December 23rd: All the other bits, and Snow!

Like everyone else, December is our busiest month. With both of the kid’s birthdays, classes, parties, outings and Christmas it can get very busy. This years preparations were a bit hampered by two main problems, me not having a car for 3 weeks and the weather. But I think in the end we managed extremely well. We did miss one group event-but that was a completely different reason, and other than that, we made it to everything.

The kids put their shoes out for treats from St. Nicholas on the 5th of December. I suggested they might want to leave a boot out, but both of them looked at me as if I had lost my mind! Really-don’t they realize that as whatever shoe you leave out is the one that gets filled, and that would mean the bigger the shoe, the more treats?

The kids Irish dance class party was as much fun as always. It’s in the same hall and we all bring loads of treats, the four classes meet together. The kids all danced for us, played games, ate a zillion treats and generally had a great time. I had a nice time chatting with a few of the mom’s while we were on guard duty. We just made sure none of the little ones escaped-as most parents just dropped them all off. I’d love to show you some photos-but I haven’t any. Ok, I have about 60, but they are all rubbish! I really must practice more with my fancy-dancy camera!

The kids and I ran a few errands during the week, and were out early a few times-even surprised myself! We had recorder/flute class very early on the Tuesday to make up for one we missed while I was carless. This gave us a good excuse to get to the library in that county as I had a book to return. The kids did a quick scouring around for books as I only had 1 ½ hours free parking and I wanted to do some shopping. They were also restricted by the fact we didn’t have any bags-so could only get what they could carry back to the car! Hazel grabbed about 8 fictional books, Kieran got about three factual books.

Later when we got home, I went upstairs for a bit. When I came back down, I was greeted by this in the living room.

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Kieran had rented the book on the left from the library, and was comparing it to his ancient civilization maze book to see how similar they were! Clever boy!

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Then on the Wednesday we were out at 8am! I made an appointment for Kieran with the dentist to have his front teeth checked out. Kieran feel and literally landed on his face at the end of August. He bashed all his teeth, but it’s only the top two front ones that have been affected. We are going to keep them in, even though they are discolouring, as since he’s young, he’ll probably just fall a few more times! We just have to make sure they stay extra clean and don’t get infected. She ended up spending more time talking to me about mine! But as she didn’t charge for either of us, I didn’t mind!

Then we stopped off at one of the library’s just over the border from us. The kid’s art group put up a display there, and both of mine contributed to it. I was blown away with how well it looked! Will have to try and get back and take some photos.

While we were there we signed up for that library-to add yet another county library card to our ever growing pile. You should have seen Hazel’s eyes when the librarian told her she could take out 30 items-her eyes almost popped out of their sockets. She left with a sizable heist! This library is right outside Michael’s gate, so he can be the drop off man.

We managed to spend the rest of the morning shopping. We got Kieran a few new things, basically everything but shoes. On the way home it snowed! It only lasted an hour or so-but was lovely.

Later that afternoon we made some treats to bring for our last home ed group event of the year. We made chocolate cups with marshmallows. One of the moms from the Irish dancing class always makes them-and they looked like the perfect, easy to prepare treat. They were. And we found the nut-dairy-egg-gluten free chocolate bars, so we were able to make a treat everyone could have.

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The kids made some more crafts in our HE art group, but I have very few photos of them! But here is Hazel’s felt heart she made. I was so proud of her. She did it mostly on her own, then helped one of the younger girls make one. Hazel gave this to her embroidery teacher, who Michael said looked very pleased to be getting it.

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Just as we were leaving the group on Thursday, it started to snow again. Twice in one week! Amazing! And it stuck! It wasn’t too bad on Friday morning for the cars, so after a quick snowball fight Michael went to work.

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Yes–only Hazel could find a piece of ice shaped like a heart!

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The weather stayed cold all weekend, so the snow stayed, but the roads were dry and stayed clear for driving. We drove down to Swindon on the Saturday where I promptly spent a small fortune on Hazel’s birthday gifts and Christmas gifts. : Michael took them for a wander for me!

Sunday we went to the Farmers market-it was freezing out. I was rather surprised at how icy all the side-walks were. They didn’t sand them, or even clear any of the ones in town. No wonder the hospitals were busy all weekend with broken bones! We all skated along fine, got the food in for the week, and Michael and I managed the last bits of shopping for Hazel’s birthday.

Just about lunch time on Monday, it started to snow again. At first I didn’t think much about it-but then I noticed it was sticking. I tried to call Michael-who doesn’t ever seem to look out his windows, but he was in a meeting. He was supposed to leave early and go to the dentist-but that meant going further from home, which isn’t the best thing on those roads. His company ended up closing minutes before he needed to leave to get to the dentist-which meant he spent almost a ½ hour trying to get off-site! It’s a large place! He managed to get to the dentist ok. It was the drive home that was a nightmare for him, just like thousands of other people! It took him 4 ½ hours to get home. He was 12 miles away. There was less than 2 inches of snow! But with no snow tires, it was far too treacherous to go over the smallest of hills. But he made it home in one piece-and because the weather decided to stay below freezing, his company closed for the week! Not a bad start to the holidays!

Michael and the kids went for a walk in the woods to enjoy the snow.

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We were supposed to burn our Yule log on Monday-but with Michael not getting home till 8pm, we decided to do it on Tuesday. Kieran found the log at the end of the winter last year, and we kept it for this special occasion!

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