Monthly Archives: August 2011


We have a step stool in the kitchen which we got Caitlin to stand on to practice her words for an assembly once….since then they use it as their stage!  They take it in turns to stand on it and song or say something…usually quite funny!

This week Austin got up there to sing a song about our new campervan…damdam!!!  I think it also has elements of wheels on the bus…think he says all day long at some point!! 

I love the bit at the end where Caitlin cheers and claps and Austin goes yay…to his audience!!!!!!!  He is very passionate about the damdam song…whatever it is he is saying!!!!!!!!


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A little local car show

I read on Facebook that there was a little car show 3 miles from our house, so I decided we’d go.  I also thought it might have some autojumble where we might find something useful for the new van!  Richard was working in the afternoon so we took both cars.  I had a vague idea where it was so I’d gone first with Noah and Richard, Caitlin & Austin followed.  I saw a sign for the show, pulled in and paid the lady for us and the car behind (Richard), I then set off down the drive.  I looked in my rearview mirror and Richard had vanished!!!  So I reversed back and asked the people on the gate where the car behind had gone??!!  She replied..”oh he’s gone in the public entrance”….I looked really confused and so she then said..”you’re exhibiting”….  I had no idea I was exhibiting but because I was in Elvis they had just assumed I had come to exhibit…whereas Richard in JapTaxi had been sent away!  Very funny…so I exhibited!! 

Although not so great was that it was raining and very small!!  But I felt obliged to stay for a while….in the end we stayed for about 4 hours somehow!  They spent quite a while sitting in an MX-5

The man was really nice letting them press the horn and open and shut the doors…we weren’t as pleased cos we were convinced they were going to break something!!

We also entered the raffle but lucky Noah let us down and he didn’t win!  He has won 2 things recently!

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A new addition to the family!!

For years and years and years we have loved campervans (and beetles) but have never really had the room for one.  When we’d been to Tatton for VW Northwest we’d noticed how expensive they are getting…a complete rust bucket of a split screen was selling for £20,000…nice ones were going for over £30,000.  We saw a nice orange camper for £9,000 which had no insides!!  So on we went with our usual…we want a camper thoughts..but not getting one.  Earlier this week Richard discovered the orange one belonged to someone he worked for and it hadn’t sold.  That got us thinking that maybe we could get it….after all yes it was £9,000…but it is solid!…but it has no insides!!  But they are getting more and more expensive each year so we wouldn’t lose money.  We decided to compare on ebay to see what they were going for.  Richard spotted a grey one which was only at £4,000 so we decided an interior couldn’t be more than £5,000 so we’d have a go!  It was due to end that night so we put a daft low bid on.  I completely expected to get outbid…but we didn’t!!!!!!!!!  And so without seeing it…or even really thinking that hard about it…we’ve bought this…..

It has 12 months MOT and looks good…and everyone says we got a bargain at just under £5,000 for it!  We collect it next week so more photos and the story of of trip home, which will no doubt be a saga, next week!!!

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Imprisoned in the garden/kitchen!

Sooo while Caitlin and Noah were busy at sports (non)camp…I decided to give potty training a try!  Deep down I knew Austin was ready…he regualrly wee’s on the potty and has done a few poo’s….but I was dreading it!  I had no idea how he was going to tell me he needed to go!!

So on Wednesday I explained to him I was taking his nappy off and he would have to use the potty or toilet…he said yes then no just like he often does!  I had no idea if he understood or not so we camped out in the garden and kitchen where any accidents could be cleaned up easily!  The first hour was good…he did loads of wee’s on the potty and got lots of sweets.  I’d decided to reward him with sweets because he really loves sweets and so I knew it would be a big incentive!  The  it all went wrong!  He had 3 or 4 accidents in a row!  It was obviously really hard on him because he then fell asleep standing up in the kitchen…so I put a pull up on him and put him to bed.  When he woke up the pull up was dry and he then lasted until 10pm (it was mini club night so we went out) with no accidents!!

Thursday we got up and he had one minor accident where he started to wee then realised, stopped and got to the potty….

Friday he had one accident, again where he was busy playing then started to wee but realised and got himself to the potty.

I’m amazed with his progress, I really thought I had misjudged the situation and he wasn’t ready, but it would seem he is!  He can say potty and seems to say that if he needs to go.  The proper test will be over the weekend where the distraction of Caitlin and Noah are there and I have other things to deal with…..fingers crossed!


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Sports week

This week Caitlin and Noah have been to a multisports week.  I’ve never signed them up for one of these before because I kind of think since I don’t work it’s a bit lazy to send them, but then I decided to give it a try because everyone else seems to have such a good time.  I was torn between multisports and trampolining but went for multisports.  I had mistakenly called it sports camp so there was initial disappointment when they realised they weren’t camping!!!!!!!

Austin really missed them and spent the while time saying football as that’s where Noah had told him he was going!  Caitlin and Noah have had a great time.  They have had a try at all kinds of sports….basketball, tennis, gymnastics, football, hockey and loads of games.  Then half way through the week they got to go trampolining as well so they were really chuffed.

On the last day they all got a certificate so we went to watch them get that….

I think the highlight of the week for Caitlin was meeting a boy called Gabriel who apparently she is going to marry!!!!!!  But not to worry they’re not getting married until they are 18!!!!!!!!!!

The highlight for Noah was either football or finding some money on the floor and getting to use the vending machine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The highlight for Austin is it is over and he get’s his 2 best friends back!!

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Circus stars reading challenge

At the beginning of the holiday Caitlin joined the circus stars reading challenge at the library.  She had to read 6 books, after the first 2 she got a yoyo and some stickers, after books 3 & 4 she got a bracelet and more stickers and after the 5th and 6th she got a certificate and medal!!!

She has loved doing the reading challenge, her reading is improving so much.  She tries to read everything while we are out and gets most words (apart from really daft ones which English has an awful lot of!!) and can read all of our baby books to Austin!  She mainly borrowed the Usborne early reader books and really loved them.

Noah was gutted because only children in primary school could join the challenge, but he borrowed some books as well just didn’t get a certificate at the end.

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A bit of gardening

The kids were at Nanny’s and we were supposed to be decorating the stairs and landing.  While I was waiting for Richard to come home from work I made a start on assembling our climbing frame!  So when Richard was home we decided to finish that off then move onto the decorating!

The weather was really nice and once the climbing frame was up we decide to just carry on in the garden and make it a bit safer for when they got back.  Richard made a brick patio bit in front of the decking so that they didn’t have to walk through a muddy bit before the grass…  Then he started on a path down the side of the grass, we repotted some of the veg and cleared a load of rubbish.

They absolutely loved the climbing frame and so have their friends who have been around to play on it.  I didn’t really get a good photo of the bits of the garden that Richard has done…’s the brick patio though!

There’s still quite a bit to do but it is getting there!!  We do have a gate so it’s secure and grass so they can play out there…the boarders will come in about a million green bin cycles!! All of that greenery to the right of the climbing frame needs to go in the bin and there is a similar pile (maybe bigger!!!) to the left!  We fill our bin and our neighbours every week and have done for months!!! It is slowly going down!

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Ainsdale…another tick for the list!

At the beginning of the summer holidays we all made a list if the things we wanted to do over the holidays.  It included things like farm, visiting Nan and Nanny, library, museum, beach etc!  We have managed to do most things on the list which was a great idea of my friends, maybe an even better idea once they are older and mind more what they do.

Today we ticked off the beach!  We haven’t been to Ainsdale for ages, it’s a lovely beach…quite quiet but very clean and big.  We went with Nanny and Amy.  We’d planned it weeks ago with no idea what the weather would be doing, in fact the day before was pretty miserable and wet.  It looked bright’ish so we set off.  As we arrived it seemed to have really brightened up and they were fine in just shorts and t-shirts!

We had spare clothes (and warm clothes just incase) but I realised I had forgotten a spare nappy for Austin so we tried to keep his dry…but after a while it was obvious that wasn’t going to work….

…so we gave up!  They loved paddling in the sea with Nanny and building sandcastles…..

…and eating very sandy cakes….until Noah decided to try to bury Austin with sand!

Austin was not in the slightest bit happy about getting sand on his t-shirt, although he hadn’t cared he had it all over his legs and hands and that all of his clothes were soaked!!!  We had been there a while by then and it had got a bit cloudy and so a bit colder so we decided to go.

I got Austin to go to the toilet and then we set off to Nanny’s which was an hour drive, nappy-less!!!….he managed to wait until we got there to go to the toilet again so disaster was averted!!!  And I suppose potty training is on the cards..but I’m not sure how you do that with someone who can’t speak!! 

The kids then stayed with Nanny and I came home…..

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Austin had an appointment today with the speech and language therapist (SALT).  She did a few assessments on him and observed him for a while….  She agree’s that his speech is behind but he seems to understand ok so she thinks he doesn’t have a major problem that needs addressing, but he does need some help.  She has signed us up for some classes that we should be starting in the next month or so. 

He was a bit of a cheeky monster while she was assessing him!  They test to see if you can put 2 words together in your mind…by giving 2 part commands like – put the cat in the cup, or put the man on the slide.  He got the first 2 of these correct but then the 3rd he got wrong but kind of clarified that he had it wrong!!!  She had asked to put the pig on the table but he put the horse there…and then said horse!  Showing that he knew it was a horse and implying he was aware it wasn’t the horse she asked for!!!!!!!!  He did this for the 3 word commands – the man is jumping on the slide….he put the man on the slide but asleep and said sleep!!  For the ones he did correctly he didn’t say anything at all just did them!!!  He is so cheeky!  This also suggests maybe he doesn’t speak because he can’t be bothered but that really doesn’t make sense on the occasions when he gets really mad because you don’t know what he wants!  I suppose it’ll just remain a mystery!!!  And one day he will talk enough to have a conversation with!!!!!!!!!

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I got a deal on a website for 75% discount on a ticket for Gauntlet, a bird of prey centre near by.  It worked out £5 for me and the kids and that also got another child and her mum in too which was a bargain so we got it.

We got to see loads of birds of prey but it was a bit odd because they are all just tethered to a branch which seems a bit cruel.  During the feeding of the vultures the man assured us they all get flown and are happy tethered but I’m still not sure!  Anyway, they have passports that they give to the kids and they have to find the stamps as they visit each bird and when they hand in a completed passport they get some sweets!  I think this was the highlight for all of them!!!!  Although Caitlin was quite taken by a little owl that she thought was very cute….

The flying display was really good, the birds really get close to you…this very blurry photo shows how close!

They also wander around by your feet.  Noah seemed oblivious to the vulture about to walk by him but you can just see Austin looking over.   Austin was very excited by the birds flying around him which surprised me as he’s normally scared to death of animals close to him!

Gauntlet was good but I’m not sure the kids loved it enough to pay the full entry (although I’m sure those birds aren’t cheap).  We were only there about 2 hours and then we went to a park for a bit of a play…..

…and daredevil Austin set to work scaring people!!

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