That same self-consciousness and lack of organisation is what stops me going here on the blog. I worry that I don't want to bore people with more pictures or stories, or that if I don't post up in a regular and systematic way, that I shouldn't post at all. This is ridiculous, because the reason I started the blog in the first place was to capture memories, no matter how spasmodic the intervals might be between posts, or how uninteresting my words and pictures might be to the rest of the world.
Anyway, this week has been one of my occasional melt-down weeks, where I feel I am falling far short of the mark, as a parent, a household manager (actually, I feel like that every week), and as a church leader and I realised I need to stop focusing on the fifty-something things I haven't achieved this summer, and take stock of some of the amazing stuff we did do.
As our memories don't manage to retain everything anyway, as hard as we might try, the beauty of social networking is that we can choose the bits we loved and WANT to retain, and just post them up instead - thus convincing ourselves we've had a marvellous time and shedding ourselves of the inevitable MummyGuilt that threatens to drown us as parents and tell us we're never quite good enough.
So here's what some of our summer looked like....
The only time a mother lets her child get his shirt written all over - the end of primary school!
This is a new award that the school commissioned last year. It goes to a child who is showing a great attitude despite difficult circumstances. Both years a child who has experienced the loss of a parent has won it, and hearing their stories has been very moving.
First day of the holidays: we went to stay at the house we spent all last summer at, on my Uncle and Auntie's property. We stopped at the supermarket for summer essentials ( = new books) and this is how they walked the rest of the time through the store.
My summer treat. I did way too much reading this summer :/
I have no idea.
When you get carted straight from the pool and into your bedroom because of your behaviour, there's only one thing to do. The beginning of the holidays we saw the last throes of the toddlerdom. She seems to be emerging much more calmly through the other side now. P. T. L.
Ha. Adventurer boy.
They were chilling by the pool when I leapt out and attacked them with their own Nerf guns. They had no idea I had smuggled them on holiday with us. Think the village will be finding darts all over for the rest of the year.
We managed a few trips to the library, because Rocky was missing his reading books from school. By the end of the holiday he had a long reading list to take into his Year One classroom.
We did this a lot. I'm thinking Ace must've had a really good hand that day.
Annual agricultural fair. They love the stalls and the animals, but they love the rides most of all :)
Fun at the local splash park with some of our besties. I love the bottom left hand picture. Turtle spent so much time chatting to her, and she's only a few weeks old. He's decided that he's going to adopt when he's older, because he wants children but not a wife. I'm hoping that's because he's in the 'all girls are disgusting' phase, and not because I've set him such a terrible example of what it's like to be married to a woman.....
Ace and Turtle went on a youth camp in Nefyn, North Wales and absolutely loved it. Great activities, opportunities and teaching...
...meanwhile I was left with two children. Two! I've never had just two before. So when I dropped the older boys at the pick up point for the coach, and I saw that the traffic home was bad, I decided to take Rocky and Baby on a trip round Ikea. It was the least stressful, most leisurely Ikea trip ever. They just pottered around, sitting on the furniture, pretending to eat invisible food, laughing whenever they saw a toilet, and squealing whenever they saw things that we already had at home. We had a blast.
Our reward for good behaviour (though I didn't need that cinnamon roll - a trip round beautifully designed, tidy family rooms is reward enough for me).
More to follow...