Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Processed food

Took this picture on the weekend near Ashlett, you need to look carefully for Lewis who is up a tree, scrumping apples! We had already collected a few boxes of blackberries, and Lewis was angling for a Blackberry and Apple Crumble...

Tonight we've been to Applemore College which is another Secondary School option for Lewis, so we've been having fun putting them all to the test! Naturally we did some experiment, played some different musical instruments etc, but sadly did not make any green slime.

It's my Mum's birthday today, so it only remains to wish her a very Happy Birthday and a safe trip to La Gomera and back again.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

She's on two...

So let's recap, on Saturday I thought we might give it a try, but in reality it was going to be the Spring before we'd be able to get Miranda on two wheels.

By Sunday the balance was almost making sense to her, but she was not looking ready.

Lunchtime today I put the pedals back on, and within 30 minutes I had her riding around the block on two wheels.

I didn't think I'd get a photo of the action as well, but Lewis obliged, whilst I performed the attendant "Ambulance" service. Great action shot Tiger!

Does she look pleased, she's absolutely made up! And I'm fairly chuffed too!

Monday, September 28, 2009


Lewis was there ready to greet me when I got in tonight, telling me all about poor old Barry who's been attacked by swarming wasps, having inadvertently damaged their nest. He really enjoys having aspects of his own life, and coming back and sharing them with us, and it's really interesting watching the growing up process kick in. One minute he sitting on the bedroom floor playing toys contentedly, and the next he's behaving like a serious grown up. I shan't feel guilty then...

Sunday, September 27, 2009

New friends for Domino

Today we had news that the Alpacas had arrived at Barry and Janis', so we had to pop down for an early visit. The grumpy old creatures seemed happy enough, but they displayed their typical aloofness, so it was left to good old Domino to do the cuddling.

Miranda rode down on two wheels, or should I say rolled down. She's still not quite there yet, but fairly determined. Not as determined as me though!

We've been out for a nice walk from Ashlett Creek this afternoon, picking what must surely be the last of the Blackberries. We came back with two decent boxfulls, and it was only the very low sun in the sky that stopped us from getting more...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

On balance

We've spent the day trying to get Miranda on two wheels, and although we've made a lot of progress, she get very scared very easily.

We have the pedals off and she's starting to roll under her own steam, although she doesn't know it yet.

We've also had a nice bike ride from Denny Wood to Standing Hat, it's been the perfect Autumnal afternoon. Just bliss.

Friday, September 25, 2009

A donf!

I'm posting this one for Miranda, who's nearly ready to throw caution to the wind, and take her stabilisers off. We've been making great progress in general, but she doesn't have the same bulletproof constitution that the boys both had.

You can't knock her enthusiasm though - today we were on our way into the village lunchtime to get a few bags of sugar for the Apple Pie maker, when she came off and feel into the brambles. The scratches unfortunately bled, and she bawled uncontrollably, and we had to return home...

It's really quite amusing to see Greg riding this bike again, but I'm sure Mipp will be inspired to chase after him, ...big time!

I found some interesting photos tonight by John Higham recording his family's cycle trip around the world - what fun...

I'm listening to Robert Glasper's Doubled Booked on Blue Note

Thursday, September 24, 2009

One for all, and all for one...

We've been to an Open Day at our local senior school tonight as Lewis has to make his choice shortly. It's been very refreshing to get involved in a new experience which filled you with so much confidence that you were making the right choice. Lots of good interaction between staff and pupils and lots of enthusiastic and committed people. We are also going to visit two other schools nearby shortly, but it's a great feeling when you don't really have any reservations.

I also came home with a bag of snot green slime which I made myself, ordered myself a drink in French from the Cafe and was pressganged to sign up for the Army by two young girls. My sort of place, when can I start?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Found this lovely birthday card for Lewis on the mantlepiece from Gregory, so thought it must go on the blog as a reminder of his lovely happy pictures.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Lewis and his friends Matthew and Sian have been around this afternoon to walk the donkey, and join him for some Birthday tea. They've fun playing stables and Miranda was been in here element - almost more excited than Lewis himself! She was very keen to sing "Happy Birthday to Lewis" solo, but in the event she had plenty of help.

Happy Birthday from us too Tiger...

Monday, September 21, 2009

You can't put it back in the bottle

Well tomorrow our handsome chappie well be eleven years old. So here's a nice recent pic taken in the Turfcutters Arms in East Boldre, whilst we were waiting for our lunch to arrive.

He's a big boy now. Ten never again...

Sunday, September 20, 2009


Just back from a nice weekend sailing over to the Isle of Wight with Fordy. Very sunny on Saturday with not too much wind but we got down to Newtown by about 6pm. The tide was almost out, and being Spring tides made for very interesting access, where we managed to grab the only spare mooring. A boat coming in after us grounded just a few yards higher than us!

After the tide had come back in a bit to cover the muddy estuary, we took the dinghy as close as we could to the pub in Shalfleet  By the time we got back at midnight, the whole landscape was covered in water, only a few trees were visible.

The wind on Sunday was not very present either but we got back with a combination of sail and motor, giving up on the sailing when we realised we were going backwards!

Friday, September 18, 2009


The boys were both pleased to tell me that they had earned themselves points for good teamwork in schoool this week, so as the new school year begins again this bodes well. This photo was taken during one such moment during the summer hols, and there's nothing like the challenge of water running downhill to focus the mind on the task in hand!

Tonight we've been down to Lepe to play at sundown, and we kicked the ball quite energetically - we needed to, it was very cold.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Comes a time...

When this dropped into my inbox this afternoon, its vitality just blew me away....

My brother Chris has been scanning film found in the "old folk's home" and this transparency taken as Juliet left home for Royal Holloway College tells an amazing story of parental pride and youthful optimism.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Aw Daddy!

She comes storming into my workroom and starts jabbering away like a mad monkey, she jumps on my lap and gives me a huge cuddle, a kiss on the cheek... and her manic face reminds me of a picture I have in my mippy folder just waiting for an opportunity....

Don't ya just love her?

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Knight becomes Centurion

One from the archive as we've been on the beach all afternoon and not taken any photos. We've been making the last of the nice weather at Calshot and have had a nice picnic and spent the rest of the afternoon in the Kayaks. Miranda really enjoyed herself, and was hooting aloud as we came back 'wind over tide' as the waves broke over our bow. I upped the ante and unfortunately her will broke, it had become a bit too dangerous or her!

The water was really warm and the kids have been swimming around in the briney. Hopefully we'll have a bit of suntan to see us into autumn!

Greg has been making a Centurion costume this weekend to wear into school tomorrow, as part of his Roman studies. He's very excited about the prospect of brandishing his sword.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Sneaking Sally through the Alley

We started the day with a bike ride down to Calshot, and Miranda came with us this morning. She brings a whole new meaning to the description back seat driver, as she hectors you along, chastising you for not overtaking Lewis etc.

This afternoon after taking Caroline back to Casualty to have her stub attended to, we've all had a nice walk.  We moseyed our way along the Solent margins near Lymington between Tanners Lane and Shoots Lane. It's been very pleasant in the warm sunshine all day today....

Friday, September 11, 2009


Friday night run around on the beach at Lepe, with the sunset glowing on their faces. The place was almost deserted now that the kids have all gone back to school, just us and a few fishermen...

No CJ on the beach with us tonight as she's feeling sorry for herself, having chopped the end of her finger off. Damn messy business, which would have made a dramatic picture on the blog, only I'm too squeamish to do that sort of thing...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Joined at the hip...

The light was very harsh and patchy under the trees in Norley Wood, and they were bouncing up and down like billy-ho, but I took a quick shot just for the record. Surprisingly it came out quite well!

Had news today that our friend Johanna in Sweden had just got married to Bjarne, so I guess we'll dedicate this picture to them... Long may you swing on the branch of life - and may all your troubles be little ones!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Mucky Mipp Mopp..

Sometimes I get overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of photos I take, and holiday photos are a case in point. Lots of time off, and plenty of opportunity means that the fat folder full of pictures rarely gets explored to it's full potential.

I think I must produce a new book and fill it with all those images tat deserve a second look!

This one caught my eye as it reminded me of playing ball with Miranda this evening. She's almost entirely useless at catching or throwing a ball (compared to Gregory anyhow, who was world class by the time he was Mippy's age) She woggles her arms around, and then closes her eyes just as the ball approaches. Absolutely n o   c h a n c e . . . .!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Out of Synch

I've been processing some of my Cornish holiday photos this evening, so it seemed fun to post a few. This is Cadgwith on the Lizard, and the weather was characteristically poor. Of course this gives the fishing port bucket loads of atmosphere, and we did have a nice walk - but it would have been nice to have seen the sea from the coast path! Today we've had gorgeous weather here, quite a contrast to early August in Cornwall...

Blah blah blah...

Miranda is getting quite good at story telling, but it's quite easy really when the narrative is as compelling as Be Good Gordon!

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Round up..

Lewis was in his element when he could see the tell tale signs of a drift having taken place within the last few days. This pound was at Rowbarrow where the kids could have played for hours, each driving the other into the stocks, before running over to the remains of the fire where they heat the branding irons, which was still fresh on the ground.

As I walked off towards Pigbush I heard screaming from Miranda as she thought she was being left incarcerated. It did cross my mind, but just for a moment!

At bedtime I asked Greg for his best bit of the weekend. "Playing in the pound with Lewis and Miranda!..."

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Hop it

Flopsy skipping along merrily at Lepe. In the background you can see the 'dolphins' which anchored large jetties in the loading of ships bound for the D-Day landings. This is where the Mulberry Harbour was built and floated over to the Normandy coast. She seems quite oblivious of what has gone on here before her romp, doesn't she?

Friday, September 04, 2009

Walk a thin line

Managed to get back in time for home (Miranda) made pasties and chips, which we ate at Lepe. Whilst the boys flew kites, Miranda and I walked along the spit, and threw stones into the sea as the sun set over Cowes. Chilled...

Thursday, September 03, 2009


The first day back at school for the kids, and I noticed a book all about the Romans on the settee tonight. Reminded me of the surprise visit to the Amphitheatre in Carmarthen, which they all loved, and thought I'd better load the picture so they can show off their extra ciricular activities during the hols!

Also whilst I'm on the subject we have a great picture of Gregory with the Ignioc Stone in St Clemments which is also a Roman period scheduled monument that we visited on our summer hols. Inscribed on the stone is the following ...VITALI FILI TORRICI ...anyone know what this means?

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Motorcycle Man

Looks like the summer's well and truly over, with the rain hammering down outside. The kids go back to school tomorrow, and we'll all be in autumn mode!

This one's from our recent Wales trip when we saw Dorrien, and Greg had a chance to ride his Triumph motorcycle complete with Arizona number plates. Does he look cool or what?

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Very amusing...

About six or seven years ago I used to publish and bind little books of photos; and I caught the kids rediscovering one that I made for Caroline. The picture is of Lewis applying shaving foam to his chin, and grimacing! Another Kodakcolour moment as they used to say...