Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Audrey and Eli head to Questacon

Questacon is a fantastic science and technology centre in Canberra. It's a great resource to have on your doorstep and it has masses of exhibitions and demonstrations for children of all ages - we've been big fans of the place ever since we arrived in Canberra.

As our kids are still tots we spend much of our visit at the excellent Mini Q; an array of water toys, climbing frames and a space rocket simulator(!) The kids love it. Amy took Audrey and Eli to play with their friends Tommy and Chloe while I finished off bits and pieces in the bathroom. Here's some pics of her morning..

water fun

Sunday, May 22, 2011

A Magnificent Defeat

Alarm set 12.45am. Crawled out of bed. Cold house. ‘Survival Sunday’. Should have been easy. Beat Blackburn, stay up. Molineux packed. Half time 3-0 down. Back to bed? Results going against us. Blackpool beating Man U. Last Premiership game for a while. 20 years? Come on Mick do something! Don’t concede a 4th or it’s completely over. Second half. Spurs score. Man United score. Relief. O’Hara scores 1-3. Lovely goal. Blues equalise. Wigan score. Blackpool beating Man United again(!). Disaster. Chasing the game. 5 minutes left. What a waste. Laughing stock. Man U winning. We only need ONE goal. Stephen Hunt curls it into the top corner. CURLS IT INTO THE TOP CORNER. Spurs score another in injury time. No time left. Full-time around the grounds. We are Premier League. WE ARE PREMIER LEAGUE! I share the elation with people 10,000 miles away and punch the air. 3am. Back to bed. Tired Monday.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

90 minutes to go...

Wolves season concludes on Sunday with the bottom five teams in the Premiership separated by a point. In theory Wolves are well placed to survive, but knowing that it’s Wolves means that they’ll inevitably be the usual ups and downs and nail biting situations.

It’s been a strange 2nd season for Wolves in the ‘big time’. We’ve already got 2 points more than last year, but the competition at the bottom of the league has been ferocious and (although I’m biased), far more interesting than the procession at the top of the league.

In Wolves first season back in the top division (2009/10) Mick McCarthy (the Wolves manager) made it his stated ambition to beat clubs who were ‘around us’. It was a tactic which worked (Wolves finished in 15th place) and he put out an infamous weakened side at Old Trafford (which lost) then beat Burnley the following week. Burnley went down. Wolves survived.

This season though it’s been different Wolves have slipped up to Wigan (lost home and away) and West Ham (lost and drew) but in the meantime have managed to defeat big spending Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Man United.

Now we’re 90 minutes away from elation or desperation. Worryingly Wolves have to beat Blackburn to ensure survival and they were thrashed when the two teams last met at Ewood Park earlier this season.

I also remember the long trip north to watch them play in Blackburn in 2003 (when Wolves were beaten off the park 5-1 in their first game back in the Premiership). In fact you have to go back to 1999 (something I’m sure the TV pundits will dig up) to the last time that Wolves did beat Blackburn (2-1).

Watching the games in Australia is always entertaining. There’s a local pub/club nearby which is open almost 24 hours, who have a big screen and can usually be persuaded to put on the football (although strangely there’s only ever me watching the game).

The alternative (because I’m too mean to buy Foxtel) is to watch it on a dodgy (usually Indian) website on the computer. Sometimes you get near perfect pictures, sometimes it’s a bit jerky, sometimes there’s no synch at all between the sound and the pictures, which can be variously frustrating/amusing. Either way I’ll be watching in the early hours of Monday morning hoping that 10,000 miles away Wolves can beat Blackburn and ensure the relegation battle continues for another season.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Royal Wedding (WOTPM)

Fortunately being in Australia at the time of the recent Royal Wedding (waste of tax payers money) the coverage (although extensive) was I imagine, muted compared to that in the UK. I read that the British press went completely over the top during the build up, surpassed only by the British retailers who used it as an excuse to flog a load of plastic stuff to the public.

Everyone's got an opinion on the wedding, variously loving it, loathing it or loathing it but secretly loving Kate's dress.

One girl who was definitely affected by it all was Audrey. After insisting we watched the "Wedding thing" on TV, she picked up a copy of the Royal Wedding Souvenir Edition of the Women's Weekly (Australia's biggest selling women's magazine) at my work the other day and has barely put it down. Poor Amy has had to leaf through every single page with an excited Audrey, who questions her on every page and every detail. Obviously picking out William, Kate, Harry et al is easy, but who the heck was the boss-eyed flower girl anyway?

Audrey insisted on taking her new magazine to bed and fell asleep with it, dreaming no doubt of Princesses and fairy-tale weddings.

In bed with the Women's Weekly

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Out of the mouth of Eli

Eli calls his sister ‘Diddy’ obviously Audrey is too much for him to get the hang of at the moment

Overall though his speaking is coming on really well(especially when discussing certain topics – his age, Bob theBuilder, balls etc) though he’s generally quieter than his sister (who talks non stop from the moment she wakes up until she goes to sleep) but he keeps adding new words to his vocabulary every day.

When realising his sister had wandered off into another room this morning he turned to me and asked “Where’s Diddy, Daddy?” which although unremarkable was a nice way to start the day.

Eli with his slinky

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Night Zoo

Amy was in Adelaide this weekend so I had the kids for 3 days. They were both really well behaved and after seeing mum off at the airport on Friday evening they were happy to potter around with me until Amy (thankfully!) returned on Monday evening.

On Saturday I took them both to 'The Night Zoo' a theatre production at Canberra's excellent 'Street Theatre'. It's only a smallish venue, but it was packed to the rafters with parents and toddlers similarly enjoying live theatre. It was aimed at children 4-11, so I was a bit worried whether Eli would last the pace, but both him and Audrey sat agog throughout the 45 minute performance.

It was a puppet show, really cleverly 'acted'(?) out by a couple of perfomers. Unsurprisingly for a play entitled 'The Night Zoo' it featured masses of animals from meercats to a giraffe to a very well performed orangutan. At one stage there was even a full size (puppet) elephant - who did a poo on stage - and left the whole audience in fits of giggly laughter. It's funny how poo/wee is so amusing as a toddler, (and let's face it as an adult too).

I think probably the most lovely thing about the play was that Audrey repeated whole sections of it to me the next day, it had clearly struck a chord and yes, both her and Eli vividly remembered the 'poo' scene.