The Breakfast Party!

This weekend Maya turned 10. Ten!!! Where does the time go?!

So now I officially have two ‘big kids’ in the house (I always like to think they turn big when they enter double figures!) 🙂

This year her main present was the trip to the ‘Wizard of Oz’ musical. But she also received other gifts from her family – a new soft red dressing gown, a cuddly toy Lemer she asked for, a compartmental shelf to keep her bits and bobs in order (with paints to decorate it), and a paint a hedgehog in which to grow some cress, craft kit. She was very pleased.

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Of course, what Maya didn’t expect, was the surprise party that happened at 9am…
I had asked 6 of her friends to come in pyjamas, ready for breakfast. These were the first two who arrived…

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After the initial shock (and stopping her from rushing downstairs to get dressed!), the present opening began, everyone dressed in pyjamas..

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I had personalised a white mug for each child, and placed in it a sachet of hot chocolate and a toothbrush…

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So it was time for hot chocolate (with marshmallows) in their own cups, and a pancake buffet with jam, maple syrup and lots of fresh fruit….

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The kids amazingly sat round the table for an hour! 🙂
Oh, let me just show you Maya’s beautiful smile when we unveiled the cups…

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Truly happy! 🙂
So…after the breakfast buffet, I had bought some fluoride tablets – just for fun! And just for fun, the ones who wanted to (including myself!) ate one, and had a ‘competition’ to see who could brush their teeth the cleanest! :()

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The kids just LOVED this! 😉
After this we had a game of ‘hide and find the ticking alarm clock’, which was fun, but then there were just half an hour left, and the kids were happy to do their thing…

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….before going home with their ‘party bag’ – their cup, another sachet of hot chocolate, some sugar free chewing gum, raisins, a mini box of breakfast cereal, and their toothbrush!

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And Maya was VERY happy! 🙂

The week of 8th – 14th March

This was the week that the man of the house was working away – and this was the week that mormor came to stay.

A week of planning and preparing for Maya’s 10th birthday. Presents to be bought, and a surprise party to prepare for. 🙂

A week of nature walks..

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Hello mormor!

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A week of playing Leon’s homemade card games – of which mormor must now be an expert…?

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This was the week that Mormor helped Maya to not only start, but to finish knitting a dress for her doll, Bella…

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This was the week that the sun came out…

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…the garden came in use….

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…and the crocuses started to bloom…

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It was also a week for Maya to prepare for Bella’s birthday…

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A week for using junk in play…

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…for attending a ‘Mumin’ theatre play…

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…and for playing with the Mumin house…

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It was also a week of making charts. Leon devised his own chore/reward chart…

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…and in typical Alfie style, whatever Leon tries, Alfie tries too….

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Maya also devised a chart, on the computer, using keynote. A behavioural chart for meal times….

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Something that is now in full force, with coloured stars and serious discussion. And it (mostly) works! 😉

This week was also a week of trying something new for me. An ‘invitation to explore’, inspired by our friends in London. Next to the nature shelf, an area that can be used to explore recent topics. This weeks topic was London. It took the kids a while to explore, though many questions were asked about the wooden buildings. Eventually however, Leon and Alfie both read through the whole book…loved it…and Alfie is still questioning the historical punishment of heads on sticks…! 😉

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And this week, as always with Ted, was a week to get up to no good, when mummy’s back is turned….

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The Week Of 2nd – 7th March…

Arriving home from London with a huge welcome from the rest of the family.

School started immediately the next day, and after school come friends (always friends), and play. Lots of play…

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Play dough and marble runs, castles from boxes – and people in boxes, lego cities, dolls dressed for walks, and collections (always lots of collections!).

Also time to create, the simple…

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….and the more time consuming…

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This is (yet another) game that (mainly Leon) is creating. A game of cards and spells and chances…

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Since this time, Leon has solely drawn, cut out and laminated 90 cards…!

Teddy continues to amuse us (and appease Maya), by dressing up….

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Pictured above we have ; Ted dressed for ‘school’, Ted trying on and prancing with Maya’s giant rainbow socks with the funny toes, and yes, Ted trying on clothes from the laundry basket (of his own accord..)….. Hmmm… 😉

I also had the joy of taking Maya out for an early birthday treat, to the ‘Wizard of Oz’ musical…

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Wow! Did she enjoy? Yes she did! 🙂

And scouts. More magical campfires, singing and outdoor cooking at scouts…

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What else? Piano lessons for Leon of course, park visits, library visits, and this week, Alfie had his first swimming lesson – something he really loved!
Plus, this week, the man of the house had to suddenly go away again for work – this time to Texas, USA, and this time for a whole week! But luckily for us, our english grandmother (mormor), was kind enough to fly over to spend time with us for a week – just like that! How lucky we are! 🙂

Wonderful Sticks!

Ted loves sticks. Just loves them! Everywhere we go he finds a stick, and puts it under the pushchair, or carries it around…

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So yesterday at the park, I decided to introduce him to the game of ‘Pooh Sticks’….

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He loved this game. He did it again and again and again…until a stick became a ‘fishing rod’……..

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…and a writing tool…..

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A love of sticks can be exhausting! 😉

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London (And A Boat)…

I’ve been undecided as to whether or not I should summarise last week, seeing as we were only around for three days – one of which was spent packing and preparing.

So to summarise, I shall just tell you a little about our trip to London – and I’ll squeeze in a little about what the small boys did at the end…

London! What a treat to go away for five days on my own with the oldest two…

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Here they are on the plane. The first time in 12 1/2 years where I haven’t had to constantly entertain on the plane, have a child climb all over me or take small walks up and down the aisle! 😉

Here they are looking very nervous on their first trip in several years on the London underground…

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We admired the ‘Natural History Museum’ (inside and out)…

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…where we met Mormor and Patu…..

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For six hours we looked at dinosaur skeletons and fossils, fish, amphibians and mammals, pickled creatures in jars, stones and minerals, creepy crawlies, and volcanoes and earthquakes. What a brilliant museum! We left happy but exhausted..!

Leon was particularly happy to discover a tardis at the Dr Who museum and shop….

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….and a dalek….

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…painting figures in a Games Workshop..

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…and playing in ‘Leisure Games’ (a place to meet and play various board games)…

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Maya really loved going to see ‘Matilda’ the musical with her Godmother..

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We all enjoyed watching street entertainers at Covent Garden….

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The kids loved visiting ‘M & M world’…

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(where our friend Jude has a dance with a walking M & M..)

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And it was fantastic to drink jasmine tea, and eat fresh dumplings and fortune cookies in China town…..

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We spent a morning checking out the buildings and goings on along the South Bank, by the river Thames…..

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..before reaching (and riding!), the London Eye!

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…and rounded off the trip with noodles and a visit to arty Camden Market….

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What a fabulous trip staying with Maxine’s family in London!

And the small boys? Well, they had trip on a big overnight ferry with pappa…

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Happy days ! 🙂

Pancake Day (Or Fat Tuesday!)

We call it Shrove Tuesday and we eat pancakes, the Swedes call it ‘Fat Tuesday’ and eat ‘semla’ (a sweet bun with whipped cream and almond paste) – we think both are delicious – and both are worth eating – and we did precisely that!

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Happy Fat Tuesday to you too! 😉