Tonight’s rewrite of today’s events

It is with much sadness that I write my diary entry today. I was almost finished on the happenings of earlier today, but suddenly the whole dynamic had changed. The shouting upstairs led to me venturing up to the top floor. Caleb had been playing on Tara’s bed, thankfully the bottom of the two bunk beds tonight. Somehow he had fallen off. His coordination isn’t the best as you might recall, but somehow he fell out of the bed with his arm between the slats on the side of the bed. He was very distressed. I diplomatically asked the other children to stay in the bedroom whilst I led him downstairs to calm him down and put a shirt on him. He had removed his pyjamas and it was clear that his arm had been broken. Maybe one third up from his wrist there looked to be about a 15% angle. I’m no doctor but I think that it must be a clean break. John not being here (in London for a leaving do at work), I called our nanny Sindy in complete desperation. She arrived within twenty minutes and is now at the local hospital waiting in A&E. I am awaiting her update. I settled the four remaining children, trying to have that chat about ‘Cause and Effect’. They seem to understand that there are always consequences. But they are all still so little remember. I’m not sure that the little ones do learn from their mistakes as they do want to repeat their (on occasion) bad behaviour again and again. More of an update later. Fingers crossed. I am very saddened by this traumatic day.

Tara’s Second Visit from the Tooth Fairy

Well Tara was besides herself with the falling out of her second tooth late last night. Obviously it was too late for the tooth fairy to come then, so tonight is the big night for our ever elusive, mystical visitor. That would actually be John as I would be far too nervous of waking the sleeping clan as I clambered through their rooms. The big tooth growing behind looks sturdy enough. Goodbye little tooth,

The holidays are zooming by aren’t they? That plus I am not looking forward to four days of Sunday’s. The only pacifier for the children being chocolate eggs. They scoffed on their milk chocolate bunnies yesterday. Just five more chocolate eggs each to munch through. I purchased two each thinking that would be plenty, but then one came back with John from Dublin, Sindy has one and finally Sally and Sonia (Sindy’s sister and mum) have brought one too.

More updates on all of that gorging later.

Chocolate Hobnobs


Well today we had chocolate hobnobs if you hadn’t guessed and not a single cellophane packet was tampered with. These aren’t just any chocolate hobnobs, these are Dadda’s super chunky, melt in the mouth buttery, smooth and velvety, yet crunchy, home made, amazingly oatcakey ‘Chocolate Hobnobs’!

And just a couple of happy, chocolate smeared faces to boot. Cooking with Dadda can be a slightly messy affair with the children when it comes to cakes and chocolate.

Great British Wildlife

Now Remus and Gracie are not averse to chasing the odd squirrel or three in the garden, but they are not the only wildlife to be seen in our garden! I’ll not mention birds in today’s diary entry as they are too many and plentiful throughout the year, though I will mention the occasional pairs of geese that fly over this time of year. I’ve only seen mated pairs so far, no squadrons like you see in the autumn when they choose to fly south for sunnier climates. Rabbits have reappeared this year. Some years they are abundant, others non existent. Must be thanks to the Red Kites that hunt in the area or disease maybe. Mind you those Kites scarpered away with the neighbours tortoise last year. Deer are another mammal that occasionally wander through the gardens and woodland any time of the year, though they are very coy and rather shy. I saw a family of five deer munching away at a neighbours hedge two years back. This is the time of year that I see the first of the local snake population come out of hibernation. There is a nest of these slithery reptiles within the limestone drywall on our terrace, not five metres from the back door and there are not just one or two, but maybe twenty grass snakes of various ages and sizes, all hibernating throughout the winter months. The dogs go crazy sniffing around the two large cracks in the wall where they come and go, but they finally vanish for the summer to hunt in the grounds and woods nearby. One neighbour actually had a wild flower meadow in order to study these rather secretive reptiles. A snake that resembled an adder (though I am not completely sure) did hiss at me whilst I was enjoying a cup of coffee last year. There are also a couple of species of rodents that nest nearby. Perfect food for our local predators I guess. I’ve seen plenty of frogs around, even a toad in the garden. There is a stream that winds its way through the woods. So that explains that I guess.

The odd, friendly pheasant can be seen in close proximity. Though on the insect side of things, they are finally back. Food for the birds and good pollinators. Six weeks ago, the midges, five weeks the bumblebees, four weeks back the first of the fly species and the first butterfly I saw two weeks back. Ladybirds aplenty all year really as they nest within the metal window frames of the upstairs bay window. They are a real pest springtime and autumn when they seem to amass. There are also the most magnificent  dragon flies that seem to come and go in groups every summer, not spied them yet, still a bit early I think. And finally I must add that I have not seen a fox as yet in ‘The Shires’. This sly predator is prolific in London where we used to live, beside the railway line. Well, there you go! The wonders of living the country life, here in The Shires of leafy England.

Our Day So Far

4am John gets up and leaves for Dublin to see his mum who is unwell.

6am is a bed invasion and I am called to arms! Thor’s nose is dribbling with snot.

7am Breakfast was had – toast and ‘Dadda’s Jams’. A choice of either Strawlime berry, Black Grapple or Ginger and pumpkin.

8am and we are either watching a movie called Dragons or drawing at he kitchen table. I am tending to Thor’s runny nose.

10am Apples, pears or raisins as a snack. The little ones are playing up. More tissue for Thor.

12 midday lunch of marmite sandwiches and pasta salad. Tesco man arrives, dogs lick him and children play in his crates. They quickly learn how to propel themselves forward by thrusting their shoulders forward. Thor and Caleb sent up to their bedroom for their nap as their playing was way too boisterous.

2pm the boys came down after helping Dadda to clean up a huge mess that they had made in their room. Tara still watching Dragons, now the series (not movie) on Netflix. Amritsar on her iPad (Kindle Fire). A treat of chocolate. The little ones return to the top floor, this time to play. Thor’s nose is still dribbling.

3pm the little ones return. Caleb has flooded their bathroom. Thinking Chair now, where he will stay… Aaliyah has returned upstairs for a jumper. I asked would she help clear up this second round of mess – a flat ‘No Caleb did it’. Thor’s nose is still flowing with snot. She has just returned. I asked if she had cleared up the mess ‘Yes I did Dadda’. ‘Good Girl’ I replied. All is now peaceful. Thor has gone to the kitchen for tissue. Gracie our adorable Dalmatian is snuggling up besides me.