"Although I speak from my own experience, I feel that no one has the right to impose his or her beliefs on another person. I will not propose to you that my way is best. The decision is up to you. If you find some point which may be suitable for you, then you can carry out experiments for yourself. If you find that it is off no use, then you can discard it." Dalai Lama...

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

One out of three ain't bad!!

Yesterday Emily found her Felicity Wishes dolls in one of the boxes in the dining room.She played with them for a while - dressing her in the bakers outfit - and then asked if we could bake.I said "yes we could make some cookies" and she looked through the Felicity Wishes magazines  for a recipe but wasn't able to find the one she wanted. When we went shopping I said I would get some eggs and we could make cookies or fairy cakes when we got home.She said " can we be a little more adventurous" I said " yes indeed what have you in mind ?" She chose to make a chocolate fudge cake.She loves the one Thornton's do at Sainsbury's and always has it for any special occasion and in fact any occasion that is not so special:-)

I saw a doughnut maker at Aldi yesterday and was tempted to buy it.

We set off today to do doughnuts,a chocolate cake and fudge to go on top of the cake.

I followed the instructions in the booklet for the doughnut mix and it was really runny,definitely didn't look right! After a failed attempt and adding more flour to make a thicker batter we tried three more times!! No luck,all came out flat/uncooked/rubbery:-(
Will have another go at making them, after talking to a friend who has one.

As we were making the batter and as Milly cracked the eggs she remembered eggy bread and decided she would like that for lunch, so that's what she had.

On to the fudge,I haven't made it for many years but it sounded easy.
Yeah well it didn't go to plan! Ended up with a strange consistency and a cross between toffee and fudge, it is very shiny and quite thin! It could well be because I added some double cream. We only had semi skimmed milk and I thought it would be better to be a bit creamier....Milly doesn't like it and Alan wasn't too keen either!

Finally onto the big one the chocolate cake...
Here it is in all it's fudgy yumminess:-)
(The pool of fudgy sauce doesn't look too appetising but it tastes just great)
We are taking it along to the Home ed group meet tomorrow to see if they can help us finish it off.

We had decided to try out the recipe to make a cake for my Nephews 14th birthday celebrations on Sunday.We will tweak the fudge recipe and try that again so we could add some to the top of the cake, but the cake is a success and we will make it on Saturday to take to my Mum's for the get together:-)

Monday, 26 April 2010

Busy days,early nights.....

We have been keeping busy here.I smiled as I wrote that:-) Busy for us is rarely full on - never have a minute-type busy. We have been out more days than we have been at home though and that is quite unusual.

Monday we had D over to play for a couple of hours in the afternoon while Millii and her Mum went for her sixth form college interview.She was very well prepared with a fab portfolio of her work.They didn't need to see that at this interview but at least she has it all ready and can now add more for the next interview:-)

Tuesday we went out in the morning to get some Dragons from McDonald's.Emily really enjoyed How to train your Dragon and we visited Mc D's for a meal last week but she had some money and wanted to get the dragons without the meal! My Mum and Dad came for lunch and then spent time with Emily whilst I had a snooze.I didn't intend to sleep. I meditated in the prone position and it left me so relaxed I was asleep before I knew it:-)
I have been feeling a bit low physically and emotionally.After eight months without a period I have had two and the hormonal swings have worn me out:-(

Wednesday was due to be a day at the Farm with the home ed group but as I was feeling so crappy we called it off and spent the day together at home.

Thursday was when things started to Ramp up a little:-)

We Picked Millii up to go Swimming at Keswick.They spent about an hour or so in the pool (while I read my book) and then had some time in the new play park which has some great new equipment.
(I took these pictures when Emily and I went last week.She has since had her hair chopped again and it is now a chin length bob)

We got back to Millii's so she could head of to her afternoon babysitting job and I had a cuppa and chatted with Maria while Emily and D played.
Back home to ours with Millii.A quick tea and then Millii and I went off to the Buddhist Meditation at 7.30-9.00. Back home and Millii had brought The Vampires assistant to watch.I wasn't going to stay up but it was a weird film that kind of grew on me:-) It was gone 12 before getting to bed...

 Friday we had a very leisurley start and after lunch we headed off to an appointment with our Homeopath.Millii waited in reception and when Emily had chatted with Dierdre for a while they headed off to do a little shopping and hang out in the park til I picked them up.Dropped Millii off at home and had more tea and Emily and D had more play:-)
Back home for food and I didn't really want to cook,so we set off with a picnic bag and bought fish and chips and sat near the sea to eat them.
Back again and just enough time to set up the dining room for a sleepover with A.She arrived at 8.30 after her swimming lesson and the two of them talked and played ate and laughed.I watched TV and went through at 12.15 to let them know I was going up.They lasted til 12.45 apparently:-)

Saturday and we had planned to go swimming with Millii again.A wasn't able to come and her Dad picked her up at 10 but Millii and Emily had a great time, in the pool for 2 hours ( I read my book ) and then onto the cinema to meet up with D to watch How to train your dragon.I did some shopping and read my book in the car filling in time.
I had a very early night on Saturday!!

Sunday and Emily's first time at a new Drama group.She was very nervous! Some time ago Millii had been talking about the new term when she was in the car with us.I had asked Emily if she wanted to go (thinking she would say no as she had in the past) she said yes!!
I wondered if she had just said yes because Millii was going.I think that was a big part,it would certainly help to have one of your best friends there:-) In all conversations we have had since that time she has not has second thoughts at all.

Emily is not a shy girl although she often is called shy.She does however get extremely anxious about new situations.We talked through how she was feeling and things she could do to help her cope.We talked about comfort zones.I talked about times when I have pushed myself even when I have been afraid and how I grew from those experiences.We talked about being in control of the situation and doing it because we wanted to and not because someone else wanted us to.I was so proud of her,she could have said "take me home" knowing I would have done,but she pushed herself and did it! She came out absolutely buzzing!

Home for lunch and a quick breather for Emily.I whizzed round with the vacuum and prepped some things for tea and then off again to her Riding lesson.When she started we had a few treks for the first couple of weeks and then she had her first lesson.I had booked a trek for this week because we had talked about it and she thought a lesson then a trek would work for her.She asked to change it for a lesson.She is stretching herself without any pressure from us at all.The lesson went well.The instructor was really pleased with the group and got them to do some different techniques at the end of the lesson.
Milly was very tired after the lesson and as we have some family commitments next weekend she is glad to have a breather! I have booked a trek at her request for the following week.She will still be learning on a trek but it will not be as intense as a lesson.Milly knows she can stop going at any stage,things can just go along at her pace.The most important thing is that she enjoys it...

Home for tea and another very early night for me!
Today was supposed to be a very gentle day with little to do but has not turned out that way!I am not going out to weightwatchers tonight and intend to have a long bath and an early night.The rest of the week is going to be another busy one:-)

Monday, 19 April 2010

Problems with comments!!

Thanks to Michelle :-)) I have realised there was a problem with the comment section since changing my template.I think it should be sorted now.let me know if you have any probs!

My reading list...

A couple of books I am dipping into at the mo.

Cellular awakening

2012 and beyond.

Alongside them I am reading Nora Roberts The Black Hills. A friend introduced me to her books some time ago and I became hooked.

I started a Buddhist meditation course last week and would like to know more, so I hope to get round to reading Buddhism plain and simple soon.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Have you been asked "THE" question about Santa...

Milly is 11 and for the past couple of years we have seen her belief in Santa waver.On the last two Christmas eves it has been very, very late before she has managed to get to sleep.Last Christmas she cried because she was so scared he wouldn't come when she was still awake at 2.00 pm.

She didn't come right out and ask if he was real or not but little things she said led us to think she was questioning,but still desperately wanting to believe in him being real.

 It was causing her so much stress and making the build up to Christmas so difficult. Alan and I talked about whether to tell her the truth even though she hadn't asked.We decided that it didn't feel like the right time and it would have been awful if we had the timing wrong and could imagine how upset she would be.We talked about ways we might tackle it if she asked and what we would say,depending on how she took the news.I have heard stories of very sensitive children being  inconsolable on hearing the truth.

Emily and I were out yesterday.We sat having lunch at a table in the window seats of a chip shop and I can't even remember how we got into the conversation about Christmas.Then out of the blue she asked me if Santa was real! I said "what do you think?" to assess how serious she was about wanting the answer and she said "no, I asked you and I would like the truth......."So very serious then :-)

Well although I had anticipated it happening this year I was thrown.It wasn't that I was thinking of carrying on with the pretence but in that split second I had to decide how to tackle it, assessing how she might take it ,and how to own up to the fabrication for so many years!

Within the few seconds I was thinking about how to word things, she asked if it was us that put them out.
I simply said" Yes it was" and she smiled!
We talked a bit more about how I would stay up till the early hours before setting out Santa's toys.She wasn't upset in fact she said she felt elated.She said that this year she would be able to lie in and not feel the need to rush and see if he had been!!
We talked about why we pretend Santa is real and I said that Daddy and I would do things differently if we had the time over again and went through a few ways we could have done it without pretending about Santa. .We talked and  I explained that it had been done with the best intentions to make Christmas a magical time.

She asked if she could talk to Amy (best friend) because she said they had been talking about it at Christmas.I said that it would be unfair to spoil it for Amy if she still believed,but we talked about ways she could broach the subject to find out if Amy knew.

We talked about keeping Santa real for younger children that we know.

  It went smoothly, the time was right,Milly was ready to know.I would still handle the whole Christmas thing differently.....without,what always felt like, the lie of Santa......

Thursday, 8 April 2010


A lot of people have recorded their feelings about the news yesterday.As I would have expected there have been some thought provoking opinions.

I haven't written much on here during the process. My circumstances have meant that I was not able to be as intensely involved as I would have liked to be. I have done all in my power to do my bit and I know that every voice,however quiet, added up to a great big shout!I feel proud to have been a very small cog in the Home ed machine :-)
I want to say a heartfelt thanks to all those who fought the bill .There are some amazingly talented people with a skill way beyond my own in their ability to access information, analyse it and communicate the details.I appreciate the time and effort it took for you to do this and the time spent away from your families because of it.It has been a very long fight.
You are all amazing.
 The thought that Labour could still get voted back in is not a pleasant one.
I will most definitely not be voting for them.I haven't decided where my vote will go,policy on Home ed will obviously be top of the agenda.
 I have been drawn to the Libertarian Party Values.This vote has to count.More thinking to be done...
I may be one small voice but I will be heard.I just hope that there are many more out there shouting the same thing....

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

love Emily

dear mum your the best best best best best times 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000
the best mum in the universe i really times 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 love you love
Emily and Pan xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx times 1222222222222222222222222222222222222200000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000

Fabulous news,

I have been out most of today and came home to find this fab news.

"Today the Conservatives have successfully blocked sections of the Children, Schools and Families Bill that posed a direct threat to the professional autonomy of heads and teachers and to the freedom of parents."

So far I have found more info here, here here and here .I am sure before long there will be many more people recording it.

(edited to add) More here,here here

I knew I would love it!!!

Living in a yurt that is :-)

It was foul weather when we got there.Our first view of the Yurt made us gulp a little! We knew it was sited on a slope but it looked very steep!!
It looked so small.We just couldn't see how we could all fit in,it had looked so much bigger on the website pics.However, we needn't of worried......it was Tardis like:-)

Milly got to have the double bed as it was a softer mattress and not too good for Al's back.

We had the two single beds.One was stored under the other and during the day we made a sofa by pulling the underneath one out slightly and filling with cushions and pillows.

There was a log burner to keep us toasty warm.

The weather may have thrown wind rain and snow at us but we were comfy and cosy.
Fab view from the door.We could see lake Windermere in the distance,this picture doesn't really do it justice,it was dark and tipping down! 

Very quiet neighbours:-)

We took ready made stew from home for the first couple of nights and it was an easy job to warm it up.

Up and down the hill to the loo was less so!Milly and Al on their way back up one night...I have to say, even though the first night washing up down there I had three layers on and rain blowing in,I really enjoyed it.I enjoyed the trudge back a little less! However I just kept stopping to admire the view and get my breath back.

This was our view for most of the time we were there.I had been looking forward to seeing the stars and eating and living outside.That was impossible for three days but it didn't detract from the enjoyment at all.

We walked, to Ambleside in the rain.We walked to Grassmere in the snow.
We loved every minute.

And on the last day the sun came out and we got to light the campfire, eat out and have a walk in the sunshine with my sister,brother in law and Nephew who had come to spend the day with us:-)

I also got to see the stars through the roof that night:-)

Holidays are often a hard time for Emily.She finds being away from home difficult.The whole idea of us camping is because she wanted an adventure.She was very excited the first afternoon and was desperate to see the Yurt.The journey was around an hour,so that was perfect for her.She enjoyed exploring and tree climbing and the adventure playground.She had all her special things(and a few more!!) with her. I always take incense to burn when we go away as she is sensitive to smells in places and it reminds her of home.So I had covered all bases to try to make it as easy a transition as possible for her.The first two nights she found it difficult to sleep which is quite usual on a holiday.She did a lot of walking and exploring and kept things together quite well.The four nights were just enough for her though,she was very very happy to get back home.The plans for future holidays are to go Mon-Fri instead of a full week and to stay within a couple of hours of home.

Within hours of being home I was on the phone to book again for later in the year:-)
I am also looking into a smaller tent than the one we had been looking at last year. Rather than camping for a week or more we will stay close to home and the plan is that we can just take off for a weekend if the weather is good over the summer.Alan is coming round to the idea and so long as we can source a comfortable bed and chair for him (he had a spinal fusion op many years ago and suffers a great deal ,which was his main problem with a big tent and the effort it would take to erect etc) it looks like we could be joining the ranks of campers.....Fingers crossed:-)

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Time for change........

I have spent ages over the last few days trying to get a template I liked....
I looked at a lot!!
I kept coming back to this one and after I put it up I decided to see what the Dragonfly symbolises.

"The meaning of a dragonfly changes with each culture. The main symbolisms of the dragonfly are renewal, positive force and the power of life in general. Dragonflies can also be a symbol of the sense of self that comes with maturity. Also, as a creature of the wind, the dragonfly frequently represents change. And as a dragonfly lives a short life, it knows it must live its life to the fullest with the short time it has – which is a lesson for all of us.
There are many different representations of the dragonfly; it all comes down to which culture you happen to be in. For instance, if you are in Japan, the dragonfly symbolizes a new light and joy. Some animal symbolism has the dragonfly representing good luck, prosperity, swiftness, purity, harmony and strength. Some Native Americans believe dragonflies are the souls of the dead. There are also many cultures that believe that the meaning of a dragonfly is happiness, courage and subconscious thoughts. It is also believed that if you see two dragonflies paired together that they represent love and maturity.
The dragonfly has been a symbol of happiness, new beginnings and
change for many centuries and even though the representation of the dragonfly seems to change throughout the cultures, there are still a few things that are similar; the dragonfly means hope, change and love."

Seems like an apt symbol for me in many ways!
Like it was meant to be :-)