Sunday, September 26, 2010


Ryan has been at college for two ish weeks now and it isn't going so well. This may not be a bad thing, I think it could go either way as he has such an ego, being taken down a peg a two may sort him out. He's always been one of those people who blame others for their problems, think the whole world owes them a living etc. He has got better with time, but it's innate in him I think. Ryan lives in cloud cuckoo land where £30K jobs land in your lap, he thinks he's destined for greatness with zero effort put in on his part. Not unusual for teenage boys, but he's always been like it in some way. He's getting better though.

When he got his GCSE's he was giving it the large saying "Wow, I didn't even try at all and I still got C's, unbelievable!"(he got a couple of B's in unimportant subjects like PE too). When he went for his college interview they told him his grades weren't good enough and they weren't going to let him do A Levels. Pete went in and talked them into accepting him.

So, fast forward a few weeks and he's getting a public shaming from the tutors who keep telling him he'll never pass, statistically he's on target for an E because of his GCSE's being at an average level. I told Ryan they are probably telling him this to try and gee him up and make him work harder. He handed in some Politics homework the other day and got a U. He had tests on Friday in Economics that he knew he wouldn't pass, so he called in sick. Trouble is, he's working too many hours at Pizza Hut because he loves the ££££, and he's chasing after some girl. He needs to get his priorities right. It's all a learning curve.

Not sure what to do for him to be honest. He needs to figure this one out for himself. We've been trying to talk him into putting some effort in for the last few years and he thinks he knows best. I'm sure the college have picked up on his innate laziness and are just trying to knock it out of him early on. It's so annoying because he IS clever enough, but he really struggles with learning and thinking outside the box. I blame the way his Mum brought him up, he doesn't know how to question things, or research or think independently. When I homeschooled him it wss a nightmare as he needed to be spoonfed everything. He's doing Business, Economics, Politics and Philosophy. He's really enjoying the subjects, they are what he is good at to be honest, but his thought processes and work isn't anywhere near A level standard yet.

In other news, Ryan's mum has decided that after about 6 maintenance payments for Ryan, at £20 a month, she doesn't really fancy paying it anymore. So, she's paid £120 in five years. Her and Pete had a massive row about it where she proceeded to proclaim that she is a "good parent because she always buys him new things like trainers when she sees him". Hmmmm...funnily enough, Ryan doesn't agree. He thinks she's an idiot, just like the majority of the rest of the world who are unfortunate enough to come into contact with her. Apparently if we want any maintenance money now we have to beg Ryan for it, out of the sporadic pocket money she sends him. As if we'll do that. Pete asked her if she was happy with the fact that another woman was financially and emotionally supporting her child, because she was so bad at it. That went down well, as you can imagine!

She also promised Ryan an iPod for passing his exams. So far she has called every week to talk about it, and she even lied about sending it at one point saying the postman must've put a card through the door, then backtracked in the next call and said she was ordering it the next day, then another week passed and we got more phonecalls talking about the wonderful imaginary iPod. What colour does he want? What case does he want? What size does he want? No actual iPod though. It's almost like she's showing off about buying it, without actually buying it. She is crackers with a capital C. We are now awaiting the delivery of the magical iPod, which Ryan is adamant she ordered while he was on the phone to her last Monday. It's still not here. *Newsflash* She is currently on the phone telling him that the company have refunded her money so she's had to get it somewhere else. How many more excuses can she come up with. It's hilarious.

I forgot to mention, at least one of us has had some luck recently. Pete passed his Youth Worker course and finally started one of his jobs that he was offered earlier on in the year. He now works Wednesdays and Fridays in two local youth centres. He is still waiting patiently for a start date for the other one, working with young offenders. They are taking their time, it's fair to say. I'm very proud of him for doing so well. It's great to be able to stick two fingers up to the stinky Retail jobs he did before.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Kit aged 18 months

Kit having a little chat. I'm sure whatever it is he is trying to say is very important.

18 Months

You would never believe that he was a little tinker when he looks so cute in photos, would you? He still wakes up at night, is a fussy monkey with food and barely eats, likes to beat everyone up and wrestle, but to make up for it all he is incredibly cute and cuddly. He's at that lovely stage where he's learning to talk, and calls everything animated a "Duck-Duck". He is obsessed with ducks. All birds are ducks. Sometimes even dogs can be ducks. Cats are not ducks though, because all cats just have to be our cat Moo Moo.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


We went for a very brief walk at the weekend as both Pete and I have terrible colds. I've had mine for about two weeks now, I just can't seem to shift it and have been coughing for ages. We keep waking each other up at night having involuntary coughing fits, and of course the sleepless nights help with our general moods. In other words, we are being grumpy sods. The kids were all climbing the walls though, so we did the dutiful parent bit and went for a wander in the woods.

Shaggy parasols, Sloes for gin, Apples and Blackberries that swiftly went in a pie that afternoon, and some Plums which made a rather tart jam. Not bad for free!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


So, the children have all had their first full week back at school. Isobel has just gone up into the final year of infant school, so it wasn't a huge change for her, just a new teacher. The boys have both gone up a level though, Taylor to senior school and Ryan to college.

Taylor has already secured a place on the school football team and played his first match on Thursday against a local school. He's taken to the whole senior school thing like a duck to water and even did his first bit of homework, French, without causing a fuss during the week. He's had four pieces of work to do over the weekend and has done two already. This is the boy that would rip stuff up if it had a spelling mistake and cry for hours over homework, so I'm glad he's taking it all in his stride.

Ryan is taking a really tricky set of A levels and he appears to be loving it, although I think he's well aware that the novelty will wear off and the hard work will begin. He's doing Economics, Business, Philosophy and Politics, and we've been having some cracking debates with him at home about the stuff he's learnt. He seems to be actually learning stuff, shock horror!

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Sun and seaside

Yes, we actually had some sun, and we made the most of it.

We drove over to Walton on the Naze for the day, which is about an hour or so away from us. Weirdly, we'd never been before, even though we've seen most of Essex over the years. The sea was so choppy, it was beautiful, and we had fun trying to run away from the breakers.

Taylor wasn't so lucky this time!

The Windfarm in the distance. Aren't they just the eeriest, most mesmerising things ever? I could watch them all day.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Exam Results

Ryan had his GCSE results last week, he did very well considering he panicked right at the last minute and actually put some effort in. We were all very pleased for him and proud.

He'd already sat his English and Maths a year ago and got C's, but still needed 3 more C and above grades for college. He got C's in English Lit and Statistics and B's in PE and Media. Pete said he was being cocky when they went to get his results, saying he couldn't believe he'd done no work and still passed, so imagine his surprise when he went to enrol at college and they told him he couldn't do A Levels because his GCSE's weren't good enough! They were really bullying him into taking BTECs instead, which isn't what he wanted, so he had to get Pete to come in with him and beg for the A Level spaces. I think that might have taught him a bit of a lesson to be honest. Pete went in and told them that he'd sat two of them a year early and had only been at the school 2.5 years and they decided to let him enrol. He got in by the skin of his teeth. Hopefully he'll realise now that he needs to pull his finger out and do the work.