Sunday, 24 April 2011


Our Easter lunch and egg hunt went very well indeed. We were up bright and early to put the new kitchen through it's paces, and everyone was very jolly:

The great thing about cooking is that there are lots of interesting things to explore, and there are so many interesting foods that there is always some new to examine in detail:

Before long, the kitchen was starting to smell wonderful and we were realising that we were running out of dishes and baking trays!

Once everything was in the oven and Ian had taken over minding the carefully written timings list, Nathaniel and I went out to hide our eggs. At first I was concerned that they were all going to be far to easy to find, but we enjoyed finding elegant perching places:

As it was, hunting for eggs turned out to be harder than we expected and the kids needed quite a lot of help to get them started so that they didn't just walk round the garden aimlessly asking "Where the eggs gone?"

But they did get the hang of it, and soon most of the eggs were found:

Some required some careful looking!

At the end, they exchanged their eggs for a chocolate lolly, and I think it's fair to say that they were greatly enjoyed!

Of course, once the food started to come out of the oven, the smells were so amazing and enticing that all thought of taking photos of the wonderfully laden dining table went out of our heads. Needless to say, it was very delicious!

After some extensive playing outside and general running around, the kids started to flag, so we put them down for naps upstairs. Nathaniel declared forcefully that he wasn't tired and didn't need a nap, so we compromised with some quiet time in his cot with some books.

I think that my assertion that he was tired was right!

Thursday, 21 April 2011


We are having some friends around for an egg hunt and Easter lunch over the weekend, and Nathaniel and I have been busy preparing. We've decorated eggs with oil pastels (plastic ones rather than real - I chickened out!), and today we made our chocolate lollies.

I decided that fun though the idea was of filling two two-year olds with chocolate eggs minutes before we insisted that they sit to the table to eat lunch, we were better off limiting the chocolate content of the morning. So the plan is that they can exchange their basket of eggs for a chocolate lolly.

Nathaniel and I had a happy morning melting chocolate and decorating with various delicious (if you are 2!) toppings:

Some of the reults aren't altogether unpleasing!

Sunday, 17 April 2011

A happy morning

Take one sunny, warm, spring morning when birds are chirping and merrily hopping around the garden looking for worms to take to their young squeaking from the nests in the tree and hedge. Add a little boy, a back step, a pile of interesting pebbles and leaves and grass and a tub of water. Drop items into water to see if they change colour, float, or do anything out of the ordinary. Admire the shiny stones and set up a check out for buying them or using them as money to buy other things.

Play happily for ages!

Friday, 8 April 2011


We've all enjoyed eating bagels recently, so we thought we'd make some of our own on the marvellous beast that is our new oven.

Nathaniel has become rather good at kneading:

And enjoyed watching the dough rise while we had a snack in the sun. He relished the punching down bit:

And did a good job at rolling the dough into sausages before I shaped them:

I have to admit that I did the poaching and baking after he went to bed - I couldn't really see a way that he was going to be able to poach without a total disaster!

I'd love to show you pictures of the stodgy (on purpose), glazed, yummy bagels that resulted, but we ate them rather quickly. Suddenly 1kg of flour was lining our stomachs!

But I think we'll be making more!

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

What's going to happen?

Nathaniel's favourite game at the minute revolves around falling beads.

First, you place the car helter skelter in an elevated postition:

Then you pour a jar of beads down it:

And catch them with various vessels:

Then it gets more complicated. You add obstacles on the helter skelter such as blocks and cars, position catching vessels such as dumper trucks and diggers at different distances from the bottom of the helter skelter, and add slides and other paths for the beads to follow:

After every change you retorically ask with glee, "What's going to happen?!"

Yes, that was the best 99p I've spent recently!

We've threaded the beads on thread using needles, sorted them, "cooked" with them, rolled them down things to investigate the effects of slope and friction and made interesting patterns. Here are Nathaniel's flowers:

Monday, 4 April 2011

Stockton Heath

We spent a very pleasant weekend with friends in Warrington, remembering that there are other places worth inhabiting as well as York. We explored the picturesque village of Lymm, which was much nicer than it's position on the map suggested. Nathaniel enjoyed his first hot chocolate in a cafe, but was rather distracted by the exciting prospect of visiting "Hine's house".

We had a lovely walk around Lymm Dam (which is a lake!), and appreciated the sun and the ducks and the trees and the waterfalls, and Nathaniel declared that fishing looked "silly".

In the evening, Nathaniel and P did some serious triking on P's trike, and some rather impressive sharing. Never have I seen two two year olds ride a trike together so peacefully. Most impressive!