Monday, April 23, 2007

BBQ in April

What a ridiculously hot April it has been both here in London and down in Dorset where I was studying hard.

Anyway we cranked out the Barbie for its first run of the year.

BBQ 05

Lauren seemed to enjoy sitting outside, graffitiing one of the Sunday supplements!

BBQ 03

Off to See the Queen!

We did a quick family trip out to Windsor on Saturday, where the Queen was in residence.

Lauren wasn't too bothered about that though as she had swans to contend with, as well as a large ice-cream all of her own!

Windsor 004

Windsor 008

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Photos for Daddy

Poor Daddy is working hard this week on a course in Bournemouth (see his post) so we thought we'd take a few pictures of the little girl to cheer him up. Jase's parents are staying with me in London until Jase get back this weekend, and we all went to the park today.

Grandma reckoned that the little girl's hair is now long enough for bunches, so we tried it out. As you can see, she looked absolutely gorgeous!

Unfortunately, the weather wasn't as good today as it was at the weekend (which was glorious; we sat out in the back garden until 7:30pm and it felt like the Med) but the sun did eventually break through the cloud. It was definitely warm in the sun, but the wind was quite chilly.

I suspect she was a little tired today because she didn't want to run around as much as normal, but she did enjoy seeing the ducks and sitting on the springy see-saw thingy with Grandad.

More photos from today can be found on my Flickr site.

We came home for lunch when she got tired, and found a British Gas service man waiting for us when we arrived. Bizarrely though, another three engineers then turned up to service our boiler! One of them stayed to do the job but they were as puzzled as we were that so many of them had been sent to the job.

Still no word from the mouse man (I called him this morning but he hasn't returned my call yet) but to be fair, I haven't seen any more mice yet. Let's hope they keep away!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Anniversary slips by...

As well as getting one year older recently (unfortunately, apart from being my first day as a consultant there wasn't much to say about my birthday as there wasn't much time to celebrate) I've suddenly realised that my blog has been going for one year.

When I read back to my first post, I realise that it was just over a year ago that I set up this blog. I'm constantly amazed at how much Lauren has grown and changed over that time. I can't believe the difference when I look at the photos and the video footage we've taken!

Belated happy 1st birthday to the blog - hope that you (my friends and family) will continue to read about our family antics!

Scary stuff!

Forgot to mention that we've had a "fun" few days; read this post and this post on Jase's blog. I suppose it's one of the joys of living in London (too many people in too little space!).

Can't wait to see the pest control guy next week. It'll also be a challenge to figure out how to put down rat poison / traps without Lauren getting at them.


Saturday, April 14, 2007

Up in the air

Our family is going through a really unsettled time at the moment. I'm not sure why this has happened, but I often think that times of change creep up on you and that sometimes it seems as if all hell is let loose.

Jase is still looking for a job and has been applying week on week for jobs. Still nothing has come from it yet and he is being forced to look further from home (such as Brighton and Watford). I'm still hopeful that something will eventually come up. However, in the meantime we are having to be extremely cafeful with money as we've been on a single income for 4 months now.

He's going on a project management course next week in Bournemouth, which will result in a professional qualification. As well as looking for jobs all week, he has studying hard for this.

Lauren has moved into the next room in her nursery which is for the children from 18 months to 2 years. She's now the smallest person in her room, which is quite large and is a group of 25. At first, we were told that she was a bit intimidated and shy. There were tears when we dropped her off, which was really quite upsetting. However, yesterday she seemed a bit better and when Jase went to pick her up, she was playing happily with the friends she'd made from her old room who had moved up with her.

I've been finding out that my job is also not secure. I've been appointed into a temporary post, which is a fixed contract until July 2nd. However, the management currrently are refusing to advertise the permanent post unless we make concessions to work unsociable hours. We are resisting this as we all feel that it is not sustainable with our current numbers.

If things cannot be resolved, I guess that I will also need to look for a new job soon.

Stressful times for all of us.

Easter weekend

We had my mum and dad with us over the Easter weekend. It was really sunny here in London so we had many days out at the park with Lauren. She had a wonderful time on the slides but is now scared to go on the swings (not sure why). Jase took some more video footage of Lauren but hasn't yet had time to edit it.

We also took mum and dad out to eat on a couple of occasions; we had a lovely lunch at Sam's Brasserie. It was fantastic; the fish was as fresh as ever and cooked to perfection. Prices were reasonable and the place was genuinely child-friendly (unlike our recent experiences at Pacific Bar and Grill) so we had a relaxed and happy time.

On the day they flew back home, we went to the London Hong Kong Restaurant near Heathrow. Despite some negative reviews on the net, we had been told by my cousin that it was actually quite good for dim sum. I must admit that we found it really good for dim sum which was tasty, delicate and not greasy at all. It was also very reasonably priced, so we'll definitely go again for dim sum. A good place to kill time and eat prior to flying from Heathrow!

By Request

Lauren and Bob

Lauren and Bob 002

Lauren and Bob 006

And a bit of Mischief

Lauren and Bob 001

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Waiting for Bob

This is Bob:

Today Bob went for a "bath".

Lauren waited patiently for Bob and then, when he came out of the "Swish Swash", she ran off with him, even though he was wet!

We eventually rescued wet Bob and he went in the "Round and Round" for an hour and came out dry.

He is now surgically attached to Lauren again!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Sliding Videos

Here are two videos of Lauren on the slide as promised.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Slides and Climbing Frames

We went to Wendell Park again yesterday.

Lauren no longer likes the swings but LOVES the slides and climbing frame.

Wendell Park 001

Videos of Lauren on the slide to come shortly! 

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Trip to Edinburgh

A bit belatedly, here are a few photos of our time in Edinburgh last week.

We had a good week with the grandparents and luckily had one or two days when the weather was actually very nice. You've probably seen from the photos and video at Gullane beach that that particular day was sunny and bright.

It was windy on beach (which is quite normal for there!) but it was really nice to get wrapped up and run about with Lauren. Our family went there every summer whilst we were growing up in Edinburgh, so it was good to revisit old haunts.

We had a very good lunch at the Old Clubhouse in Gullane, a really lovely pub overlooking the children's green. Lauren shared my fish, chips and peas and enjoyed interacting with the patrons (mainly elderly couples as we went midweek). One couple had a gorgeous labrador, who got lots of attention from Lauren.

The good weather also allowed Lauren plenty of opportunity to play in the grandparents' garden. She especially enjoyed playing ball and chasing games with Grandad!

On our last full day in Edinburgh, we went to Edinburgh Zoo to look at the animals with Lauren. Unfortunately, it was rather cold and damp. Many of the animals quite sensibly decided to stay indoors!

However, we still managed to have a really good day and Lauren especially liked the zebras, the big cats and the penguins. She also had a good run around and by mid-afternoon was completely exhausted. She fell asleep on Daddy's shoulder and at that point we headed back to the grandparents' house.

The grandparents obviously loved having Lauren around for the week, and we also had a great time. It was a relaxing break for us and Lauren had loads of fun.

The photos from the trip can be seen on my Flickr album here.