Monthly Archives: March 2012

The Weekly Round Up….Yeee-Haaaaw!!!


So the week has had it’s ups and downs, early mornings (and I mean early!!!) late nights, troubled sleep, tired grumpy people, laughter, tears, shouts, wails, moans, groans, games, fun, heartache and more!  But all that aside we’ve got lots to show for the week both inside and out.

I have found that the only effective strategy with Ot is to sit with him-and keep him focused and help him stay on track…he is very good at going of on a number of tangents…starting off with the meaning of sum and ending on why there are ducks!  So we’ll try this.  B seems to love stickers at the moment and whilst it isn’t particularly a direction I’d choose-I’ll try anything!


Sunday was a beautiful day and we had fun in the garden, cleaning up the soon to be Guinnea Pig Palace, DH made dinner and Lemon tart (yum!)

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Swinging fun!

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Lemon Tart!

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Looking after the tadpoles

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Playing football…

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A quick bit of light relief after all that cooking!

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On Monday we went to Conkers with Aunty S and met up with a group of HEers.

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Playing in the water

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Going on the barefoot walk-Ot did oh so love the squelchy mud!

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On COnckachoo over to the amphitheatre to have lunch.  Tig is looking after A in the front seat.

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An impromptu performance or two during lunch

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B desperately wanted to go and find a den so we headed there for 20 minutes or so then to the play park.

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Tiger went with A&G and L,F,A,&E on the big assault course and we went with JD &R on a few of the easier ones for B.

We finished off with ice-creams.  It was a lot of driving picking up and dropping off Aunty S and then heading to Ikea for Tclub stuff but a lovely day.


Tuesday was ancient Greeks at Tuesday Club.  Well once I’d gone back to get the keys which had fallen on the stairs…loose key ring!!!!

There was lots to do.  We all made hoptolite shields and Band Tig made honey cakes.  Tig also made a laurel wreath.

Both Tig and B had a go at smelling the different plants and creating their own perfume for the amphora in the garden.

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Everyone seemed to enjoy mosaicing.  It would be great to do a big one with everyone!

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B’s mosaic frame

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Stories on the grass-we did Pandora and made hope (or other) butterflies and after the feast kind Midas with hunting for gold and finally a marathon!

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Wednesday was a difficult day, lack of sleep, early early morning for Ot (4am) meant we didn’t get to GO kids and stayed in :0(

Thursday was much better.  Tig was super focused on getting things done and had his morning jobs done by 9, Ot by half past :0)  B was being super good at listening and we did some doctor playing, some sight words and breakfast.

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Tig has def got the hand of inserting pictures into his blog and used the models he built to create the starts of a story in an imaginary system of planets, each with one inhabitant for a different element (based on Lego hero/bionicles I think-possibly totally plagiarised but he was writing happily and that’s brilliant!)


After that we did some science-I challenged the guys to keep their ice lollies frozen (as cold as possible) for 30 minutes before they could eat them, with them being placed on a sunny windowsill…they had tea towels, napkins, foil, a cup, salt, ice, water (because that’s what I could grab easily!).

Some interesting discussions about layers and using the water ice and salt to add an impurity and make the temperature bellow 0 (remembered that one from ages ago) plus padding the bottom so that the heat couldn’t get in there.  I hinted at the idea that insulation like in the house would help stop the temperature form changing…interesting talking to Tig about the a metal and wooden box to keep an ice-lolly frozen and coffee warm-talked through the misconception there and he seemed to grasp.  We also looked at conductors, predicting the best and worst conductors of heat with the old butter on spoons made of 3 different materials experiment…great excitement as the butter started to melt!

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There was some playing, in the garden, Lego, stickle bricks, model making, transformers, note writing dinner and more playing….then we did some art…..


I sat with TIg and we did some contour drawings together then created a cactus outline, used some wet in wet techniques…B came over and wanted to do one so we did and then Tigs was dry so we did the outline in black oil pastel, used the oil resist properties to de a background with black water colours carefully.  B had a bit of help and I also worked with Ot whilst B’s was drying…Ot was not as enthusiastic as B and TIg but was very pleased with the end results….


Ben painting his wet in wet and sprinkling salt to try out creating patterns

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Mine and TIg’s at the drying stage

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Tig and Ot adding the black watercolour background as the final step

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Finished and up on the wall…..Ot, Mommy, TIg, Ben form Left to right.

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Our art wall


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Our butterflies from Tuesday-Ot felt ‘left out’ because he hadn’t done one so he made his at home….Ot, Ben, Tig from Left to right.

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Ot made some Titanic and other ship models for in the bath…..

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A Science Day


So, we got stuck into jobs this morning Tig was trying really hard to get on but there were still huge periods of distraction however, things got done and there was still plenty of time to follow whatever was interesting them too.

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B did some weighing, I asked him to see if he could find something( s) that weighed exactly 10 large teddy bears in the balance scale and there was some great maths language and comparison going on and he did indeed solve the puzzle.

Whilst Ot and Tig were getting on with multiplication table practice and book maths B was doing some threading and whilst I was helping Ot stay focused on his 4 digit numbers and place value stuff we had a go at one more and one less, adding on to our cotton reel string and using the numbers on the fridge…def. one to continue.

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Ot was really pleased yesterday that he had finished his maths book and started a new one today and started in looking at 4 digit numbers.  I think that he did fabulously but making some more numbers in deans would be good practice as he has whizzed through the years maths work so I think some consolidation is needed.  I noticed in the reviews that problem solving could do with some more as could counting on-really it’s more presentation than maths I think as he tries to do it all mentally so as not to write!

Tig has been getting stuck into measuring and drawing angles….this is tricky for him and he is persevering, a bit more practice would be a good idea….just need to think of a fun way to do it!

Both the boys did their blogs, here and here, today I asked that they blog about the science experiment we did…acids, alkalis and indicator.

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All three of the boys chose a range of substances and we talked about how clear substances or light colours made it easier to see the colour of the indicator.  We also talked (particularly with Tig) about making solutions to test…showed with soda crystals that the crystals looked green/blue but adding water helped to see the colour purple.

By the end they had got the terminology of acid and alkali and the general colour idea linked to both.  Interestingly Ot thought vinegar was a base (alkali) although remembered once he had tested.

They all enjoyed the make a neutral solution challenge.  B was getting the hand of only 3 drops of indicator with the dropper but did squirt too much in on occasion!

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I remembered some calcium citrate tablets so we stuck them in lemonade as we know our teeth have calcium in to see what would happen-definitely made an impact on Ot about teeth cleaning to see the calcium fizzing and being eaten away!

We had left our bubble solution overnight to mature and whilst Ot was playing on the computer B and Tig and I headed into the garden to have a play (Ot often comes and joins us as he did later on).  the bubble blowing tool was fab and really helped to make huge bubbles…

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If you look closely following a line from the trampoline pole on the left up you can see one bubble floating off….some were really cool with rainbows, morphing and splitting and B did love to pop them.  We created a game with rules (to keep me happy so I didn’t;t feel sad that my bubbles were all getting popped).  the boys waited by the patio doors until they counted 3 bubbles that I had blown then they could race in and pop!  great fun and good for tiring B out too!

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I discovered a setting on my camera I had never noticed before, panorama…cool!Giant Bubble blowing 22 3 12 2012-03-22 007

We had lunch, Tig did lots of Lego building, Ot did Robloxing and Virtual sailing plus some radar looking; B did quite a bit of dressing up today-sharing was a bit of an issue with trains and he really seems to be frustrated with waiting, sharing me and generally a bit difficult!  However, the terrible fours are common ground as both of the boys have been at their most difficult around 4.

When Ot’s computer told him it was time to stop (I set parental controls up with some time limiting elements as playing all day and not moving just didn’t seem healthy and wasn’t showing any signs of abating after nearly 2 months)  He still has heaps of time (much more that I would like) but there are some clear 2-3 hour breaks between sessions.  Anyway, when it was time for a break we sat down and talked about molecules, solids, liquids, gases, changes, and forces on objects…he had a pretty good grasp although some exposure to more examples which are signposted for him would be good.

Next we all read a bit about Athena and made clay owls which was fun (we listened to some more story of the world earlier too!)

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I only managed to get Tig working on his as I was covered in clay too!  B made his fly (wings sticking out) and Ot’s is 1st in this pic.  Very cute and fun-did some good showing how to join and talking about pushes/pulls with B.

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Bed time was painless, although late and DH has put live writer on my computer-at last so it works….he’s a genius and it’s so great to use!!!!  Off to work tomorrow, sports relief day….I don’t have decent trainers or a t-shirt or joggers so will look like a wreck!  All in all a productive day.

Mid March Update


Well, it’s continued to be a busy month….so far!

We had great fun with bubbles and water at Tuesday club


The W’s came to visit and we made pizza together, played, went for a walk along the canal and common and found tadpoles!





Our new chicken house arrived, was erected and had some new additions on Mother’s day!

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We have been reading some Greek myths together and painting/drawing in response (or linked to).

We read pandoras box and had an interesting discussion about what would be in tte box, their colours and shapes then practiced drawing 3D boxes in pencil and followed up by creating our own box watercolour using wet in wet to create the escaping bad things and hope.

There has been some binder making (mainly Tig and B)



B has been enjoying doing some wet in wet painting, more colour mixing (he loves to make purple) and I’ve been encouraging him to make stripes and to put colours next to each other and watch them mix which he has enjoyed lots.




We have been listening to lots of story of the world, and I’m about to suggest some more!  We’ve got as far as the Ancient Greeks and the story of Theseus and the minotaur…We completed the Greek pocket as a bit of reminder but we need some more meat to this bit I think, however the pockets are providing very useful cutting and colouring practice (cutting for Tig and colouring for Ot).  Plus B loves making them :0)


We have been struggling with our daily jobs…they seem to stretch into the whole day which is becoming a bit of a pain and a drag for me so trying to think of some options there!


We did a collaborative painting inspired by aboriginal dot paintings (ideas from here).



We visited Birches Valley last week with E, played on the park, walked around the trail (or as far as the Den bit anyway.  Fairy thicket was a big hit with the boys, especially Elliot.  Den building was great fun-bizzarely ELliot, who moaned incessantly, is desperate to go back and play in the den!  A great place and worth a lot of exploring!

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We went to the Big Bang Science Fair on Saturday, which was fab!  Lots to see and do, Ot and B were perhaps a bit little for lots, but still enjoyed it.  Tig made a balloon car, Ot made a hoopla thrower, everyone made some LED’s light up, Ot and Tig made some polymer worms, we found out what went into the colourings in smarties…def. go again but maybe just Tig or Tig and Ot…..we’ll have to see!

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There was heaps on offer at Tuesday Club this week, brains to make, smell pots and sensory experiments, flubber, scrap monster making, acids and alkalis, bubbles, making potions (colour mixing and fizzy stuff!) plus hunting for solids, liquids and gases…Tig really is confident with lots of the stuff we cover ELliot is missing out on chances to extend his understanding but in all honesty that’s easily pluggable and the playing, social side of things is great for him :0)

We went back to the W’s to play after (Tiger invited us!)  which was, as usual, good fun.

We have read Persephone’s story together and today we looked at different ways to paint trees (choosing their season linking to Persephone’s mom Demeter) trying out oil pastels. water colours and inks for the first time (including using cartridge pens) which was well received!









March Madness


Ok, ok so not all that mad but we are a week and a bit into March.  THe weather has been up and down but we have been having fun in the garden.

So far we have been to an RSPB day where we refreshed our understanding of the basics of plants, seed growth, life cycles and collected and made some plants.  We played some parachute games and bin grow.  For Ot and TIg it was just a refresher but Ben got a lot out of the day and learned new stuff.  Tig and Ot had a lovely day too :0)

At Tuesday club we continued to build on this with some more parachute games, decorating pots, making sun catchers (recycled of course), planting seeds, making wildflower bombs from paper mush and seeds, making salad flower pictures, planting mini alpine gardens and hunting for mini beasts in the garden.  We also managed to go swimming before hand and G came home for a lovely afternoon of playing and relaxing.

We had a day of cooking and baking.  Ot cooked breakfast for everyone and it was delicious, Ben and TIg cooked some biscuits, cakes and yummy millionaire shortbread (all of which have disappeared) and we made a mini history pocket about Ancient Mesopotamians!  It’s so fun listening to Ben saying Ziggurat and showing off his various pieces form inside!

TIg has been making some great Lego modles and playing with Bindeez (we have had to order more beads) and Ot has been having lots of Roblox fun-actually doing some building!

They have both been keeping up with their blogs-learning to embed hyperlinks.

Ot is keen to strt doing some game maker game programming so we need to hunt that out and make a start and Tig is keen to do some more animations (stop frame) this weekend.  Swimming lessons are starting back up after a Uni induced hiatus (no car) and our new chicken house has arrived and GRandad F is coming to stick it up with us tomorrow!!!!!

Our aim for the weekend is to get cracking with some of the projects the guys have wanted to start, sort out the chickens, makes some more sun catcher/butterfly feeders, clean out the chickens and hopefully get out somewhere on Sunday!!!

Where did February Go?


Ok, so I admit it, I have not been on top of blogging, not at all….I could blame it on not being able to use live writer anymore but life has been a bit busy!

There has been fun, learning, yelling, stropping, running, swimming, making, computing, gadget playing, cooking and heaps more.  I am bound to miss things out but here is a quick round up…

Egyptian day…took over my life and our holiday but everyone seemed to have a great time.  Archeological digs, games, making mummies, scarab beetles, videos, reattach, hieroglyphics, painting, stories and lots of fun!


Visiting the fire station-fantastic!  Walsall firestation were brilliant as was ‘fireman Sam’




We painted Tudor houses


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There has been lots of gadget playing!


Tiger’s birthday…



The cake……yummy!


So Tig is now 9!!!

We’ve had lots of fun at Tuesday club and we all went to gokidz go at the end of the month to have a birthday celebration for those who had birthdays in the month.

We went to see a musical number jacks which was enjoyed by all and Tig and Ot have started blogs.  There has been a big heap of lego making, including a great thank you animation and Ot is getting into building (a little) in ROblox so maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel!

B wants to read and we’re working on it but lots of games and emergent writing going on….I know I have forgotten heaps and so will try to be more diligent with blogging from now on!

Oh we tidied the garden and put up a new trampoline and we’re waiting for a new chicken house!