Friday, 27 May 2016

Best. Day. Ever.

There is nothing better than an inset day. It's a freebie, like winning the lottery or a 2 for 1 offer in the supermarket. Except when the sun shines and there are ponies, gerbils and kittens - then it's a through-the-roof brilliant day. We even had cheese straws which in my kids eyes counts as the Best. Day. Ever.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

The blogs that never were

It was always going to be a little of a stretch to write a blog a day.

The weeks are now zooming past at an alarming speed, 5 weeks and 4 days until we leave. And during this time of turbulence there are peaks and troughs, assurance and insecurity and times so very special it seems ludicrous we are leaving. That always happens.

So in short, our week in titles:

Scream if you wanna go faster! - an afternoon of hilarity at the funfair, am sure a little wee escaped

Champagne and tequila - and white wine and mojitos, it was messy for his birthday

Coming 'special' again - ponies are the greatest levellers, learning to come last

Horse Boy - my next career, therapeutic riding for children with autism

Lidl - seriously, how cheap?

The Royal Mews - a glorious afternoon of pomp and ridiculousness, finding ponies in London

New hat - with go-faster stripes, silvery stars and a great big pom pom on top

Book club - the endings begin

Tuesday, 17 May 2016


The stress has arrived as we are 6 weeks and 5 days away from our move to Mallorca. Great bucket loads of nerves, jitters and adrenaline have finally come to to say 'Hello!' before we go. Lists are in the kitchen, there are lists on the fridge, sub-lists on the list, lists on my phone, lists in my head and my favourite - the list at 4am making me jolt wide awake.

And then there are the wobbles.

Are we doing the right thing? Is Mallorca too busy in the summer? Will I make friends? Will the children like it? Can we afford to do this? What job will I be able to get? What about friends and family we leave behind?

All I can do is chip away at those lists and keep talking about the wobbles, for in 7 weeks time we will be there. So will ALL our belongings including the cats. It is so very hard to see that reality when there is a mountain in between to climb.

But hopefully, once scaled, there will be an extraordinary view from the top.

Friday, 13 May 2016


We had 2 humdingers of a meltdown yesterday.

The first was over maths. That's to be expected now, maths and A just do not mix - like oil and water, no matter how hard you shake or how much you increase the pressure - they stubbornly refuse to get on. We have a book of maths problems, suitable for 9-10 year olds, and all I ask is 10 minutes a day, or when we remember - to have a little try.

Cue the harumphs. The moaning, the screaming, the tears, the stomping, the door slamming and yesterday, throwing her pencil across the room.

I try so hard to be patient, to explain it in a number of different ways, we use pony analogies often and still the penny does not drop. We will keep trying - and I will keep being the punch-bag.

The second tantrum of the day was in the evening. She had been stuck inside from 8.45am until 5pm, practising the school play after a whole day in the classroom. It's too much, they were both like coiled springs, balls of fiery anger and in need of a glass of water, some food and a serious run around the garden. After an hours rest I thought we should crack on with homework. A project about Mars.

She just does not seem to care about the state of her work. It was scribbled, drawn scrappily, spelt wrong, no full stops or capital letters and looked like something a 5 year old would do...I felt like a Victorian school teacher.

I think I have been too relaxed. She knows I pay little attention to education and do not place value on the current system. But she's behind, she cares little about her assignments and couldn't give two hoots if she comes last. She has zero interest in school work and finishes quickly to get outside, play ponies, ride ponies or play with her pony playmobil.

Why am I surprised? I was exactly the same at 10.

Tuesday, 10 May 2016


I will miss Freddie when we go, really miss him.

Freddie is a Shetland. A fat, hairy pony of the naughty kind. He has forelock (a fringe for those of you not too pony orientated) that sticks out in crazy directions which won him a competition at Forelock Books. Freddie even writes his own blog each week, detailing his antics and pony thoughts. He is strong but kind, he his hilarious and infuriating, he is hairy and soft, but most of all he has the incredible ability to lift your mood even on the bluest of days.

Freddie should be available on the NHS.

A and P came out of school all wound up and grumpy. They hadn't eaten enough food at lunchtime, they hadn't drunk enough water, they had been stuck in all day due to the rain (I'm not sure when rain ever hurt anyone?) and their cheeks were a sweaty red from 30 odd kids all crammed in a classroom. A began worrying about her SATS exams for next year and that her homework about the planet Mars HAD to have a model to accompany it. Lazy bloody homework, model making - guess who's doing papier mache this weekend.

We needed to go and see Freddie. All of us.

And there he was running up and down his fence excited to see us. We stroked, fussed, hugged and groomed him. He even had his mane plaited.

We meandered through glorious bluebells and blossom confetti. We smelt the heady fragrances more pungent after the rain. We all agreed not to make a planet Mars model, but draw a picture instead - sod it. And we all started laughing, noticing, being in the wonderful moment that is Bedgebury forest with a Shetland.

And when Freddie's work was done for the day, he rewarded us with this hilarity. Turn up the volume and enjoy!