Sunday 27 October 2013

"If we took a holiday. Took some time to celebrate. Just one day out of life. It would be, it would be so nice".

 It seems that summer is now a thing of the past and we are back to having our family days out ruined by the grotty weather. Last weeks pumpkin and conker hunt ended in an inevitable down pour and Mrs M has complained many times in the last week or so that she has soggy feet. Carrying Opeie about on my shoulders has now turned into me trying to avoid muddy foot marks down my coat. We need a holiday! it's been 18 months since our last proper holiday. This thought was only made more clear today when we opened the boot to get an umbrella and saw our Visit Orlando umbrella staring back at us. 

Even Seth has been desperately looking through his books for pictures of bright skies and sunshine to try and cheer himself up. I thought id write a post about booking a holiday to try and take my mind off the rain thrashing it down outside. Plus Seth has been desperate to make some airport related lego pieces.

Booking a holiday can be quite a stressful time (for Mrs M that is). She is quite the negotiator when it comes to planning that perfect family time away, so I leave her to her own devices. I may make many sarcastic comments about her habits but Mrs M's obsession with making lists has never steered us wrong yet (it's a habit that Seth seems to have taken up too, list after list after list). Once the booking is out of the way, transport sorted, insurance, money, cases, those special locks you need for those cases, transfers, car seats, travel adapters and airport parking It's time for Mrs M's pack the car with cases for a test run activity (yes she's very organised).

And then it's time for my least favourite part of the holiday, hanging around the airport waiting to depart. I never like this part and always feel a little anxious but I guess a lot of people feel the same. Sending your cases off through that black hole with plastic tassels wondering if its going to be there waiting at the other end

Having to send your hand luggage through the x-ray machine can be a little daunting too especially with all the limitations of what you can and can't take through.

 There's something about having to walk through the metal detectors that makes you feel a bit like a criminal, I'm always expecting them to go off and that sinking feeling in my stomach only goes when I've stepped through beep free. Maybe that's just me though, I get like it coming out of shops sometimes too.

Once that's out the way though there's the sitting in a waiting area for x amount of time twiddling our thumbs. We took full advantage of virgins V room last year which was great and made our waiting around that little bit more bearable.

(Mrs M has taken to living in her new Pj's while at home so it's only right that her minifigure does too)

Although the airport arrival time can be daunting its usually over within three hours and then you're on your way to your holiday destination, it's a shame that's not now for us as the rain beats off our Lounge window and I'm having to sit here wearing a jumper... And socks!!

I cant wait to get out of this country for a bit at some point this weather always puts me in this gloomy mood.

Thursday 24 October 2013

“Mr. Twit was a twit. He was born a twit. And, now at the age of sixty, he was a bigger twit than ever.”

It's that time of year again, the excitement of 'world book day' has been filling our house. Every year Seth comes up with a long list of possible costume ideas but this year there was just one, he knew exactly who he wanted to be. In the two previous school years he had been 'The cat in the hat' (obviously) and last year if you remember the post he was 'The hungry Caterpillar'. When it's time to create a costume me and Mrs M are a great team. 

Yesterday I popped out  hunting for haberdashery supplies and a tweed looking jacket (which shockingly I found). Once Seth's measurements had been taken and the boys were in bed we got to work. Mrs M tackled the wig and I worked on the beard, we even managed to entertain our friend Chris too while working, we're a parenting super team!

After the beard and hair was finished we cut out a sardine, cheese and cornflakes from felt and stitched them in to his beard (I'm quite sure you've guessed who it is by now, the title was a bit of a give away haha).

Seth graced the school playground this morning looking like a vagabond and proud of it. I loved seeing his excited little face as his friends looked at him very confused. Seth's head teacher came over and was very impressed and I'm sure that when his friends saw his box of worm spaghetti to eat later in the day they all had smiles on their faces too.

Seth has already told us he has an idea for next year, the only clue we got was a question...
Do you think my friends will laugh at me if i came in dressed as a girl? Stay tuned to see how that question unfolds!

Wednesday 23 October 2013

"Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."

When I use the term 'best friend' I'm usually referring to Mrs M, Seth or Opeie. These are the three people I trust the most. I really don't find it easy to trust people after the life I've had full of selfish and bitter family members, untrustworthy friends and a list of destructive relationships with people that never really cared about me and had very little respect. Mrs M jokes about me being a little hermit like and sometimes antisocial but other people have pushed me to be this way.

There is someone else though that managed to get past my hardened exterior and I'm so glad he did. Having people to trust in your life is really important and outside of my family he is the one person I completely trust and would go out of my way to help him out. In fact i shouldn't say 'outside of my famiIy' because he is very much a big part of our family. I was going to write a post about the great Saturday afternoon we had and what we got up to but as we drove home I thought I'd just dedicate the post to Chris and use the pictures from the day out (ill leave you to come up with your own story from the pictures).

I've known Chris for quite sometime but we didn't speak for many years. It wasn't until a year and a half ago that we ended up out at the same birthday do and our bromance began to blossom. Unlike many of the people I know, Chris makes a huge effort when it comes to our friendship, he's an all round top bloke and the boys love him too.

One of the things I love most about Chris is that like me he says what he feels, once when me and him were out with Opeie I made a comment about us looking like a happy gay couple, to which he responded 'if I were gay I'd be proud to have a guy like you, you're a great bloke', that was a real compliment.

Having someone else in my life that i can trust pushes me that little bit closer to restoring my faith in humanity, I really couldn't ask for a nicer friend!

P.S Nanny Roo, if you're reading this Opeie picked himself some new wellies this weekend, i thought you would approve...

Sunday 20 October 2013

"My guiding principles in life are to be honest, genuine, thoughtful and caring."

If you are a regular reader you may have read our post a few weeks back about the name of the blog and where it originated, if so then you'll know all about the pirates. They have been a part of our life for years. This week on the way home picking Seth up from school, Seth sat in the back talking about how much he loved the pirates. Being the thoughtful and caring person that he is he said "i want us to do something nice for the pirates to say thank you!" he continued to tell us that they are always doing nice things for him and he would really like to show his appreciation.

It's little out of the blue comments like this that make us realise what a great job we are doing at raising the boys. He has morals and his priorities are exactly as they should be. He understands that you cant go through life taking, you should always give something back and when it comes to acting responsibly and doing the right thing he clearly knows the difference between right and wrong (unlike a certain blog author, but i turned out alright in the end).

Ive now got my thinking cap on, the pirates have and will continue to be a great source of motivation for the boys and as Seth so rightly said they deserve a huge thank you. Whatever we decide to do to show our appreciation it needs to be a celebration worthy of our eye patch wearing pirates of the sky.

Watch this space...

Wednesday 16 October 2013

"One sunday morning the warm sun came up and - pop! - out of the egg came a tiny and very hungry Caterpillar."

The time has come to make use of the conkers we collected last weekend. Earlier today Opeie pulled out The Hungry Caterpillar as one of his pile of afternoon reading material and it gave me an idea for the booty we had collected on Saturday.  I fetched the bag of conkers and together me and Opeie drilled holes in some of them in preparation.

Next we went looking for some string and after making a knot in one end Opeie threaded the conkers on all by himself. Opeie then told me it looked like a caterpillar, I knew it wouldn't take him long to cotton on to what was going on.

We tied the other end and went on a mission looking for googly eyes to attach to the face. There you have it a simple autumn craft session that Opeie loved every minute of. I could see that he wasn't ready to end our little activity so we started something else in keeping with our afternoon reading. Can you all remember what that hungry caterpillar turns in to after stuffing his face.

We had some string left and plenty of pre-drilled conkers so we made another body like the caterpillar only a little shorter (I tried to pick conkers that went up in size gradually).

Last year Seth had opted to be The Hungry Caterpillar (butterfly) at his schools world book day so myself and Mrs M spent an evening making him a costume and his wings had become a decoration on his ceiling. After completing the conker body we attached it to Seth's card and tissue paper wings. Two more drilled holes and some pipe cleaners and the butterfly was beginning to look as beautiful as in the book, but we were out of googly eyes (oh no). Luckily in these sort of situations you can always rely on Lego. Two Lego eyes and voila, One Hungry Caterpillar and his beautiful colourful conker made counterpart.

Saturday 12 October 2013

“Only the knife knows what goes on in the heart of a pumpkin.”

Every year around Halloween we head down to Essington farm to pick our Halloween pumpkins for carving. Last year because of all the bad weather all the crops had been rained off and there was none to pick (sad faces all round). So this year we phoned ahead to see if there were pumpkins for picking. They don't start their tractor ride to the field until next week but they said we could make our own way up there and pick away.

Not the best of days for traipsing around a muddy farm but then that sums us up, picking out door activities to do on the wrong days. It's only a bit of rain though and we make our own fun whether its sunny or gloomy. We made it to the pumpkin field and despite the 'no entry' sign on the gate we headed in, we had been told it was okay after all.

The boys picked a pumpkin each and we brushed them off as best we could and put them in a bag to take them to the farm shop. Opeie's little pumpkin was so cute and were going to do something extra fun with that one.

And then we got told off by a farmer, oops! Apparently we were not supposed to be in that field until next week but we explained that we had phoned ahead of the visit and was told it was okay. Trust us to cause trouble wherever we go. The friendly farmer was fine though and apologised for the confusion.

Well our pumpkins have been brought now so next is a bit of creativity, stay tuned for what we actually use our pumpkins for, should be fun.

Friday 11 October 2013

Searching for bugs and wildlife at Attingham park.

I try and write about things as soon as they happen, sometimes though i half write posts and then get wrapped up in other things, my bad. Last week we all had a morning out at Attingham park, our friend Chris had stopped at ours the night before and we managed to kidnap him for the morning and took him along with us which the boys were very excited about. Mrs M had been before but even though its not far from ours I had not been. We managed to get out of the house at a reasonable time, even if Chris did have a lie in (lie ins are unheard of in our house).

We arrived at our destination and after flashing our new National trust memberships we headed on to our adventure. The grounds were beautiful and although there was a chill in the air and Mrs M needed my shirt to keep warm, the sun was shining and was desperately trying to warm the place up. The boys were in their usual excited mood, laughing and running about.

There was a 'searching for bugs and insects' activity on which the boys couldn't wait to join in with so armed with a magnifying glass, tray and sheets with pictures of wildlife to search for, off we went turning over rocks, rummaging through bushes and checking the skies.

It wasn't long before we made it to the orchard which I think was what kicked off the last two weeks of apple scrumping (which I will write about very soon). The walled garden around the fruit and veg being grown was like Mrs M's personal heaven and she walked round in awe of all the crops and was even more excited when she saw the beehives (one day we'll have that self sustaining life that she dreams of).

The flowers there were stunning too...

Seth was desperate to get to the play area and I was parched so we headed there next. Clearly the boys had even more energy to burn off and who were we to deny them that. The play area was great, lots of climbing things handcrafted from wood and long dark tunnels built into hills, great fun for any inquisitive child, although the tunnels were slightly to small for grown ups and me and Chris ended up with neck cramp.

And then it was time to head back for lunch and i suppose we needed to let our hostage go back to his wife. So we headed back to the car. It was a great way to spend a couple of hours before Lunch the adventure got me wondering where our next National Trust adventure will be, any ideas?