Wednesday, 19 July 2017

July reading

I am just about finished this and I keep flicking on ahead and reading paragraphs in the hope that I can devour it quickly and slowly at the same time - the agony! On the back cover of the 1972 copy I'm reading a critic said 'It will keep thousands of people dithering with excitement' ~ ha, yes I'm all a dither and consequently I keep having to sneak off, away from children, to try and gulp down more in between feeding time at the zoo, refereeing squabbles and laundry baskets which seem to have their own life force.

Thursday, 13 July 2017



A scant half pound of gooseberries were picked from the bushes which are tucked into our boundary hedge. A little too much for a fool (as in gooseberry fool, eye roll) but not enough for jam. So to the cookbooks for a pleasant half hour or so until a recipe for gooseberry curd catches my eye. And now, with two little glass jars full of luscious gooseberry goodness cooling in the kitchen, I'm thinking of scones and cream or perhaps vanilla sponge filled with curd and raspberries...

Monday, 10 July 2017


peanut butter cookies
garden guitar
 pink and lime green
 peek-a-boo bovine
safe dangling
danger dangling

Saturday, 8 July 2017

last week

Last week the two younger boys (and myself) attended a creative writing and Lego making summer camp. It was held in our local library each morning. We learnt how to plan and write a story and then, using Lego figures and an amazing app (Lego Story Visualizer), transform them into a comic strip with proper backgrounds and speech bubbles and all the wham! whizz! bam! and sock! you can handle.
Mide did some quite detailed drawings of his character - Spaceman Skiff who fights with aliens and space pirates. And then ideas were transformed into comics...
William wrote about a gang of baddies, led by the aptly named 'Slasher', who were determined to envelop the city in a toxic gas cloud... It makes me so happy to see them engaged in such a creative way and also work alongside one another which doesn't always happen. Mide overcame his massive anxiety at experiencing new things and decided it was worth giving it a go and William had two of his favourite things right there - Lego and writing - so he was delighted. Thank goodness for the library!

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

winning too

It is so damp and grey that I light the candles before we eat. The steady drip, drip, drip of the rain is the soundtrack to the evening. We light the fire and set up a board game in the sitting room. The boys choose Trivial Pursuit. It's the family edition which makes it easier for their diverse age ranges and Mide and I play as a team. It sounds relatively simple to play a game together but for us it's not. Autism makes it hard to understand turn taking, it makes the unpredictability of the role of the dice agony, it makes not knowing the answer to a question tricky to acknowledge and guessing the answer just plain awful. However having said all that Mide managed well and actually enjoyed it! So much work, patience, understanding has gone in to getting him to this place ~ the first time he has played a family game with us all the way through to the end without having a tantrum or leaving the room in anger. Also, he happened to win. And slowly I feel that we are winning too.

Sunday, 2 July 2017


The day started with sun and a few puffed white clouds. On my walk I admired the sleek, glossy flanks of the little black cows tucked behind the hedges. Sunlight was in the fields, glinting off the sea of grass. Home to a sink full of breakfast dishes and homemade granola, coffee and yesterday's paper. Now the rain has come and books are the order of the day. Sounds of squabbling from deeper in the house ~ the two younger ones, all shorts and grazed knees, are bickering and I hold my breath, wondering if I should intervene. Silence again, dispute resolved and I turn back to My Cousin Rachel. The sun is struggling through the clouds, now it's time for tea, some cake maybe. The peace of a Sunday in July.