we started with the village lights display and mince pies out by the crossroads, and the brass band playing carols. all very festive. SB struggling to keep up with the gcse workload, and me feeling like the not-mother from tangled nagging and moaning at her. at least i really do love her! i just know how time just seems endless and then disappears when you are working for exams! both girls completed their secret santas – which i didn;t take pictures of :( . BB got terraria for her computer, and has been fixated playing that!

wednesday we did have a wed ed, and have moved on to chromosomes and genetics for science, so this time we extracted some of our own DNA and answered a few questions about its structure and how it works. Since biology is a common igcse for home ed kids to do, i have been slowly working my way through experiments around lots of the subjects at gcse level, using a variety of sources. the kids might even remember some of them if i am lucky ;) , tho we have been doing this over a 3 year period on and off.

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k did some work on a new artist- klimt – and did some tree of life designs. they all looked very beautiful. we missed em and music, tho played games instead.

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multisports , clarinet and french on thurs and dh only made it to wild place on friday whilst sb caught up on classical civ work. sb also dyed her hair with a semi permanent blue. it looked really good! she has also had a fringe cut, and this really changes the shape of her face, and i have several times not quite realised it is her! cake making for christmas camp also happened.

saturday tho we went shopping into town :) . I had promised the girls a christmas shop, and am attempting to do high street and local sellers predominantly for xmas and avoid the big A due to tax avoidance and workers on zero hours contracts. we had a fab day :) got lots of shopping done, no fussing or whining, easy food options found and generally were very happy :). SB did buy herself something already bought on the xmas list – argh! and BB did buy herself another cuddley…

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a great day, thankyou girls :) I think we could do this every year :)

Oh dear, I got to a blah moment, stopped blogging, and here I am, weeks behind again. So in this time, what has happened? well, SB continues working on classical civ, french and also ran biology and geography! not doing quite as much clarinet as i would like as her exam coming up. we are sort of hanging on with doing maths, but all other things seem to not be happening. this is in part as some she only does with me, and so many evenings she is out from when i come home until her bedtime at cadets or judo [2 and 1 eves] and done lots of cadet things at the weekends, including a really interesting communication day. She is really getting a lot from cadets and has applied for their marching band thing, so that is all really positive [even if ginormous time commitment] and she is also now good at ironing and polishing shoes! I am consciously not worrying about slippage of timetable on geog and biol [am i kidding anyone?]

BB has ground to a halt home ed wise. it is difficult sometimes to maintain momentum, and i am perpetually busy at working, and DH is still finding his feet after the loss of his dad. She is doing lots of reading, drawing, lego and minecraft/terraria. she is also writing most days into a diary and when reminded, doing piano and maths. Oh dear.

However, we have done some trips and joint things!

One trip was a daytrip into London to the cartoon museum. they looked around hogarth answering some questions and then moved on to making their own charicature cartoon person, helped by someone dh thought was your ultimate archetypal cartoonist! both girls very much enjoyed it, and got a lot from the session. they then went on to the british museum before coming home, having had a fab day.

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as usual, multisports and conservation group also happened. I think on the weds we did a working hard home ed day!

at the weekend though it was tree decoration and making secret santa time! for te tree dec, bb pretended to be a bauble shop, sb was the interior designer and i was the buyer. it was quite fun :) . for my secret santa, i upcycled a 7 up bottle and then filled it with a spicy seed mix.

 

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sunday we went to see murmurations, and did actually get to see them too!! [tho quite dark] we went to the rspb reserve with the manor borns and did a very muddy walk first! and saw not a lot from the hide either! m and i had a good old talk as we went round,a s not seen each other for ages. C and SB also had a good natter and BB was remarkably happy dancing between the 2 of us! DH and M bringing up the rear. We nearly missed the murmurations as it was getting so dark most people had gone home. i wish the sky had been less cloudy so we could have seen them better tho. home for a meal and more chat.

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in discussing BB’s birthday with a work colleague, he still admitted that he couldnt see what a girl would get out of minecraft. after all, what would they do on it? i rolled my eyes and called him out on it, but he couldn’t get past that point. Good thing i didn’t show him this picture, where I seem to have caught an only boys with BB moment!

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But it wasn’t like that for much/most of the time, with the girls joining in, partic R when she arrived and also L and M. the boys are in the preponderance tho. But they play together, make stuff together, look for stuff together and get interactive. loved all the headphones tho as they are talking to each other! It was the quietest party ever!!

Older siblings and adults met and chatted in other areas. Some games playing and just chatting really. we were lucky that nanna could come with cousin L as well.

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we had birthday cake, lots of yummy food, and chatted on into the night. was lovely so many could come, and it worked really well :) happy 10th birthday BB!

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honestly! i am soooo tired! I spent most of last week at a conference in the city, returning to do weds4ed on the wednesday. then the rest was party prep for the weekend. so blogging took a back seat. as did nagging! therefore no ticksheets were completed and pretty much no bookwork home ed :( argh! oh well, a week off is sometimes required.

so what did happen?

SB had arts award [bronze] on the tues pm, getting herself there and back by bus as she is more independantly minded. she is doing something photography related, and i am hoping she is independently getting on with that! Her pictures were looked at, and ok, and she has homework to research an artist. probably one with a photographic interest.

weds was are weds4ed, where we finished off the degas modroc, which look fab, some fun science and also board games and minecraft

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also a very long judo, and BB had her judo grading in the seond half, so a full 2 hours for her, and she was exhausted! She did get her next belt though, which is her yellow belt, so very happy :)

thursday and clarinet lesson was cancelled, which was unfortunate as SB’s grade 4 clarinet exam is soon. However, she is sounding good, so should be OK :) there was also multisports, so a great opportunity to meet friends and get muddy. there are quite a lot of teens/older kids there now, which makes SB happy. So it is a good group.

Thursday was also BB’s birthday :) hooray :) she got some lovely presents and was particularly happy to have got a 3ds from my mum :) and some games from us. Even more lovely, was that Josie from patch of puddles came for a sleepover to enjoy birthday cake and go to cubs as a friend. BB was really excited about that and they had a lovely time. BB had a wobble on the return about sleeping arrangements but was all settled and the girls happily watched malificent with icecream.

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Friday was french lesson for SB as she is working towards her igcse then conservation group. After this josie was exhausted and went home. we then got ready to party party with sorting out the dining room for the influx of computers, and some baking for party food. I guess I might do the weekend as a separate post.

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You can see sb new sticker one!? [there is a star missing for igcse chem, and also an extra classical civ so 33, would really have liked another piano prac and some music theory in there!] . BB also did a fairly good week with 22 things, and really moving on with the English.

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We haven’t weighed him for a while but clear he enjoyed his summer in the greenhouse and garden and put on a fair bit of weight this year. 353g, but not as much as he initially gained, so think growing nicely along his curve :)

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SB started with the christmas cake yesterday, soaking the fruit. Today she made it according to st delia – 5 hours in the oven! we all had a stir and made a wish since we aren’t making a christmas pud. certainly the smells were wonderful :)

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Today she also made a start on her arts award. she has decided to redo bronze and submit it this time :roll: but do photography, with a theme of movement. We had a bit of a brainstorm on different ways to do photos, show movement, looking at a variety of sources for ideas. However, she isn’t used to using an slr camera at all, so today was all about using the slr and getting some movement photos whilst laughing with BB in the garden.

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Still focussing on our igcse prep, and SB did all but classical civ today. SHe has had some feedback from the classical civ tutor. He was pleased that she is good at handing in all her work, and her short answers are fine. However she needs to work on spelling [this is going to be tricky] and putting more detail and maybe pictures etc in her longer answers. Things DH and I had suggested [cf prev post thinking about scaffolding] She has already done her next classical civ work tho, so will put into practice the time after. She is really loving doing this with C tho :) . also did some clarinet prac and then some piano with me. so a good day of both work and fun.

BB did her home ed without fuss today, even the english! She has finised her science workbook on animals and plants, which she had enjoyed doing. SHe and i did the animal care today, sorting out rabbits and tortoise and we had snuggles and giggles. At judo she has been asked to tie her hair back… so today I cut her hair. Always tricky as she is a bit of a moving target! Result is not to bad, and luckilly her hair has some bounce to it, so the straightline not so critical!!!  we did piano together.

Off and on we caught up with the  Rosetta/Philae space rendevous with the comet. BB wanted a joss stick holder, so i made one comet shaped to commemorate the event. SB was slightly down mouthed, so I made her a joss stick holder too. SHe is totally out of the pink girlie phase, and asked for skulls and hearts! goth it is then ;) .

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so BB and SB have last practice judo before grading, and we are now sitting watching masterchef before bedtime.

still putting the work in, as hoping the room will be functional for xmas! at this stage it is all about the fittings! DH has put in some better wiring [he is good at electrics] and so at last we have light in the dining room! 2 lights in fact from the ceiling so we can see – hoorah! He has also been working in the loft for lighting for the bedroom. Also he has put in a soil pipe from where the toilet was to going through into our box room which will one day be another diy project turning into an en suite! So, it is still moving on!

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as well as the bathroom to bedroom conversion, DH has had time to winterise the bunny palace. Not completely, but it is looking good. When we upgraded it, we used aviary panels for a full height ‘yard’ of 6ft x 6ft attached onto the 2 story hutch. currently every day they get taken out to a 6 by 4 run on the lawn to nibble. We have taken the advice of rabbit welfare, and a hutch is not enough to try and get it right. our double hutch isn’t quite to their sizing, so preparing for winter, we are hoping to make most of the yard run useable. In it we have another ‘secure’ area – it is a bench for us to sit on [or them to hop up onto] with all 4 sides closed, and a rabbity entrance. it is snug inside with hay. our aviary roof has polycarbonate on half, and currently mesh with a plastic waterproof top on the other half, tho considering polycarb there too. the mesh between hutch and roof is also covered with polycarb as is also the whole side next to the wendy house, and the single panel on the door side. this is leaving enough uncovered for fresh air to go through on the least exposed side. hopefully tho this will take the edge off wintry cold, as well as stopping most of the rain [snow] getting in. We will double layer the hutch when it gets colder [draping over the defunct paddling pool making an air trap] so with loads of hay should be snuggly, and the bench tempting us to sit and take a while. Later plans are fencing off the wendy house area for the grassy run for next summer…

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hopefully that will be good for the buns over winter. will move the water bottles so they are more sheltered too. [we always have a minimum of 2 bottles to make sure that even if one fails and leaks, the rabs will always have water.] and if it is a truly terrible winter, we will move them into the conservatory, like we have done before.

 

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