Saturday, 8 March 2008

Forgot to tell you that the skate park in Cobham has no grafitti on it.

After my last complaint about winnings having dried up, we had a bumper crop! I won tickets to the Dinghy exhibition in London, which was handy as we were up in Surrey, and so R, H and Nanny Jackie went to it and whilst there entered another competition, which they didn't win, but because they went back to find out if they had, they gave H a bouyancy aid signed by top sailing legends. Now, you can't have a buoyancy aid without a boat, so today R and H went and bought a boat, like you do! Some of you will know that R used to sail, and in fact we had a boat until about two years ago, when the combinations of tide, wind, light, me being in a good mood and it being the weekend and him not having a headache came about less often than a blue moon, so we sold it. However, thanks to Bitterne Leisure Centre's swim school, H has her 100m badge and is therefore sufficiently waterproof to go out with R, so good luck to them. A and I will go to the play park and drink tea in the club house! The club in in Royal Victoria Park, so it really is a fabulous location, can cycle there no problem, although may be tricky to rig up the 3 bikes to tow a dinghy.

So, that ended up being an expensive win. Cheaper wins this week were mine - 2 E cloths for cleaning the bathroom without chemicals, really fabulous, like the ENJO ones I already use. A won a 'Make your own Rupert Bear kaleidoscope' which she has enjoyed.

I don't think you know that the bus from outside my house to Bitterne has been stopped. To get there, we now have to walk down to the shops and get if from there. Swimming on Tuesday, both girls swim consecutively now, which is easy, if a little sweaty in the changing rooms. A is in a class with mainly much older girls (3 out of 5 of them share her name) and seems to be just about getting it, but her arms are a bit short to do some of the tasks! We went for our Quays swim on Wed, she likes the creche so much she stayed longer, so I did my new gym routine and had a swim and steam and sauna. Not had any stalkers so far, but will expect one in the sauna this week.

Today, to combine the boat purchase with a trip to Winchester, A and I got the train from Sholing to Southampton and then to Winchester. We met the rest of our family there, and checked out the much lauded Discovery Centre, which is a library, nothing more. After a fraught 'picnic' in a corner of a shopping centre, we whiled away the afternoon at the free Winchester museum, which is truly marvellous, as well as being free. We dressed up as Saxons and acted out things for ages, with me as Ethel the servant. H was the princess, and then in the Victorian section plumped for the posh girl's outfit. I pointed out that we (well my side of her genes) were more likely to be the maid, as my grandad was a cowman and both grannies were 'in service' but she was having none of it. We made mosaics, did heaps of colouring in pots and designing things, hunted for pictures and pretended to be working in an old fashioned pharmacist shop. I showing my age at this point, as a teenager I worked in a pharmacist's and we kept all the medicines in little drawers. The customer had to ask for things one at a time and you had to go and get them.

As we had made such a saving on having a picnic lunch we splashed out and spent £10.77 on tea for us all in a Wetherspoons pub, making use of the vouchers that had come through our door earlier in the week. We are working hard on reducing our food budget this week, I am cooking enough of everything to put some in the freezer, so the week ahead should be a fairly easy cooking week. Good thing I am saving my making sandwiches and flasks of tea, as we need to shave off £250 from somewhere to pay for this boat! I used the opportunity to tell H that because I go to work we can afford boats and holidays and days out, so not to complain about going to breakfast club anymore! She used to moan about after school club, but when I picked her up on Thursday, she was bowling on the Wii. Now, most of you will know that my feelings on computer games are fairly strong and negative, but I can see that the Wii is probably a good thing if it exercises your body and mind. And if it stops H complaining about going to After school club once a week.

I enjoyed my day as a teacher this week, it is lots of fun, I had year 2 and year 3 and taught some maths, some RE (talking about death- one boy has a collection of boxes of pets ashes, another told me his goldfish died because his dad stamped on it, and his dog died becasue his dad set fire to the kennel. Should I call the RSPCA?), read some funny books and poems, taught about solids and liquids in Science ( And where would you put hair gel?) and did some Roman marching for active learning in music. I mean, how fun is that? And all in the company of delightful 7 year olds? How could anyone not want to spend their days as a teacher. It is the best job ever! I can't wait to get back to doing a bit more than one day a week, if only so we can upgrade to a gin palace from Swanwick marina. OK, it may be more than a couple of days a week, but hey!

In my quest for the high life, I had a massage and facial on Friday, which was fabulous. I used my birthday money from my ma and pa for it, and it included a facial massage and a head massage as well as the back, neck and shoulders, so I am all massaged up to the eyeballs. Had it at the hairdressers in Woolston, hardly Champneys, and cycled there and back so ruined my back by the time I got home. I have entered so many competitions to win a trip to Champneys.