"Once your consciousness has been raised, it cannot be lowered"

My parenting journey, our home educating family and some other stuff here and there....

Saturday, 17 July 2010

The Boo Birthday

Five years and 1 week ago I had a 7 day old baby in my arms. Esme was, without doubt, the best birthday gift I could have ever wished for.

Well, last weekend it was my birthday (again) and I didn't get a baby this time, but I did have a really cool time with my beautiful family and lots of friends around me. It was pretty much perfect for me actually.

I did a yoga and meditation workshop on the Saturday morning with an old teacher I used to go to classes with a VERY long time ago. It was great to see him, hear his voice and to really feel how gentle his approach to life is. It was most affirming. 

I had a slightly odd sense I was in a time warp as the workshop was held in the same school hall I used to mope along to for yoga twice a week when I was a student. It's funny how back then I really didn't appreciate how much time I had to practice, write, cook, go for a run, chat on the phone, and the list goes on.... When I think now what I could have achieved then IF I'd bothered to get off my backside....ugh. And now I'm squeezing my yoga practice and everything else I want to do into an hour or two in the evening. With age comes wisdom?... or was it the kids that gave me that insight here?! Anyway I digress....

On the Sunday (my birthday) we went to a Puppet Festival at the Boo, home of the Horse and Bamboo Theatre and saw some wonderful performances...

Hippochondriac .... a bit hit with Magnus who (after a long time plucking up courage) enjoyed tickling the hippo's nose with a feather duster tickling stick!

And Storm in a Teacup , which was just stunningly beautiful. I couldn't really imagine how this story was going to be presented, but it was fabulous- crafted so cleverly and creatively.  It was so delightful; a really meaningful story, visually stunning, funny and engaging and with lovely music.We were all enthralled, and I was slightly shocked to be moved to tears at several points in the performance! 

Afterwards we were allowed to meet the performers, explore the set, handle the puppets and masks and ask questions...

I wondered if this might demystify the magical feel of the show for the children but actually it served to add intrigue. The seamless performance, which had appeared to be very simple, was obviously planned with great precision and carefully choreographed. It gave the children a few insights into how they could start to create their own fantastic theatrical puppet masterpieces, they were still rapt!...

It was such a privilege to see this show and I am still moved inside when I think how much we all enjoyed it now.

I've been thinking of getting my children involved in some sort of "drama" but going to the Boo really clarified that for now I want them to be exposed to truly creative theatre, gentle storytelling and artistry rather than more show-y off-y theatre/ (poorly) regurgitated West End musicals or anything too heavyweight. It's fab we have the time and freedom to pursue this since Esme is not at school. 

After the puppets we took over a big table for tea in a local cafe with my family and plenty of chums who had all debunked from Manchester up into the hills for the day. 

I came home feeling very loved and very, very lucky. I'm so, so grateful for all this. Thank you everyone ;)

Monday, 5 July 2010


Last weekend we were invited to go camping in Anglesey with some lovely folks, so we went. It sounds so simple but it took a whole 2 weeks of deliberation for us to decide to pack the car and go. We ended up making a snap decision, frantically packing up and driving into the evening on Friday. We pitched the tent with seconds to go before the light disappeared completely!

I'm so glad we went. It was such a beautiful place and we were extremely lucky to have a gloriously sunny day at the beach.

It was Esme's 5th Birthday, which felt almost as momentous as us hot-footing it out of the city. How can it be 5 years since she was born?! Esme was delighted to be around friends and running wild and free. Five is suiting her so far. My beautiful, thoughtful, happy little girl. I love her so much.

Magnus is asking to go camping again and keeps saying "beach...again....soon"

Even Bruce did lots he things he wouldn't normally....

....well, almost! He did sit in a different place!

We found loads of dead crabs, saw jellyfish in the sea and were all delighted when one of the Dads found this dogfish egg, you could see the baby fish's heart pulsing inside and it was moving about.

We shared food, the children, washing up, stories, thoughts, hopes, fears and even thermal underwear....hehe!
We had such a good time with wonderful people, it was so relaxing.

I feel a real shift for our family, a burgeoning sense of adventure and a new willingness to explore and grow together outside our comfort zones.

This is a good example I suppose...I'm putting pictures on my blog at last!... though I can't take any credit for these. They're all courtesy of Joel for now (thanks love). I'll need to work on expanding my comfort zone with photography ;)