The best kind of weeks

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There are lots of times when I really just want to freeze time! Its mainly when the children are off of school and this half term was no exception! They are growing up so fast, I just want to enjoy every single moment and remember every moment whilst we are still all together and enjoying these times.

This post is really just about what we did at half term. I don’t want to forget little things that made us smile or even frown as I feel I have forgotten so much of our times together over the years! Im probably exaggerating but as the kiddies are growing up i feel I need to grasp onto everything!!!

Pancakes!

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Before we started our half term we decided to make pancakes from scratch as I usually cheat and get made ones ( I know, I know! Its lazy but I really hate cooking!!)  Our very first one came out looking like an off colour blob which they found hilarious! They did get much better though, and they were even edible by about the sixth one!!! The best thing was that we had loads of fun, made lots of mess and spent a great few hours laughing.

Off to stay

One of the things we love most about end of terms is that quite often we will go and stay with my parents. We don’t really get to see them much during term time so we all look forward to staying with them for a few nights and the kids always love a sleepover!! Its a real mini holiday. Whilst we were there we decided to catch the bus to Plymouth to visit the Aquarium. It is somewhere we have visited quite a lot as you pay once and then visit as much as you like for a year!  The kids always enjoy it and find it relaxing. Plus, there is always something for them to do. This time it was a shark-teeth finding quiz.  It usually ends up with just me doing it all though haha

 

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This visit the kids were excited to see that there were two new sharks. I only stood underneath them long enough to take a photo which was a bit freaky in itself as the water was so dark you couldn’t see them until they appeared right over you. I still have  nightmares about Jaws so I was happy to be moving along!

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We enjoyed being able to have our first picnic of the year for dinner as the weather was lovely and after seeing an octopus, Nemo and dory,  and a huge amount of ordinary and unusual looking fish, the kiddies went to their final and favourite tank with the gorgeous turtle in it. It was more exciting as its the first time that jayden has actually seen her properly as she is usually asleep when we get there!!!  and jayden also enjoyed taking all of our photos!

 

Chicken treat

One of the things that the children get most excited about when we go out in half term is that I take them to KFC. I feel a bit guilty that they get so excited as im sure people must think I never treat them! Its true that we really only go maybe 3 times a year but its so far away from our village we only go if we stay at my parents and catch a bus. My eldest is 16 next year and said she would like to go out for a meal for her birthday and when I asked where to, she replied…yes you can guess Im sure… KFC!

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As well as our trip to Plymouth, (which is also an experience for the children because it is so much busier than our village. Its really hard to even explain the difference. We may see one car a day where we live and a handful of people but in the city it was such a different world, ) we had fun with cousins and went to a church where they had bouncy castles for them also  to enjoy. On our return back to the village we went to see a puppet show in the village hall which was a lot of fun for children and adults! In fact, I think my Mum laughed and enjoyed it the most out of everyone!!! and in a strange coincidence, one of the puppeteers used to work at my eldest daughters Special Needs school!

 

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In between these days I had to start yet more steroids and antibiotics so sadly I couldn’t do everything I wanted but as I was poorly at my parents it didn’t really matter so much because the kiddies were having fun anyway 🙂

This is by far not a great piece of writing but it was by far a great week and that’s the most important thing to me! 🙂 Counting down to Easter holidays now!

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Take My Breath Away

When I first had ideas about doing a blog, I really had high hopes for myself! I was going to write at least twice a week and take photos and make sure I stuck with it as its something I have always wanted to do in some form.

Then I forgot I had asthma!  I also have some other things like Arthritis and ME but they aren’t so bad right now so they probably wont get a mention today and Im not fond of talking about my hidden illnesses as I worry that people might think i’m being self indulgent!

Last week I went to help out at the primary school as a volunteer reader which is something I do and felt absolutely fine. The next day I couldn’t breathe and my inhalers were not working for me which really does scare me a lot. I think I caught a cold the day before from someone I spent a bit of time with, and these days every time I get a cold it goes straight to my chest.  Luckily my doctor gave me anti biotics and steroids which work luckily for me, although the steroids do make me a little ill..but that’s much better than not being able to breathe!

The thing mainly about this post really is the fact that even with the best intentions and excitement, we just never know when something might pop up that puts a damper on it all! and that each time I have an asthma attack im reminded of how ignorant I was about asthma before I became asthmatic. I really did not think that it was that much of a big deal, something I always think of when im struggling to get the air into my lungs!!! I also did not realise just how  much it effects your life and how many things can trigger it! Cold air, colds that always turn into chest infections, perfume, someones deodorant, pets,  excitement, stress….they all are the reason that at some point its a miracle if I can walk to the end of the road without having a 2 hour rest!  I did hope it may excuse me from exercise but the doctor informs me that I am still able to do that sadly!

I could really go on for ages about it but that probably wouldn’t be interesting at all for anyone and I really just wanted to have a record of why I hadn’t written in a few weeks for when I read back over the year at what we were doing. I was talking to my lovely son about what he was good at and I could think of lots and when we got to what I was good at and couldn’t think of anything, he helpfully said ” I know what you are good at! you are good at not being able t breathe!!” That really did make me laugh ( and of course that made me reach for my inaler! haha)  but he is so right.

It really is just typical of me that off all the things to be bad at, I am the worst at breathing!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

Bird watching

 

On a Sunday we usually go to church but if there are five sundays in the month then the villages all hold just one service and today it was too far away for us to go as we don’t drive.

The weather was horrid today. Cold, dull and icy drizzle. The perfect weather for us to stay indoors in front of the coal fire and watch tv and that’s just what we did, right? Wrong!!! My 3 youngest children decided they would like me to take them bird watching! They had seen the advert for it and thought it would be a good idea.  My eldest had the sense to flat out refuse to go..I only wish I had thought of that approach first!  Jaydens Dad was also happy to stay to look after her.

So, armed with wellies, waterproofs, a list of birds and most importantly..snacks, we set off. Now, we live in the countryside and have hundreds of trees around us and always always see birds so we expected to have to use extra sheets of paper because we would record so many.

How wrong we were!!! An hour later and quite wet, the only bird we had seen was a seagull and it wasn’t even on our list!!! We heard lots of birds, probably laughing at these odd people out in this sort of weather when they were quite snug in their nests, but not even a glimpse of a tail feather.

 

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We did, however, have a lot of fun exploring and they certainly enjoyed seeing me struggling to climb up places whilst they without any effort just passed by me. I suppose it was lovely to see them working as a team and enjoying each others company even if it was at my expense! So, even though we probably wont make award winning birdwatchers, we did have a lot of fun, laughs, exercise and chats and even better it was all for free!!!

 

 

 

A little tradition

Early days

Food has been the source of many battles and worries over the years!  My daughters have sensory issues which resulted in them eating very limited things, mainly food like potato waffles with little colour, smell or “squishiness!” I was always trying to introduce new foods and many meltdowns resulted. Mealtimes were just something that had to be done because we had to be fed and I got into a habit of eating when the children were in bed because someone always needed something or there would be some kind of problem that I had to deal with and it was less stressful for me to just focus solely on them for food times.

A small comment

Fast forward many years of this being normal for us and without thinking too much, apart from the first few times when I celebrated new food, my girls slowly added to the variety of foods they ate. Its still limited and nowhere near what other children probably eat but we can go days now without a frozen potato variety. C is fantastic and will eat most things although ironically is not that fond of frozen potato items and J2 is very fussy but I have learnt to not let it bother me at all now (if only I could have learnt that about 12 years ago!!) Not that long ago and because it was Christmas we all sat down together to eat our meal and J1 said ” its like we are a proper family now” because we were sat together at the table actually enjoying food and a meal time!  That small comment changed the way I viewed mealtimes.

Enjoyment

Meal times now are a time that we all look forward to. Its a time when we enjoy each others company and have lots of chatter and laughs. Of course, we have occasional arguments and children wandering off but I would think my family had been replaced if that didn’t happen now and then. Its a time when we can all talk about our day or even any worries or things that are coming up.  I think as they get older and do more things independently, the family mealtime will become even more important for me especially as the one time we are all together. And, although I don’t mention it, I notice as they are chatting and laughing (or bickering!!) they even might try something new to eat because the emphasis is on togetherness and not the eating.

 

 

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Who my children are

I have 4 children and 3 of them have Special Needs. My youngest doesn’t but he is only 5 so things could pop up along the way. We are just helping him as he has a stutter which is getting much better and really appears when he is really tired or nervous or really excited and wants to tell us something quickly.

My eldest son is going through assessments as he has dyslexia and Dyspraxia and a processing disorder and is being assessed for A.D.D.

My eldest daughter has Autism, learning disabilities, behaviour problems and a consiton called Landau Kleffner Syndrome which I quite rare and we don’t know of any other families now that experience it.

My youngest daughter has Autism, learning disabilities, and behaviour problems.

My children have special needs but they are not their Special Needs…they are so much more than a label and things like routine and sensory problems and meltdowns. I will probably talk about these things in another post sometime. My children are amazing individuals. There are many people with Autism and Dyslexia but there are not 4 people like these!

My eldest girl is 14 and loves to organise. I am sure she could probably plan a wedding by herself at this age she is so good at it! I always ask her if I have anything important to do in the week! She also loves gardening and is fantastic at growing vegetables. She has just discovered make up and youtube and watches people like Tanya burr and Zoella ( I really hope ive got their names right!!!!) She is also very kind to little children and a fantastic baker. She also remembers every fact! A big part of her life is the church and village get togethers. She is even a part of the church flower arranging team!

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My youngest daughter is the most funniest person ever! I wish I had written down everything she has ever said as I have never met anyone as quick witted as her and she doesn’t even know she is doing it! She is also a fantastic artist and loves to make up her own cartoon characters and scripts. She is 11 but still loves to play with her 5 year old brother, playing Pokémon or My Little Pony. I love that she is completely herself and never worries about what other people think especially with things like she wears costume tails!

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My eldest son is such a huge help for me. He is also the most determined person I know! If he sees something he wants he will do anything to save money for it from car cleaning to dog walking (with me of course).  This determination helps him in his school life too and although he finds it hard he never gives up. My girls don’t really like affection but Charlie is always ready for a hug and I love to sit on the sofa on winter evenings in front of the fire and watch tv or read having a hug with him.

Like his sister, the church is a big part of his life and he decided last year that he wanted to be christened. He was really involved with the whole process which was lovely of Rev. Pam and he even chose his own hymns. Charlie is also a member of the bell-ringing team! He also has just done his first reading in church which is a huge achievement for someone who hated to read in front of people.

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And then there is my youngest son who has us all wrapped around his little finger and is a real monkey!!!! He is very stubborn and knows his own mind! He is a huge dinosaur fan and I am often surprised at how he knows the long names!! He started school in September and I am still getting used to it as I think I still baby him a lot which I know I shouldn’t but he has had a lot of operations in his life and I think that’s why, plus he is my last so I am trying to drag out each stage more! I have certainly had to get used to how independent he has become since starting school though which is a good thing my rational brain says but I wish he wouldn’t grow up so fast!!!

 

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So, as you can see my children are much much more than a label!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charlies 10th Birthday Party

On Saturday my lovely eldest son, Charlie had his 10th birthday party. His birthday was a few weeks ago but he likes to have his party a few weeks after that just to prolong the celebration I think!!! It turned out to be a lovely afternoon and about 30 children came who were all well mannered and well behaved! Even my children behaved themselves which was great as I am sure they choose the busiest places to generally try and embarrass me! I cleverly each let them invite a friend though..you cant outsmart mummy! The children danced and joined in and laughed and all seemed to get along really well with nobody being left out.

I was so glad though that everything went well because I was worried and kept awake for days before! I worry that people wont come and if they do come they won’t enjoy it or they won’t like the food or entertainment. This is the reason I would and have never had my own birthday party!! Its my 40th next year and I would probably cry if I thought of having a party!! My sister on the other hand loves organising parties and is fantastic at it!!! She had a folder and just knew exactly what everyones jobs would be and exactly what needed to be done. I, on the other hand, forgot to give out invitations to my sons christening as I just assumed people would come!!

My sister is a fantastic organiser and really should think of going into some kind of planning job. I am just someone who is happy to go along with things and help. Its fascinating how people can be so different but it also makes life interesting and we certainly need all kinds of people to make life go along smoothly20150808_150414

Alan Rickman

 

If I see a film that involves Autism I will try and watch it as my girls have Autism and I like to see if there are any tips or anything at all that could help with our lives. More often than not however the films or programmes are really not that great or representative of hardly any person with Autism that I know. Many years ago now, however, I watched a fabulous movie called Snow Cake. Not to give away too much of the plot, it involved a man that was on a trip and ended up meeting a young lady called Vivienne and circumstances saw him going to meet her mother called Linda who is a High Functioning Autistic lady. I enjoyed the film very much and a huge factor in that was because it starred my favourite actor, Alan Rickman. How I adore that man!!

 

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Today I found out the devastating news that this fantastic actor and man has sadly passed away due to cancer. I have spent so many years watching his films, joining fan groups and finding out all I can about him that today it feels as if I have lost a friend. He is such a talented actor with so many different roles from hairdresser in Blow Dry, to his humorous part in Dogma to his bad guy parts in Die Hard, Robin Hood and of course Harry Potter. And who else can compare to that velvet voice!!!

It also shows how equal we all are in the eyes of cancer. It doesn’t matter who a person is and fame, riches or poverty matter not at all to it. I hope by the times my children are parents or grandparents no one else will be writing about that horrid disease taking the life far too soon of anybody else.

Here We Go!!!!

I always wanted to write a diary, my whole life and I have bought so many I cant even tell you how many!! I would love it as a child, and an adult, at Christmas when I would open a present and there would be a brand new diary, just ready for me to start to write my innermost thoughts and good or bad things that may have happened to me in the day.  I had so much fun choosing just the perfect pen and deciding whether I should leave the front page blank and excited about the whole thing, yes even as a 30 year old I would still get the excitement.

Then it would be March and the diary would still be blank or at the most have two entries which were so perfectly written that I could have copied them from a book. And I have no idea why! Some reasons I think is that I always worried if I wrote what I really felt and someone found it they may be offended or think differently about me. Or it may be because I really hate to think of bad things!!! im someone that prefers to deal with it tomorrow so if I wrote it in my diary it becomes real! or maybe its just because I’m a little boring!!! I don’t really do much apart from everyday Mum things. I have interests and hobbies and I’m always trying new things but they are things like card making or growing seeds or learning to make my own clothes…not things like skydiving or mountain climbing or much that if someone did find my diary, they would think I was such an interesting person!!

However, I decided recently that we are all climbing our own mountains whether they seem small to others or not. I have four wonderful children who make life very interesting especially as my daughters have Autism and my son is being assessed for certain things..maybe ADD. And my littlest man has started school so I’m still trying to deal with being just me for a lot of the time again and finding out who I am. So, although I’m not out scuba diving ( i’m not fond of the water..strange as we live 2 minutes from the beach!!) I am doing my own things and making memories (even though my son said he would remember forever how I wouldn’t let him eat chocolate at 2am this morning) and in all honesty it will probably be March and no one will have probably read this anyway but that’s ok because I am determined to be myself and record my memories, good and bad now and maybe when I’m older I will look back and think that actually my life was just a little bit interesting!!!