My Sunday Photo

My eldest girls did Brownies, then moved onto Guides and both still attend now. They are 12 and 14 and DD1 is about to move on to the Senior Section.

DD3 did the Brownies thing too, but then she and a friend wanted to join cubs as well.  Now they are both 10, in the next month or so they are going to start the move to Scouts.

Part of the reason DD3 wanted to go to Scouts is because they do real camping in tents their parents they put up themselves. The Brownie and Guide groups around here tend to do indoor camps where the girls stay in dorms or perhaps already-erected tipis.

DD’s kit listed included ‘up to two soft toys’ to make bedtime easier. These are the two that DDs chose, AND I had to evict a 4 foot snake and 3 ft teddy from the black bag under the sleep mat.

She wouldn’t give up the wolf or the lion though and we drove them out to the campgrounds and lugged them across the fields to the site. I was expecting Akela to say no, but the other girl DD3 was sharing with didn’t mind, so the soft toys got to stay the weekend.

Next time I think Akela may be adding dimensions to the kit list.

Cuddly toys for cub camp

Sunday photo

My Sunday Photo

When your kids are little, and you come across an ice cream van parked outside your school that you don’t want to patronise, you can just say no. Or tell them you have no money, or no time, or the van has run out of ice cream or…something …

But when your kids are a bit older, and you live really close to the school, and one of your children is old enough to run home and let herself into the house to find her purse, then run back to you and her little brother with the said money and offer to pay for ice creams out of her own money, you have a problem.

Or maybe you don’t. Choose your battles, remember?

At least DS didn’t complain about the difference in the size and build quality of their ice creams; he knows not to look a gift horse ( sister?) in the mouth.

Icecream Friday

Sunday photo

My Sunday Post

We are lucky enough to have a local farmer’s market close by.

It runs every second Sunday and we often go for lunch as it has a good selection of food stalls.

It also has a petting zoo, and the kids sometimes use their pocket money to go and hold/stroke chickens, rabbits, piglets, lambs etc.

Last week it had something we’ve never seen before. For £1, kids ( and their parents) could take a goat for a walk! Of course walking goats is different from walking dogs, as DD found out. The secret is to have something green and juicy in your hand to encourage the goat to follow you…

Laura goat

Even then, they didn’t get far. Goats can be very stubborn, as can DD, and I think she may have met her match.

Sunday photo

Annoying Words

‘Whatever’ is not the most annoying word in our house.

Don’t get me wrong, it is pretty annoying; especially when used by a teen or tween who is determined to have the last word and thinks they know it all.

It is used as a last resort word though, mainly when things have not gone their way but they want it to look like they have the situation totally under control.

So let me tell you, if your child is using ‘Whatever’, you have won and they know it. You don’t have to have the last word.

Another really annoying word in our house is my eldest’s sudden adoption of ‘Yikes’.

I know this doesn’t sound that annoying but she manages just the right mix of rudeness and condescension when she uses it. I don’t much like the word; she knows it annoys me and I’ve asked her not to use it. but you have to pick your battles when they are 14.

Most of the time I ignore it, but DD2 HATES the word and is often reduced to tears by her older sister’s use of it. DD1 is totally aware of this, of course…

But the most annoying word used in our house is..are you ready for this, it’s a four letter one…’Wait’.

‘Can you turn the TV off?’-‘Wait’
‘Can you get off the computer?- ‘Wait’.
‘It’s time to get ready for school”- ‘Wait’.
‘Time for bed!’-‘Wait’.

My children seem incapable of hurrying when asked, but just casually put one hand up and drawl ‘wait’ while they finish what they are doing. And this is after 10 and 5 minute warnings of the need to cease and desist. The seem to think that time stops when they do!

What’s the most annoying word in your house?


My Sunday Photo

Mouse in the house
This was the scene in our kitchen on Wednesday night.

Our cats are always bringing in small furry things and dropping them as soon as they get in the house. The said furry thing then makes a beeline ( or should that be mouseline?) for the nearest large appliance and this results in very frustrated felines.

On Thursday night, it was obvious the Furry Thing had relocated to the living room. We had cats in cupboards, up the chimney, behind the TV- they were definitely on the prowl.

When we went to bed, we shut them in the lounge and let them get on with it…

This was the sight that met our eyes on Friday morning. The scene of the crime has not been altered in any way.

Mouse on the piano

Do you think our cats are trying to tell us something?

Sunday photo

Did You Watch ‘The A Word’ ?

Last night, like thousands of other people in the UK, I tuned in to watch the BBC’s new Drama ‘The A Word’. Actually, if I’m honest, I watched half of it last night. I fell asleep halfway through it and watched the rest this morning.

The falling asleep is no indication of the quality of the programme by the way, I’m just tired and not very well at the moment.

Before I watched the first episode I didn’t know much about it, just that one of the main characters is a young boy with autism. The A Word is the story of a family who have been working around their young child’s differences for so long that they find it difficult to admit that he might have a significant problem. When Joe’s parents are forced to entertain the possibility that there might be something ‘wrong’ with their son, their reaction, and those of their friends and family, make for an emotional drama that will feel familiar to many of us who have first had experience of neurodiversity.

Joe’s story is very different from that of the autists in our family but I recognised some of the emotions, behaviours and situations.

The boy who plays Joe is a very good actor; he’s not autistic himself but he is very convincing in his role. One thing to remember though is that if you’ve met one autistic person, you’ve met one autistic person, They are all so different. Not many people would pick out my daughters as autistic but one has a diagnosis, one is in the process of getting one. In fact I have had many people express surprise if I mention it. ‘Are you sure?’ is an often asked question. There are less girls with autism than there are boys, and they are harder to spot, but they are out there.

Joe is shown as a musical genius, listening to music through headphones at all times and having an encyclopedic knowledge of songs and lyrics. Not every autistic person has a special skill. Some children with autism are savants and have these ‘special talents’ but many others don’t. Some have below average abilities, some are average, and some are above average.  Special skills make for good TV in this case and do allow the use of an excellent soundtrack for the series.

I  also thought the process of diagnosis was portrayed unrealistically as most families I know have had to wait for months, or even years, for a diagnosis. We were turned down for assessment twice for DD2 before we had to get CAHMS involved. From there we were granted a referral and then a diagnosis. And for us, it wasn’t actually a shock  at that point, it was more a relief that we could get some help.

Of course, what help is available depends on where you live..

It’s going to be a good series, I think and well worth a look even if you don’t think you know anyone with autism. Because actually, you might one day, and more importantly you might learn something. And with knowledge comes tolerance.

Did you watch The A word? What did you think? Did it remind you of your experiences?

The A word shows on BBC1 on Tuesdays at 9pm or is available on iPlayer.

The A word

My Sunday Photo

This week DD3 was invested as a cub. She’s a bit old as she’s already turned 10, but her Brownies group closed down at the end of last year and one of her friends asked if she’d like to join her cub group so they could go on a camp together!

She’s been attending the group since Easter and enjoying it very much. Last week she made her ( non religious) promise and joined the group properly.  She also attends Guides with her sisters on a different night but come September she’ll have to decide which path to follow, Scouts or Guides, as both are on the same night.

I have to admit I am hoping she will choose Guides as I haven’t worked out how I will clone myself for pick ups yet!

As you can see, our dogs had to be in the photo too. F loves to smile for the camera!

F and L cub


My Sunday Photo

My Sunday Photo

Last week I shared a photo of one of our cats who gets possessive of anyone who sits on the sofa.

This week, I’d like to introduce you to his brother who allows the kids to hold him in all sorts of weird positions. Here he is being used as a phone rest by my eldest. He doesn’t  seem to mind at all

Phone rest cat

He also tries to follow the little two to school each morning, which scares me as we have to cross roads to get there. I would hate for either of the cats to get run over but I don’t feel we’d be being fair to keep them as indoor cats.

The local wildlife would probably rejoice if we did. For the first couple of years, these cats only brought in frogs but have since graduated to mice and birds. Along with the odd camellia.

Look. My cats bring me flowers!

Things cats bring in

My Sunday Photo