December is always our busy month—so that should explain my lack of blogging. So I’ll try and just go over a few of the main highlights.
Dec 6th—The kids are finally full-fledge American citizens! We went to London and had a lovely visit at the Embassy for a few hours in the afternoon. We did get to London early and had a picnic lunch in a park, and then a nice wander down Oxford Road to a few shops. The kids were bought the mandatory minature London Red buses! Then we had a bagel at a luncheonette just before going to the Embassy. Luckily enough I had sent all the paperwork ahead of time, so it took less than two hours. The downside of the day was they rejected the kids’ passport photos as being too small. Hazel’s original photo was lovely. As we were in the city for the day, and it was windy I had put her hair up in a ponytail. So her new photo wasn’t as gorgeous as her hair was up, but at least Kieran’s was better—though it took about ten attempts!
French class—The kids started French class. We went for a taster session on the 30th of November, and they both enjoyed it. We only had three actual classes, but they’re hooked. They do have the advantage of having French friends-Carole and her little girl Victoria.
Ballet classes—They both had their end of term class the 1st week of the month, and we enjoyed those. It’s always a treat to see how well they’re doing. Kieran really enjoys it and has ‘great extension’ according to her teacher. Hazel is in a league of her own. We do have worries that she’s getting bored with the routines. I know they have to do them repeatedly to get the right form—but she has her form down pat. She starts to look all around near the end of class, studying pictures on the wall—all while she is doing the routine correctly. I’ll have to talk to the teacher about this. She really loves the dancing, and I don’t want her getting turned off of it because she’s bored.
Music class—They had their last ever Monkey Music class on the 15th. I was a bit misty eyed about that one—but they have gone as far as they can with those classes. They have enjoyed them immensely and it’s our longest running activity. We started just after Kieran was born. The good news is I’ve finally gotten Hazel into a beginning recorder class in Abingdon for HE children. The teacher will have the final say on if and when she’ll take Kieran—they should be five years old to enter—though the teacher can bend the rules a bit.
As most of you know, both children were born in December. Kieran was 4 on the 9th, and Hazel is 5 today! What can I say—they are growing by leaps and bounds. If I could slow down time I would—I’ve so enjoyed every moment I’ve had with both of them. I miss my babies, but love my children!
For Kieran’s party on the 9th we had a bowling party. There is an alley just up the road from us—which we never go to! Well—the last time I was there it was old, dingy and smoky—it’s not now! Anyway—it was just supposed to be a few friends there and back to the house for cake. It ended up being 10 kids all together (we had Katelyn again that weekend and my aunt brought Hannah). Needless to say that meant 20 some odd people coming back here for cake and snacks. That’s the one upside to open plan living areas! Kieran had a good time and besides the three large remote control cars from us—he got tons of other trucks and cars! Can’t go wrong giving Kieran a car!
The ‘I’m still making progress getting over being shy’ moment was that I invited someone new round for Kieran’s birthday! Hazel has had two different ballet terms with a girl named Leigh (whom she likes). Leigh’s younger brother Ben (2ish) and Kieran have always played together very well when the girls are in class. So we invited them and they came! Usually their dad does the Saturday ballet class, as does Michael—so who knows, they might have a budding friendship going!
For Hazel’s 5th birthday—she had two parties! One large, one small. We were supposed to go to one of those paint your own pottery places—but she decided against it last weekend. Plan B was just to have everyone round here on the 20th instead of meeting in town. So our small party of four friends going on an outing ended up with 5 friends and their 2 cousins K & H. My cousin was feeling well enough to come, so we were thrilled for her to come and feel social again. She’s been a bit cooped up the last few months. Anyway—we had the usual party fare and some cake.
For her second party, we had our friends the Barlow’s round for lunch today. It was a very nice day. I do like having them over on their own—you can’t spend as much time with them when you have a crowd around. So today Hazel had a snowman cake (her 1st store bought birthday cake) which she seemed to enjoy. After lunch and cake they exchanged their Christmas presents. I was happy when Naomi (4) opened her gifts and was thrilled—as the kids picked them out. Abby was the happy receiver of some Fimo –something I’m sure she’ll enjoy. H & K got a paint your own bowl and mug set each. Rachel also made them each a fleece pullover, which are fantastic—and well received by my two.
I’ll be back in a few days to post some photos here! Stay tuned!