Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Yet another Conversation

Setting: The porch, where Angus is taking off his shoes and coat after school. Mum is sorting Isla's shoes and Blue (dog) is getting in the way as usual.

Mum: Hurry up Angus. We need to get in and close the door. It's cold.
Angus: pausing from taking off his shoes Mum, something great happened at school today.
Mum: Can you tell me when we get inside? Let's hurry up and go in.
Angus: still not taking off his shoes But I want to tell you now. It's important!
Mum: Well, tell me as you take off your shoes.
Angus: But I can't. I'm a gentleman not a lady and gentlemen can't do two things at once!

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Reasons to Live in Heddon

I thought that since we have settled in Heddon on the Wall, you might like a brief tour around the village in a few instalments.

One reason for Heddon was its location: near enough for Ken's work and for him to cycle, and yet not too close to Newcastle to scare me! What we have is a good compromise which we are both happy with, and a stunning view! Our house is on the north side of the Tyne valley, which means we have uninterrupted sunshine - okay, as this is England, uninterrupted except when it is cloudy and raining. We are also high enough up to see for miles. 

I am really looking forward to the view when it snows.

A cloud inversion this morning.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Ten things you should know about Isla

Isla is now two years old. She reached this milestone last Thursday and celebrated with my Mum, Christina, a friend and neighbour visiting from Germany, and us. We started the day with a birthday breakfast, a couple of small presents and the birthday train. Interestingly she remembered the train from Angus's birthday two months ago and thought it was for him.

Isla has confused "Happy Birthday" with "Hallelujah" and spent the day saying "Happy Ujah Isla!"

She also can't quite say "water" yet and asks for "ooter" instead - Aunty Jo you should be proud of her. Isla prefers water to fruit squash.

She is feisty, adventurous and very determined, knows her own mind and can become quite frustrated by her physical and linguistic abilities.

Isla idolises Angus and copies him a lot, which Angus sometimes uses to his advantage.


Although the admiration is quite mutual, Isla's determined attitude means that she gets frustrated with Angus's prevarication in the morning. This results in Isla shouting at Angus to remember his book bag; she will hand him his shoes, push him to the front door and shout, "Agoo school. Come on. Shoes on Agoo." I haven't managed to catch this on video yet as I am usually too busy being equally frustrated! I really should though as it is very funny to watch. 

Isla's comfort object is a blanket. She is not too bothered which of the three she has and is willing to change according to which is being washed at the time (what a relief!) but she has to have a blanket in bed, in the car and if she goes in the buggy.

Isla loves to help - she particularly likes unpacking the shopping and will carefully put it away in the places she can reach such as the fridge.

Fortunately Isla still likes a nap in the afternoon for a couple of hours which means I actually get some time to myself once more. Phew - long may it last.

She has the most adorable curls on the back of her head. Isla had her first haircut a couple of weeks ago. She and Angus were waiting on the chairs as I had to pop upstairs (we do know the hairdresser really well, so don't be concerned about neglect here!). The hairdresser was ready to cut Isla's hair and was told in no uncertain terms by Angus that she could do what she liked to Isla's hair but she wasn't allowed to cut the curls as they were pretty and we all liked them!

She is amazing. I never thought I would like having a daughter - Isla has shown me how wrong I was. Thank you for being you.

Monday, 14 November 2011


The builders turned up to day and ripped out more of our kitchen. The insurance company has coughed up and work has started. Needless to say, I now have dirt and dust all over my kitchen again and also over the lounge floor. The tiles were obviously as stubborn to remove as we thought as evidenced by the pair of safety glasses left on the dining table.

But progress has been made and for this I am grateful. We have put off doing various jobs around the house citing the kitchen as an excuse but hopefully we will be encouraged to begin ticking off our ever-varying list once again. As with all projects like this house, the list rarely gets shorter: the items on the list are just changed or replaced by new ones. Eventually we might feel able to stop keeping a list but right now it helps keep focus.

We also now have a stove in our lounge - a positive move forward but far too tempting in the evening and possibly detrimental to list completion! I will post a few pictures but needed to update you on the kitchen and I am sure you don't want more pictures rotten floorboards and removed cupboards - do you!