Saturday, July 30, 2005

Swimming, reading and preparing for piggies


We started the day with some Hama beading – thanks to the prompt service from BeadMerrily. Can't manage photos tonight as too tired, but Leo did a square with colour blocks, and P worked on a circular pattern. More Fimo creations were made and baked too.

I had to work in the afternoon but Dani took the kids to the park (once it had decided not to rain for a while!) via the mobile library. The kids picked up cards for the Reading Voyage thing that is happening this summer. In the park P climbed the 10ft poles and hit a ball around with our 'boom bats'. These only cost a couple of quid from Woolies last year and we've had hours of play out of them. Leo practised hurling a foam ball up in the air. This is his favourite park activity of the moment – he likes to discuss the height each time.

Interestingly Leo uses feet and metres when talking about distance, and kilogrammes and stone when discussing weight. Looks like he's destined to be yet another British person who operates in a mixed up world somewhere between imperial and metric – a bit like his mums! I can never understand how, having been taught exclusively metric measures at school, I have never managed to relate to them properly. I like cms, but need to know distance in miles. I know I weigh a bit more than 50 kilos, but sponge cake recipes are forever in ounces in my head. Ho hum. I think it's another thing we can blame the Tories for as they abolished the metrication board back in the early 1980s and slowed up the process of transition for us all.


Today has been action packed and I'm shattered so this had better be brief. Dani was at work all day today. I got the kids up, breakfasted and dressed, and we were ready for cousins S, D and their mum when they arrived at 10am. We walked up the hill (10 mins) to our little local swimming pool, which was surprisingly quiet. We all had a really good swim. Pearl and her cousin S did lots of diving down to pick things up from the bottom of the pool. Little cousin D has had his confidence boosted by wearing goggles at all times – so he was able to really play and have fun. On a whim I asked Leo if he'd like to swim for a bit without his armbands (we never think of things like this with him – I think it's second-child syndrome!) and he was very enthusiastic. He swam four or five widths holding a traditional float, and seemed very confident, in spite of a few minor sinking episodes. I don't assume he will want to give up his armbands in one go but I think he feels good that he gave it a try today – and we'll play it by ear, as we did with P.

In the afternoon we met up with the same cousins again, to go down to the main library. We walked down and the kids had fun and got wet running too close to the Mazda fountain. When we got to the library, and the automatic doors failed to open, we remembered that it is shut on Friday afternoons. So, we jumped on a bus and went to our favourite branch library instead. Pearl got a fridge magnet and some stickers, for having filled in two books on her Reading Voyage card – both Tintin books, which she loves with a passion. Leo got nothing as he had only read one book -48 pages, and the first whole 'chapter book' he has read alone! I thought this was somewhat unfair really, and rather disheartening for him. But he is applying himself to finishing 'Sinclair Wonderbear' before next week! I must admit I rather dislike these incentive schemes, and feel that reading is its own reward - but if the kids want to do this thing then I guess they will.

When we finally got home I'd just sat down with a cup of tea when Tesco arrived early with our shopping. Sadly no-one at Tesco had noticed the strong smell of bleach coming from our shopping. A loose lid on a bleach bottle had resulted in a slimy bag full of bleach, and some leaking onto the surrounding bags too. I had to spend about an hour scrutinising all the food to make sure things weren't contaminated, and cleaning up the spilled stuff. Needless to say my cold tea ended up down the sink. Dani arrived home and saved the day with pizza and salad for everyone.

Dani and Leo played a quick round of a 'Walking with Dinosaurs' game we had borrowed from the library. Pearlie was too tired to be patient with the whole board game experience, so she watched a Tintin video flaked out on our bed.

Kids have been very tired this evening and were happy to veg with a re-run of Dr Who.

P and D did also do a bit of work on a book P is 'compiling' (scanning and re-arranging) from some library books. The topic is 'caring for a guinea pig' BECAUSE we are planning on getting a couple in the next few weeks! Leo has been asking for a pet for some time now and he and Pearl are very excited. The piggies will be house pigs because we have very confident urban foxes patrolling our garden day and night (wonderful!) and I have known rabbits and GPs just die of shock if they spy a big predator. We have a lot to get ready and I spent a hideous amount on GP related items tonight. We are hoping to get to the local RSPCA shelter this weekend to fill in forms and stuff, with a view to re-homing some guinea pigs they have. At the moment they have a pair of six month old females, and if things work out well they may end up being ours!


Jules said...

oooh at the guineas :-) We have got 3 (along with a rabbit, a budgie, and 2 hamsters...)

Looking forward to piccies :-)

Em said...

messed up metric/imperial or something inbetweenie here too! Only taught metric at school, can only cook in lb and oz, weigh myself (rarely!) in stones and need to know distance in miles, but can cope with short distances in cms and m - I wonder if my girls will be the same too....