Category Archives: April

Birthdays and Special Days

As usual, we’ve been doing all sorts of activities and I’ve been fielding all sorts of questions, from ‘why is the sky orange at sunset?’ to ‘why do meteors burn up in the atmosphere?’.  M is definitely showing more curiosity and eagerness to learn these days which is a clear sign she is leaving her school days behind her.  She even managed an explanation of how the sun shines on the earth (complete with a demonstration using a lamp and a globe) without getting angry at all!

On Wednesday, we went into Wimbledon to get M some sandals and go to the library.  M rode her bike, D scootered and I ran along behind them.  It’s the first time we’ve been into Wimbledon without any ‘I’m tired’ moaning, which was great as it means we can do it more often now.  D began getting fed up in the library but soon cheered up after I read her a few stories.  I found The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe for M and we’ve been reading it every night since (we’ve finished Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix and I think this Narnia book is much easier to read!).

We celebrated D’s birthday on Thursday, with a small gathering and a few party games at home.  She was delighted by M’s birthday card, which was lovely to see!

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On Friday their cousin came round to take them out before heading back to university this weekend.  They went to South Park Gardens and played football and climbed trees.  He tired them out so much that neither of them wanted to go out to our social group, Curious Minds, so we got busy at home instead.

M got going on her crystal mining, which she still has a fair amount of work to do on… it’s hard work but suits M down to the ground: lots of careful scraping, dusting, peering and then excitement when a new crystal is uncovered!

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D drew a picture of a rocket and then decided she wanted to make a 3D one, so I began showing her how to measure the rocket she’d drawn and transpose that onto a cuboid net.  I failed miserably and was starting to get quite cross about it so I announced that I was going outside to get some fresh air before having another go at it.  When I came back in, D was merrily doing it herself!  I was amazed because careful measurements and details aren’t really her forte – just goes to show that I shouldn’t pigeonhole the sausages.

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D got a pack of Frozen Top Trumps which has been played a few times – excellent for her reading, though she still struggles with competitive games as she can’t bear losing!

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On Saturday the sausages were back at Judo: they both gained another stripe on their belts last term.  In the afternoon, their aunt and uncle threw another small party for D (her 3rd party!) and they cooked chapattis and had some cake.

Sunday was supposed to be D’s lovebombing day. I say ‘supposed’ because she got a bit upset at the thought of spending the day without M!  So in the end we had a ‘special’ day whereby D got first choice with everything and M said she would be her slave, ha ha.  Amazingly, they managed to stay friends all day!  We started on some papier mache party bags, which D had seen being made on Creative Galaxy.  Then we made chocolate biscuits.  Then D wanted to read her Maps book (tagline: travel the world without leaving your living room = D’s delight) and then they spent some time sticking glow-stars onto the bedroom wall.  The afternoon was spent watching The Lion King and playing lots of board games with J.

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This morning has been crazy so far – by 9.30am we had done another papier mache layer, made more chocolate biscuits, got dressed and cleaned the kitchen.  The plan is to get out of the house and enjoy the weather while it lasts but the girls have just settled down to a lovely game with Sylvanian Families so we’ll see what happens next!

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Fun and Stress

We’ve been out of the house a lot in the last week, in fact we’ve been out for at least half of all but one day: a lot for us! Three play dates; J took the girls to London; we had another celebration and a meal out for my birthday; M had her art class; we had a pyjama day; and we went into Wimbledon to get M some sandals.

More fun at Morden Hall Park. with J this time:

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Fun in London with J:

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Making bath crayons:

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Playing outside:

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And of course, lots and lots of art:

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Both girls have been struggling with their emotions this week.  D has been upset because she won’t be spending her birthday with any Nottingham relatives and we won’t be having a ‘proper’ party either (the fact that she’s already had a party with all her Nottingham relatives didn’t placate her).  She’s also been upset by M’s behaviour towards her.  M has been getting very stressed over the pressure of getting D’s birthday card perfect and finished in time.  Because she struggles to understand and express her emotions she’s been taking her frustrations out on me and D.  Thankfully, after 3 tortuous days, the card is finished and is, of course, utterly amazing!  It again highlights for me how much stress she must have been under with the pressures of school.

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Birthday Celebrations!

Hey all, we’ve been away for two weeks with my parents in Nottingham.  We seemed to be on a permanent playdate and the girls didn’t want to come home!  We visited cousins in Birmingham, had sleep-overs at my sister’s house in Nottingham, and had cousins over for sleep-overs at my parents’ house.  We also had an early 6th birthday party for D because she wanted all her cousins to be there but her birthday isn’t until next week.

The party was very basic with the standard party games, a treasure hunt and a game of Twister but D said it was fantastic!

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We can’t go for long without some form of art being done and luckily, Grandma had invested in a new set of watercolours which the girls loved.  D was inspired by Creative Galaxy to produce a pointillism rainbow and a Fauvism picture.  Seriously, why would anyone restrict screen-time when there’s this stuff being absorbed?!  Thanks to this programme, D is also keen to paint a mural on our lounge wall but I’m not so keen.  The girls have also been watching lots of Mr. Peabody and Sherman and thanks to that film have gained an awareness of Leonardo da Vinci, Agamemnon, the French Revolution, Tutankhamun and George Washington.  Their interest in the French Revolution has been backed up by Aquila this month, who did a feature on it in their magazine.

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The sausages love playing schools and Grandma was asked to set one up for all the toys, which she duly did.  The girls spent hours on sums, spellings, reading, P.E., history, Spanish, space and art. 🙂

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Grandma also bought them both a book for Easter and M wanted the Frozen paperback.  She proceeded to read almost all of it to herself every night in Nottingham!  I think it really helped that she knows the script by heart which helped her to understand what was happening in the story and not panic when she couldn’t read certain words.

My sister also taught the sausages something while there, she is an Environmental Health Officer and happened to have been showing a class at school how to wash their hands properly to stop germs spreading so she had her glo-light thingy with her.  The girls loved putting the special lotion on their hands and then testing to see how much was left after a hand-wash.

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M also produced this incredible pencil drawing of a rubber plant while on a visit to my cousin in Birmingham:

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Since we’ve been back, J has played with the sausages a lot, having missed them tremendously.  He took them swimming for 3 hours at the weekend!  He has also had them in the garden a great deal.  Me and the sausages need a bit of a shove sometimes to get in the outdoors, me in particular.  It’s something I’m determined to change, partly because my sedentary tendencies just aren’t healthy, and partly because I know how much the girls need me to do it.  So with that in mind, I chose to take the girls out to Morden Hall Park today, for my birthday!

It was really hot and as we haven’t really explored it properly it was quite exciting to be somewhere that felt new.  We played frisbee and fetch (the girls were pretending to be dogs) and explored the different fields, gardens, play areas and the River Wandle.  It’s really lovely and I can’t believe we haven’t used this great (and free!) resource properly before.

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More birthday celebrations tomorrow as J has the day off!