Saturday, 21 December 2013


It was a busy advent. Far to busy to write the blog! So here are some photos:

Our advent ring plans were affected by the shapes of oasis available and the dishes we own. So we present the advent tray!

I declined to purchase a chocolate advent calendar (because I am mean and nasty and don't think that a five year old and a two year old need to eat chocolate every day), so instead we had two! One with windows to open to reveal a picture, and one consisting of little evelopes to open in which there was an adventy activity to do (which sometimes was some chocolate!). Here is the second one:

One of the activities, as you would expect, was going to collect the christmas tree. We had left it later than most people, so it was a bit of a round trip around several shops, but we did find one that we liked the look of, and the kids got to wade through piles of trees and do good impressions of escaped caged animals as they ran round the garden centre! And then we got to prepare it:

Another activity was making snow dough. This would have been more fun if I'd tried it myself first! We had fun mucking around with the ingredients, but it would have been better if I'd known what we were aiming for! Once it coalesced properly it was much better!

I had decided that I wasn't going to be buying and writing 25 christmas cards for everyone in Nathaniel's class (though as I never actually managed to send any adult cards in the end, this seems a bit mean!), and had intended to help create a giant card for the whole class in which Nathaniel could write all the names if he wished. But he got so much pleasure from opening all his cards as they drifted in through the last weeks of term, that I relented, and helped him make a batch. We did cork-print christmas trees, biscuit-cutter stars, and tacky foil Father Christmas stickers when we got bored! And Nathaniel wrote each and every one! (Their name and his name)

Making presents was fun this year because both children understood what we were up to. If you think you may have received something that they made, you may prefer to look away now (or get your jabs up to date!!).

And at last we got to buying all the food for the masses. Here, Nathaniel has set up a French market stall from which to sell us our veg. There are scales (out of shot), which tell him how much our purchases weigh (20cm more often than not!) and how much we owe him (in multiples of 2ps).

And then there was Nathaniel's school Christmas performance. What can I say! It was a 70's show called Rock-around-a-Christmas, and every class had a dance. Nathaniel's class were animals with headresses made by themselves and sung the songs along with the rest of the school and did a dance of their own to "Crazy Horses".
video to follow

They all managed to stay awake for the 90 minutes and were able to remember all the words and dances to the encore songs when they got up on stage at the end (at 7pm!). It was highly entertaining!

Monday, 16 December 2013

How they are now

Dorothea at 2 years

Nathaniel at 5 years and 2 months

I'll attempt to do some more updating very soon.......

Sunday, 17 November 2013


Thea has had a lovely second birthday. Thank you for all her wonderful gifts and cards.

This is the first time that Thea really understood that it was her birthday, but nevertheless, Nathaniel was the most excited of the two of them, and we suspect that he had been awake with anticipation from 5am!

But he was very good at finding an appropriate level of help to provide in unwrapping presents.

Thea had fun playing with her toys.

I've always thought that these little trampolines were a bit of a waste of space, but then I have never met someone who enjoys bouncing as much as Thea! It will give the bed and the floor a bit of a rest!

Thea is pleased to discover the pockets in her new dress, but finds that they are less hazardous when she isn't jumping!

Later, some friends came to play and we had "Happy Birthday cake".

Surprisingly, Thea got all shy once the candles were lit, and Finn had to blow them out for her. But when we relit them later with just the four of us, she was very happy for us to sing and her to extinguish.

Now all we have to do is persuade her to let us put the trampoline in the garden!

NB I have no idea why Thea refused to wear tights all day. She sported a variety of trousers with her new dress including tracksuit bottoms and pajamas!

Monday, 11 November 2013


Today Thea and I went into school to attend the "Writer of the Month" Assembly. It was such fun. One writer from each of the six classes got up and read their writing, or an exerpt from their writing, to the school. And there was good natured heckling from the teaching, and pupils put up their hands to offer ironic comments at the expense of the teachers. Wonderful - exactly what we were hoping the school would provide!

We discovered that Nathaniel had been awarded this accolade for his piece on Divali. He had coloured in a picture of Rama and written next to it, completely legibly, "It is a god.". The notable element of this was that they haven't yet discussed sentences structure yet, and Nathaniel had started his with a capital letter entirely independently which impressed his teacher. Not bad.

As well as being applauded by the school, Nathaniel was awarded with a certificate and a book token, and his picture and a copy of his work is being displayed in the hall all month. How exciting!

Tuesday, 5 November 2013


STOP PRESS**** Nathaniel has just been named as Writer of the Month for his class. Not bad for a little boy who was really struggling to write the whole of his name whithout getting bored and wandering off at the beginning of September.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Half term

We were very ready for half term, and I think that were at least 4 days when Nathaniel didn't even get dressed! Of course, thanks to the dragon suit, that didn't prevent us from leaving the house. We had friends to play, and lots of cake and lots of fun.

For some reason, the favourite toy was the travel cot, and both children spent many hours pretending to be children. Fortunately, they are both now tall enough to get in and out of the cot without help so they attended to themselves for some time.

We did autumn crafts, starting from an interest in cobwebs. We made cobwebs out of wool;

and then with oil pastels on dark paper. Then we made firework pictures.

There was lots of baking. The chocolate crispies didn't last very long.

But there was some gingerbread left for Ian.

We had a trip to get Thea's feet measured which included exciting coffee and cake out,

and playing in horrid shopping centre plastic.

The sandpit got lots of use and we made lots and lots of japanese rock gardens with rakes and pebbles and shells.

On Halloween, we went to the butcher and Sean presented both children with chocolates which prompted this dance,

which was rewarded with a round of applause from inside the butchers!

At the end of the week we had an exciting trip out to a restaurant,

followed by visiting the A4 exhibition at the NRM, lit up as part of Iluminating York festival.

Saturday, 26 October 2013


Since the manic business of September, we have managed to calm down a bit and had a more relaxing October. This is what we have been up to:

Enjoying the autumnal weather.

Thea and I have been particularly confused by the lack of Nathaniel during the day. But it has meant that we've been able to do some good wandering without the need to be constantly going somewhere!

Nathaniel and I have managed a couple of "walks" on our own as well. (Nathaniel still doesn't really consent to walk anywhere!) Well, if you don't count Ernest, our newest dragon.

Playing outside in the sun.

Appreciating our favourite vegetables.

The glee that occured when the sweetcorn was spotted in the veg box was indescribable! And when I called to say that it was time to prepare them, I have never seen two children appear so quickly!


You can take the boy out of Steiner, but you can't take Steiner out of the boy!

Making the most of all weathers on the moor.