Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Jammy dodgers and "Maria"

Today has been a little bit more mellow than yseterday. Thanks to my sister we got free tickets to see Harry Potter at the cinema last night so Piper was very excited as she is a huge fan of both book and film. My M-I-L very kindly lent me her car overnight so we could drive there and back. The film was great and its always lovely to have one on one time with one child. I love the little converstaions that only happen when you are away from home and by yourself with them. Nothing major just daft things but still its lovely. Cordelia didn't sleep though until we were home which was quite late so this morning I had too sleepy girls on my hands who went a bit bonkers this morning. As I had the car and Daddy had left for the station at silly-o-clock this morning I thought I would make use of the car and go to the supermarket early. Good job it was quiet really as the girls mixed with super energy Bubs proved for a rather frantic supermarket shop. Will be shopping online I think from now on.... We took the car back to MIL and then the girl's got sucked into "Sindy World" whilst Bubs ran around with the dogs and chatted to nannan before work. Nannan bought a new HUGE doll from the charity shop last week, that we had spotted half an hour before her, its a little freaky to be honest as its the size of a 2/3 year old. She very kindly let the girls bring it home for a few days. They've called her Maria because she looks like Maria from The Sound of Music. They were dressing her up in the clothes MIL bought from the charity shop and generally behaving like little mums, lots of arguing about going out and Maria not putting her shoes on and wanting to eat chicken nuggets for her tea etc. Felt very strange to watch them struggling to put her raincoat and shoes on whilst they burst into fits of giggles, which were very infectious I have to admit. After we came home I had a very large mocha to revive me from my early start and then the girls wanted to make some biscuits for their friends visit tomorrow. I wrote them a recipe down and sat and supervised from the table.
Weighing out each of their ingredients. They made a bowl each.

Giving it a good mix.

After 30 minutes of chilling in the fridge they were ready to be cut out. Piper chose heart shapes and Cordelia flower shapes.

Out of the oven and ready for some raspberry jam.
Delicious home made Jammy Dodgers, which were divine!
These were some mobile photo's of the girls playing in Sindy World with gargantuan doll aka Maria.

Trying to get her feet in the shoes, whilst she apparantly shouted No and Chicken nuggets lots........
This afternoon, whilst the girls played with Maria, Bubs decided he wanted to sit and read me not one, not two but three magic key books!!Who is the child and what have you done with my Ruben???? Afterwards we all had a game of phonics lotto that my friend had lent us. Ruben won of course.
This is what I had to look at whilst the girls baked *shudders *. Not sure I can wait till nannan picks up back up on Friday.....In fact I'm sure the girls are leaving her around the house to freak me out, she looks real from certain angles. Creepy

Muddy walks and thunder storms.....

Well after deciding we all needed some fresh air yesterday we put our trainers on and put the dog on the lead and set off up the hill. Not sure if its more me or the childrenor maybe even the diggity dog that need walking these days but either way I find the fresh air good for all of us. We are very lucky here to be able to walk out pretty much straight away into lovely countryside. It was quite gloomy when we set off, then it got really hot so we were all stripping coats off and the kids got a little flustered. We found a new path to walk down and Cordelia squealed "Let's have an adventure!!" too much Famous Five for that one me thinks! Anyway we walked down a lovely winding track, past some beautiful farm houses, tractors and saw some cows going/coming back from milking at the local farm. we took a wrong turn, due to no signs! And ended up down someone's private driveway, ooooppppss! We headed back the other way and through some lovely trees, up above the clouds got darker and started to grumble quite a bit. Then a short sharp rain shower. For some reason, clearly they do not trust my sense of direction, wonder why?, they all got a bit panicky. The dog was being silly and seemed to have forgottten how to walk properly so I tried to get slightly ahead of the children so the dog wasn't tripping anyone over (except me) and then the children went all super racing to walk as close to me as possible, then crash, over went Pippi into the mud. Two things to know about Pippi-She hates noise and she hates being dirty. Que tears and Bailey searching his smart phone for our GPS location. Thankfully, I managed to find the right path back home in time to pick some bread up from the garage (I had earlier forgotten to put the bread machine on !). Back home, hands washed, clothes changed, tomato soup fed to hungry children. Well, Cordelia asked for an adventure and that is what she got.

These are some photo's before the thunder, Pippi's fall and mud.....

Thankfully the afternoon passed much quieter. Not. Yep, my four children/four projects proved to be quite stressful, at least for the printer anyway. Not sure my printer que has ever looked like that before: Pictures of Queen Victoria, Henry V111, Odeyessus, Medusa to colour in and notes on Twelfth Night to look at. Hmmmmmm, good to keep busy/have a nervous breakdown though.........?

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

So everyone is busy then? Goodo!

Its been quite the hive of activity over here this week so far. Daddy was back at work yesterday and so we were back trying to find our routine, which is a)more difficult without a car and b)strange when everyone else is gearing up for the school holidays. A little bit like limbo, we walked to our local shops for supplies which was nice and we are very lucky to have an ok selection of shops in our village including a craft shop, charity shops x2, a good library and a swimming pool. We popped into the library for the second time in four days! They will soon be sick of seeing us in there I think. Signed up for the summer read, which is circus themed, although Bailey declined on the grounds of him being too old and Piper said it was pointless due to her being able to read the 6 required books in 1 afternoon! I really can't argue with her there she is the fastest reader but I felt a tad sad as they have taken part in the library's summer reading challenge for years! I guess another part of having more grown-up children that I will have to get used too. Piper found the books she wanted on the Victorian's, Cordelia found books on the Tudors and Ruben on Ancient Greece. Will it be stressful having four children all doing a different topic each? Yes very likely!
 Back home and time for a little bit of very silly play doh time. Ruben was in a very silly mood and decided to completely destroy my lion army with his play doh caterpillar. He is having a death and destruction phase at the moment. And also an extremely frustrating over-emotional phase too. He literally bursts into tears over pretty much anything! Hoping its just a phase and won't last! Think its a little bit of tiredness as he's up sooooo early everyday, even though he's in bed by 7-7.30 every night. No idea how he would go on at school being so tired by 10am but thankfully not an issue for us.

 He took this photo after making his name out of playdoh. Sometimes I think he is better with my iphone than I am!
 The afternoon brought us some cooking, no photo's as I was too busy! I made roasted butternut squash soup, which was very filling and very tasty and roasted red pepper and chickpea hummous. Cordelia helped out with the hummous, she's very practical in the kitchen. The blender did not like the lumpy chickpeas so that was quite a lot of messing about. Still it was very yummy. Cordelia then decided to do an experiment after helping me sort their tea (none of the children would eat the soup!) of pasta and bolognaise. She wanted to see if she could cook the pasta just in warm water, it didn't work but at least when she leaves home she won't be one of those people that can't cook pasta!! Silver lining in everything today it seems!

 Meanwhile Bailey has found himself a new obsession, which is nice, he has swopped his xbox controller for my camera and is entering a stock motion competition with Mega Blocks to win some Halo mega block figure packs. Apparantly you get a pack for each entry you submit so he is in the middle of planning several different ones. Either way I'm not complaining, I'm happy to see him outside and being productive. As well as this he has also started working on Twelfth Night.
 The girls were sad to here one of their very bestest friends was feeling rather poorly and so decided to make her some get well soon cards that involved their mutual friend Barbie. These were Piper's cards, Cordelia sealed hers in the nevelope before I had chance to take a photo but they were also very sweet. They also sent a card to their friend's sister as they didn't want her to feel left out.
Oh, and we also watched this together which was very interesting viewing. I laughed quite a lot actually at themy  children's comments on the behaviour of the other children, in particular they were very appalled at the behaviour of Maisy but thankfully did not know or read the swear word she wrote on her whiteboard. Yet another good (hunfred!) reasons why we home educate.

Last few days of a free-from-work daddy!

As daddy's holidya came to end so unfortunately, did our car! Its died a bit of a death sadly so looks like we are going to be a little immobile for a while, at least until we save up for a newer car. Luckily the children's activities like sports and singing are coming to an end for the summer holidays so it will be fine for us for the next few weeks anyway. So whilst we couldn't go as far as we normally would we did a few local activities and even had a bus ride into town and a very long walk up through botanical gardens up to the museum and back into town! No photo's because, to be honest I only recently did a post on botanical gardens and the museum and we did pretty much the same thing but sometimes its nice to be a creature of habit! Ruben was still excited to play the dancing game in the sports exhibition and Bailey got his name at the top of the scoreboard for the bike ride around the park!

 I have taken up my knitting needles again and started myself a chunky scarf for winter.
 We are lucky enough to live near some pretty lovely countryside too so we took the children's nets and did some pond dipping.

It was very lovely and quiet but we didn't catch anything apart from some rather lovely and brightly coloured green slime, much to the amusement of Cordelia and Ruben! We had a walk up to our reed field to see how much it had grown too. Sometimes its quite nice to do things more local and i have to admit I am ready for a break from the activities. Thechildren all have lots of projects they want to do so this will be a very good time to get them started........

A spot of gardening to be done....

Whilst we had lots of day trips out whilst daddy was free from work we also did lots of pottering about too which was nice. We have done very well with the few veggies we have grown in the garden and it was time to pickle some beetroot. We have never done this before so we had to do a bit of internet research first before we found a recipe.
 Piper digging up the beets

 Some of our other veggies that are doing quite well, cauliflower
 And carrots not far off ready
 Washing the beets

 Wrapping them in tin foil ready to roast
 The mixture of malt vinegar, garlic cloves, pepper, salt and cinnamon
 Chopping up the beets after they had cooled out of the oven
 They tasted delicious but do stain your fingers a fair bit!
 Sieving out the pickle juice

 Adding the beets to the pickle juice

Ta-da! Our very own Barras Beetroot! Love these labels the girls made!

 Also, our peas were ready to be eaten so we warmed them briefly in some boiling water and served them with butter, delicious!