Journey into Unschooling

Birthday Fun!

November 13th, 2016 by becki

What an amazing Autumn it has been! After a September and early October full of travels, the rest of October was full of adventures closer to home.

We have been attending Miss Becky’s Monday gymnastics as usual. The new tumble track was an amazing hit!We have lots of fun in the park afterwards too.

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We have been having lots of fun at our fortnightly Chase Group home educators’ meet. Each session is a different topic. This month’s have been cake decorating, indoor den building and papercraft. They always involve lots of fun playing with friends outside too!

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Our monthly meet ups at Jack’s Wood are great fun, and an amazing place to practice bushcraft and campfire cooking skills. We even made some amazing works of art!

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Our weekly Oak Park gymnastics have been lots of fun too, with many new skills being gained and practiced by all three children.

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We have been swimming regularly with friends, and paid lots of visits to the libraries nearby.

We had a great time with friends at Boingzone trampolining centre.

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We had an amazing day at Wonderland with lots of lovely friends.

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The Wildwood Park meet up was lots of fun.

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Alfie and Amber enjoyed learning about and walking alpacas, whilst Poppy and Daddy went out to the cinema.

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We had such a lovely day at Brockswood Animal Sanctuary :-)

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A great day hunting for pumpkins at Canons Ashby National Trust with Uncle Steve, Aunty Andy and cousin Toby.

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We have had lovely play dates with friends, including a sleepover.

 

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We went to an awesome Halloween party at friends’ house.

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An awesome day hunting for clues on the Halloweeen trail at Biddulph Grange NT.

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A tractor and trailer ride and picking our own pumpkins at Essington Fruit Farm. Lots of fun carving our pumpkins and baking with the flesh and seeds too.

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Lunch with Granny and Grandpa. Lots of visits to Nanny and Grandad.

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A day at the vegan festival and Wolverhampton museum and art gallery.

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Land art at our monthly Wolseley HE Explorers group at a beautiful nature reserve.

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Walks in the woods at Pipe Hall Farm.

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Firework fun!

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Two trips to the cinema with friends to see The BFG and Ice Age Collision Course as part of the Into Films Festival.

An amazing birthday party with all our friends for Poppy turning 9 and Amber turning 6 at the National Forest Adventure Farm.

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Family time at Zizzis and in town to celebrate the special birthdays.

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Lots of fun at home too. Celebrating Daddy’s birthday with a birthday cake made by Amber and handmade cards.

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Crafts, play dough, cooking, imaginative play, Numberjacks Mission to Learn.

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Saying goodbye to Humbug after 3.5 years with us. We will miss her. She lost her friend Chestnut just a few weeks earlier, but not before giving her a goodbye hug.

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Autumn Adventures!

October 9th, 2016 by becki

We have been so lucky to have three awesome adventures away from home so far this Autumn. We spent a night at Alton Towers Resort for a close friend’s birthday, 8 days at Golden Sands in Mablethorpe for our family holiday, and 3 nights away with friends at Chessington World of Adventures as an early celebration of Amber’s 6th birthday. We are all worn out but have had so many amazing experiences and adventures together!

We started the month of September off with a lovely day out with some schooled friends – Sarah, Alica and Saule. We met at Pooley Country Park for a lovely day of picnic, making ladybird homes, scooting and bridge and den building in the woods :-)

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We also had lots of fun cooking st home.

 

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Alfie and I went book bench hunting, and had an explore of the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter.

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Poppy was very glad to get back to her Monday gymnastics class.

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Lots of fun playing in Beacon Park with friends afterwards too.

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We had a lovely meet at Jack’s Wood with amazing friends.

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Followed by Active Gym class for all three children at Oak Park Active Living Centre.

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We had fun swimming with friends, then trying out natural paints Poppy made from plants, mud and other substances.

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We had a lovely play date at our friends’ house.

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A fantastic day at Wolseley Home Ed Explorers.

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Alfie and I found the last book benches over the weekend, as well as a visit to Mr Singh’s pizza parlour and Nanny and Grandad. We also all went to the Herbert Museum and Art Gallery in Coventry for the Lego exhibition, and to explore all the galleries.

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A major milestone occurred that weekend too. Amber lost her first teeth! Not one but two teeth out in the same night!

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Back to gymnastics on the Monday, followed by park fun with friends.

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Tuesday was Chase group, where the topic was gears and pulleys. We enjoyed making our own cardboard gears, as well as playing outside with friends. Later we went to our other gymnastics class at Oak Park.

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The following day was the Tamworth Not Back to School picnic. We had a lovely day with friends, playing in the sunshine :-)

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The next day, Amber made chocolate chip cookies :-)

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We took some to meet up with lots of HE friends at Wildwood Park. We had never been to this park before, but the kids loved it.

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Lots of card making ensued, ready for the birthday of a little girl who is practically family.

 

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We had a wonderful couple of days celebrating Violet’s birthday :-) We started with a day at Peak Wildlife Park.

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Followed by a special birthday dinner, and a night in the resort hotel.

The next day we had a wonderful day at Alton Towers.

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Back home for gymnastics the next day.

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Followed by swimming with friends.

Followed by a day at Hednesford Park with lovely friends – another new park for us.

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We then headed off to Golden Sands holiday park in Mablethorpe for a wonderful family holiday by the sea. We were really lucky with the weather too.

We stopped off at Belton House NT on the way. It had the most amazing adventure playground.

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We had a wonderful time on holiday, and the caravan was really nice. The beach was just across the road, and there was a great arcade for spending all our 2ps. We also all enjoyed the swimming pool with a flume that all the kids (and me!) loved. The weather was perfect for kite flying too.

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The sand train to Mablethorpe town beach was fantastic. It even took us into the water!

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We had a lovely time at Mablethorpe Seal Sanctuary.

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A fantastic day exploring Tattershall Castle with the audio guide.

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A fantastic time at Natureland Seal Sanctuary, and exploring Skegness, where the girls made a friend on the park on the seafront and played happily for ages. We even fitted in a curry at the local curry house, Khushis.

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We had a lovely day in Lincoln, and explored the medieval bishops’ palace with our audio guides.

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On the way home, we stopped at the Workhouse at Southwell, where we learnt all about workhouse life.

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Home again briefly!

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Back to gymnastics and park with friends.

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A lovely meet up with friends at Jack’s Wood, followed by more gymnastics.

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Then off on our travels again, with a night at YHA Jordans.

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Followed by two days at the Chessington Safari Hotel in a Penguins of Madagascar room for Amber’s early birthday treat with friends.

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What an unbelievably amazing Autumn it has been so far!

Awesome August

September 1st, 2016 by becki

What a wonderful month August has been. Full of sunshine, fun with friends and family, and even my birthday :-) Here are some of the highlights of our home educating adventures this month :-)

We spent a lovely day in Beacon Park with Esther, James, Marnie and Izzy. There was lots of gymnastics practice, and a very friendly cat that got nicknamed C C Castersugar!

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We had a lovely time at a jewellery making workshop at Chase Group, where all three children produced some amazing creations.

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We met the lovely Caroline, Lauren, Tom and Martha at Cannon Hill Park for cycling, hide and seek and tree climbing fun.

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We went book bench hunting with Elaine, Jacob and Jess in Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, and Birmingham Library.

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We had a lovely play date with Miriam, Caleb, Flynn and Niamh.

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Alfie and I went book benching to Blakesley Hall, Solihull and lots of libraraies.

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We spent two days with Uncle Matt and Mei Mei, visiting from Singapore, as well as lots of visits to see Nanny and Grandad.

We had a lovely day at Witley Court with Elaine, Jacob and Jess. We picnicked by the Perseus and Andromeda fountain,explored the ruins and painted rocks :-)

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We had a wonderful meet up at Jacks Wood with lots of lovely HE friends, cooking over the camp fire, making rope swings and decorating the trees with clay faces. There was much excitement when the firefighters (including a female one!) came to put out a fire left smouldering by youths using the woods the previous weekend. The children were fascinated, and they obligingly showed them their thermal imaging camera and explained how it worked.

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We had an amazing science day, doing loads of experiments.

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On my birthday we went to The Warehouse Cafe for lunch and found lots more book benches.

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We spent an amazing day with the Hupfield clan at Ilam Park in the Peak District.

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We spent a lovely day walking the summer adventure trail at Kedleston Hall with Charlotte, Mark, Katie-Rose and Bella

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We made lots of cupcakes and delivered them to Cate’s cake sale in aid of breast cancer support.

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We had another amazing day with friends at Chase Group.

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We had a final lunch at Taybarns with Granny and Grandpa before it closes down for good.

Poppy had her friend Evie to play. Whilst they were jewellery making and drawing upstairs, Alfie, Amber and I had a board game marathon! Our HE meet at the library was cancelled at short notice, so we made a trip to our local library instead,

We spent a lovely day at Coughton Court with Bex and Violet.

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We had a fun playdate with Marnie and Izzy

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A lovely walk around the nature reserve and play date with Caleb, Flynn and Niamh.

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An amazing day at Arley Arboretum with Kate, Clare, Bex and their amazing broods. The boys loved completing the Alice in Wonderland trail, and Poppy made a new HE friend on the playground whom she has since been emailing.

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We went fruit picking with Sally, Julie, Bex and their lovely children. We picked lots of strawberries, plus broccoli, cauliflower and blueberries.

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We had a lovely (if soggy!) bike ride at Emberton Country Park with Uncle Steve, Aunty Andy and cousin Toby.

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At Chase Group we made art using nature, and Poppy played with her friends Jaxon and Aeryn outside.

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We had a lovely time at Shugborough Hall with friends finding the seven secret doors hidden around the gardens.

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We also had lots of fun at home. We collected four new rescue chickens – Rocky Road, Brownie, Dark Chocolate and Firefly.

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We had lots of fun at home making cards, doing jigsaws, playing board games, reading, watching Inside the Factory documentaries, playing in the garden and rollerskating and pogoing!

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What an amazing summer :_) Now for our favourite month of all – September!

Jolly July

July 31st, 2016 by becki

July started with a fabulous (if rainy!) meet up of the Wolseley Explorers. We had lots of fun with Hapa Zome (pounding leaves and flowers onto cloth with a hammer to make amazing patterns). It was great exploring which flowers and leaves gave the best effects. Some beautiful creations! It was lovely to walk around the nature reserve and see how the baby birds had developed.

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We spent three very happy Mondays of July at gymnastics class, followed by our weekly Beacon Park playdate with lovely friends :-)

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We had a lovely time at our fortnightly Tuesday meet ups at Chase Group.

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We had great fun cooking on the campfire, playing with Sidney and playing with friends at our monthly Jacks Wood meet up.

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We spent an amazing couple of days camping with friends at YHA Wye Valley. The children had never been camping before, and were really excited to sleep in the bell tent. We cooked our dinner over an open fire, toasted marshmallows and generally ran wild :-) We also visited Goodrich Castle and Puzzle Wood :-)

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We spent two lovely days playing at Cannock Chase stepping stones with different friends.

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We went to the cinema twice – to see The Secret Life of Pets, and Finding Dory. Both were fantastic.

We spent some time at Forge Mill Farm.

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We went swimming with friends twice, and Poppy perfected her underwater forward rolls ;-)

We spent an amazing day with friends at Peak Wildlife Park.

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We swam in the rain with friends at Ravenhill Lido

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We spent a lovely day at Wightwick Manor NT with friends, completing the trail and exploring the grounds.

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We had fun at the Bloxwich Library Meet.

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We spent the day with Nanny on her birthday, and called into Stone Cross Library to see the book bench there as part of the Big Read trail.

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We met friends at the Mad Hatters Tea Emporium for afternoon tea.

We went fruit picking with friends at Essington Fruit Farm.

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We found more book benches at Aston Hall with friends.

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As well as lots of getting out and about, seeing friends and doing lots of activities, we also spent time at home.

We baked treats for Nanny’s birthday.

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We made birthday cards using our new card scoring and embossing equipment.

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We made two plaster of paris holders for the test tubes in our new chemistry set.

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We spent a day doing lots of experiments with our chemistry set, and did some on other days too.

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We did lots and lots of cooking – both old favourites and experimenting with new recipes.

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We collected three new rescue chickens – Bramble, Chestnut and Smoky. We have been busy treating them for scaly leg mite. Sadly Bramble died after a prolapse, despite an operation to try and hold her insides in. It has been very sad, especially as Matilda, 2 years free, is also very ill indoors in the hospital cage. The chickens have been taking up a lot of our time with their specialist care, but we give that time gladly.

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There has been lots of playing too. Alfie is also loving the Great Fire of London Minecraft map – and learning so much along the way.

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Jubilant June

July 2nd, 2016 by becki

June started with a lovely day out with Bex and Violet. What a great way to start our 30 days Wild challenge! Starting off at the farm, we walked around Forge Mill Lake and RSPB reserve, spotting a heron and all sorts of different wild birds and water fowl.

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Back home, we tended to our own poorly chicken, Buckbeak, who, despite an operation at the vets to stitch in her prolapse, and lots of antibiotics and TLC from nurse Amber, sdaly passed away a couple of days later.

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We had a lovely play date with Jacob and Jess.

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A lovely splash in the stream and picnic with friends at Streetly Gate in Sutton Park. We saw another heron, lots of wild Exmoor ponies (and not so wild cows!) and had fun both climbing trees and making clay faces on them.

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We had a fun day at the library, out for lunch and buying new sunglasses. Amber made a start on her Father’s Day card for Daddy.

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We spent a fantastic day at Sudbury Hall and Museum of Childhood. There were so many goslings! We built dens in the woods, explored the museum and Alfie and I completed a trail around the old hall.

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We had a lovely time at gymnastics class, then playing in the park with friends.

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We had great fun at Chase Group hand sewing bunting and playing with friends outside, followed by a visit to Nanny and Grandad.

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We went swimming with friends.

We went to an amazing farm day where the children got to groom rabbits, guinea pigs, goats and donkeys, feed the animals and pond dip.

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We had great fun paddling in the river with friends at Wolseley Wildlife Trust

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Alfie got to meet his adopted alpaca Tailwind at Charnwood Forest Alpacas.

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Amber had fun at Alison’s 21st birthday party.

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Alfie and Amber planted their cress seeds from the farm.

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More fun at gymnastics and at Jarvis’s 7th birthday party afterwards.

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We had a great meet up with HE friends at Jack’s Wood.

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Followed by a visit to Nanny and Grandad.

We went swimming with friends again, and spent time making cards and presents for Daddy for Father’s Day. We also looked after poorly Sonic the hen, who sadly joined Buckbeak at Rainbow Bridge.

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A lovely day of bouncing around with friends at Flip Out trampoline park.

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Fun with friends at Cannock Chase.

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Alfie, Amber and I went to the wildlife festival in Birmingham, then for lunch at Cherry Red’s.

The next day Poppy, Amber and I went to circus themed Pugfest.

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Yet more gymnastic and park fun.

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The big Chase HE picnic :-) Amber made some beautiful glass lanterns.

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Solstice fire

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Snow tubing with friends. It was great fun – I had a few goes too ;-)

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Charlecote Manor NT with Granny and Grandpa.

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Sutton Park stream fun with friends, including dam building.

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Library and visiting Nanny and Grandad.

Brownhills canal festival, followed by pub lunch and park. Alfie and Amber had fun rowing on the canal :-) Jam tart making later.

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Yet more gymnastics and park fun.

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Looking after Nanny, and a fun HE meet up in the Arboretum, including braving the chilly splash pad.

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A wet cycle ride at the Wheelie Workshop, and donating a bike and scooter. Making lemon curd and garlicky pasta with roasted tomatoes.

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A fun day with friends at Water World. Alfie and Poppy spent most of their time on the rapids and flumes with friends :-)

Flaming June it was not, but we had an amazing month anyway :-)

May Meanderings :-)

May 31st, 2016 by becki

 

May has been a lovely month, full of sunshine and adventure :-)

Here are a few highlights of the fun and learning that we have experienced this month.

We have had lots of fun at Monday HE gymnastics class. Poppy spends so much of her free time practicing her gymnastics on the trampoline or anywhere she can. She really loves this class, especially headstands!

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We usually head to the park with friends afterwards.

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All three children completed their term at their Active Gym class on a Tuesday evening. Alfie and Poppy gained their Level 2 British Gymnastics Award, and Amber her Level 5 :-)

We have been to the Chase HE group every fortnight, having lots of fun making musical instruments, painting terracotta pots, planting seeds, and playing with friends.

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We have spent lots of time with Nanny and Grandad, including looking after Nanny so that Grandad can attend appointments.  Precious times spent with Nanny and her constant companion, Sapphire. The ancient Lego from my childhood is always popular too ;-)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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We have been swimming with friends, practicing our underwater swimming and having fun playing games.

We have met friends at Beacon park for fun in the sun.

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At Victoria Park for a splashy triple birthday celebration.

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We had great fun pond dipping at Wolseley Nature Reserve, identifying lots of amazing creatures in both the lake and stream. We saw a swan on her nest, turning the eggs, goslings with their proud parents, and the resident turtle climbing out of the lake.

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We got a clean bill of health from the dentist, then had a lovely time ten pin bowling with friends.

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We had a lovely day with friends at Wightwick Manor NT. We completed the spotting trail, and explored the grounds.

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We went to the wheelie workshop to ride bikes and learn how to maintain them.

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We went to see the Angry Birds movie at the cinema with friends.

We met lovely friends and their dog for cycling and fun at Elvaston Castle.

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We met up with Uncle Steve and cousin Toby at Canons Ashby NT, where Alfie had great fun flying his remote control bird, Amber furnished a fairy house, and everyone enjoyed playing hide and seek and completing their spotting trail.

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We had a lovely day with friends at Blists Hill Victorian town. We learned how candles were made, visited the Victorian sweet shop and watched the steam engine in action.

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We had a lovely visit to Peak Wildlife Park, where we sat in the bird hide spotting wild water birds, peeked at the new maneless zebras, and stroked the wallabies and goats.

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We have spent lots of time gardening, louse powdering the chickens, caring for Sonic the hen when she was poorly and having fun BBQing and playing outside :-)

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We had fun with lots of HE friends at the Bloxwich Library meet – and got lots of new books out to read too!

We have done lots of cleaning jobs, lots of crafts and loads of cooking and baking. We have built marble runs, played board games galore, set up pretend cafes, read copious amounts of books and fitted together more of Billie Bones’s skeleton and organs.

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A lovely lunch date with my biggest girl too :-)

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What an amazing month of learning and fun :-)

 

Awesome April

April 30th, 2016 by becki

 

April always starts with a very special day – Alfie’s birthday. This year he reached double figures. Ten!!! Ten years since 7lb 14oz Alfie arrived a week early after a long and hard back to back labour.

Alfie chose to celebrate with lunch at his favourite vegan restaurant, The Warehouse Cafe, and a browse in his favourite Waterstones bookshop, where he happily spent some birthday money and vouchers. He had been saving for months to buy Lego Dimensions for his Wii U, so was pleased to finally be able to buy it on his birthday, along with Captain Toad’s Treasure Tracker. He spent a happy evening playing Lego Dimensions with Daddy on two player mode, whilst his sisters watched happily.

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We enjoyed a bank holiday walk at the nature reserve, finding all the items on our Woodland Trust spring scavenger hunt, and finding the pond full of frog spawn! We also did lots of gardening and seed planting.

 

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We had fun cycling and playing hide and seek with Caroline, Lauren, Tom and Martha at Cannon Hill Park.

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We made pomanders and learned lots about the Great Fire of London, and Tudor life at the Ancient High House where we did an amazing workshop with other home educator friends.

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We had a lovely day at Mimi’s birthday party, where we learnt circus skills from an ex-circus man :-)

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We spent a lovely day at the country park on our bikes with Uncle Steve, Aunty Andy and cousin Toby.

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We enjoyed gymnastics and the park with friends afterwards.

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We had a great time at Chase Group making marble runs and amazing inventions out of junk, followed by gymnastics class.

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The next day we enjoyed swimming with friends, then cake baking for Alfie’s birthday meet up.

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He had a great day with lots of friends at Wibbly Wobbly World of Play :-)

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After a busy week, we enjoyed a quiet day of cooking and crafts.

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We enjoyed a great day at Sarehole Mill, sampling the Vegan Grindhouse burgers at the folk festival and exploring the mill.

 

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Back to gymnastics and the park the next day :-)

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Followed by more gymnastics the next day, then a play date with Jacob and Jess.

A fantastic home ed meet at Flip Out trampoline park, and a sunny picnic at Aston Marina.

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Barefoot walk construction at Wolseley HE Explorers

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Fun at the library and art gallery, and lunch in Bella Italia.

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Yet more gymnastics!

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Making vegan Jaffa cakes

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Using clay to create at Chase Group

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A lovely day meeting the animals at Peak Wildlife Park.

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Exploding volcanoes

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Playing lots of board games

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An amazing day at Gentleshaw Wildlife Sanctuary

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Building Billie Bones

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Fun at Viva vegan fayre, and lots more, such as visiting Nanny and Grandad, crafting, reading, drawing, creating mandalas and generally having fun :-)

March 31st, 2016 by becki

 

March has been an amazing fun filled month, with two holidays!

We actually start on our bonus day of February 29th.

Gymnastic class fun, baking for our Dementia UK coffee afternoon and preparing the tombola :-)

 

 

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The next day was Chase HE group, with Mother’s Day crafts, then yet more baking. Plus moon dough fun.

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The next day was the Dementia UK coffee afternoon that we organised at MPV in Walsall. It was a great success, with £70 raised for charity and lots of fun with the wonderful HE friends that came to support us :-) The Flaky Tarts played a wonderful acoustic set too.

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The next day was Monster Mayhem fun for a friend’s birthday.

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A cold, blustery meet at Wolseley nature reserve on the Friday, with a welcome warm up with lovely friends in the cafe.

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Amber and I spent the Saturday looking after Mom, then the Sunday was spent packing and dropping our chickens off at their holiday home. A cooked breakfast in Morrisons to celebrate Mother’s Day wasa  welcome interlude!

Off to Bluestone National Park Resort for our holiday on the Monday. We had the most luxurious lodge, with 4 bedrooms, two flat screen TVs and DVD players, loads of space and 3 bathrooms. We also got given £100 in vouchers due to construction work going on nearby, which got us two lunches out in the Wild Wood cafe, 2 DVDs from the shop and a bottle of wine :-)

To break up the journey, we stopped off at Caerphilly Castle to admire the giant dragon and explore the amazing ruins.

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The next day we swam in the Blue Lagoon water park, and played crazy golf and climbed in the Adventure Centre.

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A trip to Folly Farm the next day. It was amazing, especially getting so close to the giraffes!

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The next day involved more Blue Lagoon swimming, plus walking around the lake and enjoying the sunshine.

On the way home, we stopped off at Tredegar NT.

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A brief return home, then off again to YHA Streatley, with a stop off at The Living Rainforest enroute. We even spotted the free range sloth this time!

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The youth hostel was a lovely old manor house, with a really friendly warden.

Then onto Legoland to meet our friends for a day at the theme park, and a night in the Legoland Hotel for Alfie’s birthday treat. We had great fun. The next day we went into the pool and splash play zone.

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Back home, it was time for the Big Bang science fair. So much to see and do!

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A day at the National Forest Adventure Farm with lovely friends next :-)

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The next day was Walsall Library and a visit to Nanny and Grandad.

Another busy week followed, starting with gymnastics and fun at Beacon Park with amazing friends.

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Workshops and fun at Think Tank science museum.

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A double bill of Horrible Histories plays (Incredible Invaders and Groovy Greeks) for Alfie and friends, whilst the girls and I went swimming, made Amber’s wind chimes, constructed a marble run down the stairs and painted some more of Amber’s earth.

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Fun times with amazing friends at Boing Zone trampoline Park the next day. Afterwards, Poppy and Oscar were hanging upside down from the beams in the cafe – as you do ;-)

A visit to Nanny and Grandad, and gardening on Good Friday, with more gardening and a roast dinner on Easter Saturday. Amber made apple crumble.

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On Easter Sunday, we went to the new Light Cinema to see Kung Fu Panda 3, followed by lunch at Pizza Express and another visit to Nanny and Grandad.

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Easter Monday was a quiet day of crafts, cleaning and playing.

Then it was back to Chase HE group for an amazing wool workshop, complete with laser mazes and pom poms. We then met lovely friends at Sutton Park for an egg hunt in the woods.

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Next, some time with Daddy whilst I visited an old friend,then a play date with the lovely Violet.

Today, a play date with Jacob and Jess :-)

So, a busy month full of trips away, unbelievable learning opportunities, fun with a wide variety of different friends, and even some sunshine! What more could we ask for?

 

February Frolics

February 28th, 2016 by becki

Another month nearly over, and spring is well on its way. February had its share of tough times. Alfie endured an hour of the dentist trying to extract one of his adult molars under nitrous oxide, but it just broke up and had to be abandoned. He was so brave. Instead, he had a general anaesthetic at Walsall Manor Hospital to have all four adult molars removed. These, along with his incisors, are the teeth affected by enamel hypoplasia. Hopefully, his other adult teeth will be unaffected.

Brave boy coping well with the 5 hour wait for his surgery slot. He even did his Spanish lesson with totally numb hands from the cream!

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Stroking Molly the therapy dog just after waking up.

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We had lots of fun times too.

Gymnastics and dance class every Monday.

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Always followed by a bit of willow swinging ;-)

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Gymnastics every Tuesday evening, where Alfie and Poppy gained their level 3 certificates, and Amber her level 7.

Fun times at Chase HE group, the first week painting our own canvases in the style of famous artists.

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Next session, trying out ceramic tile, mug and plate painting.

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We went swimming several times with lovely friends, both at our local Oak Park leisure centre, then for a fantastic day of flumes and waves at Water World.

We had fun at Wolseley HE Explorers making clay creations, climbing trees and swinging on ropes.

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We had a fantastic day out at Warwick Castle with lots of HE friends – walking the ramparts, visiting the state rooms and Kingmaker exhibition, building dens, playing hide and seek, and creating in the Lego Club.

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We had a vegan breakfast at the Shire Oak. Both girls went to the opticians and got a clean bill of health. We visited Nanny and Grandad lots of times, including a fun meet up with Uncle Matt and Aunty Mei Mei, over visiting from Singapore. Alfie demonstrated his Wii U to Grandad too ;-) We got a family pass at Think Tank, and went for a browse in the book shop afterwards, complete with vegan cake.

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We had a lovely big meet up with lots of HE friends at Come Into Play. It took Alfie’s mind off his op the next day, running round playing with his friends.

We had fun on the Hollybush miniature railway.

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We had a soggy meet up with lovely friends at Cannock Chase – mainly spent in the cafe eating chips, chatting and exploring the visitor centre :-)

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We went to the Boar’s Head for Grandpa’s birthday lunch.

We went to a fantastic HE group at Bloxwich Library.

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We had great fun holding and learning about guinea pigs, rabbits and hamsters at Pets at Home workshop.

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We went ice skating with lovely friends.

We had great fun at Bounce trampolining centre, then Wibbly Wobbly World of Play, with friends.

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We had fun with friends at Monster Mayhem.

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Fun times at home too. Lots of Hama beading.Lots of fun playing in the village they created – with Alfie’s vegan cafe, Poppy’s craft shop, and Amber’s pet shop.

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Making epic train tracks, pretty fruit salads and fruit bowl arrangements, and Amber framed her own canvas in the frame she decorated herself.

 

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Potato chitting

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Overall, a good end to winter, and all happy to have Alfie’s surgery behind us. Here is to spring!

January Journeys

January 31st, 2016 by becki

Welcome to 2016 :-) January is usually my least favourite month of the year. The bright lights and purpose of Christmas is over, the weather is awful, money is tight. It was made even worse for us by some unknown idiot smashing into the side of  the car in a car park and not leaving their details. However, life is what you make it, so we have tried our best to make January as much fun as possible. See whether you think that we succeeded :-)

There was lots of cosy, indoor crafting. Amber painted a horse and foal, Poppy painted lots of sunsets and water scenes.

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There was lots of play dough fun, drawing, writing, gift tag designing and colouring. We made papier mache models using balloons as a form to wrap the paper around. Poppy made a bowl for her brush and blow paint pens, Amber is painting hers to be a model of the earth, and Alfie is undecided as to what his will be :-) Poppy designed an amazing pug t-shirt and My Little Pony t-shirt with her fabric pens.

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There was monster designing, board game playing, Minecraft cooperation, marble runs, movie nights, cooking and baking, willow weaving, Meccano building and Lego play :-)

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We used cocktail sticks and jelly sweets to explore geometry.

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We started to put together our Billie Bones lifesize skeleton model.

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We played in the snow and built a snowman.

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We went to HE dance and gymnastics every Monday, and gymnastics class every Tuesday.

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We went swimming three times, with lovely friends. All three children are making great progress with their swimming and underwater confidence.

We had a lovely day at Enginuity science museum with lots of lovely home educator friends

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Poppy and I spent a lovely day together browsing the craft, sewing, material and wool stalls of Cannock market. She used her Christmas money to buy herself lots more crafting supplies.

There were visits to Nanny and Grandad too. Alfie took along his new Wii U to demonstrate for them.

We went ice skating twice with friends.

We met lots of lovely home educators for a day of play and fun at Come Into Play.

We met lots more lovely home educators for bouncy fun at Bounce trampoline centre, followed by more play with friends at Wibbly Wobbly World of Play.

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We went to two lovely sessions at the Chase HE group. One was junk modelling, the other was Lego themed. The creativity and imagination of the children was awe inspiring to watch.

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We went to Flip Out trampolining centre with lots of friends for yet more bouncy fun and exercise.

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We had two lovely trips with fantastic friends to the National Forest Adventure Farm.

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We went with friends to our local pub for breakfast, then had a fun play date.

We went shopping and for walks. We helped search for a local lost dog. We went out for lunch a couple of times. We enjoyed the novelty of a tiny Corsa as our courtesy car (and celebrated getting our big old bus back!) Overall, it has been a fantastic start to the new year :-)

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