Tuesday, 2 September 2014
So I sit here the night before you start school for the first time Mr Magoo. You are excited and happy and looking forward to the new adventure with your best friend. I am so glad about that. I am a mixture of emotions. Excited too but anxious, worried, apprehensive and sad. Sad that it is the biggest step yet of you growing up and not being my baby boy anymore and anxious that you will start to lose your innocence now that you're going to have more outside influences than you've had before. These things can be flipped to be positive too of course and I am sure I will see that more clearly soon. Tonight though it feels more sad for me as you are my first born off to school. I watched you sleep tonight, sucking your thumb and cuddling Flat Ted and looking too little to be starting school.
Thursday, 12 June 2014
Well firstly, sorry for being AWOL for a little while! It has been rather busy here with Mr Y having to use the laptop most nights to prepare his best man's speech added on to that the manic month of June! We have our wedding anniversary and then Mrs Magee and Mr Magoo's birthdays ten days apart. So we are in a bit of a birthday blur at the moment. Last night I was busy trying to recreate a sugar paste Peter Rabbit and tonight will be spent making Mr McGregor's boots and various vegetables to top the cake that will be made tomorrow night! Tomorrow being Mrs Magee's big day and the grand old age of 2! Anyway on to the blog post. So recently we have done quite a few days/mornings/afternoons out which have been free or a very low price. This has been fabulous seeing as June is an expensive month for us! So last week a lovely friend (thank you Mrs M!) made us aware of the fact that Weston Park was opening it's doors for 50p entry to celebrate being open for 50 years. So Mrs Magee and I spent a great day there with our friends including our Gifts from the Pirates chums. Lilleshall Abbey again due to a recommendation by a friend (thank you Mrs W!), it is a stunning place, especially in the sunshine. Mrs Magee and I met up with some of our Mummy friends and their children and we enjoyed exploring the ruins and eating a picnic. I will let the photos do the talking! Bye for now, I am off for a date with some wellington boots!
Monday, 12 May 2014
Bookmarking and 'liking' pages on the internet and Facebook which have fun recipes and ideas on is a common occurrence. Actually remembering them and trying them out is less frequent! I have made home made playdough before and it was great, I only made half the quantity and it was loads and it lasted well past the 3 months it said and was probably more like 2 years! The colour had faded somewhat though! So one rainy day I decided to make a new batch so Magoo could play with it alongside his new dinosaurs. I used this recipe (I love the Imagination Tree website, so many fabulous ideas). I added green food dye as we felt it was the best suited colour and we got to work. Magee and Magoo loved playing with it, especially Magoo though, he really got in to it and was content for ages. Magee lasted a little while and then enjoyed chucking hers on the floor! Cloud Dough so we gave this a whirl too as it looked super easy. It was! So we had lots of fun experimenting with it and making sandcastles and using cake and jelly moulds. Then obviously they had to be destroyed by a dinosaur!
Sunday, 20 April 2014
Yesterday we went along to the Pop Up Festival of Stories at Enginuity and the Museum of Iron in Coalbrookdale. We had seen it advertised and it looked like it could be fun and it was free, so win win! The weather wasn't quite as balmy as promised but it stayed fine so all was well. We went along close to the start of the festival thinking we would be there a couple of hours tops, we ended up there for about 4 hours in the end, so that in itself shows how much fun we had! The festival was set up inside and outside of the museums and the different areas were set up to reflect the book that was being read/advertised. There were quite a few authors there with their books all set to inspire and engage the young and slightly older people of Shropshire! We all had fun playing the different instruments in Ken Wilson-Max's pop up jungle area and having a go with some that we had never seen before. TADLOP theatre group. We moved on from our craft activity to have a look outside but stopped via a giant piece of art on the floor that everyone could join in with. It was set up by an author and illustrator called James Mayhew. Magee and Magoo loved adding to it and I was admiring the illustration of the character called Katie. Kite Spirit and there were lots of beautiful paper kites hung up with poems on them. Magee and Magoo loved the cosy material tent and looking at the props on display. Over at the Museum of Iron there were food outlets and the obligatory ice cream van! We settled for pizza from The Really Good Pizza Co we had to wait a while but it was yummy, so worth it! The last part we went to was Julia Golding's Young Knights and Dangerous Dragons where Magee and Magoo got to decorate a shield, they loved this and enjoyed playing Knights with them afterwards. Essex and Camden too so do go along if you can as it was great fun and very inspiring, follow them on facebook to keep updated. I have certainly been looking up the authors since and I am sure I will be reading quite a few of their books at some point.
Friday, 18 April 2014
Having a small house and being mindful of the environment, we try not to go overboard with toys. We love wooden toys as they last a long time and can withstand knocks and bumps, they are tactile and look great too. We also love the fact they can be reused/recycled and that another family can enjoy them once we are finished with them. It is great to know that they come from an ethically sound source in the first place. I will talk in a separate post about the different ones we have maybe but I just wanted to do a quick one today about the firm favourite in our house, that is the wooden railway. Mr Magoo loves trains and we kicked off his train set with a basic Ikea figure of eight to see whether he would like it. He did, so there started his collection! We have various wooden Thomas the Tank trains with Gordon being the flavour of the month at the moment. We are lucky enough to have a great second hand toy stall at our local market and we got a big bag of track and accessories for £20 which went down well as a 3rd birthday present. Bigjigs we love them as they are such great quality are bright and colourful too. I also love the environmental and ethical responsibilities that they take seriously. It is great to buy from a company that cares about where their products are sourced. It is nice to see Mrs Magee actually playing with the trains now as well rather than just bashing them around or pushing her brother's ones off the track! So it looks set to be popular with her too and it will be lovely to see them continue to make up stories and adventures together as they get older. Definitely a set we will continue adding to and will be enjoyed for years to come.
Monday, 14 April 2014
When choosing a first bike for Mr Magoo we were set on getting a balance bike as we loved the idea of getting used to no stabilisers from the start. Then it was just the matter of deciding on exactly which one, what a minefield! There are so many makes out there. At first we thought a wooden one would be great due to our love of wooden toys but once we had investigated lots of makes and read a lot of reviews we settled on a Strider bike from learning early.
Wednesday, 9 April 2014
Having a good imagination is so great and really opens the door to whole new worlds. I go through fits and starts about worrying about the amount of TV the littles watch. It isn't on all day but neither is it limited to an hour a day. You feel bad when you hear about people that have banned the TV altogether but then not so bad when others have it on all day. Like most things in life I think you should do stuff in moderation and not feel guilty! For me the TV is great to keep them occupied whilst I need to start dinner or do something where they can't join in or help as there just isn't the room. I also put my hands up to using it sometimes to give me some peace for ten minutes so I can do something I want to do or just need some time out! We will sit and watch things together too and we'll talk about what's going on or join in with the counting/letters etc if it is something like Numtums or Alphablocks etc. Magoo is at the age now where he likes certain films and it has been really nice to sit and watch Toy Story or Cars with him and see how much he gets in to them. It certainly doesn't curtail his imagination afterwards either as he doesn't just reenact parts of the film he plays his own games with the different characters. Magee has an active imagination too and loves 'cooking' you things or playing cafes/shops with Magoo.
Sunday, 23 March 2014
So Magee has been poorly this week with Hand Foot and Mouth Disease, we have had it before so knew the score more or less and that you just wait it out and have to get on with it basically and you aren't told to stay away from others! She was so, so grumpy last weekend, which is very out of sorts for her as she is usually very happy. We weren't sure what was up really but she was sleeping badly and was in with me whilst Mr Y was in with Magoo. Could it be her tummy? Could it be her teeth (her amber necklace had broken so was that related?)? The spots outed themselves anyway and a trip to the docs just to check confirmed HFM. We needed to get out of the house as they were both a bit fed up and the weather was beautiful. So I had already packed my well worn Ironbridge Gorge Museums Passport in anticipation that they would want to go out. We have used it so many times and I have had a passport for the last 2 years as it is fabulous value for money seeing as the children are still free until they are 5. So I will definitely be renewing in April! Anyway, we headed to Coalport China Museum and had a great time as we hadn't visited that particular museum before. They are set up well for children and we followed a trail around looking for animals to tick off on our clipboard. It is still very much a whistle stop tour as they don't want to hang around looking at stuff for long and are always eager to see what is in the next room! We found all of the animals though, apart from a pesky rat that was hiding in the dark where we missed it! Magee and Magoo enjoyed pretending to have tea and Magoo liked rebuilding the kilns and other buildings on the map in the children's area. The kilns were amazing and a little spooky! The sounds of the 'workers' made us all jump in the second kiln! We finished by walking along the canal to see the ducks, have a look at the Hay Incline and walk over the bridge over the river Severn. We also found the Tar Tunnel which we'll visit in the summer. Jackfield Tile Museum after picking Magoo up from nursery. I knew he would be tired but he was keen to go somewhere new. So we called in and had a good look around. So many beautiful tiles and it was interesting seeing the recreated tube station, complete with train noises!!! That really confused Magoo, he was sure there was a train around the corner! Even after I thought I had explained that it was just sound effects and not real he still asked me 5 minutes later if the train would be around the corner!! Wednesday we met up with Magoo's best friend and had a play in the park and then went on to Enginuity. This is the museum we visit most often and is our rainy day fixture! They love it there as it is so hands on and as they get older they begin to understand more about what they actually see there. The favourite sections are the water part (goes without saying really!, the recycling sorting machine, the bead tipping truck, the penny squashing machine and the soft play area. It's a great museum as it isn't too big and normally I've found that you don't notice the school groups too much although it was the busiest I had ever seen it on this visit! We also love Blists Hill Victorian Town but didn't visit it this week. I'll have to do another blog post just on that one I think!! Magoo and I ended our week by popping in to Ironbridge for a milkshake and hot chocolate, just the two of us as that is a rarity really. We called in to Truffles and were impressed with our choices and Magoo loved the extra goodies he got with his drink! Magee was having fun at my parents' and Magoo was in need of some time with just me as he'd been feeling a bit left out I think with Magee being under the weather and being very needy! So we had a lovely time and will definitely be doing that more often. We stopped off at Queenies for some delicious cupcakes to take home and enjoyed tucking in to them after dinner! We are so lucky to have Ironbridge so close and it offers so much to do. I must remember to take lots of photos next time and put them on here!
Wednesday, 12 March 2014
So following on from my previous post about using our back yard more than out front garden I thought I would write this quick post. We have used the outdoor chalks on numerous occasions but the novelty seems to wear off pretty fast. The other day though it lasted a bit longer and with Magee only deciding to eat the chalks at the very end! They both really enjoyed themselves and I think Magoo's colourful bricks look great. Although you can't really tell from the photo!!
Sunday, 9 March 2014
We always try and make the most of getting outside when we can. Our garden isn't great as it is at the front of the house and very public and often used as a litter tray by the local cats, nice!!! So we use our little back yard most of the time. We are lucky to have some great open spaces on our doorstep though and our regular walks for some much needed space to run around are only a few minutes walk away. Monday's jaunt took us up to the cemetery, sounds morbid but it is beautiful! I love the trees, flowers and birds up there. It is obviously a peaceful place but never fails to make you thankful for what you have. It is great for the children to run around on the paths and spot the wildlife. A moment I loved that made me thought 'I have to blog about this so I remember it' was when Mr Magoo was going off up the little paths closely followed by Mrs Magee and she fell over but got up instantly and seemed fine. Anyway, I was watching from a distance and saw him crouching down in front of her for a while and wondered what he was up to. I thought he may have been brushing down her dusty knees or something after her falling over. I went closer to see what was going on and as I got closer I could see that he had been busy concentrating hard on placing a daisy in to each of her button holes on her coat! It made my heart melt! A moment to treasure.
Sunday, 2 March 2014
Inspired by my yoga class on Saturday I have started off this blog. It has been an idea for a while but with a new moon and new month bringing new intentions I thought I had better seize the day and kickstart it! Thanks to Gifts from the pirates for boosting my confidence to give it a whirl too. So a short first post but another to come soon, watch this space ............