DSCF3876For the first 2 years of your lives we all lived together in our big house in the Midlands. The “big old house”, with the big old garden.

You don’t remember it. I do.

I remember how I was your full-time, stay-at-home Daddy. For your first year with Mummy, and for your second year by myself when Mummy went back to work, with reduced hours.

034I remember it all so well. You don’t.
Continue reading “Blackberries”


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!”
Continue reading “The Magic of Christmas?”

An Active Family

My Tiny Dancer. Dressed as Snow White, for some reason.

When Jaime from ‘The Oliver’s Madhouse’ asked me if I could maybe join in with her new ‘Active Family’ blog-linky I have to admit: I sniggered, a little. I may have even actually ‘lol’d!

Trying to get our funsome twosome to be a bit active isn’t really a problem at the moment. Even when they watch TV it’s more likely than not to be ‘Lazytown’: a show whose main character is a health fanatic called Sportacus. Living on ‘sports candy’ (mostly carrots) & always going to bed at 8.08, this is a man who has never knowingly walked anywhere in his entire life. Why do that when you can double-flip, cart-wheel, run or jump instead? Lately Ellie seems to spend more of her time being his preposterously pink side-kick Stephanie than herself, & she loves trying to copy Stephanie’s dance moves. Jake is Sportacus of course; I get to be the chubby, middle-aged, bald Mayor. Yay me.

Sportacus Jake!

No, it’s more of a challenge to get them to not be so active sometimes, please. Like when they’re jumping & doing forward rolls & headstands on the bed, or wanting to play ‘horsey’, when it’s late & they should be settling down for the night. Sometimes even after 8.08 (gasp)! Or a “Please stop climbing on the back of the sofa, especially when I’ve got a cup of hot coffee / a plate of lasagne!” sort of thing.

They’re at pre-school now for a few hours during the week, & that seems to use up a lot of their energy most days. We still take them to Monkey Music on Friday mornings, & have just started them in a dance class on Thursday evenings. They love both! We used to take them to a children’s gym on Friday afternoons & we’re looking for an alternative; that was probably their favourite activity & it would be a shame to lose it.

On the weekends we try to take them out for something active at least once a day: the country park, the fun farm, soft-play, swimming, or just scooting to the local playground. And there’s always the mini-trampoline & the flexible flyer in the garden!

So overall, yes: I think we’re a fairly active family.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I just need to have little lie down please…

For more ‘Active Family’ posts just click the pic:

 photo ActiveFamily150x150_zps28e829a4.jpg

How to Stop a Fight Between Twins: A Magic Moment

Yesterday morning, first thing: Jake & Ellie were up, sitting on the sofa & sipping their morning milk as usual.

The Mummy & I were both briefly upstairs.

There was a commotion downstairs: shouting, crying; you probably know the sort.

The Mummy was ‘indisposed’ so I was first on the scene…

Jake was crying, & when I asked him why he said: “She pushed me, & hit me in the eye!”

“Ellie, did you hit Jake?”

(Grudgingly): “Yes”.

“Why did you do that?”

“He hit me!”

“Jake, did you hit Ellie?”

“Yes! But…but…she wouldn’t let me play with…..<insert toy name here>!”.

“But that doesn’t mean you should hit her, does it?”

I eventually managed to establish that Ellie had a toy that Jake saw as his, he tried to take it, she resisted…yadda yadda yadda…crying & shouting. And that Ellie didn’t mean to hit Jake on the eye.

So I did the usual “Jake, I want you to say ‘sorry’ to Ellie” & “Ellie, I want you to say ‘sorry’ to Jake”, along with some “I’m sure Ellie didn’t mean to hit you in the eye; it was an accident”, sort of thing.

There was some Resistance. Feelings were running deep.

I must have been under some sort of inspiration, as I’d only just emerged from slumber & hadn’t had so much as a sniff of caffeine. First thing in the morning I’m generally doing well if I can remember my own name. Maybe I’d had an illuminating dream, I don’t know!

I said to Jake: “Jake, why don’t you just go over to Ellie & say you’re sorry? You love her, don’t you? And she loves you. She’s your friend. I’m sure she didn’t mean to hurt you”; and the same to Ellie.

This photo is one I prepared earlier, but a Magic Moment nonetheless 🙂

They responded! Jake first, smiling as he said “Yeah”, then sidling over to Ellie.

They both said sorry to each other, then embraced & kissed. I’m sure I heard an “I love you” or two as well…

A real ‘Magic Moment’.

I’m linking up for the first time with Jaime’s ‘Magic Moments’ blog-hop on her “The Oliver’s Madhouse” blog. For more Magic Moments just click the pic:

I have good news & I have bad news

The Good News?

Jake just did what is probably his best drawing yet: an easily recognisable person, with limbs, a head & facial features.

And the Bad News?

It was on the wall.

And I didn’t even get a photo before we wiped it off!

At least I have some that he prepared earlier:



It’s Casper the Friendly Ghost! And his /her  Dad, I think.