Thursday, August 20, 2009

Holidays nearly over

We took the kids for a picnic to Hadleigh Farm last week, where it proceeded to rain on and off all day and was bloody freezing.

August. Greyer and more miserable than January.

Isobel had a donkey ride. Her donkey was called Joseph, and was a grumpy little bugger. He had a fight with another donkey while Isobel and another child clung on for dear life.

The farm sells the obligatory bags of animal feed for you to wander round with. The only problem was the farm was so rammed with visitors that by the afternoon all the animals looked at you in disgust when you presented them with yet another handful of stinking sheep pellets. You could just tell from the desperation in their eyes that they'd much rather have some of your picnic. Maybe a jam doughnut, or scotch egg.

We also had a lovely day out to Grays Beach on Wednesday, which isn't really a beach(it is on the Thames-don't swim in it, it's grim!), but has an amazing sandy playground and water fountain park, bouncy castle and go-karts. I can't believe that we haven't been before. We were there literally all day. It also has this really bizarre setting, like being on holiday, but with huge industrial buildings looming over you.

Even better, it was about thirty degrees yesterday, so we didn't get rained on for a change.

Ryan is now not going to his Mums. After weeks of messing him about, she calls and says she would rather send him the money she would've spent on travelling to get him/get him to her, which was £70. Fine, she's still saving herself hundreds of pounds by not having to feed him or entertain him for a week, so everyone is a winner. Except, she has let him down again and instead of the promised £70, only given him £20. He was planning on saving that to put towards his moped insurance at Christmas.

I've had a good day today. We decided about two weeks ago that I was probably going to have to get a second job to up my hours, and also go back to my main job early. I really didn't want to have to put Kit into childcare, or get Isobel picked up from school by someone else, so I'm really happy that Pete will be at home with the kids. That is worth its weight in gold as far as I'm concerned. He was home with Isobel a few days week for two years and they are so close because of it. I had an interview for a little second job today, cleaning a doctors surgery, and they called me this afternoon to offer me it!

We have some big decisions to make this year about Taylor's senior school, as we have to choose in a few months. The school I wanted him to go to has been under subscribed for years, but it looks like this year everyone else has had the same idea as us and they were fully subscribed. He'll never get in as baptised Catholics get first refusal. Our local schools only have a 20-30% pass rate at GCSE, which won't do Taylor any favours really. He's a good learner IF he is taught, leaving him to get on with it means he will learn nothing. He will do well if he's pushed, he learns easily. Ryan's senior school isn't great for setting e extra work, or even homework, or getting them to do the coursework, hence the 30% pass rate. This has been not so bad for Ryan, who is naturally clever(but lazy with it!), he'll probably do OK in his exams regardless, but Taylor wouldn't. Not sure what to do really. I think we are going to have to either try our hardest to move, or accept that he isn't going to do very well. How on earth will we be able to move in time? It's not an option really. Bugger.

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