Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Chocolate refridgerator cake at Byfords in Holt was a hit.
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Monday, March 29, 2010

Manic kids

Apparently the chocolate cake they'd just consumed wasn't responsible for this display.

Here's the kids having fun on a wet day in Holt. We'd just been for coffee and cake at Byfords, and were keen for the kids to exhaust themselves, and thus (I hope) sleep well tonight.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Norfolk 'n' kids

We've come on holiday on purpose.

We're renting a house in Fakenham, Norfolk for a week. It's a much needed break for all of us, especially Anne who's supposedly part time job has taken up a lot of time over the last few months. Fakenham wasn't chosen as a particularly glamorous location, but as a convenient base to visit other parts of north Norfolk.

We arrived on Saturday with two over-excited kids having a great time exploring the house. ThingOne has a bunk bed in her room, which is a big hit. In part this is because Peppa Pig has a bunk bed, but it's also because we can drape a duvet over it and make a den.

We forgot that the clocks were changing. This is something that is always an irritation for us, since it messes with the kids' sleep routines. However, being on holiday makes it easier, since we're not under pressure to get our timings back to normal since we don't have a normal routine on holiday.

We looked around Fakenham a bit on Sunday morning. Fakenham wasn't there to greet us since it chooses not to open on Sunday. We did manage to take the girls for hot chocolate, and Anne chose to go into one of the few open shops: a tatty clothes/toy/toiletries shop. I figured she was just going in since it was one of the few places open, but was amazed when she actually started trying things on and after 20 minutes of me trying to stop the kids picking up everything in the shop Anne bought some boots.

To realise how bizarre this is you need to know that Anne a) hates shopping and b) would never buy clothes in a tatty souvenir shop. I really don't know what came over her. She kept saying that the boots were good. Bottle Rocket or something.

As we left I said to Anne "I don't even know who you are any more." And I meant it.

On Sunday afternoon we took a trip out to Foxley Wood for a walk. I think we may have solved the time change issue by wearing the girls out. ThingOne walked for over an hour, and only started moaning about ten minutes from the end.

This morning we went swimming in Hunstanton (an indoor pool - do you think we're mad?) ThingOne seems much more confident in the water nowadays (I should hope so after Anne's taken her to swimming lessons for the last eight months) and had a lot of fun.

It's lovely to be able to spend time with the girls without jobs to do, clothes to wash, real life to live. ThingOne seems to be enjoying herself and ThingTwo is singing, shouting and running around almost constantly.

Having ThingTwo around is a bit like having a random phrase generator. She's spent part of the day listing all the things in our rented cottage which aren't chocolate, and on the way home from Hunstanton in the car, on a very vet and overcast day, suddenly started pointing out of the window shouting "CLOUD! CLOUD!" To give her credit, she was right, but why pick then to notice?

In other news, we can no longer get any good photos of our kids. ThingOne thinks pulling faces for the camera is The Funniest Thing In The Whole World, and ThingTwo copies whatever ThingOne does. I think I'd better brush up on my photoshopping skills.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Paint a little birdhouse in your soul

A fun weekend started with me taking ThingOne to the cinema to see Happy Feet (she danced throughout) while my mum took ThingTwo for a walk by the River Cam. This gave Anne a break on what she's dubbed Mother's Day Weekend.

Mother's Day Proper started for Anne at 8.30 as the girls presented her with beans on toast and coffee in bed. I should really get the credit for this as I prepared it, but I graciously let the girls lie. They then presented her with a birdhouse they (mainly ThingOne) had painted. Garishly. But probably better than I'd have managed.

It was a really nice sunny day, which was a pleasant change after all the cold weather we've had lately, so we headed out to the Magog Downs, one of the few hills in the area for a run around (i.e. to wear the kids out). The girls had a great time, having seemingly been shut in the house for three months (at least that's how it feels).

ThingOne picked up a stick and said it was a gun, and kept running round saying "Shoot gun!" No idea where she's got that from, but I wasn't overly concerned. I was more concerned later when I heard her say, in a sweet manner, to ThingTwo "I have a gun and a sword. Do you want to be cut up or killed?" Oh boy.

A further trip to a playground this afternoon and I'm expecting the kids to sleep well tonight. They'd blimmin better do, since I'm shattered.




Wicked ball skills

I'm not usually one to boast, but ThingTwo, at two, has the soccer skills of a 35 year old man.

Unfortunately the 35 year old man is me.

Also here

Friday, March 12, 2010

Mother's (Short) Day

Wednesday evening when I got home from work:

ThingOne approaches me, conspiratorially.
"Daddy, on Sunday please can we..."
ThingOne pauses. She turns to her mum.
"Mummy, I've forgotten what time."
Anne whispers "Half past eight."
ThingOne turns back to me.
"Daddy, on Sunday please can we take Mummy breakfast in bed at half past eight because it's Mother's Day?"
I am suspicious. "Did Mummy put you up to this?"
I feel rather bullied.

Anne will probably get her wish, even if she did go about her request in a nerfarious manner. If she's lucky I'll even stop ThingOne and ThingTwo from preparing the breakfast and do it myself.

In retrospect half past eight isn't an unreasonable request. It says something that Anne's dream is to be allowed to sleep in until half past eight, and then be given breakfast.

At what age can kids be trusted to get up by themselves, make their own breakfast and watch The Wide Awake Club, leaving their parents to sleep?

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Birthday weekend

ThingTwo effectively had two birthday weekends. We visited my mum the weekend before her birthday, and she had a cake there, and gifts from my mum and sister. Then Anne's sister and her partner visited last weekend and we had more cake and more presents. These kids' birthdays are mainly for the benefit of the grown ups and their tummies.

ThingTwo even managed to blow out the candles on this second cake. I think ThingOne was a bit miffed at that as she was hoping to help out there. Having hit two, the younger one seems to be attempting to grab some of the spotlight the elder has been hogging for the last two years. ThingOne's enjoying this more-bolshy younger sister so far. I wonder if there'll be territorial issues later...