilled cheese sandwich. I didn't order anything because I'd guessed there'd be plenty left over for me to pick at. There was.
I wasn't a fancy place. If you wanted a pee you had to get the key from behind the counter.
For a meal like that to beat Go-Karting Trampolining and Dinosaurs...well, you get some idea don't you.
I can hear Mazlow* going "I told you so" from beyond the grave.
The Secret Foster Carer
*Abraham Harold Maslow, as any foster carer who has been to almost any training session knows, was an American psychologist who was best known for
creating Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Basically he said you need to make sure people (especially children, I think) have their physiological needs first: air, water, food. Shelter, warmth, sleep.
Go Karts probably somewhere near the top, "Self-Actualisation" maybe.