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posted by [personal profile] madelinekelly at 03:32pm on 25/08/2014 under
Another full fortnight of summer busy-ness.

- We drove south to Cregneash and dragged River into all the little cottages so she could see how people used to live. There were Manx cats! And chicks! And a pedal-powered harmonium! And scones baking on an open fire! And we danced to Hunt the Wren in the last cottage before heading back to the car for a picnic of sticky barbecue chicken drumsticks.

- We headed east to see the Laxey Wheel. River's known about the wheel for a couple of years but we've never been up to the top before. So exciting! And we explored the little bit of the mine that's still accessible.

- Matt finished attaching the main parts of the handrail and has started putting up the tongue-and-groove on the ceiling in the attic.

- I made fish pie, sticky toffee pudding, chili, minestrone, coleslaw (home-grown cabbage!), butternut squash risotto, anzac cookies, sausage and French bean casserole, minted pea soup, chili, courgette fritters, rosemary gnocchi and peppermint bark. . And Matt made toffee popcorn and Marmite pinwheels.

- The allotment is now giving us mange tout, peas, courgettes, potatoes, chard, rhubarb, lettuce, cabbage, French beans, onions and garlic. Still waiting for the tomatoes, runner beans and sweetcorn...

- I had a wonderful hour with my mezzo soprano friend, rehearsing songs by Madeline Dring.

- We went to a family wedding and had a lovely time catching up with everyone. The girls behaved really well even though they were both ready for a nap.

- River twice asked to visit the allotment when I (and 2 days later, Matt) expected to go alone. We had a lovely, peaceful, co-operative, productive time together. I pruned the raspberry canes and found even more fruit forming!

- Matt sorted through his clothes and cleared out a LOT of stuff. I'm inspired to be more ruthless in my next cull!

- Willow, having mastered crawling like a pro, has moved straight on to pulling herself up to standing.

- Several times Willow and River have played happily together with no parental intervention.

- I cleaned and cleared the top of the piano, and did all the filing!

- We finally visited my dad's shack up in the hills and saw his sheep and his 16 acres. It was a windy, sunny, cheerful morning.

- My mum came round and spent a quiet morning making insects with River out of pompoms and glue.

- We raced along the promenade with River on her bicycle (still covered in pipe cleaner decorations from the carnival).

- I took the girls to my cousin's house. Her sister-in-law came too so there were lots of small children everywhere. It took a while for River to warm up but she seemed to have a good time. They have a trampoline in the garden so she spent most of the visit bouncing. I had a lovely time catching up with family.

- Despite a very grumpy start to the day (me) we ended up having a very entertaining morning at Rushen Abbey, followed by a quick picnic in the abbey gardens (lucky to catch a hot and sunny window in the day's rain).

- I took the girl's to mum's house where we blew River's mind with the concept of yellow plums. Mum held her up so she could pick them out of the tree. And then, at tea-time on the same day, my dad turned up with another huge pile of plums! I shall have to get jamming this week...

- Matt took the girls for a walk through Arrassey plantation where they apparently found a wizard's house. And they searched the northwestern shore for whale poo.

- Matt's youngest brother and his wife are visiting so we spent Sunday with Matt's family. River invented a very elaborate Father Xmas game that kept them all occupied all afternoon.

- I need to write a post about River because she's processing new info, feelings, etc in very interesting ways.

- Not so fun: I spent a day just being irrationally angry, to the point where I was throwing things and asking Matt to keep the girls away from me. Not good. A few days later I had a few hours of anxiety and self-loathing but it didn't last. Matt went through a similar down patch for a few days -- he seems to be okay now.
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