Thursday, June 26, 2008


Just thought I'd mention that since Jake's birthday (May 2nd) we have celebrated a few other milestones and my blog has missed them :( Been SOOO busy, I don't get enough time to blog as I'd like. Must get back into it more, it is very therapeutic!

Anyway - NJ turned ONE at the end of May
and CT turned THREE middle of June.
and I turned ... not that would be telling!
Paul also had a BD but I'm not telling his age either or he might hang me - even if he is younger than me!

Where Does Time Go?

Only 4 more weeks to the end of term (where DID that year go?) and today was supposed to be an 'intake day' for Jake at his secondary school, but he did not go, as we have now decided he is not going, for more reasons than just that we are moving away. Instead I gave him a day at home with us. There was only one other little girl in his year not going to this intake day, so they were given permission by the head to have the day off :-) SO, today was the start of tomorrow and we had a great day! I think it was made better by the fact the Thursday is our non-book day, so Jake felt like he was almost getting a day off!

We started the day out by finishing off Geography - we always seem to run out of time on a Wednesday (that'll need tweaking next year) and so it carries over. Today we were talking about how the sun influences the weather and what actually makes weather in the first place. Jake was interested, despite having missed half the book to date, and felt he learnt something. Then, whilst the middle two wrote up in their notebooks about the lesson, Jake did some on-line fractions work on which is what I am planning for him to use next year. I thought today was an opportunity to test the water. He said he like the way it taught and he understood it easily and got 19/20 on the questions in the following online worksheet. So that's a positive start :)

Then playgroup pick up for which I was grateful to have him with me today as all three girls took a tumble, resulting in three sets of scraped knees! Ellie was carried part way home by him (bless!) - he is a very caring big brother :)

During lunch break the girls watched the boys playing soilders in Joel's room because, despite trying, they simply couldn't agree a board game that they all wanted to play! Then, after lunch, Jake led some simple exercises in the lounge. At his school they do a 5 minute exercise drill at the end of assemble every day, before they start lessons. They all seem to enjoy it there, as did mine, so maybe this is something I can introduce into our day... Only today it was more like 3o minutes of messing around together doing exercises on an off - but that was OK :)

Lastly we set to having an art lesson. Initially this was met with droans of complaint from Joel, but he bent to the will of the masses and ended up having quite a good time. We were experimenting with colour mixing today and I thought it was going to be way too simple for Jake, but I was wrong! He thoroughly enjoyed messing with the gouache paint and the watercolour pencils (neither of which they have at school it seems) and everyone produced some nice pieces of work. In the evening he said my art lesson was better than he gets at school - which amazed me as they have more of everything and I am certainly NO artist, but we did have fun and I think he felt he really learnt something today.

And last achievement - I convinced him that I do have some good books on my shelves when the first one he picked up (Superhuman) he immediately got engrossed in and was thoroughly impressed with the descriptive writing in it. He gave it 10/10 and took it away to read more at bedtime :) ... "YES!!"

So - all in all a very successful and encouraging day when I think about the future. My nightmare child is rapidly turning into a joy to have around...something in him has really changed and I LOVE what I see :)

There is some impressive stuff going on with Joel atm as well, but that's another long story which I can save for tonight. Suffice to say, we always thought he was a very spiritually open child right from when he was a tiny-tot just learning to talk. And now it seems we were very right - he has been praying some amazing things of late (essentially praying for near-miracles) and seeing them answered almost at once. I'll tell all another night, but we are very happy parents atm :)

There are other things in life which are not so great. Money is a real worry just now and that always makes me shouty and stressy, but we trust that God is faithful. We could really do without it though as we contemplate an imminent move (never a cheap affair). House hunting is also stressful and hard. God willing we will move in the summer, but He'd better hurry up and drop a house in our laps, coz' we need to start giving notice very soon if we are to move in August in reality.

Ho-Hummm! It'll all come right in the wash - so they say!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Event of A Life-Time

Well, the deed is done…Paul is officially now (of of Monday this week) the 'Reverend Paul Hampton'! If seems 'WOH' to me to think that I married to a Rev' and yet in so many ways it I'm not that surprised or phased by it - yet!! I guess only time will tell what a challenge his calling will be to us all. For now, we are pootling along, but I know that won't last forever - it can't - life's not that easy!

We have been away at the Elim annual conference this week (which is where P was ordained) and we all had a fantastic time J !! The kids were nearly all 'catered for' which meant they were all (except Natty) off, busy doing stuff in their own groups for a few hours each day. Jake we hardly saw from morning 'til night - he was with his friends (old and new) most of the time. In our free time we swam, played in the park, did crazy-golf, shot snooker, dived around in the soft-play centre, kicked a football around, threw the hover-disk about…and generally enjoyed each other's company. It was especially special by the fact that Paul's Mum and Dad joined us - which meant the kids got to spend a week with Nanny & Grandad and also made the whole kid-sharing thing a lot lighter J. Spiritually - I think I need time to assimilate everything…it's a lot to absorb. I need to read over my notes and read a little more around them, but I know that what I drank in this week was good wine!

It's been a strange three weeks really with Jake because he has simply not been around much; first school residential at Min-Y-don, where he had a fabulous time it seems J Then Energi Youth Camp (Church Camp) where he had an equally excellent time and had a real experience with God, such that HE BECAME A CHRISTIAN by his own confession - A-MEN - HALLELUJAH - sorry, but I get SO excited about that bit!! J And then this week were he has had a mixture of great fun and Christian teaching to consolidate his decision. And all the while I've not seen much of him, but I've been able to see the emerging man in him through a window of opportune independence - and I like what I see J! It's going to be hard for him readjusting to 'family' life again I think, where he is not so free to do his own thing due to the nature of his actual age and family dynamics, but needs must and he must, so I guess the next week or so might be tough for both of us (brace myself!!)

Back to the grindstone on Monday - with a bunch of tired kids I'm not sure we'll get much done in reality, but at least it will stave off the echoes of "I'm bored" which I'm sure will rain down otherwise!