Sunday, 25 September 2016

A busy, standard week, plus a big family birthday.

I started the week by having a change over on the nature table.  Out with summer, in with autumn.

Betsy and Meg painted the wooden acorns a couple of years ago.

I love the gnomes and the felted toadstool!

Meg has played with it most days.

I helped Betsy to sort out her game design paperwork.  She weeded out the rejects, and we put the rest in a box.  There are pages and pages and pages!  Here is a tiny sample.  So much time has gone into the process.

I'd done a bit of activity preparation at the weekend, and when we hit a quiet spot I offered these really cool Pokemon kaleidoscope paper toys.  Betsy loved them.  They were quite a challenge to colour in.

She did a word search with some tricky words (about life processes).

Betsy and Meg did a habitat game, trying to identify the right habitat for various creatures.

On Tuesday we went to Mead Open Farm.  It was gloriously empty!  They played inside, went on the sky trail, bounced on the pillow, fed the goats and alpacas, and had MASSIVE ice creams (well, the girls did, Fred had a Magnum!).  It was a really lovely day.  They get on so well, it's such a pleasure to watch them.

(I've gone a bit slo-mo video-tastic).

On Wednesday was the usual swimming/diving/parkour, though excitingly Fred and Betsy did a pencil jump from the second highest board.  They are very brave!  I did a bit of knitting, and Meg (who does a fair bit of waiting around when the others are diving) did some artwork on her ipad.

We stayed home on Thursday.  Betsy and Fred played Minecraft on the PS3 together, and there was lots of 3 way playing of Roblox.

On Friday Fred had a very very good haircut.  How handsome...?!

Some new (second hand) clothes arrived for the girls.  Meg wore her new skirt to town, along with some tap shoes given to her by a neighbour.  I ended up giving her a piggy back home as they hurt her feet, but she was so happy when we set off that it was worth it.

Check out how flippy and swishy the skirt is!

On Saturday we went to my Nan's for her 90th birthday party.  She has Alzheimers, and was rather confused about why she had a house full of people.  She enjoyed it though.  Rob and the kids popped out to a couple of local parks during the afternoon, partly to avoid overwhelm for Nan, and for the kids. 

Nan lives quite near Heathrow Airport, and is directly under the flight path.  I grew up in the same area, and planes were just a feature of everyday life.  It was funny to see how excited the kids were as the planes came over!

We're going to the Great Fire of London exhibition tomorrow, looking forward to it!

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Groups, classes, outings, home!

We've had a lovely week.  We've done a bit of everything.  The weather has been hot hot hot (Tuesday was the hottest September day since 1949).

Monday was the first TVAP of this term.  There was a drumming session followed by group games, then all three did a different activity.  Fred did Lego engineering, Betsy did print-making with a local artist, and Meg did tissue paper window pictures.

Fred wasn't super keen on his one.  He did it, but I think would prefer not to do it again.  Betsy loved the printing.  Meg really enjoyed creating her window picture, and spent ages on it.

Then they had lunch, and were in and out of soft play, the scooter/bike area, and the splash zone.

We spent Tuesday at home, playing different games and with the hose in the garden.

Betsy (especially) and Meg spent ages working on the Pokemon-inspired game planning.  I wonder how I can help her to take it past this stage.  Rob and I need to do some research.

Wednesday was swimming/diving/parkour day.  Mum came along to watch, and the kids all enjoyed having her there.  

On Thursday we had the Best Day Ever at Chessington.  There were absolutely no queues for anything.  Meg and I went on the Vampire 6 times.  Betsy and Fred got stuck on the Dragons Fury for a few minutes, and saw the whole thing as a great adventure.  So many times during that day I found myself thinking how flipping happy I was, and how lucky I am.  The kids are such great company.

On Friday it rained and we stayed at home.  Rebecca, Isabel and Alex came over in the afternoon.  Later, Betsy and Meg made some creature homes out the front.

Fred's been spending a lot of time on a Roblox game called Food Empire, making factories and developing structures.  Roblox is great, as anyone can join games together no matter what platform they're playing on.  The three of them join role playing games together, helping each other out and deciding who will do what.

Rob and Fred went to watch Port Vale v Gillingham yesterday, with Rob's dad.  PVFC won, and they had a really good time.  Meg and I watched a couple of Disney films, while Betsy played with the neighbours.

It's been a good week for wildlife.  Rob made a small pond last week, and this week the kids spotted a frog in it.  Great excitement!

A cormorant has been around the canal for the last few days, and the kids saw it being chased off by one of the swans.  We're lucky to have the canal right outside.

We have a relatively quiet week coming up, but if the weather's nice I'll see if they fancy a trip to Mead Open Farm, or the woods.  Or both!

Monday, 12 September 2016

The start of our 8th year

Fred would have started at senior school last week.  It was just another day, but it does feel like a milestone.  It's interesting for me to read the beginning of this journey, how different I sound.

It was good to have our normal, if loose, termtime routine back.  On Tuesday I intended to make the most of the schools starting back, and visit Chessington World of Adventures.  Unfortunately London schools were still off, and the place was rammed!

It was the final day of the Bubble Works ride, so the queues were epic.  I bought fast track tickets (a one off!), and we said our goodbyes.

We'll visit again soon, so we can enjoy the vampire without an hour's wait.

Wednesday was diving and swimming in the morning.  Meg has moved up a group, and they're all doing so well.  They had parkour in the afternoon, a most welcome return.   We had time for the playground afterwards too.

On Thursday mum came over.  She broke her wrist the week before, and is in need of cheering up.

Friday was Camp Mohawk.  Swimming, playing, craft, science, happy.