Sunday, 22 October 2017

Thomas' first day

The children have just stopped school for half term, so I suppose it's time to write about Tom's first day at school.  No doubt influenced by 3 years of taking his sister to school, Thomas took the whole thing in his stride.  No arguments over uniform, normal breakfast, barely a hint of nerves when we got there, and when it was time for us to leave him, he just gave a wave and off we went.  

It's not really so easy getting pictures of Thomas doing sensible things at the moment...

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Summer holiday part 3 - Devon

This is where we stayed for the last part of our holiday, another Landmark, the China Tower.  It's 4 floors with a big spiral staircase, in the middle of some woods in the middle of East Devon.  It was loads of fun to live in for a few days.

Before we got there we had a day out at Killerton, a national trust house (with mouse trail) and gardens/grounds (with history trail).  Both were sufficient fun for the children to allow the grownups to have a little walk around too.

And when we got there we had tea.

We had a bit of a beachy time, although the weather was never good enough for anything other than a walk along them.  This is Budleigh Salterton (stony).

A trip to A la Ronde was unusual (seagull trail inside, brass rubbing trail outside) but also pleasurable.

And then a fossil day over at Charmouth and Seaton.  Finding ammonites on the beach, going to the Seaton Jurassic adventure, and then a non-fossilly ice cream!

And finally (in which I brush over the car troubles we had getting back), fish and chips on the beach in Beer.  A very nice week.

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Summer holiday part 2 - Exeter

Of course the best part of visiting Exeter was seeing mum & dad in their new house.  But as well as that we had a couple of nice day trips out.  We had a lovely sunny day walking on Dartmoor, complete with tors (for playing on) and ponies (for smiling sweetly in front of).  And we had a less sunny day in Exeter, with pancakes for lunch and dressing up in the museum for pudding.

Holiday interlude

I don't often get the time and the inclination occurring together for taking actual photos rather than pictures of the children, but he bank of wild flowers outside our window at Ironbridge kept calling to me, so early one morning after a wet night I went out for some photos.

Summer holiday part 1 - Ironbridge

We enjoyed our summer holiday closer to home this year.  We started off with a week in Ironbridge, staying in Iron Bridge House, a Landmark Trust property.  It was one of the more conventional Landmarks, made special by the proximity to the bridge itself (it's the building in the middle of the photo below).

On the way down we stopped at Dunham Massey, a national trust place.  They had a carnival adventure type kids trail, which was quite a fun way of getting everyone around the gardens in good spirits, especially as it featured hula hooping!  We also enjoyed the very friendly deer, and some rather tasty ice cream.

And here is the view from the window on our first morning!

This was mostly a week of museums and industrial heritage, as you may imagine.  We walked from the house to Blists Hill, a nice woodland walk of a couple of miles.  Highlights of the day included doughnuts that match your hat, genuine Lloyds Bank victorian coinage, an inclined plane, and plenty of iron based bits and pieces.  And Marisca and Thomas had (and won) a race with a steam train.

When not at a museum we had a nice walk up the Wrekin, although it was maybe a little more tiring for the children than they expected...

Possibly our unexpected favourite museum was the Tile Museum.  Really interesting to see the extent to which tiling is used throughout our lives, and some very attractive designs.  We had our own go at artistic glass tiles (Thomas decided to make a sunshine), and enjoyed a walk around the neighbourhood following a tile trail.

Apart from that, and sundry other museums, we loafed around Ironbridge a little, reaquainting Marisca with tapas which she Absolutely Totally Loved, and frequenting the gin shop across the square from our house.  Three days wasn't really enough to cover everything in this little corner of the industrial revolution.