I am necessitous of absolution from you dear readers. Apart from a slow start I have been updating this website with some alacrity this year but as we hit the halfway mark, nothing. Nigh on four weeks and no news from the Bagnalls. Now the reason for the lack of updates is nothing to do with a lack of news. On the contrary there is perhaps a little too much news for one update. No, the reason for the lack of updates is due more to the fact that we have been taking full advantage of the hiatus before my working life takes over family life for a month or so. The fact that the UK is currently enjoying (or not – depending on your point of view) its first proper heatwave for 7 years also adds to the desire to enjoy the outdoors rather than sitting indoors on the computer (and if you look on our Flickr page you will see over 100 photos taken over the last three weeks or so). So although I beg your forgiveness dear readers I make no apology for spending the time with the family!
The disadvantage of leaving four weeks between write ups is the fact that there is so much to tell you and yet I fear that I will bore you if I regale it all verbatim so this will be more a précis than usual.
On the last day of June, Staines-upon-Thames celebrated Staines-upon-Thames day. So to show support to our local town (and because Ashford on the Map was so good) we decided to head down with the kids. Unfortunately Staines-upon-Thames days was not a patch on Ashford on the Map and we were actually disappointed, the only highlight was a boat trip down the Thames. It was then back home for the first of many barbecues.
With the approaching school holidays (and my approaching busy period at work) we decided to get a head of the game and spend a day at the seaside before it gets mobbed with schoolchildren. We decided on Mudeford since we enjoyed our trip to Hengistbury Head and since we only passed through Mudeford we thought it would be nice to actually explore Mudeford for a day instead of just using it to catch the ferry. Nanny and Granddad know Mudeford quite well and they joined us on our trip to the seaside. The girls thoroughly enjoyed themselves, as did Lucinda and I and Nanny and Granddad.
The turn of the school year marks a big change for Éowyn. No longer will she be at pre-school but will start full time education at Town Farm school in Stanwell. The last few weeks saw Éowyn begin the transition and preparation for the move. Lucinda and I had a tour and introductory chat with the staff; Éowyn spent an hour and a half at school (and although she was very teary when I left her there by all accounts she was on good form and was one of the more confident children) and then Éowyn’s teacher Miss Finbow paid her and us a visit at home. It was something that surprised us but in a nice way. It is good that Miss Finbow got to see Éowyn in her environment and she how she spends her time. I think that Miss Finbow was a little overwhelmed with the greeting that she received. The girls were both very excited to see her and Éowyn had drawn her a picture of a butterfly and wouldn’t leave her alone. At least Miss Finbow is forewarned before she receives Éowyn in September.
Éowyn has taken the fact that she is going to ‘Big School‘ to heart. She has stopped sucking her thumb (which is a massive achievement as she has been sucking her thumb since birth), begun taking showers and ventured in the realms of older children television programmes. She has insisted that we teach her to read and has been practising drawing (drawings that actually look like something) and writing her letters and numbers.
Her choice of television programmes are interesting as they are the same ones that I used to enjoy when I was a child: Tom and Jerry, Bugs Bunny and Scooby Doo. In fact as I came home one evening I opened the door to hear one of the most delightful sounds there is. Éowyn was giggling and Ezra was giggling too! Éowyn was watching Tom and Jerry and thought it was one of the funniest things she had ever seen and Ezra was sitting there giggling at Éowyn giggling. The small things in life are the best.
Ezra is also developing at a rapid pace. He is now four months old but looks much older (he is a bit of chunk!). He is still relatively placid only crying for a reason (hunger, nappy change, wind), however he now wants a little more entertaining. He enjoys holding his toys and rattling the ones that make a noise. He has also begun to roll over. Therefore you have to be careful where you leave him and not only does he roll on to his belly and also rotates around so he can be quite far from where you left him. As a consequence we have to be careful where we leave him unattended. It probably will not be long before he begins to crawl – taking after Éowyn more than Amélie!
Let us not forget about Amélie, she, too, is growing up. Unfortunately she is starting to go through the terrible twos. Not quite as terrible as Éowyn’s terrible twos but because Amélie is so much of a cutey that the slight change in attitude is noticeable. Again you have to look at everything in an holistic manner rather than in isolation. Thus with unemotional attachment you can see that Amélie could be overcompensating for a perceived lack of attention with Ezra taking at lot of our time and obviously with Éowyn’s imminent change in school, Amélie could feel that she is being left out. Obviously we are trying not to make that so but I think it will be the perennial problem facing us that there is always the possibility that one of the three will feel left out at some point. So no doubt this will become a common, if somewhat unwanted, theme.
It probably didn’t help that I paid a flying (literally and metaphorically) visit to New York (well Stamford, Connecticut) for a meeting with one of our new clients for the Premier League, NBC. As an important client it was an important meeting to have to ensure that we can provide the level of service that they expect. We were only on the other side of the pond for 36 hours and the states were experiencing a heatwave every much as intense as ours. I think that the girls (and Ezra) missed me but the little cuddly toys that I picked up at the airport more than made up for my absence!
The other big news of the last month is the fact that we have accepted an offer on our house. It is in the region of what we wanted to accept and the couple that are buying it seem very nice and so we feel that we are handing it over to worthy custodians and at the same time not leaving the neighbours with someone that we wouldn’t want to live next door to. We still haven’t found anywhere to buy ourselves though, so it could be that we could be homeless before the autumn (a caravan in Nanny and Granddad’s back garden could be an option!). The only house that we have both fallen in love with is a little out of our reach but we have put an offer on the table and entered into a negotiation with our ability to move quickly the ace that we are trying to play over the higher offer that they have already accepted. The joys of buying a house! Let us see how that pans out.
Before I leave you to look through the photos there is just enough time for me to wish Lucinda a happy anniversary. It has been 6 years since she said ‘I do’ and made me a very happy man. We have squeezed a lot into the last 6 years but probably not as much as we will fit into the next 6 weeks, with a potential home move, a definite work move, Éowyn due to start school, Amélie due to start nursery and Ezra due to start crawling. Thus, I am sure you can appreciate that the next few months are going to be somewhat busy so I apologise in advance for any perceived lack of news and any tardiness in relating it to you all via this medium but there are only so many hours in a day!
Peace and love
PS This must be the only website written on the 22nd July 2013 that hasn’t mentioned the birth of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s son, our future monarch. Damn!