Back to school, back to reality

It has been a little while since the last update and for that I apologise but there are extenuating circumstances that will be hopefully become clear in the next few weeks. As an appetiser I thought I would do a quick update just to bring you up to speed with the current goings on at chez Bagnall.

September has started in a similar manner to how August ended for me, i.e. extremely busy at work.  It is the start of the football seasons and with new clients on board my department is busier than ever, so work has be leeching my time therefore any spare time has once again been directed at family rather that cyberspace and this website, which I am sure you will agree is a much better use of my time!

September is also the start of a new school year, Éowyn’s last at pre-school (Playbox) and, come January, Amélie’s first, the family is growing up!  In fact Éowyn is growing up as well as getting older.  She is about 3 feet 7 inches (108cm) which puts her about the 95th centile on the UK height chart and as such is rapidly growing out of her bed.  We bought her a cot bed when she was born that should last until she was 7 years old (according to the blurb).  However when Éowyn lies down, there is no longer a great deal of room for her toes.  With this is mind we are going to buy her a new bed in the next couple of months.  We are trying to decide whether to buy her a normal single bed, a bunk bed (for her and Amélie) or a cabin bed with storage underneath.  Since Éowyn is the one that is going to have to sleep in it (and probably from many years) we asked her for her input.  The conversation went something like this:

If you had a new bed, what kind of bed would you like?

Daddy, if I had a new bed I would like a monster bed.

What’s a monster bed?

It is made of bones, with skeleton heads and ghosties on it.

Sounds cool, but why do you want a bed like that?

So that when my friends come round they will see my bed and be scared.

It seems that unwittingly I am raising a goth, a Satanist or possibly an evil scientist or some combination of all three.  It could be possible that she is being influenced by her quasi-corporeal companion, for he is still around although I have not yet found out what he looks like.  Dizzy (as you may recall is his name) doesn’t sound like a particular nice character, for the other day he was scaring away all of her other ‘pretend friends‘ (as she calls them).  ‘How many pretend friends do you have?’ I asked.  ‘Hundreds’ she replied.  A very popular girl is our Éowyn.

Last weekend was my first weekend off since June and by some miracle the weather was glorious (a sign surely that the kids are back at school).  So we organised a picnic on Barnes common with friends of mine from university Andy and Máire and their children.  It was the first time that our two oldest girls (they were born within a couple of weeks of each other) had really had a chance to play with each other, for we do not meet up that often despite the fact that we do not live that far apart.  Considering they do not know each other they are still of an age where they do not have that reservation that older kids and adults have and just get on and play with each other.  Perhaps not bosom-buddy well and with half an eye their own possessions but nevertheless it was good to see them play together and even more so when we returned to Andy and Máire’s house and Éowyn and Amélie could really investigate other children’s toys.  We can all relate to that!

As I mentioned above, Wednesday, saw Éowyn’s first day back at pre-school for what will be her last years before starting school proper.  It was a family outing to take her to school on her first day.  Myself, Lucinda and Amélie all stood with Éowyn in playground waiting for the school doors to open.  As more and more of Éowyn’s friends turned up Éowyn left the three of us and ran off to play with her friends. Now, the games of three year olds can sometimes be a little incomprehensible to those that have left childish ways behind, but many of you will recognise the running around and screaming game.  At 08:55 this seems to be a very popular game in the school playground and Éowyn and her friends were thoroughly enjoying themselves.  Unfortunately, Amélie, does not know the rules of this game and did not seem to realise that it was actually a game and became defensive of her big sister.  So when Éowyn ran to the safety of Mommy and Daddy’s legs and strange children were chasing her and screaming Amélie got all aggressive, misinterpreting the game and hugged her big sister with all her strength shouting at the other children, ‘No! My Éowyn!‘  It was very cute to see such sororal love reaffirmed to both of us that we have less worries about sending Amélie to pre-school as we did when we first sent Éowyn.

With a new term came the realisation that both girls needed new shoes.  So a trip to Clarks was called for and the preparation of parting with a serious wodge of cash for something that they grow out of so quickly.  Nevertheless it is something that is obviously very important and not to be treated as a luxury moreover a necessity.  So we headed off to Kingston and one of the larger Clarks shoe shops in the area.  With hindsight probably not the best time to shop for children’s shoes.  The shoe department was overrun by people with the same idea.  We took our ticket and waited in line.  Éowyn and Amélie looked through the shows to see what styles they liked and Amélie tried on the biggest pair of shoes that she could find and wandered around the shop!  When it finally came our turn Éowyn measured a 10G and Amélie a 7F, both considerably bigger than their current footwear.  We indicated the styles that we liked and waited for the assistant to return with the shoes.  Not only did they not have the shoes that we wanted in either of the girls’ sizes, they didn’t have any shoes in those sizes.  None of the nearby shops had shoes in those sizes either – the school rush had obviously denuded the stock of children’s shoes in the vicinity.  So an order was placed and the girls will have to squeeze their feet in their current shoes for another week or so.

The family beckons so I will leave you here, with an apology for the paucity of photos below I promise to make amends in the next write up.

Peace and Love