Tuesday, September 29, 2009


We have finally got around to starting work on the girls' room - something which was promised when they first switched rooms with Alex, back in the spring (or whenever it was). The delay has been mostly because of thinking we'd have to strip the paper in their room and re-paper, which task I found a bit daunting. Finally, we decided to try to go ahead and just paint over what was there - we are going to use a strip of wallpaper as a border/motif around the wall about halfway up - this should cover the worst of the damage from previous borders, and hopefully look ok.

Here's Olivia putting the first coat of paint on, yesterday evening. I did a second coat today and that looks like it will be enough to cover the orange. Tomorrow afternoon I will try to get the skirting board repainted (white) and maybe even get the border on, on this wall. Once this wall is done, we can put the furniture back and move on to the next wall. Thank goodness there are only 4 walls! Of course, once the walls are done, it's on to curtains - they are going to be tab-top, though, not gathered, which will make things a lot easier...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Chocolate Fountain

We borrowed this from a friend - it takes rather a lot of melted chocolate to make it work, but Sarah and her friends who are sleeping over for her birthday enjoyed it (as did the rest of the family) - it was quite a big nuisance to clean, so I don't think we'll be buying one of our own any time soon!

My chocolate boy enjoyed himself. No one was sick, though I think we stopped just in time!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

311 steps!

Alex is studying the Great Fire of London in school this term, and despite having lived in London for a long time, none of us, Geoff and I included, have ever been to see the monument to the fire. A friend of mine was there recently and commented favourably on the views, and as it was a nice day, we decided to go up to town and have a look, then wander along to the Museum of London (where we have all been many times, except Geoff) and refresh our memories about the section there on the Great Fire.

Geoff and I particularly liked one line in the inscription on the monument (now removed) which blamed the fire on the Catholics. As any Year 2 child should be able to tell you, the fire started in a bakery in Pudding Lane...

Here's a view from the top - looking towards the building commonly known as the Gherkin. More photos from the day and more views from the top are over here in my flickr album...

Monday, September 07, 2009

First day for all...

The traditional first day photo - first year with two different uniforms!

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Diggers ahoy

Today, Alex and I had a trip to Diggerland, while the girls were off at the Guiding Centennary Launch Party (Sarah camping for the weekend, Olivia down for the day) with hundreds of other Guides, Brownies & Rainbows. Thank goodness there was nice weather for them! And for us, of course. We had great fun at Diggerland, which is a theme park based around diggers. They had some rides made from diggers, but more to the point, the chance to dig with actual diggers and ride in them. Of great appeal to small boys, clearly, though I had fun, too - more than I expected.

Loads more photos and a couple of videos over here on flickr...

Friday, September 04, 2009

Big School

It may seem a little strange to start school on a Friday, but it's only the Year 7s who were back today at Sarah's new school. They had a talk and stuff in the morning - sorted out the administrative stuff - got lockers, registered their thumbprints for the cashless payment system, etc - and went to a few classes after lunch. Monday, it all starts for real, with all the bigger kids. Strange that kids who seemed so big recently at their primary schools now seem quite small again with all the Year 10 and 11 kids (who are as big as grownups)...

R.I.P. Gerry the Gerbil

Well, we knew the time would come when one of the gerbils died, and that time was today (or rather, I think it was a day or two ago, as I haven't noticed him so much recently). Not sure what was wrong with him - he's always been a bit mad, liked to chew on the bars of the cage - perhaps it was eating the paint off the cage bars? - but the kids took it quite well. Gerry was nominally Sarah's gerbil in that she chose him and named him, but really, they all belong to all of them so they are all a little sad. They did agree unanimously that they didn't want to get a new one to replace him, so we are now a 2 gerbil household. He wasn't quite two yet, so he was a little young to die, but 2-3 years is fairly common for most rodents, so it's not a huge surprise. Farewell little Gerry; it was fun!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

A litte rain and some sun...

makes a rainbow. Not a very prominent one, and not for long, but it was nice to see as I was dashing to get the end of the laundry taken down....