Keswick 2013

The Alley to Crandy NookFire!Street TheatreInvaders!Tiny Castle CragCatbells and Maiden Moor
Pitch and Putt22 years later...NappingWatching the sleepy cowsGrandma's cakeSkiddaw
WaitingLow cloudShelteringLakeland rainThe Keswick LaunchRigging
Amy & SamDistant boatLow cloud 2Coming closerDe-riggingHappy sailor!

Keswick 2013, a set on Flickr.

Another Cumbrian adventure in the North Lakes with the Family and In-Laws of Mine.

Mountain walking, Wayfarer sailing, Lake kayaking, ice-cream eating, Jennings drinking, game playing, jigsaw failing, sheep spotting, photograph taking, waterfall finding…

A great time was had by all.

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OMG!

“Daughter of Mine is most definitely now a tweenager.”

I started a draft post with this title and opening sentence over a year ago. Distracted by life, it – along with many other posts – was never finished and published. But then again, this blog has ended up being mostly about my memories; this photo qualifies as a memory –  my blog, my rules.

This photo was taken in February 2012 – when Daughter of Mine was still just 11 – and texting was as social as she got. Tomorrow she turns 13… with the best and worse of social networking within her grasp.

Although, according to news stories following the publication of Facebook’s annual report, teens are turning away from the social media giant in favour of other, more awesome/wicked/cool (or whatever the latest ‘word’ is) social networking apps.

You know, the ones where you don’t have Mother of Yours as a friend.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Hope

'Just' plastic bricks, but through your eyes they could be anything...

Son of Mine. His hopes. His dreams.

Today –  that maybe Mum will make time to construct a little more of Darth Maul’s Sith Infiltrator (“Mum, it amuses me, watching you struggle…”). And a very much looked-forward-to piano lesson.

Tomorrow – a visit to a friend’s house and his weekly football training with his local club.

This month – a fun half-term holiday, perhaps a visit to the cinema? That his request for his favourite dish of moules marinières isn’t ignored for much longer.

The future? Relayed to us at last night’s parents’ evening, overheard by his teacher: Son of Mine and his two best friends discussing university tuition fees, agreeing a house-share and mapping out future careers playing to their collectively agreed strengths – one in history, one in English and his own ‘specialist subject’ – maths.

Fly that kite as high as you want...

Daughter of Mine. Her hopes. Her dreams.

Today – that she manages to get her fruit smoothie, made in Food Tech, home without spilling it.

Tomorrow – to end the week without too much more homework, allowing some respite over the weekend to play in the promised snowfall.

This month – that she gets some time in half-term to hang, metaphorically speaking, sloth-like from the comfort of her bed, emerging only to have breakfast perhaps 30 minutes before the rest of the Family have lunch.

The future? Endless possibilities – secondary school is bringing out new favourites alongside the primary school years’ answers to ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ Now, a 9-year old’s dream of being a scientist, electrical engineer or contemporary dancer have been thrown aside in favour of a soon-to-be-12-year old’s world of possibilities. A textile artist. A history teacher. Or something to do with music – she has recently found ‘her‘ instrument: the saxophone. Possibly languages, which at the moment, both excite and enthuse her.

My hopes for Children of Mine?

That they continue to enjoy learning at every stage of their life. That they stay healthy, happy and fulfilled in whatever path they choose to take. And like every other parent today, that they don’t rack up massive debt on the way to get to where they want to be; then realise they didn’t want to be there in the first place…

Oh, and that they’ll visit their grumpy old mum and dad when they’re settled in a little cottage in the Lake District.  Husband of Mine will be strumming his ukulele and mandolin in the pubs for beer money.  I will be avidly blogging, blipping, tweeting and Flickring (or their future equivalents) about my adventures on the fells.

For real.

 

Boxing Day Blues

Boxing Day for me is always tinged with a little bit of sadness. This year it has been five years since the last time I saw my dad. I remember hugging him goodbye and teasing him about losing weight in the New Year – just over six weeks later he suffered a fatal heart attack.

My dad on the left, with my father-in-law, taken at Children of Mine's christening in 2004

But every day I thank God for my other ‘Dad’ – my father-in-law. Together, they made a formidable pair – always there to help in a crisis; always there to have fun at a celebration.

In the 25 years I’ve known my father-in-law, he’s always been loved and recognised for his own individual contribution to the Family’s lives. I remember hugging him, this time at my dad’s funeral and sobbing “…at least I still have you.”

His contributions are endless. He designs, makes, mends, grows and initiates ‘things’: handmade toys for the Children; surprises for his loved ones and friends; vegetables and fruit for the table.  He shares his scientific and electrical knowledge, whether helping re-wire a house or teach Daughter of Mine about circuits; and creates legendary games, puzzles and quizzes for Christmas night.

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Even this Boxing Day night, he left our house armed with a multitude of things he had offered to mend: a spring catch on a secret treasure chest he had made for Son of Mine’s birthday this year; the flag pole on the wooden castle he had made for his fourth birthday (joking that it was now out of guarantee); and the attachments for my Kenwood Chef, to loosen the adjustment nuts (because Husband of Mine doesn’t have a vice). He also left with another wood project to design and make – a series of display boxes for Son of Mine’s collection of gemstones and fossils.

It was also my father-in-law who introduced me to the Lake District and Keswick, back in 1991 when newly married Husband of Mine and I, desperate for a cheap holiday, jumped at the chance to act as support team while my new in-laws walked Wainwright’s famous Coast to Coast walk. We camped, in the rain, near Bassenthwaite Lake then moved our tent to Kirkby Stephen for a few days of glorious sunshine – leaving me in love with Cumbria, but alas, not with camping!

This year we bought him a ukulele for Christmas.

Thankfully, Mother-in-Law of Mine got the joke...

“To ‘Davey’…Merry Christmas…” read the tag, so written because he can play ‘Davey Crockett’ on any instrument you care to mention. He may even get to ‘guest’ with Husband of Mine’s folk band – ‘The Renegade Dogs’!

So with a bit more practice, maybe next Boxing Day’s ‘blues’ won’t be so bad…

Weekly Photo Challenge: Waiting

The grey, wet, windy view from my car as I wait to pick Daughter of Mine up from her school.

Usually she walks to her old primary, to meet me and her brother there, but I took pity on her today, given that the weather was so bad. She did also have a batch of Christmas shortbread to carry from this afternoon’s Food Tech lesson – of course, none of us wanted it to end up as crumbs!

Son of Mine came out of school excited too as he has been chosen to sing a solo verse of ‘O, Little Town of Bethlehem’ at the end of term concert.

When pressed for more details of his day, he also declared that it was exciting because today was his first day of writing with a pen, rather than a pencil, because his handwriting is so neat!

Little things…

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I’ve been having a black and white photography day today to match the weather… check out today’s blip over at seen by highonahill

Doctor Who Experience

Holding the TardisMy 42nd birthday outing from Mum!Vampires of Venice costumesVampires of Venice costumesVampires of Venice setCovers of the Radio Times
Outfits for the First to Fifth DoctorsOutfits for the Sixth to 10th DoctorsThe Eleventh Doctor & TardisSonic screwdrivers2005-present day CybermanThe Silence
The SilenceThe Ninth & Tenth Doctors' TardisChildren of Mine on the TardisFifth - Seventh Doctors' TardisNinth & Tenth Doctors' TardisThe Companions
The 1980s TardisThe Time LordsMum enjoying her birthday outing!A Cyber-Controller1966 -  The first Cyberman in 'The Tenth Planet'Davros

Via Flickr:
Mother of Mine treated the Family (well, it was my 42nd birthday present actually!) to a ticket to the Doctor Who Experience at Olympia.

The Experience itself immersed the Family in their own Doctor Who adventure with the Eleventh Doctor, Matt Smith. We stepped through the crack in the wall, ‘flew’ the Tardis, avoided Daleks and Weeping Angels, and battled aliens in a 3D time vortex to defeat the enemies and rebuild time.