The Story Behind the Photo

This was my Silent Sunday Photo on the weekend (many thanks, by the way, to everyone who offered words of support):

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Ellie was in hospital, & on a drip. Neither she nor Jake have ever had to spend time in hospital like this since they were little babies; obviously it’s been a difficult time for all of us.

So why was she there? Continue reading

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Hook, Line and…

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There they are! Aren’t they lovely?  There are even more on the other side!

A marvellous feature of the new house is the plentiful & easily accessible coat hooks by the front door.

Jake & Ellie each have their own hook, & guard them with a territorial ferocity that would rival a wild animal.

When Jake comes in & takes off his coat he carefully hangs it on his hook before going inside. Takes after his Dad…

When Ellie comes in & takes off her coat she drops it any old how on the floor then runs off to play. Takes after her <CENSORED! Ed.>

I’ve been hanging my coat on a hook in the row above theirs; unknown to me however this has been causing ructions!

One evening I saw Jake walk up to the Mummy, then heard him say:

“Mummy, can you tell Daddy not to put his coat over my hook? I can’t hang my coat on it”, then he walked off.

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Everyone happy now?

So my smart little boy has deduced that if you want Daddy to do something then you get Mummy to tell him?

He seems to understand the dynamic here!

It probably wasn’t the smartest thing I’ve ever done though when I said that to the Mummy…

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Wot So Funee?

How to Get Through a Car Breakdown With Young Children

I’m speaking from experience here! I had the great misfortune of breaking down 3x in 2 weeks at Christmas, each time having to be rescued by the AA.

The 3rd time was the most concerning as I had Jake & Ellie with me. We were heading off to soft play in the Astra, & it just didn’t feel right: its usual acceleration just wasn’t there. It felt suspiciously like the little car did before its clutch failed (breakdown #1). Unfortunately I was right.

They’d fallen asleep anyway, & I decided to turn around & go back home. There was a hill though;  a long one. Try as we might the car just wouldn’t make it! The best I could do was to stop on the hard shoulder of a dual carriageway, just past the slip road. Hazard lights on, of course.

Continue reading

The gift that keeps on giving

My in-laws were here last week & as usual they came bearing gifts.

They gave Jake a remote-controlled robot.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen a human being so utterly excited & happy.

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Apologies for the poor picture quality – lightbulbs & fuseboxes gave out at the same time in the new house & my ‘phone’s camera isn’t great in low light

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Doggie Don’t!

We were talking about a new game that Jake & Ellie got for Christmas: Doggie Doo.

Basically it involves feeding pretend doggie food to a pretend doggie then rolling a (real) dice which gives you the chance to get pretend doggie to do a pretend doggie poo. Whoever has the most pretend doggie poo at the end of the game wins.

Lovely.

1-DSC_0441Just what is it about poo that young children find so hilarious anyway?

Ellie however wasn’t convinced.

“I don’t want to play Doggie Doo because it’s too smelly.”

Us: “It’s not real poo, it’s just plastic.”

Ellie: “Oh. Well I think that’s just silly. And quite odd.”

It’s amazing how grown up she can be sometimes!

The game however is actually quite fun, as long as you understand that with 3-year-olds any rules are entirely optional & can be ignored at any time – usually when 1 of them isn’t winning.

And it’s not at all smelly, but definitely very silly!

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Wot So Funee?

Music Appreciation

frozen_ver8_xlgIn December we took Jake & Ellie to the cinema for the first time: we saw Disney’s ‘Frozen’ & they both absolutely loved it!

I was impressed as well. Although it’s a children’s film I thought everything about it was top quality: the voice acting, the animation & visuals, the characterisation, the dialogue, its humour were all outstanding. I also particularly liked the way it dealt with quite heavy themes in a way that was palatable even to 3-year-olds.

Then of course there’s the music. It was excellent – in a Disney context of course –  & unsurprisingly the musical is already being planned & is heading to Broadway, then presumably here as well.

Music plays a major part in my life & it has in Jake & Ellie’s too. I love to play music for & enjoy it with them, & have a collection on my ‘phone of 100s of songs that they like. I knew they’d love the music from ‘Frozen’ so I bought the soundtrack album for them.

I wasn’t wrong! 

We listened to it for the first time in the car on the way back from ‘Monkey Music’ last week: they were ecstatic, especially Ellie! When ‘Let It Go’ came on they were  singing along with utter abandon at the tops of their voices, heads raised, gesticulating wildly, arms waving about as if in a manic West End musical!

At home we played the songs in order; instead of the usual TV or tablet games – which sadly has become the norm in the new house while our unpacking has been delayed – they just sat listening on the sofa. While listening they were talking together & with me about the songs, remembering what happened in the film when a particular song was sung, talking about the characters & the story, enjoying the pictures in the sleeve notes & trying to read the song titles & lyrics there.

The power of Music!

It was wonderful

For more Magic Moments just click the pic:

 

 

 

 

 

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Tired, scared, sore, smelly & frozen!

The Gallery: Something Beautiful

A lot of it is a blur, but I still remember the moment.

My wife had survived what was a very difficult delivery & was still in recovery.

I was alone with my newborn twins, besotted.

Jake was sleeping, Ellie was crying.

Then she reached out & wrapped her tiny little fingers around my finger & stopped crying, held on as if she would never let go & went back to sleep.
Continue reading

Does Hogworts take 3-year-olds then?

Jake had found one of his magic wands; he loves pretending to be a witch / wizard (yes, I’ve tried explaining; he doesn’t care!) & doing Magic.

He’d been using it to do magic spells on the Mummy, while she was preparing dinner.

Says the Mummy, jovially: “I hope you weren’t trying to turn me into a frog!”

Straight away he responded, quite matter-of-factly:

“No, I just wanted you to go away”.

Riiiight…

Well, at least his cheek comes with a sense of humour, I suppose…

Also, I think the spell he’s looking for is “Expelliarmus”, but it’s probably best not to tell him that yet – just in case it actually works!

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Wot So Funee?

The Magic of Christmas?

Christmas is many things, but there’s one aspect of it that you don’t hear much about in the consumerism-obsessed, slick advert-soaked world of the media.

I’m sure though that it’s one that most parents will be aware of: that extra little weapon it adds to our armoury in aiding our  little darlings in their eternal battle between Good and Naughty:

“Father Christmas is watching!”
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Film Appreciation

Now where was I?

Oh, yes: ‘Frozen’: Jake & Ellie’s first trip to the cinema! Last year.

Yes: bit of a gap; I know I wrote “tomorrow”. I’ve had a lot going on here lately…

As I said, they love films, & have done since very young. Early favourites were ‘The Jungle Book’, ‘Mary Poppins’, ‘The Wizard of Oz’ & ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’. More recently they’ve both loved ‘Tangled’ & Jake has fallen in love with ‘Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs’. And actually I may have as well!

We needn’t have worried about their ability to sit through the film without being noisy or running around: they loved it! Jake especially was rapt throughout, almost entranced.
Continue reading