Monday, 7 September 2009

First day of school

Both of my boys are at new schools this year. J has just joined a 13+ intake so he is with many boys in the same boat. Unfortunately H has joined Year 6 at a prep school, all on his own. It is a tough year to be moving school as it is the final year of school but I know he will cope well as he is a very sociable and likeable boy.

I haven't done anything with their photos but here is another "first day" LO that was in SBM Issue 40. I wanted to take on a slightly different angle to first day by extending it to first week. J's school was part of the town of the same fact, the school was the town! School buildings were set out all over the town, much like a university campus. He had to do a lot of walking to get from one lesson to another. This LO shows some of the places he had to go and some of things he had to contend with. I have also included a map of the school and his prep timetable. He was very tired by the end of the week!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Summer 2009 update

Ok, that makes it sound as though summer is over. What do you think ? Are we due some more good weather ? The boys are due back at school this week and whilst I love having them home, I missed my creative time. Anyway, this is going to be a long post about the long hectic summer holiday we've had.

1) We completed on the sales and purchase of the new house on the first day of the holiday. The packers turned up the day before to pack. They continued on completion day and didn't finish till about 2pm. Luckily our buyers were not moving immediately so they were quite happy for us to take our time. I had to abandon the packers and A & J at home to go for my piano exam.
2) Can you take the heat ? The moving meant I didn't have time to get stressed about the exam. I persuaded H to accompany me and we headed to Dogsthorpe. I was sure the church where the exams were taking place would be easy to find. Not so, I had to stop at a corner shop to purchase a map. Luckily I managed to calm down and the exam went well ( except by the time I was doing the third piece, my hands were starting to shake from nerve! ). The good news is I passed with merit and even got full mark for sight reading YAY.
3) Catherine from the solicitors rang to say we have completed on the purchase whilst I was driving to Dogsthorpe so that was good news. I will be driving to Cambridge after the exam. The removers and A&J were already there when we arrived. The team of 4 strong men, with some help from us, unloaded till about 8pm. 'A' then went on an unboxing spree.
4) A couple of days in the new house and we went to Spain to see the inlaws. Andalucia was very hot and dry but fortunately not as hot as it had been the weeks before. I almost melt in the heat.
5) Then it was back to the UK where the weather had been less ideal ( but perfect for all my plants that are waiting transplantation ). We pressed on with the unpacking and making the house presentable for housewarming.
6) We had housewarming. It was great to see our Oundle friends. Now I just have to make sure I keep in touch as I am terrible at this!
7) A couple of good weeks in Cambridge. We took our bikes out and cycled 5 miles to the Grand Arcade, and 5 miles back. This was my first outing on the bike. I learned to cycle as a young girl but have never really cycled anywhere, least of all, on the roads. My bum was very sore after that but luckily it didn't hurt for very long and even better, I didn't suffer the same on subsequent trips.
8) The pool was finally ready for swimming. I had to call out to the pool man to show us what to do. At first everything sounded very complicated but I think we've got the hang of it by now. We took the opportunity to use the pool whilst the sun was out. H swam nearly every day. The next stumbling block will be to 'close' the pool for winter. I might have to get Richard out for that.
9) Next stop was Miami. A was working in Boca for 2 weeks so we took the chance to experience the sunshine state. We stayed in Delray Beach which is right next to West Palm Beach. Our hotel is at the end of a long road that is full of grand mansions, just opposite the beach. I didn't see anyone famous but I did see a man in the local Starbucks, writing a book. Could he have been a famous author ?
10) A was working from 6am till late so it was nice to able to have him go away to Orlando with us for the weekend. Yep, you guessed it, we went to Walt Disney World. We got to our Disney hotel around 8 pm Friday night and got an early night, to recharge for the weekend. We did Animal Kingdom ( dissapointing! ), Magic Kingdom and Downtown on Saturday. On Sunday we went to the Studio ( my favourite! ) and Epcot. I overheard someone say the Toy Story ride at the Studio is very popular and they tend to run out of fast pass so I persuaded A to get some passes. This was at around 10 am. and the passes were already running at 3pm. By mid-day they were all out of fast passes and the queue for that ride was 70 mins. At the end of the ride, we all thought, "that was fun but I would be p*ssed off if I queued for 70 minutes".
11) We went shopping at Sawgrass Mills outlet mall. This place was vast. People walked around the shops, pulling a suitcase to put all their shopping in. We weren't that organized and not that crazy buying everything up. I bought a couple of jeans for me, some jeans and t for the boys, a couple of Oakley's rucksacks for the boys and some shoes.
12) On the way back to Miami, we had some time to kill. We made our last shopping stop at Pembroke Pines where I managed a Michaels, JoAnn and Target. Hamish wanted to check out Club Penguin's toys. Unfortunately all the ones in Target have had the coin codes stolen. If you are not familiar with Club Penguin, each toy come a coin that allows you to unlock a hidden item from the Club Penguin online game. We looked in Toys rUs and their coins were all intact.
13) Then it was back home to get ready for school. I had loads of school uniform to tag. With my lack of sleep due to jetlag, it was quite difficult to sew straight or even to thread the needle LOL.