This posting intermittently thing really stinks for continuity in blogging, but I will plow forward with current events and backfill as needed when I've got the luxury of internet in my house. (Yes, I have a new-found appreciation and outlook on this service that I took as my God-given right not so very long ago!)
First up, today is the boys' first day of school! Don't they look adorable in their uniforms? They look a bit like they are going to the firing squad, but really they are completely excited to finally get to school and meet some kids their age. They have done very well playing with just each other, but they are definitely ready to add more kids in the mix and get back in a routine. For my money, this might just be the second happiest day of my life, superseded only by the imminent day that finds all THREE of the boys in school and internet at my fingertips at home. (I believe the expression is "Like a pig in shit.....," no? *snort*)
Next up, my CC (Capt. Chaos) turned 10!!! He was started the day out well, but storm clouds started to gather while I was out trying to piece together the last bits of school uniforms in Salisbury. I got a desperate call from Daddy-Double-Oh-Seven,as I was meandering my way home on the treacherous country roads that make up the bulk of my driving here, saying that CC had retreated to his room in tears and was depressed about having his birthday here in the UK, so far from all his friends and loved ones. The bright side of his call was that the trampoline that I have been trying to procure for the past month, FINALLY arrived!
I sped for home, throwing caution (and my sideview mirrors) to the wind, knowing that I had a secret happy-maker weapon in one of my bags from town. Being Mom-Extraordinaire is easy on some days, and today I lucked out by finding the perfect gift for CC and buying it (even though, technically I wasn't supposed to get anymore gifts for him because we had blown our load the day before at Legoland (amazing, fun, awesome, ....and financially draining).
I got home and went upstairs to find him cowering, crying, distraught under a pile of blankets in the corner of his room. Way worse than I expected. :( I talked to him and no words seem to comfort him, so I pulled out my secret weapon: "Well, I was going to wait until dinner, but do you want your birthday present now?" You know a glimmer of happiness crossed that little face of his, don't you? So, I had him wait and I went downstairs and got out the presents and put them in a bag, brought them up, and let him open them. I wish I had a video of his face as it went from the depths of depression to joy, with a look at me that said, YOU always know how to make me feel better, Mom. Aint't life grand when your worries can be repaired with this:
Yeah, that's right. Problem solved with a soft, fuzzy Bart Simpson bathrobe and some snazzy slippers, to boot. He instantly stripped to his boxers and wrapped himself up in all its microfiber, snuggly glory and headed to play the Wii with his brother. Disaster, depression and doom: Circumvented. Thanks, Mom!!!
The next step was going to town to pick out a birthday cake. The birthday boy picked out a cake shaped like a massive black spider and cooked up a whole scheme for a dinner by candlelight, followed by an unveiling of the cake, which we were all to keep super-secret-hush-hush from everyone else in the family. The plan went off without a hitch (unless you count the Animal screaming and crying that he "just wanted to see the cake" every hour, on the hour, for the rest of the afternoon).
We had CC's favorites for dinner, roast chicken and spaetzle, and we had toasts to CC's birthday and toasts for the imminent departure of our babysitter, Gigi.
We dropped Gigi off at Heathrow on Saturday morning and I am still recovering.... I am once again the only female in a house of raging testosterone and male activity and it is completely overwhelming. Gigi has not only been our helper, sitter, and buffer while she was here for the past three weeks; she has been my friend. We spent a lot of time chatting, talking, laughing, and relating. She is an amazing girl for just being on the edge of 18 and I am really going to miss her. We have high hopes that we will be able to lure her back after she graduates from high school next year, the seed has been planted, and we will have to see how it grows over the next 10 months. :)
I'll end with a slew of photos. I am hoping to get back into town to check in on my baby blog on Wednesday, but you know what they say about the best-laid plans....
These are our keys! Aren't they dreamy? ;) Seriously, though, they are so old-fashioned looking (by American standards) that I can't help but be in love with them a little.
This was taken on the boys' first train ride. We hopped on the train at the station nearest our house (about a couple miles away) and rode into Southampton for the day. The train goes through a field across from our house and I got lucky, snapping this pic as we went by. I say "lucky" because that train moves fast!
Legoland was unbelievable.... Mostly because of this part: All kinds of city scenes from all over the UK and Europe, recreated in Legos. Whoa. I think that I was the most giddy over this part of the park.
We went to the Duxford Air Show on Saturday (150 miles from our house) and had an AWESOME time. The planes that were there were unreal.... A Eurofighter Typhoon was the first one to really get us revved up (imagine a rocket blasting off a half-mile away and you can imagine how loud that thing was as it whizzed by and then flew straight up to 65000 feet with his afterburner glowing orange.... we could almost feel the jet-wash and definitely had to plug our ears) and then the show ended with a aerobatics display by the Red Arrows, the Royal Air Force's official aerobatic team (think Blue Angels). It was the coolest air show I've ever been to. I think CC is ready to defect and join the RAF, if they'll have him. ;)