Thursday, August 14, 2008

Off the Path and Back Again!

We are back into 'real life' after a hectic but very enjoyable weekend 'Off The Path' with J&J - and many others (hello everyone J). It was so nice to put faces to names after so many years of reading everyone's blogs. The kids all had a ball and are talking lots about all their new friends. It was lovely to even see E hooking up with a little team of girlies. A seemed to rather enjoy Big's assertiveness and really enjoyed her company. Big J was happy to team up with a 'giggle of girls' and let them do silly things with him. He is such an attention seeker! Anyone have any pictures of him dressed in the pink jumper?! It was so great to be amidst a big crowd of really nice children J And I don't think I have felt as comfortable in a big crowd of people I hardly knew - ever! I haven't laughed quite so much in a while either!

Shame the weather was not so great as the company L Just one night camping was not quite what we had planned. I was just grateful that first night was calm and friendly as when the foul weather hit, our tent was the first tent to go down - and we didn't take it down. Everyone else's at least survived most of the following day, but ours broke in the afternoon. Admittedly it was borrowed and we did not have any instructions on how to put it up, so we had done our best, which might not have quite been good enough! We managed to end up with 3 broken sections of the poles and a very flat tent L. So the rest of our weekend was spent bedding down in J&J's playroom - which was warmer and dryer, but more strain on J&J - sorry guys L

Come Saturday night though we weren't the only ones camping inside - and here is the evidence - can you spot a borrowed child bedded down amongst my crowd?

Gradually the crowds dispersed to the four corners of the country. Paul went home on Sunday evening, but the kids and I stayed on till Tuesday afternoon (when P came back for us).

Monday and Tuesday, Jan and I knuckled down to keeping the kids occupied with crafts and games. So out came the paint, the Hama and numerous board games - all of which were much enjoyed. I like to try new games. It gives me ideas for games to put on the Christmas list…so this year it's Carcassonne, Set, Rummikub and Ticket to Ride (which I didn't play but the kids seemed to enjoy a good deal). Hopefully we can stretch to some or all of these after we have bought Joel's drum kit!!

Another momentous moment was when Natty started walking on Tuesday afternoon! He just let go and walked his first four steps! J I think Katy & Bob's little 'A' was an inspiration to him J

We are all glad to be home now though, and the next day my 7 just flopped around and watched TV & played on computers way too much. Jacobite even took himself to bed at 8.30pm (an hour early) for the last two nights! Boo has been tearful and bored since we got home, but has been spending a bit of time playing on Zoombinis (my new trio arrived - I had to order it because my old Win '98 edition just would NOT run on Vista!). P & E have been quietly occupying themselves upstairs and C & N have both been a bit whingey. Nat however has really found his feet now and is pretty much trying to walk more than crawl, resulting in him getting from lounge to kitchen today (across the hallway) and most of the way across the garden too. Look out world - here he comes!! Jake has spent a fair amount of time creating cartoons on Tuxpaint. And I have spent some time creating things for fun with Sketchup (Google's FREE 3D modelling program - complicated but brilliant!). Jake likes the look of this too and tbh I downloaded it with a view to encouraging his interest in architecture, but it is hard to use until you know how. So I'm teaching myself the basics in order to get him started at least - then I bet he'll get better quicker that me!

Tomorrow I have 'busy' day planned. We are going to go into town to 'Ye Olde Sweet Shoppe' in the morning (holiday treat), nip into Morrisons and pick up a few bits, including ingredients for cheesecake (at Jake's request), go to the park on the way home and kill time till late lunchtime. Then home for lunch, Natty to sleep and then make the cheesecake with the brood. I might even get them to make mini ones. That way they can each pick their own 'topping'. I like mine with tinned mandarins J That should take us up to mid-afternoon. I might get out the Hama after that, or something such like. I started a painting today that I didn't get time to finish, but would like to. I am no artist, but I like to have a go every now and then - just for my own pleasure. Jake is WAY better than me!

Just when I signed up to Twitter updates via SMS - they go and stop them - typical!! LOL

Need to go and write another important email…


alison said...

Can't believe we missed N starting to walk! Woo N!

pcjjap said...

I know - just a day or two sooner..! I was quite suprised when he did though and in actual fact I missed his first steps too. Only the kids saw them! He is the first one I have not witnessed :( But he is really going for it now - positively ran to P when he arrived home today :)

Michelle said...

It was lovely meeting you all - even though I am still most put out not a single wellyboot was to be found amongst the 9 of you. (Can't quite associate you as frogs yet!).