Friday, 1 August 2014

6 in 6 minutes

Join the Scavenger Hunt!

This isn't a new meme (although it could be) but the number of items I ticked off Rinda's Scavenge Hunt list in a 6 minutes stroll around the village
1. A sign welcoming you to my holiday town and 16. A sign in alanguage other than English

2. A garden gnome on a neighbour's window box

3. A bird on a wire - just the one, hoping I'll do better with this one

7. A rural landscape.I 'll share a few more I took from this favourite spot later

9. A bakery. Not the best or the prettiest, but the one I can walk round the corner to for my morning croissant
 I'm quite pleased with this little hoard. How are you getting one?

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Project life goes on Holiday

My Holiday front cover. this will start a new album as I work in academic years, Sep to July. It just makes more sense for our family. Hydrangeas are a feature of the Normandy landscape in all shades from palest blue to deepest red. I spent last summer photographing as many as I could but didn't end up doing anything with the pictures so I decided to use them for my title page os this year's holiday.  The edges are painted with white acrylic, I stencilled the title with a white gel pen and added a PL transparency in the corner.
This spread covers our first 4 days. As I am on holiday I have the luxury of being able to work almost in real time, printing and documenting the days as I go along. Most of the photos will be printed directly from my camera without any computer titivating.
The Good, the bad and the ugly is my attempt to keep it real as P accuses me of only documenting the good stuff in my Project Life. R was sick on the ferry (bad) and M had the mother of all tantrums the first night (ugly). But it has been mostly good so far - a barbecue with friends and a trip to the local adventure park. I used blue & aqua cards from the Coral kit with orange accents from Jade. I have only brought a limited stash with me so that all of the holiday weeks will be colour co-ordinated, as I like to do.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Reasons to love teaching

Reasons to love teaching:
Half term

Wishing every teacher and parent the happiest of summer holidays.

Monday, 21 July 2014

A large number of numbers

The last few weeks have been full of exciting but tiring 'big events'. The sort of things you spend months preparing for and feel sad about when they end.
This weekend saw another one - the end-of-year show for M's dance school.
She was in 2 choir numbers and a ballet dance. Some of her friends do more classes and were in 4 or 5 numbers. There were over 140 children involved aged from 3 to 18.
Raggetty Anne - in The Toy Box

They did 2 dress rehearsals and 3 performances. I  watched 1 and helped backstage at 3 of them. Saturday was a very hot day - we were there for 8 hours.  I was put in charge of the Nursery and Pre-Primary group. Out of  30 children, I knew 4 of them. In total I think I made 24 trips to the toilet, organised 70 plus costume changes and dealt with 7 tantrums and 1 pair of wet knickers.
Actually, these figures in no way convey the emotions of the weekend. Backstage management was poorly managed and I felt extremely stressed by my responsibility but watching my 7 year old performing made me immensely proud. The standard of dancing and singing was exceptional. M was excited, hyped up, hot and exhausted. She coped brilliantly, until we got home on Saturday night, when she had something of a meltdown.

I was relieved and shattered by the time we had finished. But there's no peace for the wicked. R was reading at church, so we had to get up in time for that on Sunday morning and then M went to a 'Princess Pamper Party'  for her school friend and came home looking crimped and made up and beautifully grown up.
The kids have 3 days left of school. My only jobs in that time are washing and packing, jam making and eating up what's left in the freezer before we go away.

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

A few more things Scavenged

Cracking on with Rinda's Scavenge Hunt, I have 2 more legitimate finds to share and a rather dodgy cheat.
13. A Son Rise! Sorry Rinda, but I'm not getting up at 4am even for you. This son has to rise at 7am every morning anyway.
(BTW, there is a reason for the messy mattress, but I'll share that when his room is finished)

17. A lamp post. I've never noticed these Spotlight lamp posts before near the theatre in our town, but I think they are really cool. Love that the Hunt makes me notice things like that

18. A Waterfall. I know I can get a clearer waterfall when we are in France, but I like this photo of my daughter and niece watching the water in a restaurant garden. They look so serene

Monday, 14 July 2014

Shiny happy scrapping

I love this picture of my kids stripped off in the water park at LEGOLAND. I hadn't come prepared with swim stuff as the day started cold and rainy, but the sun came out at the end of the day and I figured it didn't matter if they had wet hair and no knickers when we were heading straight back to the car!
I also love that the only new things on the layout were 3 Dear Lizzy stickers. The background cardstock is printed with a wedding cake and so has been sitting unused in my stash for several years. It is the last sheet of a pack by DCWV, as is the red scalloped circle, which I cut from the cover of the paper pack and then kept for ages.

I've pulled them out several times as I like the combination of colours but always put them back again. This time I found a couple of A4 floral sheets (from Scrapbooking Magazine, I think.) I layered one behind the circle and used a strip of the other to cover the wedding cake. Turning it 90 degrees so the strip was at the bottom not at the side gave me the design I wanted. From there it was just a matter of layering up around the photo with various cards, stickers and sentiments.

Nice and colourful, but gentle tones. Happy with that!

Sunday, 13 July 2014


The first 2 weeks of July and ( not incidentally) the last 2 weeks of my term have been very full on. My college broke up yesterday and,  although the kids still have 10 days to go until we can escape to France, I can finally come back down earth and catch up with sleep and all your lovely blogs that I've been ignoring.

This is what I've been up to since we last met:

Mon 30th June -  I invigilated exams all morning.  R went to Science club and Scouts.

Tues 1st July -M visited her Yr 3 class for next year,  R practised his lines with me for 'Charlie & the Chocolate Factory' and I tidied our disgusting house.

Wed 2nd- I celebrated the end of the year with one of my adult classes then did admin work until it was time to pick up from school. M had Rainbows, so Rand I spent some more time on his lines.  Dress rehearsal on Sunday was apparently "dreadful" and all the parents are under instruction to " shout at your children!"

Thurs 3rd - Sadly, I had to miss M's Sports Day as I couldn't get of work  so my parents went in my place. Her house came 3rd out of 4, and it was an extremely hot day so I didn't miss much! I took her to her swimming lesson after school then R to rehearsal for his 'other play', Oliver.

Fri 4th- Another hot day and another end of term party for another class. M was at home on INSET so we visited the WWF visitors centre in the afternoon. The HQ of WWF has recently relocated to our town. Last run through of lines and dance moves with both children - finally starting to hope it will be OK.
Sat 5th-Both children performed in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. This meant a morning rehearsal, during which time I collected flowers for the director, a matinee at which I helped backstage.
This was also End of Term Speech Day for P, so he was shattered by the time he arrived to watch the evening show with me. Despite last weeks dodgy dress rrehearsal ( or perhaps because of it- they had worked hard) the final 2 shows were excellent.  The kids were exhausted but elated and I was both proud and relieved.
Sunday 6th- We did have a bit of a lie in but went out in the afternoon to celebrate the hundredth birthday of R's Scout group.

Mon 7th- At college the students have finished so the staff are working twice as hard!  I suffered through a pointless training on the VLE from someone who didn't know how our VLE worked.
R has 'activities week 'this week so he had to be at school at 7.45 to leave for a visit to the Olympic Park.  I had to pick him up afterwards,  feed him and get him to and from Scouts again.

Tuesday 8th - Our department had a full staff training then went out to lunch.  I watched M do her stuff at ballet,  but left the room before they rehearsed their show number.  I want to see it first with costume and pizzaz!

Wednesday 9th- Speaking exams at college were even more stressful than normal as we were inspected by the Home Office (to be sure we weren't cheating students who need the qualification for visa purposes)  We weren't,  of course,  but he was very thorough,even wanting to check our staff records to be sure we were who we said we were!  The afternoon was spent at the staff BBQ until I collected M from school. R didn't get home until 8 from watching 'Matilda' in London (lucky thing!) I had more burnt caramelised sausages at a Rainbow BBQ to celebrate their 21st birthday. Although I was there as a mum, I used to run the Guide company there before M was born so it was lovely to catch up with some old Guiding friends who had been invited.

Thursday 10th. R was at the zoo today.  M was poorly.  She'd been fighting it for 2 days but today I could finally give her a day off as P was at home.  I had to go into work in the morning to do an inventory of books and had a working lunch with a colleague, but I was free in the afternoon. R was tired too, after his 4 days of activities so we took it easy until it was time for R's rehearsal.
Fri 11th. Finally,  the last day of college!  A few hours of office tidying (it doesn't often look like this!) and retirement speeches,  then I was free to take R to the dentist, make an appointment for myself and last...spend some time blogging.

Sat 12th: Back to Drama for the last sessions and then a local Fun Day, which was a lot more fun than anticipated in unforeseen blazing sunshine.

Sun 13th: We haven't made it to Church for a few weeks but I was on Sunday School rota today so no excuse!  After an hour of vaguely Bible-related craft with a dozen 4-14 year olds, I had a little time for some grown-up crafting of the PL variety before meeting the In- Laws at the local Chinese restaurant to celebrate my Mother-in-Law's birthday.
Very yummy!
M and I had to miss pudding (I don't think I would have had room anyway) in order to go to the Tech Rehearsal for her upcoming ballet recital.

Right, the World Cup Final is about to start. I don't can whether Germany or Argentina win, but P does so that is how we will spent the evening.

I  haven't got my holiday head on yet. The kids still have a week and a half of school and M has her ballet recital next weekend. I also have a work meeting next week to prepare for so I can't completely relax yet but it is a nice feeling to know I don't  have to teach a lesson until September. 

I can - I think - start to breathe again. I look forward to catching up with all your blogs and posting a few pages.