Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Mrs Mouse eeeek

Smallest woke us up at 4am after having a nightmare about dogs. He crawled in between us in bed and stayed snuggled there until he felt able to go back to his own bed.

Huffle worked from home and had a very busy day which included a telephone call with his boss about his Performance Review. He did very well and has been cleared to work from home as often as he can. He may need to travel to other offices far and wide but overall it was a good call.

The boys went to school and Smallest's team managed to win the school Tchoukball Tournament. At the end they played against the teachers but the teachers won. I had never heard of it before but I knew it involved a trampoline and a ball. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tchoukball. He was very pleased. He also got a 4 (equivalent to an A) for his homework. Both boys have been shown their reports for Music and both have an A- so far. Super.

Moo Skyped me whilst I was having my breakfast and we chatted for a while before I went off to do some food shopping. I put the shopping away and then went to Suffolk's for my lunch. After lunch we went material shopping and signed ourselves up for a course. The sewing shop made a course just for us (there may be others joining later) where we have three sessions of 3-4 hours and we make a quilt from start to finish (with plenty of homework no doubt). It took me ages to chose my material but I am happy with it and can't wait to start. Suffolk had other things to buy so we were there for a while.

I got home with plenty of time today to see the boys off the bus and even managed to make a Sweet Apple Sponge but forgot the baking powder as I was following a recipe from my GB bake off book, a Mac n Cheese, prepare some chicken and make a salad. We all ate really early and got out for 5:30pm for football training.

Tonight we sat on the balcony and watched the boys play. Smallest first, whose team included a goalie who stood with his back to the game counting his fingers and several players using the goal as a den! Small's coach calls everyone by their Country name, ie Small is called England. He won the penalty shoot out.





Monday, 26 January 2015

Moustache and a Top Hat

Ouch I have bruises today from yesterday's snowboarding and my legs ache!!!!! I had to wake the boys up this morning. Huffle and the boys went off in temperatures of -15 (windchill of -22).

After my breakfast, I made Blueberry and Lemon muffins (and I adapted the recipe to make them less sugar and low fat) with a splodge of my homemade lemon curd in the middle. Late morning I went off to Suffolks for a day of sewing our quilt squares. She made us a lovely Roasted cauliflower soup (with cayenne pepper - yummy) and we tried the muffins (very good). We managed to do most of the quilting square as well as signing ourselves up for a pottery course and getting a membership so the boys could join some courses too (even Huffle can give it a go).

I left with just enough time to be home for the boys getting off the bus except that I was behind Mr Slow of Slowsville all the way and the boys were patiently waiting for me (having noticed my car wasn't in the drive).

I started dinner and played table tennis and Chess with Smallest before the boys played Chess together and then started their piano lessons. After a mad dash with dinner, Small and Huffle went off to Rock Climbing and I took Smallest to Beavers where they made Beaver Buggies.



Sunday, 25 January 2015

Chairlift Exiting - TICK

-10* with windchill of -17* but with bright bright sunshine. So what does a family of four do on a Sunday when the sun is shining and the slopes are just a twenty minute drive away. We go snowboarding of course. Obviously this takes us all morning to get our gear together, have breakfast, think about what clothes to wear and which gloves to take and pack the car.

When we arrived, the car park was full as all the lessons have started now. Smallest forgot his helmet and goggles even though Huffle had very kindly sorted everything out for us before we left. We ummed and ahhed about whether to rent him a helmet but as we were only down the road, I decided to drive back and get them while Huffle queued for lift tickets. Eventually I was back with everyone for about 12:30. Tickets weren't bought as Huffle wanted to get Smallest a lesson and they were only available at 2:30pm. We decided that was fine and went off to the magic carpet to warm up. After about three goes, we chose to go up the chairlift (the smallest one). Small came with me and we were both dreading the lift as we weren't keen and although Small was confident of getting off, I was scared I would fall over at the end again. Small got off well and glided away whereas I fell in a splat and scrabbled on my knees to stop myself being hit by the chair. We watched Smallest and Huffle get off and Smallest did really well and then landed in a heap but he was fine and wanted to do it again as soon as we boarded down the hill.


Huffle was really good with Smallest and guided him down the hill safely. Small and I zig zagged our way down the hill. At the bottom we did it again and after my third go I managed it. In fact we all did it. Wahooo. We were so pleased with ourselves and even the man at the bottom of the lift commented. We went up and down a few more times and half an hour before Smallest's lesson, me and him went in and got ourselves a hot chocolate and a coffee and a warm. When he started his lesson (just him and another boy) Huffle, Small and I attempted the bigger lifts. Small and I fell down the first time but after that we managed to stay up and had great runs coming down.

Middle Left: a bit of photo trickery with two Small's.

After an hour of lifts and runs we finally joined up with a tired little boy who wanted to go up the lift again. We took him up and he decided he wanted to go down a different way, despite the fact that Huffle told him not to. He fell and hurt his bum and gave up and walked down the slope. We decided to call it a day as we only had minutes left before our passes ran out anyway and made our way to the chip shop.

Small's first go on the Terrain Park with Huffle going through the tunnel with three bumps in it!

We are obviously regulars there now as the waitress came up and said "how were the slopes today? Four specials?". All full of food and limbs warmed, we set off back home. Smallest went straight into an Epsom Salt bath to ease his tired limbs and hurt bottom and Huffle followed him when he finished. I sat and blogged and Small played on the IPad.

We had the best snowboarding day ever. All of us going up the lifts and finding new runs and being able to get off the chair lifts was just fabulous. We are so lucky to live so close. Huffle bought a book of tickets for the resort for just $50 to enable us to get 2-1 offers, half prices passes, night passes etc etc and we have already saved so much money. That's amazing. Smallest's instructor said he was doing well but needed to practice his back edging. We thought his back edging was fine but we will practice and practice. Today he said he was so pleased he could do more exciting stuff. I said he never needed to spend hours on the nursery slopes again. He said he would do it all again when he had kids so he could teach them to board too.




Saturday, 24 January 2015

Keep it brief

Yesterday the title was Pants Away Day due to the fact that it was a PA day and I had no idea what that meant and also I found out that even though the boys take pants (underwear) with them to swimming to change into afterwards (they arrive in swim shorts) they never ever put them on. Today Huffle looked at me and asked if I had blogged. My reply, "I have nothing to write about". Keep it brief then he said. Why am I telling you this? Because I don't want you to think all I think about is pants and briefs etc.

I had to get up early today as I needed to be at my sewing class for 9:30am. I didn't make it but got there late with a tired foggy head. I'm not quite sure I understood the complexities of the new quilt square we have to do this time but luckily Suffolk was there and I know it made sense to her. After we picked up our material and instructions we sat and drank coffee/tea for an hour putting the world to rights.

I got home to find Smallest had had a shower and was hoovering the basement stairs. Huffle and Small had already cleared the basement and tidied a nice big space for Huffle's new office. My clever boys.

We had lunch, played table tennis, played hide and seek which was very funny when I found Smallest stuffed into a small cupboard in the bathroom. We also played chess and S'Quarrels.

We all made pizza and watched Cool Runnings until Smallest's bedtime.

The temperatures are supposed to dip right down from tomorrow and it's started snowing. Hurray!

Friday, 23 January 2015

Pants Away Day

Today was PA Day and to be honest I have no idea what that means. I think it may be similar to a Teacher Training day and I know the kids love it because it is always a Friday and so they get an extra long weekend. Normally the parents dread it but today we had a lovely day. I had a much needed lie-in and the boys got up at a reasonable time and sat and watched TV until I got up and insisted on breakfast.

After breakfast Small attempted to call one of his friends to come and play but he was busy so the three of us played on the Wii. Huffle worked from home and we saw him occasionally when he ventured down for a cup of tea or lunch with us.

Today consisted of piano playing, table tennis, IPad playing, knitting (me really, no-one else) and a game of S'quarrels.

At 4pm ish we started to get ready for swimming lessons. Huffle came with us and we sat and watched the boys swimming for 45 minutes. There are hardly any other people there when we go now so Smallest swam with just one other boy and Smallest two others. They swam well and worked hard, both of them swimming 350m and 500m respectively. At some points they were swimming side by side at almost identical speeds (had they known I'm sure they would have raced each other as they are both so competitive).

Back home we had tea and watched the rest of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. I finished off my knitting. The boys went to bed and I read Harry Potter to Smallest and Huffle read The Mysterious Benedict Society to Small.

While we were cooking yesterday the fan on the Cooker Hood suddenly went on full blast shaking the kitchen units. We panicked until we read the manual and found out that we have a heat sensor so that if the cooker gets too hot it switches on automatically until it has cooled down sufficiently. Clever. Tonight the dishwasher made some gurgling noises and refused to drain, wash or turn off. What kind of sensor has that got then?

Huffle thinks I should start a new feature called BadLicencePlates as there seems to be many of them. Here is our first one.

Do you think it's supposed to be SURREAL? Does the driver of this vehicle think they are Bizarre, Weird, Unusual? Or maybe it is someone who thinks they are a true gentleman. Huffle edit - or its a bloke who is a prat


Thursday, 22 January 2015

What is the purpose of a Rubber Duck?

Huffle went to work and had meeting after meeting. Luckily I was here to make him a cup of tea when he got home (he says the service has improved since Moo left!!). The boys went to school, tired and with achey limbs (well Small anyway).

My car was recalled for the sixth time (maybe more) in three years so today I had to take it to the Toyota garage for work on the Spinney Steering thingummy. I got a courtesy lift back home and spent the morning sewing my quilt square as it is due on Saturday. I had a little trouble but got there in the end. Just as I was clearing away my stuff, I got a phone call from the garage saying my car was ready and the courtesy lift despatched to pick me up.

At the garage I was greeted with an invoice (with nothing to pay as it was a recall) with recommendations that I change my after sales drivers mat (the salesman showed me how the car had an unapproved Toyota mat and that a woman had sued years ago because of a problem with the brake when in fact she had piled a few mats in her car and they had slipped causing the brake to be lodged). Anyway, I explained that they had sold me the car three years ago and since then I had not changed any mats. I do need to change the mat but can't understand why they haven't told me about it before. Some health and safety thing I guess. They also suggested I have repairs done to my steering column which will cost $700, even though the Mechanic last time told me it could be changed but it was an unnecessary cost unless the clunking bothered me! I think Toyota have realised I don't spend a lot of money with them as I use our local garage and wanted to see if they could get some money out of me.

I picked up a few things at the supermarket and came home for lunch and watched some more Last Tango in Halifax. I made Spaghetti Bolognese for the boys and Vegetable Lasange for me. When the kids came home Smallest Skyped Moo and they chatted about snowboarding last night. We accidentally Skyped Grandma when calling Moo and Grandma called me back. I was chatting upstairs to G&G while the boys were playing piano and table tennis for Moo. Then Small came up to talk to Grandma and took her downstairs to listen to the piano. On the way down the boy's put the IPads together and Moo and G&G got to chat. Honestly, they all live in the same County and Country and yet they chat via Canada. Silly Billies. All chats finished, the boys played on the IPads.

When Huffle got home we all ate and then we watched Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets. We felt we all deserved a long rest and a snuggle on the sofa.




Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Two less for dinner

My bed was too cosy again and so it seemed was Small's as I had to wake him up. It was strange having no Moo sneaking up on me in the kitchen today. Huffle worked from home and the kids went off to school, both with extra baggage as Small had his Snowboarding lesson and he had his extra kit to take so Smallest carried one of his bags for him (kind boy).

I went off to aerobics dressed in an extra outside layer as it felt cold today. The driveway was slippery too. Aerobics was fun but hard and I know my hamstrings, at least, will hurt tomorrow. When I got back I Skyped Moo and heard about her falling down house (it's not that bad but when you've been away and come back to boiler problems, a couple of roof tiles loose and a broken kettle and dodgy fridge, I guess it feels like it's falling down). We had a quick catch up before her plumber arrived and I set about tidying, filing, clearing and washing (now my laundry lady has gone). I started watching Last Tango in Halifax (1st series) and had lunch with Huffle.

After showering and putting washing away, I spent all afternoon knitting. Well I say all afternoon, but in reality I had a phone call at 2pm from Smallest's teacher to say that he had had a bump to his head and a lump was forming and his lip was bleeding. She said he didn't want to come home but as the lump was forming (surely that's good sign isn't it?) she thought she should let me make the decision. I spoke to him and he said it hurt but he was sitting out of the classroom so I agreed to collect him. He was fine but I sat him on the sofa watching TV for an hour and then we played two games of Snakes and Ladders 3D where he thrashed me. I started dinner and we played on the wii for a while.

Huffle wanted to go snowboarding, so we had an early dinner (dinner for three tonight as Moo and Small weren't with us. It felt a small gathering) and were on the slopes by 6:30pm. We saw Small instantly, munching on Mintoes (or Mentoes as they are called here). We went on the Magic Carpet and the Little Hills and then followed Small and Huffle as they went up on the chairlift and we watched for them coming down. Small did well and only fell at the end of getting off and came down beautifully. They went up again (we can't take Smallest up yet as he has to have another lesson at least). I didn't want to go up on my own or with the responsibility of having Small with me so I Carried on the little hills with Smallest.

He was very tired and struggling so we called it a day at 7:30pm but it was good to be out and boarding at night. By the time we got the car and bags unpacked, it was the kids bedtime so Huffle read to Smallest and Small. We haven't read to them for six weeks as that has been Moo's job.