Our beautiful baby daughter Anabelle was born sleeping June 2010.
Blessed with the screaming arrivals of our gorgeous rainbow sons,
Alexander October 2011, Zachary November 2013 and Lucas July 2016.

After Anabelle - Raising Rainbows
Heartbreak. Joy. Death. Life. But most of all Love.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Six Weeks of Summer Week 6: Outer Space

Well we were supposed to start the final week of the holidays with a bank holiday day trip to the Space Centre up in Leicester... what better way could there be to start Outer Space week...? However, we were feeling utterly shattered Sunday night and after much umming and ahhing we decided to abandon the idea and think of something a little less full on for the bank holiday instead. I knew then from the outset that to be honest it was going to be a 'wing it' week with a bit of space thrown in if we were lucky! Haha! (We're now going to save the Space Centre for a birthday day trip maybe next year!) 

So Monday was visit the family in Plymouth day instead! The boys always love getting together with their cousins and we spent an unusually sunny bank holiday playing on Dartmoor and with the paddling pools and water squirters in the back garden at my brothers house. Lucas's highlight was of course definitely some ice-cream. 

Tuesday we did manage to space it up a bit. We baked some stars, moon and planet biscuits whilst listening to The Planet Suite by Holst. The boys had a good go at guessing which part of the music was about which planet and I was surprised by how many planet names they already knew. They all loved baking, even Lucas who had each step of the ingredients given to him on his tray to explore; I should do it more often with them, especially now Mum and Dad bought me my own mixer for our wedding anniversary this year (that I somehow managed to find a home for in my kitchen! Haha!)  Xander thought the spinning mixer bowl was fairly hysterical and Zachary loved getting his hands stuck into the biscuit mixture. 

Wednesday was of course 'big boys' day out. This week we went to Dewstow Gardens and Grottos near Caldicot with my Mum. She has wanted to go there with the boys for ages, but it isn't a baby suitable place so it had to be a day without Lucas. The gardens and grottos are fairly magical and very different; so we pretended we were going on an adventure to a new planet. The boys promptly decided between them we were visiting a planet called "Zoomi Mars" and thoroughly enjoyed themselves running across bridges and stepping stones, into caves and caverns. My little plonker Zachy managed somehow to fall into one of the little ponds and finished exploring the gardens soaking wet... we even pretended the water might turn him into an alien! Haha! 

Wednesday night the boys had the real treat of sleeping over Nana and Bampi's house so Thursday was another fairly quiet day after we had returned home. Lucas has some rare 1:1 playtime in the morning before went to collect his big brothers, so we played with our  'space blanket' and he discovered some plantets and stars using our imagination with some of his orbit rattles, tambourines and star stacker toys! He loved the foil blanket and made sure he had a good go at shaking it as loudly as he could! 

When the big boys were home we watched some story bots videos on YouTube - with this planet video being one of my personal favourites! 

Friday was a complete Space off day (as Saturday and today have been, apart from watching a film called Planet 51), and instead we spent a glorious start of September day at the beach celebrating our friends twins 4th birthdays. We arrived at the beach at 11.00am and didn't leave until bedtime. We really are loving the seaside this year! 

The weekend has been spent mostly getting ready for school. We have had the most fantastic summer and we can't wait to do it all again next year; infact the boys have already requested some themes for next year so Boats and Jungle are already on the list for Six Weeks of Summer for 2018! 

And now it is time for back to school... Boo! But we've got so much to look forward to before half term, and indeed throughout this entire academic year with Big's birthday in 6 weeks and his London weekend away, our fly away holiday at half term in 8 weeks, a new cousin for the boys around the same time, Small's birthday in November, Christmas, my BFF's Hen weekend to start 2018,  Jon has the stag to look forward to in Feburary, our birthdays in March and the wedding of course all before we get to Easter! 

How lucky am I to have been able to have so many adventures with my boys this summer! My confidence with solo outings with three has definitely improved (although ask me again next Summer when Little can walk! Haha!). We've made some wonderful memories and I'm determined to make the most of our summers like this every year until they decide they are too old. I'm just loving them at the age they are now; yes sometimes it is really exhausting and really hard but they are little children that just love life and prove to me every day that life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful.  Even though I think they are pretty perfect! 

Our wonderful summer and my rainbow boys, still healing me. 

Six Weeks of Summer Week 5: Dinosaurs

I absolutely cannot believe that tomorrow my babies go back to school! 

I've been entirely rubbish at keeping up with my Six Weeks of Summer diary entries but we really have had the most marvellous summer. I'm not ready for it to end and feel sad that its over. I know I'm exceptionally lucky to be able to spend school holidays with my children and jam them pack full with adventures in the way that we have this summer; but now I face term-time when I'll miss 'Family Thursdays' and the prospect of many other things in school because the irony of my job makes it difficult to attend school events for my own children. 

Back to school is a milestone each year that rests quite heavily on me; it is undoubtably exciting and the boys are definitely excited to spend the day with their new teachers and cannot wait to see their friends. But along with the momentary gut-wrench that my boys are moving another year away from being babies and getting so big,  there is always that smack in the face that another chalk board should be ready for the 'Back to School' photo tomorrow morning too. Another yearly milestone where Anabelle is missing. Tomorrow she should be starting the junior school, joining Year 3 and feeling very grown up because she isn't in the infants anymore. But her cohort starts without her again while Alexander start Year 1 and Zachary becomes a rising 4 at Nursery instead of a rising 3. 

The last two weeks have been so busy. Although I'll admit Week 6 we have been flagging. Outer Space week has been extremely flimsy on the ground to say the least, to the point that its hardly worth giving it its own blog! Haha!  We've all been tired, six weeks of adventures have tired us out, so although I don't back to reality to arrive I think we'll all certainly benefit from the back to routine. 

But anyway.... Week 5, Dinosaur Week. 

We started the week with some dinosaur egg hatching. The boys had been dying to do this for ages, after we had found them in the cupboard (we had forgotten we had them!) but they made a perfect activity for dinosaur week so I saved them for the summer. We found our eggs with our dinosaurs and put them in water, waiting for them to grow and hatch. Zac was most put out that they were not going to hatch instantly! 

Tuesday was a home day. We spent the morning building some Lego Duplo dinosaurs (and watched The Land Before Time). The boys worked separately on this for a while, Xander building lots of different designs of dinosaur and Zachy making a Diplodocus. After a while they started to work together, joining their bricks to build a very tall dinosaur!  Later on in the day they then decided to build a tree for some of their dinosaurs to eat. 

In the afternoon I went to get the tuff spot out. I was going to make some sort of dinosaur land in it for playing in the garden that afternoon but discovered it filled with water (note to self - the blue sheeting isn't waterproof!). Not to matter I thought it can be a dinosaur swampland! Now the boys loved it but I don't really think entirely thought the swamp through... of course all three of them were in it within minutes; the baby especially thought this was marvellous! But the soggy mess! Haha! 

Wednesday was 'big boy' day out and this week we went to Cardiff Museum, especially for the Dinosaur Babies additional exhibition currently there. We arrived to discover some enormous dinosaur footprints outside the museum and some ominous claws over the side of the building! We spent a good few hours discovering animatronic dinosaurs, fossils, skeleton models of dinosaurs and their babies, baby dinosaurs in their eggs, the children had a pit they could climb in to reveal dinosaur bones, made up their own dinosaur names, dressed up as a dinosaur, read dinosaur books, and completed big dinosaur puzzles. It was an exhibition well worth the visit and the small entrance fee to that part of the museum. Both boys came away happy with their mini dinosaurs I bought them too. 

Thursday we were in Cardiff again. This time for the dinosaur encounter event at Cardiff castle. I must say, that although we had a lovely afternoon out it was an incredibly busy session with many many other people there too. I was quite disappointed that the group was so large because it meant there wasn't any opportunity for the children to have a 1:1 moment with the T-Rex in the walkabout session and didn't get chosen to meet one of the animals in the animal encounter session. The boys were subsequently quite underwhelmed by the whole experience to be honest! Zachy lost interest and all Xander had to say was the T-Rex was a man in a costume because he could see his legs, jumper and shoes. Not the best effort into disguising! They enjoyed themselves though in the castle grounds - we'll definitely be back with our castle keys (heavily discounted 3 year entry passes because Jon works in Cardiff) soon to explore the castle properly with more time (and less people!) 

Friday was mostly a dinosaur day off. Instead we met with some of our friends for a day out in Cardiff Bay. We parked in Penarth and walked and scooted along the barrage to the Bay, stopped half way for a play in the park,  had ice-cream and another park play when we got there, had a Starbucks, couldn't get on a boat (too full) so had to walk the rest of the way back as well. 14,367 steps (or 4 miles). The children were super!  

Luc got in on dinosaur day though, because after a late nap and then a car nap he wasn't going to bed on time that night. So instead had a dinosaur hopper session! Hehe! 

Saturday the boys watched The Good Dinosaur in the morning and played in the sand making Triceratops skeleton fossils with sand moulds in the afternoon. 

And then Sunday was another dinosaur day off and another day spent in Cardiff Bay with a different friend!

Then we loosely started Outer Space week... more to follow! 

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After Anabelle - Raising Rainbows. I'm Caz, Mummy to beautiful angel Belle and my wonderful rainbow boys, Xander, Zachy and Luc. Wife to Jon. Twitter @cazem Instagram @cazzyem
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