Drip, drip, drop, little April Shower

After the glorious weather that greeted the end of March and the subsequent hose pipe bad that has been imposed on our corner of the world, the climate gods have once again shown their sense of irony and since that hose pipe ban has come into force it has rained everyday.  However, it is something us Bagnalls are used to and it does not stop us enjoying ourselves.

Since football stops for ne’er a bank holiday and indeed doth seem to multiple about these days I found myself working the Easter weekend.  However as those days are given in law to us UK citizens I moved them to the following weekend and ended up with a belated Easter at home with the family, beginning on the second Friday 13th of the year!  No sufferers of friggatriskaidekaphobia in this household, which is fortunate for there is one more left before the end of the year (in July if you are at all worried!).

Éowyn had been asking to visit the cinema again after her first visit back in February.  Aardman animations new feature length film: The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists! was playing the local picturehouse and she has seen the trailer and liked the look of it and I had seen the trailer and liked the looked of it and so the decision was easily made.  So 09:00 on Friday 13th April we headed off to Staines, a bag of pick ‘n’ mix and smuggled bottle of Fruit Shoot, two tickets and £17 lighter we took our seats.  Even though it was the end of the Easter school holidays there were but 15 people in the entire theatre.  I thoroughly enjoyed the film, for most of the jokes were aimed at the adults but Éowyn I think struggled with some of it and was a little scared at some of the scenes.  Although in fairness she is like that with films she knows well.  When I asked her about the film afterwards she did enjoy it and had followed the story throughout (and I always ask her to tell me the story of the films that we see so that it encourages her to remember the story and understand what was going on and why the characters did what they did – I am an evil father sometimes but I do think that there is learning to be had from every experience and by encouraging thought and asking questions is something we should all be encouraged to do).

After the cinema we met up with Lucinda and Amélie and booked our family holiday, an all inclusive resort in Tenerife.  Neither of us have been to Tenerife and the resort looked very child friendly and for the next few years that is what we will be looking for.  Although I am not really the kind of person that enjoys just sitting by the pool with a book, I like to be out and about exploring (although with my new Kindle 4 perhaps I will learn to appreciate the rest) and Tenerife seems to have a number of enticing venues, including the world’s third largest volcano.  Come back in a few months for our holiday report.

So that was day one of our belated Easter Weekend.  Day two was no less exciting.  Last year we discovered the delights of having a Merlin Pass and the fact that they can be purchased with Tesco vouchers.  Last year’s pass ran out on Easter week and so renewed.  Éowyn’s cousins also have done the same and they had planned a visit to Chessington World of Adventures so we thought that was an ideal time to renew the passes and meet up with the family.

Coincidentally Chessington was the venue to obtain last year’s tickets but on that visit we will a little disappointed and thought that there was nothing for Éowyn to go on.  Which at the time was probably true.  However, one year on and there seemed to be a lot more choice for our three year old.  Obviously the older cousins went on a lot of the bigger rides but we all piled on (even Amélie) to the ‘BubbleWorks‘ disappointing for its lack of bubbles but everyone seemed to enjoy it, all except Amélie who clinged on to Lucinda for dear life throughout the ride.  However, both chidldren (and Lucinda) thoroughly enjoyed the Madagascar live show, in fact Amélie tried to get on stage with them!

We decided to take it easy on the Sunday as both kids (and both adults) were a little knackered after two busy days, plus Lucinda was back at work on the Monday morning.  Monday was an inset day and so instead of going to school it was an Éowyn and Daddy day for Amélie was already booked in at Jo’s.  As the morning started with bright sunshine and the promise of a good day we decided to use the Merlin Passes for the second time in three days and headed to our local theme park: Legoland.  Legoland is by far the best of the attractions for Éowyn (and Amélie’s) age range with most of the rides suitable for them.  We arrived at Legoland as it opened and headed straight for the Atlantis ride as we know that is one of the most popular.  Indeed arriving so early was great we had queued and rode on 5 of the rides before noon just as Éowyn started to get grumpy because she was tired.  Most of them were rides that she had been on before and enjoyed but because we were so early we managed to go on a new ride that she thought was fantastic which was the mini driving school known as L-Drivers.  Aimed at three to five year olds L-Drivers allows the smaller children little electric cars which they operate and drive around a circular track (not quite NASCAR!).  At the end of the session they are awarded with their own little driving licence.  She loved it and I have to say after an initial difficulty controlling the car was excellent including one incident when she had to take evasion action as the cars in front crashed.

As we were leaving the park we bumped into a colleague who was just arriving with his son.  The beauty of living around the corner from a major attaction and having a Merlin Pass, we were quite satisfied to leave when Éowyn got tired rather than attempting to get our money’s worth.  Unfortunately Éowyn was being particularly grumpy to say hello to Tim, Gill and Harrison and they were getting on the funicular train known as the Hill Train as we were getting off, so it was a quick hello, goodbye and then off to MacDonalds for a naughty lunch for us.

Amélie is still swiper in disguise, her major achievement was hiding Lucinda’s keys which took the best part of a morning to find (thank’s Éowyn!).  She also still has her Cow’s Milk Protein Intolerance.  We went to see the dietician for her six monthly check up and share our findings.  As we suspected she still is showing signs of intolerance but can handle cooked milk (in the form of biscuits).  She said not to challenge for a few months as we need to give her body time to grow out of the intolerance, however to wean her off her neocate as her diet sounded like it was giving her all the nutrients that she needed.  However if we wanted to replaced the milk in her diet that Alpro now do a soya milk fortified with vitamins formulated for toddlers and that they recommend it for children such as Amélie with Cow’s Milk Protein Intolerance.  So, as we were parked in the Tesco car park we headed straight into the supermarket to buy some for her and try her with it.  We’ll let you know how we (or more strictly: she) get(s) on with it.  Our next appointment isn’t until the end of October but it would be a nice 2nd birthday present for Amélie if she has grown out of it by then.  Maybe she could have a chocolate birthday cake!

We have to say a belated Happy Birthday to Nanny Fran for last Friday.  Unfortunately as I was so busy at work we were unable to pop up and see her but hopefully that will change next weekend and we can wish her a happy belated birthday in person.

So a busy family week comes to an end with the promise of a busy couple of weeks at work as the football seasons (yes seasons) draw to their traditional May conclusions.  West Brom are safe with the possibility of a top half finish and Wolves already have been relegated so a successful season as far as I am concerned.

Love and Peace