Thursday, 24 June 2010


A few months ago, I spoke to someone at work about organising a trip for our Year 10 Public Services group. There are only 12 of them and she had a contact who could help organise a visit and a tour around RAF Odiham in Hampshire. "Not a problem" I told her "I'll drive the mini bus."

So, after much to'ing and fro'ing with dates, it was agreed we would go on Wednesday 23rd June. At the beginning of last week I was bragging to people that I have PPA on a Wednesday period 6, which meant I could leave school early and be home in time for the all important England match.

Until I realised it was the same day as the trip. Arrgggghhhhhh. It was one of those things that you agree to and then when it sneaks up on you, you kind of wonder why you did it.

Anyway, the day came. I spent 15 minutes trying to find the fuel cap to fill the mini bus up with diesel (thankfully no one else was there!) and then we spent 2 and a half hours driving from Kent to Hampshire.

The day was absolutely fantastic. We got to see and do so much - it was amazing.

First of all, we had a tour of the fire station and then they showed us a little demonstration. Then we saw some Chinooks take off. Then we had lunch. Then we went up the air traffic control tower and got to see all the radar. Then we saw where they train the dogs. Then we got to actually go in a Chinook. The students got to sit in the pilot seat - how cool is that (I could have done, but because of the dodgy knee, I was worried I'd get in and not get back out!)

(excuse the sweaty look - it WAS the second hottest day of the year so far and it was HOT in there!)

It took us an hour and forty five minutes to get back home, during which time, we couldn't get Five Live to tune in, so we couldn't even listen to the football. We pulled into school just as the game finished! At least England won though, so we can all see the game on Sunday.

Then.....last night, we had Cara's primary school introduction. I welled up a few times while they were talking. My baby is all growed up! Where has all that time gone? Anyway - today, I am shattered. Think all that driving is catching up with me!!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

"Shall we wash Grandad's tea pot up?"

I found out today, that when Grandad is being grumpy, Cara asks my mum if they should wash his tea pot up. Apparently, he doesn't like his tea-pot being washed and so they do it when he's grumpy to almost get back at him. My mum said that if he is super grumpy, then they give it an extra hard scrub! I'm glad I don't drink tea!

Monday, 21 June 2010


A little while ago, we changed Cara's swimming lesson. She used to go on a Saturday and myself or H would have to get in with her. With the introduction of trampolining before swimming on a Saturday, it was all becoming too much and she would just mess around and not really do too much. So...when I joined the gym...I signed her up for the swimming lessons there. On a Monday and in the pool by herself. She loves it!

There are only 4 children in the group - Cara and 3 other little girls. I'm the only mum that sits and watches; one goes in the pool with her other (younger) daughter and two go and have a coffee/sit and chat with friends.

Today, there were only three of them as one (the one whose mum goes in the pool wth her sister during the lesson) was on holiday so they all went into the big pool. In the toddler pool, they can stand up, so don't really try, but in the big pool, they can't, so they have to work harder so to speak. Hazel, the swimming instructor is fantastic and does a great job. She got in and had Cara and one of the other little girls. The third one was a little bit late coming out, so had only just sat down on the side. Her mum had gone back out and this poor little girl just sat and looked at me. "Okay?" I asked her. She kind of half nodded at me and then her bottom lip started to wobble. "I don't like the big pool" she told me. My heart just went out to her and I will admit to being a little upset that her mum kind of sees her swimming lesson as a time to sit and socialise rather than watch and encourage her daughter. I know I shouldn't judge and I don't know the full ins and outs - for all I know this may be her mums only free time - but this little girl was clearly so scared and worried. "You'll be okay" I said to her in as reassuring way as possible.

Before she could get too upset, it was her turn. She went in the water and after a bit of a wobbly start, oh my goodness - she just went. She had a shark fin on, but she was going so fast and was so confident - it was like a different child.

When she got back to the edge, I clapped her and told her well done. She looked so pleased and happy - I just wished it had come from her mum and not from me though - a total stranger.

At the end of the lesson, her mum came and got her and dropped her brother off for his lesson which follows her one. She took her through to the changing room and as I walked past with Cara, I heard her ask the little girl if she had been in the big pool for the whole lesson. I admit - I butted in. I said what a fantastic job the little girl had done and how brilliant she had been. The mum seemed genuinely happy - imagine how happy and proud she would have been had she seen that for herself and not heard about it from a random stranger.

Children grow up so quickly and things like this to them are important. I would hate to miss one of Cara's lessons. For example, while in the big pool today, the instructor was getting her to practice getting her arm up out of the water on each stroke, so she said to Cara, "wave at mummy." Instead, she pulled her arm out of the water and gave me the biggest thumbs up possible. She may not be the world's most natural swimmer, but she loves her lessons, and to me, that's priceless. I wouldn't miss that for the world.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

So it's official....I am lazy!

Too lazy infact to even blog regularly. How pathetic is that? So, I'm going to try whole heartedly (until tomorrow maybe!) to blog on a regular basis. I mean - how hard can it be? I bet there's even an app for the iphone that would help me in my task.

So, today we went to a boot fair for the first time in an age. After damaging a ligament in my knee five weeks ago, it's the first time I've felt able to. We got a huge haul of new games for Cara. The type that would have cost a small fortune had we bought them brand new! Amongst the lot was this

I can remember playing with something similar (maybe a different version) when I was little, so for the bargain price of 50p I snapped it up. Unfortunately, it didn't come with any pieces - just the shell of the post office. So, while Cara whittled away the hours today playing with her friends (we had a house full again!) I set about designing and making some resources for her. She now has an array of TV licences, car tax, insurance forms, savings booklets, paying in slips, cheques, special delivery forms and stamps. She and her friend spent some time playing with it.

She is now having some wind down time in her room before bed and is happily playing away.

She just said to me "Are we going on holiday tomorrow?" I replied "No sweetheart, I've got to go to work" "can't you cancel it?" she asked. Wishful thinking!

Here she is on the bouncy castle this morning