Monday, February 26, 2007

We made it!

It has been a busy week, but Mum / Grandma is now officially "round the bend", as Tevye informed her. I managed to get everything - apart from a number of items that appeared at the last minute - packed up by 7pm on Thursday. Almost everything fit on the removal van. They had to summon a small, extra van, but compared to a previous move when she more than half-filled a second full-sized van that was a mere trifle. (No removal firm ever moves my mother twice. They never allow for the nook-and-cranny effect - items stuffed everywhere!)

Over the weekend we managed to paint the sitting room and guest bedroom (named the Rocket Room by Angel and Star in honour of its previous decor!) and unpack enough boxes to be able to move around. Still a lot of work to go before everything is done and unpacked, but after six months of decluttering and packing up ... we made it :)

Monday, February 19, 2007

Plans for Lent

With all the craziness going on here - splitting my time between two houses, frantically packing and no routine - I haven't had time to plan for Lent. I also need to keep it simple. A few ideas have jumped out at me - mainly from other peoples' blogs - and suddenly with minimal effort and thought on my part I have a plan.

  • Turn my face to my children (HT: Karen for this link) - toughest and most important, particularly for Star who desperately needs more positive attention than she has been getting.
  • Make a salt dough crown of thorns (HT: Karen again)
  • Collect money saved by giving things up for Aid to the Church in Need (inspired by Operation Rice Bowl - yes, that would be Karen too)
  • Fast from the internet on Fridays (HT: Faith)
  • I like the idea of this star chart, but I'm afraid I am good at starting this sort of thing but poor on follow through. I may give it a try, though.
  • Lent reading:
  • Lenten sacrifices:
    • Myself - chocolate in all shapes and forms
    • Angel - biscuits and crisps (cookies and chips to those of you over the pond!)
    • Star - all drinks other than water and milk, and bubblegum!
  • Prayer - I will add something into our daily prayers, but I'm not yet sure what.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

What colour red are you?

You Are Ruby Red

You are warm and inviting - yet a little wild and outrageous.
Well aware that you have a dual personality, you work it as much as you can!
You like for people to be comfortable around you, but not at the expense of you stealing the limelight.
Popular and well known, you make friends easily. You have your big personality to thank for that.

HT: Jenn

Thursday, February 15, 2007

More progress

Filled - one skip (and I mean filled!)
Packed - fourteen boxes of books (so far)
Emptied - one loft, one garage and one shed
Taken to the dump - one boot load of files and papers (ran out of space in skip)
Strangest find - three sets of false teeth in loft (left by previous occupant. Why?)
Best use of children - loft monkeys. Much easier than climbing up there oneself.

Only eight days to go!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Making progress

Spare bedroom ... packed
Bathroom ... packed
Linen cupboard and chest ... packed
Understairs cupboard ... packed
Two large boxes of needlework and other craft bits ... packed
Gone ... four large bags for Oxfam (charity shop)
Gone ... five large bags of rubbish
Gone ... four bags of papers for recyclying

Phew! Back to the grindstone tomorrow. With help from Tevye, Angel and a friend we will be tackling the garage, utility area and loft. We have a skip (dumpster?). It is going to be a long day!

Narnia Quiz

HT: Alice

You are 88% a Loyal Narnian!

Congratulations Loyal Narnian! You are an exceptional student of Narnian history. Dr. Cornelius would be proud of you!

Are You a Loyal Narnian?
See All Our Quizzes

Not quite as loyal as I should like, but some of those questions were tricky!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Panic on!

Yikes! We have a moving date ... February 23rd. We also have snow forecast for tonight and tomorrow, and being England the transport system (road and rail) is utterly hopeless when it comes to snow - we get little enough that nobody is geared up for it - so I am driving over to my mother's this evening with Little Cherub and staying put until Sunday to launch a major assault on the packing. Tevye is staying here in the temporary role of single parent with Angel and Star.

Entries on this blog are likely to be scarce for the next few weeks!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

We also have colds

Star has been complaining of sore throat and sniffles for a couple of days, today I hit the thoroughly miserable sneezing, coughing, croaking stage of a cold, and Angel thinks she may be going down with one. Ugh!

Tomorrow we are booked for a homeschool group trip to the Roald Dahl Museum. A local friend is very kindly going to take Angel and Star with her, colds permitting (her daughter also has a sniffle), so I can stay at home with Little Cherub and rest up in an attempt to shift the worst of mine.

I really, really need the cold to go, and fast, as Mum will be moving on either February 23rd or March 2nd and I HAVE AN ENTIRE HOUSE TO PACK between now and then. At least it is mostly decluttered - except for the garage, the utility area and the loft, which is rumoured to be full of junk. Currently our solicitor (lawyer) and another are facing each other down over the final choice of date. We are trying to get that extra week, which would make the difference between panic and ... um ... near panic?

We have a tooth!

The very beginnings of a very small tooth are poking through Little Cherub's gum. She was very puzzled this morning by this tiny sharp point in her mouth and kept wiggling her tongue around to explore it. She has also just discovered waving, and will wave - or flap - enthusiastically to say goodbye ... hello ... or just "here I am! pay me attention!" Oh, and thanks to big sister, she also gives high fives!

Oooohhh!!! I love babies!!!!!

Monday, February 05, 2007

Climbing the paper mountain

... is where I have been all weekend. Grandma - as my mother is known to my daughters - is still in her old house, but it looks as though she will be moving at the beginning of March. (Property transactions in England are a lengthy and uncertain business. All being well we should get a definite date this week.) The decluttering and packing marathon is now moving into high gear, and Little Cherub and I are spending weekends there in an attempt to avoid a major last minute panic.

This weekend we tackled a paper mountain. Everything from reams of college lecture notes - she has degrees in both theology and psychology and had kept the lot, plus notes from various other courses she has taken over the last fifty(!) years - to ancient sets of accounts, old book catalogues, minutes of meetings, old birthday cards, and important family papers. These were often mixed up in files otherwise full of junk, meaning that we had to go through everything. I filled the car boot with paper for recycling. I can't say the mountain is now a mole hill, but it is getting close.

Next task is the understairs cupboard on Thursday. I have no idea what is lurking in there. I just hope I stop aching before it is time to find out!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Book Review: Number the Stars

Title: Number the Stars
Author: Lois Lowry
Age Suitability: 8+

We read this book to kick off a study of the Second World War - a fairly disorganised study, reading any books that take my fancy in no particular order! The characters are fictional, but the story is based on truth. Ten year old Annemarie lives in Nazi-occupied Copenhagen. When the Nazis move against the Danish Jews, the Danes step in to rescue them. Annemarie and her family help her best friend Ellen and Ellen's parents to escape first from Copenhagen and then by sea to Sweden. A heartwarming tale of human goodness (the Danes really did save almost the entire Jewish community), and of personal courage. The book is well written, is a fairly short and easy read, and there are no graphic descriptions of the horrors of war, making it more suitable for younger children than many books about World War II.