Thursday, July 26, 2007


Last weekend we packed up the bombi and travelled to BugJam 2007 - A Veedub festival. Poor Samuel had an awful fever and a sore throat, so he stayed home with Grandma, who we had picked up from a flooded airport that morning. With the fuel leak fixed and the van all packed we trundled up the M1, all excited, with Kylie and the little man she nannies - Louis.
We arrived, set up camp and it started raining. It rained alot that weekend - we are getting good at muddy festivals, our wellies are getting a LOT of use this summer. But we also had lots of fun, saw cars, heard loud music, went on fair ground rides, saw monster trucks, burnout cars & trick motorbikes, ate warm sugary donuts, danced and drank etc. On Sunday it was SUNNY! So we lay in the sun and watched the drag races, the jet cars, the stunt planes before heading home. Lots of noise, cars, boys and mud.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Sunday I took the boys and our friend Ali to Box Hill. A National Trust site south of London - renowned for its beauty. So, we chose a 5.5hr walk and off we trekked. After about 2hours we came across a lovely feild for our picnic. We were sat overlooking the valley and the clouds above started rumbling, and rumbling - it was magic, pure silence but for the thunder. The calm before the storm, no birds, no voices - electric silence. Then a few big fat drops of rain and we quickly packed up. Seconds later we thought we were in Indian monsoon. We were drenched to the skin in seconds and were in hysterics - such joyous warm heavy heavy drops of rain. At about the same time there was a pissed off wasp that decided it would sting poor Oscar through his sock. So there was a few moments of screams amongst the thunder and lightening. But he is a super brave boy and we trapsed along the path which was now a river.
Pretty soon the sun was shining again and we finished the walk in only 3 hours! what little troopers. It was beautiful scenery, summer flowers on the hills, lush forest. Christy had a hugemongous smile on her face the whole time too.

Then to come home we all had to strip to our underwear. Luckily there was a coat in Jeffs car, so I drove home in that - like some sort of flasher. Hehe. What a fun afternoon!


Last week at school, S was learning alllll about the birds and the bees and puberty. He was duly fascinated. Today in the supermarket he told me he needs to buy some deoderant. After a quick, discreet sniff to confirm a genuine need - I can say that my eldest boy is officially starting to use BO Basher. arrrgh. How did that happen so fast? The minefield ensued, right scent, no aluminium etc. In the end he's a bit chuffed, I just think he's growing up too fast. He'll be 10 in a few months!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007


O's little Mole - so soft and cute

Tonight was my night to run the Woodies, since the current theme is native British animals and I had a basket full of odd socks...we made sock puppets. Cornelia bought her big tin of buttons and with some bright yellow wool we sewed on eyes, tongues, ears tails etc. They all had such fun! At the end there was 15 kids running around with cute little puppets biting each other.

Slitherin' Adder


Buffalo Bill is a real star

Only 1 week of school left, so everything is winding up. Last night was Samuels end of term Viola concert - he played Bach's Minuet 2 with real panache. Tonight was Oscar's end of term Perform performance - he was Buffalo Bill. So we researched Ol Buff on the internet, checked out his tache and beard, made the same from cotton wool and Os looked the part. He had a lot of lines to remember and did Brill!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


We have only 5 days until our eggs start hatching. I never knew that eggs start moving! We can feel the heart beat of the little chicks inside!! Last night when Samuel discovered this we all got SOOO excited. I had been thinking that nothing would happen, its hard to believe that it would - The eggs sat around for a few weeks, we stuck them in the fridge, then we've struggled with keeping the temperature consistant. So, we were dancing around about our moving eggs last night! I need to think about getting rid of the boa constrictor so that we can use its vivarium as a brooder!


Os has had a sqewwy front tooth for a while now and it FINALLY came out! He is pretty pleased and comments on the softness of his gum where the hole is. Do you remember that feeling? He also loves squishing food through the gap.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Wet day at the Wetlands

Today, Os and I met friends; Michael and the gorgeous little Lainie for a day at the WWF - no we weren't watching wrestling. We were bird watching and mostly frog watching. Oscar suddenly became extremely stubborn about catching a frog. They were everywhere, lovely green ones, brown ones, big ones and little ones. We love frogs.
Initially I was fighting his stubborness, I thought we should do it this way (like actually visit the whole place), then I argued that we are with other people and should consider them (wanting to see the place), then I saw that he was enjoying himself immensly...and learning. So I took up a seat under a tree, ate my lunch and relaxed in the light rain. After about an hour, I realized that we could use the plastic bucket the nectarines were in to scoop up a frog. Which I promptly did, he got to name it and hold it before it jumped away. SUCH a fun day!
The Wetlands Centre Report

It was very fun today at the Wetland Centre. We saw a little track into very long grass and we found a pond full of frogs. There was one green frog and lots of brown frogs. I was trying to catch one. It was very fun there because we saw lots of frogs. I saw a frog croaking and its cheeks were getting very big when it croaked. I learnt about ducks, frogs, pond snails and bugs. It was very very fun.

pond dipping, studying bugs (note bullrush underarm...)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Glastonbury 2007

I have been lost for words when describing Glastonbury - awesome, amazing, fantastic, crazy, inspiring, exhausting, overwhelming, fun, crazy... This was our first time to the worlds largest festival. We left home 3am Thursday morning, slowing driving past Stone Henge at sun rise Solstice morning. Many people where there, but the horizon was cloud. We arrived at Glastonbury about 6am and trudged to set up camp in Lost Vagueness. Then we rested, slept and chilled before going exploring.

There are the Greenfields, full of hippies - a healing field with massage, yoga and reiki available; a crafts field where one can try out stone masonry, iron mongery, knitting, candle making etc. There are loads of cafes in yurts and tents that have big steaming pots of chai and homemade cakes, all vegetarain foods. Then there is Lost Vagueness, which is an area of creative crazyness, you can buy your fancy dress outfit and dancy to ska, or punk or funk - while rollerskating, or just hang out in dodgem cars. (this is where we camped). There are the tipi fields, where you can take dance therapy or sit around a fire for story telling. There are the circus fields, where you can wonder amongst the strange sculptures or sit in a circus tent for while and see men swalling swords, riding 3m high unicycles while juggling fire blind folded. Then there is the childrens area, with workshops for drumming and diablo or clown acts, swings, castle to climb in and a million other fun things to do. There are the Greenpeace feilds with an ark made out of sustainable timber, a ship shaped climbing frame, poo poetry, a place to buy weetabix all day...(yep, we did). There are educational informational places, food galore, and the most AMAZING things to buy (wish I had more spare cash). THEN there is the music, everywhere, all the time, 24 hours. There are the big stages for the big acts, then there are a million little stages for everyone else. After the big stages close, then the periferal parties start and THEY are the good ones. Saturday night I had Sienna Miller push past me three times. I gave the organizer Michael Eavis a big thumbs up in his vehicle window as he drove right past - very friendly man, very inspirational. We saw some great acts: Bjork - thrilling. Paolo Nutini (my fav album of last year). The Marley Brothers (Bob's sons), for some reggae feel good, love music - yay! The Egg - for true festival dance music - we are friends with the sound engineer. And my favourite, can't wait to buy their album Think! - 5am dancing like crazy to the BEST funk I've ever heard - LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!

Did I mentioned it rained and was the muddiest in the past 10 years? I am now a professional on the subject of MUD. There is chocolate milkshake, which is easy to walk in, ankle deep water is - just hope the person behind isn't someone who walks kicking it up (most are). Then there is chocolate sauce - looks great. Then there is chocolate mouse - this is slippery. Then there is chocolate bread dough - arrrgh - this is where your boots get S-T-U-C-K, EVERY time you take a step and it make funny sounding suck-tion noises - hehe. All are very tiring and there is ALOT of walking to be done over a 2000 acre festival.

So last night we arrived home exxxuasted. Did I mention that we camped near a big tent, that turned into a pumping old school disco from 5pm - 5am? Its really hard trying to sleep while your feet can't keep still and your ears are we got tired. And Sunday we decided we'd seen and heard and done enough, so we packed up and headed home. What an EXTRAordinary 4 days.

Oh my I could go on about how much of the waste is recycled, how much there is an atmosphere of love and peace and good times, how much I love the quirky creativity, the scale of it (180,000) on and on. Thoroughly enjoyed it and would go again if someone could promise no rain....

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


We spent 3 days in Ayr, the Riviera on the west coast of Scotland. We went to stay with Reg and his family. He lives in a fabulous house that looks like a Castle, overlooking a golf course with the sea and the Isle of Aran in the background. His daughter is horse mad, so one day we went to the stables and got to see a horse being shod. Before going for a pony ride! Oh my! First time on a pony for Oscar - he is so confident, it astounds me. Samuel was on a teeny walk around when he was about 3, so he was equally excited this time. Brilliant.


On our first day of home educating, we went for a walk in Richmond Park and found a great spot that we decided we would come back to for story reading. We collected some green helicopters, which we later decided looked like fly wings. So we made some lovely squishy green playdough (I never knew you were meant to cook playdough before!) Such FUN!


A couple of weeks ago, there was a knock at the door and 2 police occifers were there! We haven't had police at our place since that time me and a couple girls scared the poo out of Jeff, when we returned to haunt the house after missing a flight to Barcelona.

The neighbours MOST annoying alarm was going off and they wanted to peep over our fence. Os and his best mate Will were VERY chuffed to chat to them and get to try on the famous Bobbies hat.


Brett Hall at left, thinking he is not in the photo.

Twice a year Kew Gardens stays open late so that revellers can enjoy the long sunny evenings. A few of our friends with a zillion of our kids organized a dinner picnic. It was BRILLIANT! The kids all had soo soo much fun. We played at the Climbers and Creepers area and it felt like we had all of Kew Gardens just to ourselves. To the extent that the kids were riding around pretending to sell us ice creams...until we realized we weren't alone in the park and a security occifer came along. hehe.

Home Educating

what a beeeeaaauutiful pencil hold and wrist!

I took Oscar out of school 3 weeks ago, straight after half term holidays. This is so that I can build his confidence in his writing and spelling and reading - literacy. It is working wonders! He is SO SO happy - no more waking me up at 7am with tears and upset about having to go to school. No where near as much anger as before. He is HAPPY to pick up a pencil and do writing now. We are doing a program called: Handwriting without Tears, which is going brilliantly, certainly no tears about writing anymore.

So, I bit the bullet and realized that noone was going to tell me what I should do with my child. The school was amazingly supportive. And while I feel like I should be more organized, we are happy. yay!

making a card for Olivers Christening

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


speedy boy

he had a "parp parp" horn in his pocket, which he bounced on to honk...

the greeness

tickle tickle - he he

We spent a day in the Wye Valley, in one of the most beautiful spots ever. We had a picnic together right by a pond, under delicious green oaks. After a few hours of lazing around, we jumped on our bikes for a 7mile ride around beautiful foresty commission forest. We had SO MUCH FUN!! It was the most amazing blue sky day and we were one happy little family.


Over half term hols, the boys went camping with the woodies. 1 week away from Mum and Dad!! With a bunch of the lovliest people in the world. They had SUCH a brilliant time: rock climbing, caving, kyaking etc. They camped in the Wye Valley, right next to the river. FUN FUN!

Alphabet Gingers

Last week, we made a big batch of yummy molasses and ginger cookie dough. Then every day we would make the 2 letters we had learnt to write that day. F & E etc. One day we had our friend "Nickelarse" over for dinner, so he got a cookie in the shape of you know what, with a big "N" on it - quite yummy with yoghurt and strawberries.


This evening O was reading me story when it started BUCKETING down. S reminded us that he was dancing in the rain neked when he was little. This inspired O, to get his gear off for summer rain dancing. Such giggles! hehe.

Studying a snail...hope the neighbours weren't looking out the window!