Our Tribe

Our Tribe

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Bank Holiday


Bean, 10, and dad headed off to Roothill Christian camp for three days. Pumpkin, 8, planned our day of roblox and cake making. Plum, 5, chose to make the chocolate cake with white butter icng and the she and Pippin, 2, decorated it with chocolate chips. Plum placed hers in a perfect ring on the edge of the cake.
Pumpkin and I played roblox. We played Natural Disasters, Zombie Rush and cake baking.


I took Pumpkin, Plum and Pippin to church. They all went to Sunday School without me, things have changed and i now attended the adult bit. Situations changing all the time. We came home and had soup and then we cut Pumpkin's hair. He last had it cut April 2016, 13 months ago.
This was followed by everyone making giant chocolate chip cookies together ready to take to the play park, except it rained a lot so we stayed home instead.
We also watched a hedgehog in our garden today, weeding the herb garden and making a nest in the store.


Pumpkin up and dressed himself, even though i hadn't asked him and we had no plans to be out and i usually have to dress him. We made a spontaneous trip to the play park for an hour and took the cookies we had made yesterday. The smalls pushed 3ach other on the swings and the roundabout and played hide and seek together.
Back home Pippin slept long, Plum got out her horses and combed their hair, Pumpkin put on The Simpsons to watch.
Then we went to collect Bean and daddy, had a picnic tea and played on all the equipment. I was completely stumped when a child asked me why my children don't go to school. Pumpkin stepped in and told him how we like to be together and you don't get to see your family much if you go to school and everyone tells you what to do all.the.time and that is boring.
We headed home and all collapsed on the sofa/bed.

Sunday, 28 May 2017

See the sea swash

After a bit of  rocky morning and putting a lot if effort into encouraging Pumpkin out of the door, we ended up spending five hours on Worthing seafront. Bean, 10, and Pumpkin, 8, ate bubblegum flavoured ice cream, Plum, 5, had chocolate and Pippin, 2, had strawberry. They all bounced on the trampolines and then we headed to the beach for a late picnic and everyone put on their swimmers and went paddling, splashing, running around, in the sea.

We then headed to the arcade. Plum beat both Bean and Pumpkin at air hockey and Pippin was her usual successful self on the 2p machines and they enjoyed the horse racing game together. Then, Bean and Pumpkin found a shooting game that they could play together and they loved it. They played it three times and have arranged to come back with their pocket money for another go.

And all of that took five hours. Pumpkin, Plum and Pippin all fell asleep in the car on the way home and we only got home tw minutes before daddy. Fortunately i had thrown meatballs in the slow cooker so easy food prep for a meal.

And, dispite the rocky morning, the children are in the midst of planning two more beach trips.

Friday, 26 May 2017


I played minecraft for half an hour with Bean, 10, and Pumpkin, 8, this morning. They were both building gladiator areanas. I was helping Bean to build his and had a gladiator fight with Pumpkin in his areana.

Later in the day Bean and i built a replica areana on a new world that he created. His use of levers and redstone is becoming quite complex.

It was also gymnastics day. Bean and Plum, 5, joined the session as usual and Pumpkin and Pippin played in the foyer with the other siblings. Pippin played with her friend Th and drew pictures and sat with Pumpkin. Pumpkin sat and played/chatted with another HE boy of similar age to him who was showing his nexo knight lego cards. They were together for most of the hour. Next term Pumpkin has asked to join gymnastics.

Back home was get lots of drinks, find a missing drawing pin, log in to various pc accounts, watch youtube, plan next week, try and keep cool, read books, play doll's house, pack for Bean's camping weekend, kind of afternoon.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Nerf War

Today was a nerf war kind of day. We made dens in the living room, kitchen, large bedroom and Plum's top bunk. Bean, 10, and Pumpkin, 8, teamed up and mummy and Plum, 5, were on the opposing team. We made barracades and shields from pillows and cushions and hid behind doors and walls and shot at each other. This game lasted for about three hours (although i did manage to call a food break in the middle and another break to breastfeed Pippin, 2, in the hope that she would go to sleep, which she didn't until i found her in my bed at 4.30pm)

We also hot glued more youhurt pots onto Bran's pot tower. It is now over 2m tall. He measured it with the tape measure. His aim is to reach the ceiling. Pumpkin then picked up the tape measure and measured the coffee table and himself and the width of his knees and various other objects he found.

Plum and Pippin hung the laundry outside with me and played on the slide and the see-saw. Plum set up a shop in the large bedroom and Pumpkin went and played with her and then they moved on to playing roblox (natural disasters) together.

Having the time and the space to move between one activity and other as necessary is one of the many reasons we love Home Ed. Playing on the see saw for one minute and then moving to the slide or emersing ourselves into three hours of a nerf war or continuing a project with yoghurt pots that we began weeks ago, having the freedom explore and play and create and managing our own time and pace is essential.

Skip a few

So, we landed badly last week (metaphorically not literally, we only went to pagham, remember?) or maybe it was me who landed badly. We took a trip to Fisher's farm and Bean, 10, and Pumpkin, 8, spent an afternoon at friend O house (we should do this more regularly) Plum, 5, and Pippin, 2, joined mummy and daddy at a funeral, their second this year, my third, daddy's fourth. We had one home day, returned to gym class after a five week break, and reunited with Archie dog for a very musdy walk in the woods. Whitespace was filled with films, pokemon series, power puff girls, drawing, drawing, drawing, roblox play altogether, books and books and books, dollies and mummy's and daddy's and a host of other things.

We spent the weekend at FA#3 with cousing C and H. Swinging in the hammock and having a tea party in the garden, watching films on netflix (rise of the guardians, tmnt, barbie as rapunzel) scooting up and down the hallway, role play games and eating a lot of pizza.

Monday we stayed home and relaxed and recovered from our hectic weekend. It was very peaceful. All activity was rather calm and calming: listening to music, watching a film, drawing pictures, reading books, playing computer games, taking a bath (and practicing holding his breath) I took the opportunity to put together a bookcase, Bean and Pippin helped. We moved some games and books onto it, which promted us playing a few board games and reading a few more books. And Bean designed a self drive car that you can sleep in. He drew three or four different models. Daddy then showed him self drive cars and how they have been developed so far.

Tuesday, another at home day. Friend O came to play. They all played cranium together and watched Mr Bean's holiday and played nerf war. O brought with him a surplus copy of Finding Dory so we had a family film night and tried different flavours of popcorn. Pippin and mummy and O's mummy reaaranged the animal pens and set up Charlie's summer residence and dismantled his winter one ready for storage.

Tomorrow we will have another at home day. Summer feels like it is arriving as this week is rather sunny and warm. I have suggested a beach trip to the smalls but only one seems keen so far.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Happy 10th Birthday Bean

Bean turned 10 on Wednesday, which seems rather significant, moving into double figures. Not for the first time, we were on holiday on his actual birthday. We celebrated with a pokemon birthday party, that he organised, at the weekend but we also made his actual day a bit special too.

We began with a swim. The boys are happy and confident now in the water as long as they are not out of depth and Bean is on the verge of swimming a short distance. It occured to me that i might be able to take all four swimming on my own at the right pool. We bought some sinking rings of Bean's choosing so played a lot at picking them up with our feet at holding our breathe with our faces in the water whilst wearing googles.

We went to Pizza Hut for lunch, another day, another pizza for Bean who is currently working his way through comparing margeretta pizzas from different establishments. The children weren't that keen on the garlic bread but the onion rings were devoured.

And then 18 hole crazy crazy golf. Everyone joined in and we had to keep everyone's score.

We enjoyed party tea with party rings, white chocolate oreos, egg mayonnaise sandwiches, skips, and lemon cake, ten green ballons and birthday presents. We got Bean a whittling knife and he got Rouge One, a starwars lego set and story dice from his siblings.

We went to the arcade again in the evening. The boys played the fishing game, splat a minion and crossyroad, acruing more tickets and adding them to the stock pile.

Bean continues to love lego, he loves building things and figuring out how things works. He devours films and he is constantly looking for new films to watch. He likes, action, adventure and comedy films and he enjoys watching the extras and looking them up on youtube for interesting facts about the film or actors or how the film was made, special effects and spotting continuity errors. Harry Potter is still a big feature in his life, currently reading through the books, rewatching the films regularly, collecting cards, quizzing each other on trivia and planning a visit to the studios. He plays computer games on his tablet and pc: the escapists, the sims, minecraft, roblox, age of empires. He enjoys watching cartoon series Pokemon and Power Puff girls, the amazing world of gumball and finding extreme videos on youtube and world record attempts. And his new love this year, playing with his borrowed dog.

And he still golds my hand when we go out walking.

You can read his birth story here.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Pagham Holiday

Pagham is on the South coast, West Sussex, right next to Bognor Regus. It is approximately 1 hour from our house. A quick get away. Trip to the coast. And a chance to explore the other end of the county! We stayed in a caravan. Daddy and Pippin, 2, shared a room, mummy and Plum, 5, shared a room and Bean, 9, and Pumpkin, 8 shared a room. Bean turned 10 whilst we were away.

Monday was travel day. We took our time to finish packing and get last minute things done. Mummy went food shopping and Bean came too. We organised the animals and ended up having our picnic lunch at home before we left. The children all packed their own back packs and off we set. We went and enjoyed the arcade games and had slush puppies and ice cream smoothies in the evening. Bean and Pumpkin found a fishing boat game that they liked and gave them lots of tickets. They decided to save their tickets until the end of the week before cashing them in.

Tuesday we all went to the Weald and Downland Museum. There was lots to see and do. Pumpkin enjoyed making a roof segment with roof tiles, Plum made an arch bridge that she could then sit on and Bean put together the timber frames of a model house about 6ft high. We had two staff members helping us out with all these things and explaining how they worked and where we could see them on the buildings around the museum. The chilsren all liked the gypsy caravans and we watched the carpenter and the blacksmith at work. We found a mechanism that needed a horse to pull it and Pumpkin recognised it from Pirates of the Carribean. Bean enjoyed the toilet that led straight below into the outside and we all enjoyed ice cream.
We went for a swim back at the holiday site, which turned out to be a bit crowded. Mummy went and found the nature reserve and coastal walk after dinner and then we all went to the arcade in the evening.

Wednesday was Bean's birthday. I will write about his special day here.

Thursday we took a more restful day and stayed on site. We swam in the morning again and Bean and plum chose to wear googles today. Bean was determined to hold his breathe and used the sinking rings again. We spent a long time counting how many seconds he could put his face in the water for. His record was 9 seconds but he only felt comfortable in the shallow end for this length of time, any further out and it was 3 or 4 seconds. Both the boys went on the slide again, Pumpkin repeatedly. Pumpkin also spent a lot of time moving around the perimeter of the pool.
Daddy took Bean and Plum and Pippin to the play area whilst Pumpkin and mummy went and prepared lunch. Bean caught us up and met us just as we reached the caravan.
The boys had a go at riding the easyscooters in the afternoon. These were motorised scooters. They were very cautious but had fun zooming around the basketball court on them and racing through the obstacle course. We found the coastal walk back to the caravan which was longer than we had anticipated and involved avoiding taking the buggy across stones. We stopped and played skimming stones on the lagoon andwatched the investation of moth caterpillars crawling everywhere. Bean became upset with our choice of route but we got back eventually and Plum had some lovely encouragment for him along the way.
We went to the arcade again in the evening where the boys cashed in their tickets. Bean got a rubix cube and Pumpkin exchanged his for a large pencil sweet for himself and a sweet each for Plum and Pippin.  Plum was pleased to see that the show involved the singing of Frozen songs on the stage. We got ice cream for the children and stayed to watch the singing for the next show too. Pippin, Pumpkin and Bean all opted to leave first as they were tired and Plum and mummy followed on a little later.

Friday we packed up and checked out followed by a final swim, where Bean swam a width and almost a length of the pool and spent more time holding his breathe under water whilst wearing googles. Pippin spent large amounts of time climbing out and jumping in, Plum being pulled around the pool by daddy and Pumpkin on the slide and circuiting the perimeter again. Bean and Pumpkin made a pool dare game together. We had a picnic lunch in the play area before heading home.

In between all the activity, there was playing chess and draughts and reading Harry Potter and 'Brown bear, Brown Bear', watching cbeebies and Poptv, discussing advertising and advertisments, twirling ribbons, colouring, playing hide and seek and 'scaredy cat.'