Saturday, 28 June 2008

Seb Learns to Ride a Bike.......

......finally. the stabilizers (training wheels) have come off at my insistence and over the last couple of evenings we have taken Sebastian out to master the art of riding a bicycle, an important life skill that you never forget (or so I'm told).

And he's done it!

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Dancing with Matt

Not entirely sure who this guy is or what he is doing dancing around the wolrd but I love the videos! Even the outakes are good!

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

This book caught me completely off guard. A few months back one of the mums at school had said to me she was reading a book which she thought I would love. It was set in Germany during the second World War (at which point my attention waned) and it is told from the perspective of death (at which point I wondered what this woman thought of me if she thought I would love this book).

But then I kept hearing snippets about it and the premise intrigued me.

It is indeed set in Molching, Germany just outside of Munich and not far from Dachau and the concentration camps and extermination ovens. It is indeed narrated by death but death is not something to fear. It is rather a compassionate and extraordinarily compassionate task master who needs to take each of us off to the inevitable end regardless of how we lived our life.

The story centres on Liesel Meminger, a young girl who lives her young life in these tumultuous times whilst her father brings home a Jew to hide in the basement and her blond haired blue eyed neighbour boy develops a crash on her. She loves to read and steals books to read to herself, to the Jew, to the people hiding in the bomb shelter as the adults around her wreck havoc.

In the end she is all that is left. The Fuhrer is dead, her parents have been killed by the Allied bombing, the neighbour boy is dead. The Jew returns to her and gives her the strength to carry on. She marries and has children, grand children and death comes to take her away.

This is a beautiful and sublime book. I love the characters, each and everyone of them are elegantly depicted. The weaving of the story in and out of inhumane and humour is exquisite.

I highly recommend this book. Pick this up just as soon as you can.

Editor's Note: pages 550

Olympic Gold

After sports day and the swimming galas I can now confirm that it is extraordinarily doubtful that either of my children will be winning any Olympic gold on behalf of either the UK or USA. Abigail ran every race with her tongue out. Seb waved at every one as he sauntered past oblivious to the fact that this was a race.

At the swimming gala Abigail was having fun playing whilst Sebastian had to use a float for every stroke other than the normal stroke where he finished after several minutes.....he climbed out of the water exhausted. Luckily, all of his classmates were chanting his name so I am hoping that he won't be permanently emotionally scarred as a result of his lack of physical prowess.

Click on the photo below to get a complete photo montage of the swimming galas.


Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Once Upon a Time

St George's School presented a series of traditional children's stories for the PrePrep Entertainment. Sebastian starred as the Gingerbread Man in a costume designed and made by Auntie Mary. He was a star! Click on the photo to see a slideshow of the entire photo collection.


StG Sports Day Extravanganza 2008

Click on the Photo below for a photographic montage of the glorious Sports Day 2008!



My hat for Ascot this year was extra special. My dress was far too big so I told the shop I needed a hat which would ensure no one noticed how big the dress was. I think they succeeded. I loved it!

Thursday, 12 June 2008

Sponsor Me

I'm running in the Running4Women 8k in September and raising money for breast cancer research. Please be generous and support this worthy and relevant cause. Just click below.

Monday, 9 June 2008

Break Down

We had an off the scale busy weekend.

Friday evening was the Old Windsor Donkey Derby.

Saturday I dropped Abigail off at Football Camp. Marc went to help build the Beaver Scout float (theme Lapland - don't ask!). I sewed Sebastian's elf shoes and hat. I picked Abigail up at Fottball Camp. Marc dropped me off at the Scout Burger stall at the Old Windsor Carnival where I served up hamburgers, cheeseburgers, hot dogs, and chips ( US= french fries) for 2 hours despite it being the last day of my diet. He then dropped Sebastian (aka Elf) at the float before the start of the parade. When my shift was over we ran across the village green to catch the end of the parade and saw my little elf.

On Sunday morning I went to my last diet group meeting and came home to pick up the family to take a quick trip into London. We had thousands of things to do as we headed home when the car stalled at a busy intersection in Central London. We waited for nearly 5 hours for the recovery truck to show up to tow our car and transport us home by which time it was far too late to do even 1 of the thousand things.

Boy was I glad just to be home!

PS: See the sick car behind us on the tow!!

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Sick Angel

My little princess was on her way to her ballet lesson this afternoon when she vomited all over her little ballet skirt. She vomited all the way home in Daddy's car into her dance bag (glad it wasn't my car). She had a nice warm bath and has been having the dry heaves on and off all evening and is feeling pretty sorry for herself. Poor little girl.

Monday, 2 June 2008

Strictly Come Dancing

Sebastian had a themed birthday party on Saturday: Strictly Come Dancing.

He had been excited from the moment he got the invitation. He designed his own costume and practiced his dance moves. I messed up with the costume because I couldn't find a red satin shirt. We settled for a white satin shirt after the fourth dance shop let us down.

But he came up trumps with his dance moves and even won a prize at the party.

The girls are still talking about what an amazing dancer he is! Guess those ballet lessons are paying off.

Check him out!

Mac Convert

For Christmas last year, my husband gave me a mini Mac. I loved the idea of it. I loved the look of it. I hated using it.

I complained here on my blog. I complained to colleagues who were Mac converts and I persisted.

I've spent quite a bit of time using it and therein is the secret to using the Mac. I've figured out shortcuts and the text editor offers far richer features. The machine is far more stable than my other pc. Firefox actually remembers my passwords when I tell it to. The predictive text consistently works.

I haven't by any stretch of the imagination used the Mac as much as I should but that is due to demands on my time to do other things. we still keep all of our photos on the pc and with our photos are our videos. this means it is a bit of a fiddle to get the videos over to the Mac and edit them. I'm still trying to find the time to edit the video from Sebastian's performance of The Sound of Music. But first I have to figure out how to get it over to the Mac.

This would all be solved if we had a file server but again, Marc has been unable to carve out some time to set it up. My verdict is a definite thumbs up!

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Crime Statistics

If you are in the USA, depending on where you live, SpotCrime can be either incredibly frightening or a soothing reassurance. Could come in handy when considering where to buy a home or send your children to school. Word of warning, I've heard the data can be a bit unrealiable. But interesting nonetheless.

If you are in the UK, tough. This data is not released to the public. Do you smell a conspiracy?